Tuesday, 16 September 2014

Boracay, Philippines Day 2 - D'mall, Jonah's Milkshake, Andoks, Real Coffee and Tea Cafe, Bom Bom Bar, Sunset Paraw Cruise, Zuzuni

Stef woke up bright and early for her dive and I joined her for an early breakfast before retreating back to our room to sleep a while longer. When I was finally well rested, I picked up a beach towel from the reception desk and headed out for a nice stroll along the White Beach to D'mall. The White Beach is so beautiful. It is definitely a beach you should visit if you are a beach bum like I am. The powdery white sand, clear blue waters with clear blue skies, swaying palm trees, and a strong steady sea breeze are just too awesome to put into words. 

The Willy's Rock (picture below) is near the shore and can be reached easily if the tide is low. You would see groups of tourists wading out into the water when the tide recedes and climbing up the rock. The sea is completely dark at night so I would advise against visiting Willy's Rock at night. 

I stumbled into Jonah's Milkshake to grab a cold milkshake. The milkshake at Jonah's was really good and I am especially fond of the avocado milkshake. However, the service was terrible. Service in Boracay was generally impeccable and the locals were just so friendly. But Jonah's just made me feel highly unwanted like they could not wait to toss the milkshake into my arms and shoo me out immediately. I guess the large crowd seeking some cold comfort away from the heat at Jonah's did not help. 

I strolled around D'mall which was not exactly what you would expect a mall to be. It was basically a collection of small little shops and restaurants that formed the heart of touristy Boracay. Met up with Stef and we decided to have lunch at Andoks. Andoks was situated along the road behind the beach front shops and restaurants. It is a fast food chain that serves grilled chicken and pork items. We ordered grilled chicken and what we thought was char siew. Both were yummy! The chicken was super tender and juicy. The char siew was nicely grilled but slightly fatty so you might not enjoy it if you did not fancy fatty pork. We sat in the area which was not air-conditioned and it was really very hot. There were also many flies zooming around our food and we tried our best to shoo them away until we grew tired and decided to just let them be.

After our lunch we headed over to Real Coffee and Tea Cafe for dessert! It might not be easy spotting Real Coffee as it was located on the second level of a large wooden hut above Sea World. We climbed up a steep flight of stairs and found ourselves in a large cafe facing the beach. Real Coffee was famous for their lemon muffin which was what we went for. We also wanted some ice coffee but they ran out of rice and we were not going to gulp down a hot cup of coffee in that heat so we left after finishing our lemon muffin. The lemon muffin was not spectacular so forget about making a trip to Real Coffee just for it.

We promised ourselves that we would not start on drinks too early because... actually I could not remember the reason. But anyway, the reason was no longer important because we broke that promise on the second day and started drinking right after our trip to Real Coffee. It was just too hot (our favourite excuse) and an ice cold beer at Bom Bom Bar was just perfect. The acoustic live music was good too. The locals could sing so well! 

We went for our sunset paraw cruise next. Sunset on a paraw is a must in Boracay. Watching the sunset along White Beach was definitely one of the best memories of Boracay. The sunset was spectacular every evening and I asked a local whether she would ever get bored of it. Her reply? Never, because the sunset is different every single day. Indeed.

There was some difficulty trying to secure our paraw sunset cruise. We did not want to book the entire paraw ourselves because that was just wholly unnecessary. So we had to get someone who was willing to sell us a seat on the paraw without trying to stuff the entire paraw down our throats. There were touts along the beach touting paraw sunset cruises and we basically asked all of them for their rates. Prices fell dramatically closer to sunset when they were desperate to fill their paraws so I would suggest that you wait out. We were offered 800P for 2 pax by one tout, then 700P for 2 pax by another tout, before finally finding a tout who offered us 500P for 2 pax. We were comfortable with that price so we went along with him. Take your time to shop for the best price and be in no hurry to settle for one until you find the right price. 

Riding on the paraw into the sunset with wind in my hair and a San Miguel in my hand was definitely one of the highlights of this trip. The sunset was marvelous, a spectacular ball of gold dipping into the sea. I was just so at peace with myself at that moment. 

The sunset cruise was roughly 30 minutes and we returned to shore shortly after. We laid out a beach towel on the sand, sat down with our beers, and gazed out into the horizon until the sun disappeared and darkness enveloped us. 

We had dinner at Zuzuni (Boat Station 1). We ordered a salad, Salmon Steak, and Squid Ink Paella to share. The salad has crisp lettuce, tomatoes, watermelon and cheese. The watermelon was an interesting addition to the salad. The Salmon Steak was nice but nothing to shout about. The Squid Ink Paella was definitely something I would recommend everyone to try. It was just so delicious. The waiter brought the large pan with our paella to the table and set it on a stand beside us. He scooped our first serving onto plates and returned periodically to serve us more paella. The squid ink was rich and tasty, the seafood fresh and sweet, the rice crispy and perfect. This is definitely a must try dish.

We walked along the White Beach back to Punta Rosa under a star studded sky. We looked up at the same moment and spotted a shooting star streak across the dark sky. You would never see a sky like this in Singapore.

Read about our Day 1Day 3Day 4 and Day 5 in Boracay!

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