The best thing about Boracay Island is that you can do as much or as little as you want.
You will have a great time doing little more than swimming, eating, sleeping and drinking.
But, there is so much more on offer for those who want to be a bit more active.
We have put together this comprehensive checklist of everything you can do on the island so you can get organized ahead of time.
Because once you are there, just lazing around on the beach is a tempting way to spend each day.
In this post:
- How to Book Boracay Activities
- Beaches to Visit
- Water Based Activities
- 5. FlyFish
- 6. Banana Boat
- 7. Parasailing
- 8. Island Hopping
- 9. Cliff jumping
- 10. Helmet Diving
- 11. Snorkeling
- 12. UFO Ride
- 13. Paddle Boarding
- 14. Jet Skiiing
- 15. Mermaid Swimming
- 16. Sunset Sailing
- 17. Fishing
- 18. Scuba Diving
- 19. Glass Bottom Boating
- 20. Slides N’ Splash Water Park
- 21. Kite surfing
- 22. Wind Surfing
- 23. Wakeboarding
- 24. Speed Boat Rental
- 25. Underwater Scooter
- Land Based Activities
- 26. ATV Tour
- 27. Tindahan it Boracay (Wet) Market
- 28. Regular Markets
- 29. Shopping
- 30. Rock Climbing
- 31. Day Spa and Massage
- 32. Fish Spa
- 33. Zorba
- 34. Reverse Bungee
- 35. Golf
- 36. Helicopter Tour
- 37. Boracay Island Land Tour
- 38. Professional Island Photoshoot
- Night Time Activities
- Final Word
How to Book Boracay Activities
When on the island you will constantly be approached by people trying to sell you these activities.
Unless you are a local, expect the prices to be inflated at first. You will need to haggle your way down to something reasonable.
I always found this to be a major hassle!
Some of these activities can be booked online ahead of time. The price will be better than, or comparable to what you will get in person and removes that hassle.
It also gives you some reassurance that you are not paying through the nose – which can leave a bitter taste in the mouth.
Boracay activities that you can book online are below:
- Banana Boat
- Island Hopping
- Helmet Diving
- Sunset Cruise
- Day Sailing
- Day Spa & Massage
- Fish Spa
- Scuba Diving
- Reverse Bungee
- Cliff Diving
- ATV Tour
- Jet Ski Tour
- Kite Surfing
- Helicopter Tour
- Boracay Island Tour
- Professional Island Photoshoot
- Speed Boat
- Underwater Scooter
This is far from our full list (less than half), and many of the suggested activities are completely free.
So read on and get planning!
Beaches to Visit
There are lots of beaches on the island. The majority of which get very few visitors.
They are all just a short tricycle ride away if you are in the mood to do some exploring.
1. White Beach
This is the most popular and where 90% of the visitors will spend all their time. The majority of this article is focused on this area so nothing further to add here.
2. Puka Shell Beach
Located right at the northern tip of the island where you will find a beach just as beautiful as White Beach but without the clutter surrounding it.
You may run into the occasional boatload of tourists who are on island hopping trips. But aside from that it is generally quiet.
3. Ilig-Iiligan Beach
This would be the least popular place to visit and it is surrounded by little more than bushland and very little infrastructure.
If you are looking for a window into the old Boracay this may be as close as you get.
It may only be a matter of time until the commercial sprawl starts to creep into the area. So check it out while you can.
4. Bulabog Beach
Located opposite Station 2 at the northern end of White Beach, this area is a hub for some of the more active watersports.
Kite surfing and windsurfers are constantly darting up and down the horizon as you look out to the east.
Parasailing also transfers to this side of the island in the quieter months through rainy season.
There are hotels and resorts here also and is a great place to stay if you are going to be spending a lot of your time immersed in the watersports on offer.
Water Based Activities
As mentioned earlier, you will constantly run into people trying to sell you these activities.
By booking ahead of time you can get past this process which can be a hassle. Those activities that can be pre-booked have links included below where you can find the most up to date prices.
This is great fun and will challenge you far more than the Banana Boat which looks boring AF!!
As the boat picks up speed the inflatable you are holding on to will fly up in the air and the strain to hang on while the boat corners will test you out.
Expect to be flung around and eventually off the device, before they circle back and pick you up for another round.
You can fit up to eight people on the ride, but stick to 3-4 for maximum carnage!
6. Banana Boat
The poor boring cousin of the above…. Don’t bother unless you are easily amused.
I guess it will make a good photo when traveling in a group. But seriously guys, get on the FlyFish.
This is popular with parachutes airborne from sunrise to sunset most days. And this is another that I just cannot understand!
Yes, you get up fairly high in the air…. But nothing happens when you are up there. You just cruise at a pretty dull speed.
Unless you have an innate fear of heights it wasn’t much of a thrill. But the colleague I flew up with screamed the whole time.
So I guess most would enjoy it…
8. Island Hopping
This is a pleasant day sailing around the calm seas to nearby islands, and also check out some of the beaches on the other side of Boracay Island.
- Start at White Beach
- Coral Garden
- Tambisaan Beach
- Puka Beach
- Crocodile Beach
- Ilig-iligan Beach
- Return to White Beach
Some of the tours also include helmet diving (No. 10) if you wanted to kill two birds with one stone.
9. Cliff jumping
I have not tried this one, but it was always top of my list.
After so many visits I have no excuse…. But I will do it next visit!!
I love jumping off ledges into the water and this has a number of springboards at differing heights. All the way up to 10 meters I believe.
10. Helmet Diving
The helmets themselves are very cool. Unlike a sealed mask, the helmet creates an air bubble inside.
This enables you to walk freely on the ocean floor with air to breathe.
Similar view as the Helmet diving, but more freedom to get horizontal and swim around.
This will be a better option if you are strong in the water. Whereas the helmet diving is more of a casual stroll.
12. UFO Ride
A slightly more tame version of the fly fish experience.
Rather than having to hang on for dear life, you can sit back in this inflatable space ship looking device as you get towed around the open sea.
This is definitely a more family friendly activity. But if you are not traveling with kids then go for the fly fish instead!
13. Paddle Boarding
The waters around the island are usually very calm and are perfect for paddleboarding.
You can cruise up and down the beach at your leisure and it is also great exercise!
14. Jet Skiiing
There is a designated jet ski area in the southwestern end of White Beach.
It may be a little dull for those who are experienced on these watercraft but for the beginner, it would still be great fun.
You can also take a private jet ski tour around the island, and to neighboring islands.
This is a bit more expensive, but is a cool way to go island hopping. It is also a bit more enjoyable to be jet skiing with a purpose than just going around in circles for no reason.
It is one of the more expensive activities on the island.
15. Mermaid Swimming
This must be a chick thing… I’ll leave it at that.
16. Sunset Sailing
At the northern end of Station 2 you will find a stack of boats sitting on the shore waiting for customers to take out onto the water.
You can take a day trip on a sailing boat, but this activity comes to life at sunset where you will get front row seats to a pretty spectacular sight.
You can find a local to take you out fishing, but this is one activity where you can expect to be disappointed.
The waters are overfished and for a western recreational fisherman, you probably won’t find what you are looking for.
But, if you want a nice day on the water to throw a line in while you relax with a few beers then you can still have a nice day out.
Just stay away from the reefs. Fishing too close is illegal, and you will do damage to the coral.
18. Scuba Diving
You will find scuba centers scattered along the beach that will accommodate both licensed and non-licensed divers.
The water surrounding the island is both clear and calm so a relatively safe place to test the waters if you are new to diving.
For the more serious diver you will find a diverse underwater world with some stunning sea life, and scenery.
19. Glass Bottom Boating
Another more family oriented activity for those wanting a less immersive experience.
The next best thing to diving, but it is a distant second!
You are at the mercy of the weather with the visibility through the glass being poor at times when the wind picks up.
You will have the option to snorkel at some of the stops you make along the way, and can also feed the fish if you want to.
20. Slides N’ Splash Water Park
Here you will find a network of inflatable floating obstacles, slides and that big cushion thing where you can launch your mate into the air and crashing into the water.
Great place to play around if you are looking for more action in your swim than the calm Boracay seas can offer.
21. Kite surfing
This activity is done over on the eastern side of the island from Bulabog Beach and is not for the faint hearted!
You can take a lesson to get you started and if you can master it then my hat goes off to you!
22. Wind Surfing
Similar to kite surfing, you will need a lesson to get you started.
You can hire a board and take off around the bay and attempt to get the hang of it. It looks like fun, but I could never quite get the balance right.
If you have never wakeboarded before expect to be sore for the next few days…. Really sore!!
It takes some strength to pull yourself out of the water, and when you get there you have to stay composed enough to stay balanced and on your feet.
It is great fun, but the soreness will kick in two days later and it can be debilitating if you have not done it before. Trust me!
24. Speed Boat Rental
One thing you will see everywhere around the beaches are speed boats towing around all of the floatation devices mentioned so far in this list.
But, if you scrap any load to be towed around these boats could pick up a hell of a lot of speed.
This is a twist on the island hopping day tour and will see you flying along between islands, not wasting any time.
The faster you go, the more you see!
25. Underwater Scooter
For those who are less confident in the water, you can motorize the whole experience! I have not tried this one – and would prefer to swim anyway – but I am so curious as to how this would work.
Again the calm seas and lack of strong currents around the island would make this a simple craft to operate and will enable you to cover a lot of ground as you explore the ocean floor.
Land Based Activities
This is focused on daytime activities. We will cover the bar scene and nightlife in the next section.
For those looking for some good wholesome fun there is plenty to keep you occupied each day.
26. ATV Tour
I found this activity to be a real snoozer! The only highlight being the (tower?) which gives you a stunning view of the island.
You will be in a group of 10-20 ATVs and will move at a snail’s pace…. Nothing like the Mayon Volcano ATV – which was awesome!
So you are really just paying for the experience of riding this thing at 5 mph down a dodgy island road.
Some people on the tour really enjoyed it. So don’t let me turn you off, just wasn’t for me.
27. Tindahan it Boracay (Wet) Market
Here you will find fresh seafood for a fraction of the price of the beachfront restaurants.
You will need to haggle a little, but I have found that a kilo of prawns (or shrimp…), a lobster and a handful of clams would set you back about p1,500.
Every side of the market has small restos who will cook up your catch for p200 per plate with a sauce of your choosing and rice.
They have cheap beer on offer to wash it all down too.
Yes, this is open at nighttime too, but if you have cleaned up and ready to head out then hanging around a very fishy smelling market may not be the aroma you want to carry around with you.
28. Regular Markets
The alleys that surround the Wet Market (name?) are full of flea market style vendors attempting to sell you tacky souvenirs and I Love Boracay singlets.
If that is your thing then you can spend a good hour or two wandering around checking things out.
Most shops are in and around D-Mall and along the beachfront. Here you will find all the usual beachy kind of places.
I dislike shopping at the best of times so I have little advice to offer here except to wander around and see what you like.
Oh, and take note of the shop policies…
<insert bikini shop pic>
30. Rock Climbing
Also in D-mall is a small rock climbing wall. It is right in the center where the narrow mall opens up into a larger area flanked by restaurants.
There are multiple difficulty levels and any reasonably fit person should be able to give the wall a pretty good shake.
31. Day Spa and Massage
For a more relaxing experience to get you into the laid-back island state of mind there are tons of cheap massage options around the island.
You can have one right on the beach and listen to the waves and passing foot traffic. Or you can go into one of the more reputable establishments for a clean, air-conditioned environment.
One suggestion I would make is that if you want the indoor option go to the actual storefront so you know where the massage will take place.
Many of the masseuses will stand at the beachfront to find customers and then take you to wherever their table is (although this was apparently banned after the island closure).
You can spot these girls because they will be in a uniform and on the beach.
Whereas the ladies who give you a massage at the beach have no uniform and will sit you down at the sunbeds right in front of them.
I make this point only so you have a comfortable experience. I went with this option once and ended up in some room with no AC and dodgy bed sheet partitions separating the beds.
I had to listen to a room full of old white guys attempt to flirt with their young masseuse… Not a relaxing atmosphere at all.
There are less reputable places on the island in the back alleys. I only know this because the entrance to my hotel on one stay was in the same back alley and the workers would call me in every time I walked by.
It was a nuisance, but never threatening.
32. Fish Spa
For a different kind of massage you can dunk your feet into a tank of hungry fish. They will nibble at your skin and provide you with a very weird kind of cleanse that will leave you fresh oddly fresh toes.
If you are squeamish or overly ticklish then this may not be for you. But if you can get past the strange feeling it can be quite relaxing.
Basically you get inside a giant ball and get rolled down a hill.
The chaos once you are inside is multiplied if you have more than one person in there. You will be tripping over each other as you get thrown around.
34. Reverse Bungee
You will get the best view available on the island here. The only problem is you will be moving way too fast to really enjoy it!!
This is located in a small complex at Station 3.
I didn’t even know there were gold courses on the island until I went up the <name> tower and could see the full 360 degree view.
These are right at the northern end of the island where the luxury hotels are.
It may even be part of the Shangri-La complex. I have never played, nor wanted to play when in island mode (despite being a keen golfer).
The rounds are expensive and aimed at a different crowd.
36. Helicopter Tour
Yes this one is a bit more expensive but what better way to see every corner of the island from a view that not many get to see.
If you are lucky enough to get the window seat on the flight in you may catch a small glimpse of the island. This experience gives you the full picture of Boracay with it’s unique shape, colors, and beautiful island surroundings.
When back on land you may be able to retrace your steps to a hidden beach that no one else knew was there…
37. Boracay Island Land Tour
This half day tour can be a great introduction to the island so you can get your bearings, and also get outside of the White Beach area.
If you are new to the island you may not know what is out there, and once surrounded by the convenience and commercialism of the White Beach area you may not feel motivated to leave.
By locking in a tour ahead of time you will see the less popular, but no less beautiful beaches, see how the locals live, and learn a thing or two about the island’s history while you are at it.
38. Professional Island Photoshoot
For those traveling as a couple you will get some memorable photos from a session with a professional photographer.
With glistening blue water, white sand, and palm trees as your backdrop you can take home some lasting memories from your island vacation.
Or if you just want some professional quality pics for your instagram account, there will be no shortage of instagrammable places.
You will quickly see why Boracay is a popular wedding destination!
Night Time Activities
The fun doesn’t stop when the sun goes down. In fact, one of the main draws for Boracay as a destination is the nightlife.
Most other destinations outside of the capital cities are very quiet after dark but the shores of White Beach will be buzzing until the early hours of the morning.
39. Watch the Sunset
Ok, so this isn’t an activity as such (not a paid one anyway) it is something that you will be looking forward to every day!
White Beach faces directly west and you will be treated to some amazing colors with a sprinkling of sailing boats in the foreground.
Combined with the music on the beach and the gathering of people all there for the same spectacle you get a unique atmosphere that is fun in a very Boracay kinda way.
40. Bar Hopping
At night time you will find bars, clubs, and restaurants all along the beach offering a wide range of music and atmosphere.
My best advice here is to just start walking and stop wherever catches your eye.
You can have a quiet drink with some laid back reggae music playing in one bar, then move to have dinner on the sand with live singers and bands playing covers of popular songs.
After that you can head to the clubs where things kick up a gear and the party crowd congregates.
Plenty of options to satisfy your mood and taste.
The staple of Filipino entertainment! You will find videoke on offer in a handful of the bars scattered along the beach at night time.
But if you have a group of friends you can just head to one of the dedicated videoke places where you get your own room and can bust out your best high note without making a public spectacle of yourself.
Something that only foreigners seem to mind…
42. Pub Crawl
I had to throw this one in. Always a fun night out.
For more info check out our full review of the Boracay pub crawl.
This list is only the start of your boracay experience. The best part is that you could choose to do none of these and still have an amazing time lazing around on the beach, swimming and eating.
But as you can see there is a lot on offer here to ensure you have a fun time.
Nothing on this list is unique to the Philippines though and it will be a more generic tropical island holiday. But that is what Boracay is these days.
If you are looking for something more cultural then check out our list of Philippines Islands and I am sure you will find something to your liking.