Boracay is fringed by dozens of gorgeous, powdery white-sand beaches that are easily explored on foot, motor scooter, paraw (native sailboat) or motorised banca (outrigger boat).
While Boracay’s famous White Beach can get overcrowded during the April to May high season there are plenty of alternatives.
During the dry season from November to April, the west coast beaches, including White Beach, are calm and best for swimming, while the more windy east coast beaches are best for wind and kite surfing. During the rainy season, from June to October, this is reversed.
The best beaches in Boracay, include…
Boracay’s White Beach is almost as well known for its party image as it is for the sugar-white sand that gives it its name.
The beachfront and area immediately inland is crowded with shops, restaurants, bars and nightclubs – the place to party-on until the wee-hours.
The 4.8km-long stretch of fine, powder-white sand shelves gently into the azure waters of the Sulu Sea on the west coast of Boracay and is the island’s top see-and-be-seen beach for locals (and probably best avoided during Philippine public and school holidays).
By day, sunbathe on the brilliant palm-fringed white sand, unwind with a massage in the shade of swaying palm fronds or go swimming, snorkelling, windsurfing, sailing and kite surfing. After dark, head to Borocay’s legendary clubs and discos. White Beach is divided into five areas and regularly patrolled by lifeguards.
The beach is home to a range of resorts to suit all budgets, with the more exclusive accommodation located along the northern end after Boat Station 1, including the five-star Fridays Boracay.
Follow the track north from White Beach to this less-crowded beach, a 200m-long, palm-fringed, white-sand oasis with great views of the island from the rocky headland.
This tiny crescent of white sand lies hidden between rocky headlands just north of Diniwid Beach – perfect for a romantic interlude and for sunbathing, swimming or snorkelling the offshore coral garden.
Come for a day or stay longer at the beachfront Balinghai Beach Resort, with a choice of sea-view cottages set on the rocky foreshore and atop the cliff overlooking the beach.
Sunbathe, swim or beachcomb for attractive shells on this pretty white-sand beach, located just over a headland from Balinhai Beach.
Perfect for a secluded picnic. Come for the day or stay longer at the luxurious and exclusive Shangri-La Boracay Resort and Spa.
Dip your toes into the clean white sand of this gorgeous beach located just a short climb north of Punta Bunga.
Swim and snorkel in the crystal clear waters then enjoy a refreshing drink beneath swaying palm trees at the Alon Bar, courtesy of the nearby Shangri-La Boracay Resort and Spa.
Explore the second-longest beach on Boracay, an 800m-long stretch of (slightly course) white sand, crowded with shiny white seashells called puka that are used to make necklaces sold in Boracay’s shops.
Located on the more exposed north shore, the waves here are stronger than on other parts of the island, which means less people and more solitude for a romantic picnic.
Relax on the palm- and tree-fringed beach, grab a snack at one of the small beachside restaurants and climb to the clifftop at Lapuz-Lapuz on the extreme northeast point of the island for views across the most rugged region of Boracay.
Puka Shell Beach is less than 15 minutes bike ride from White Beach and can also be reached by motorised banca.
Framed on the north side by a rocky headland and tiny islets, this palm-fringed white-sand beach offers great swimming, snorkelling and scuba diving during the wet season, with the added attraction of hiking inland through dense jungle to see giant fruit bats.
The Bat Caves are located just a 30-minute stroll from the beach, which is located on the east coast. The caves are best visited at dusk when the bats flood out of the cave.
This white-sand beach sits on the opposite shore to White Beach and is a favourite of windsurfers and kite surfers when strong offshore winds blow along the east coast from November to April.
Discover a more laid-back old-style Boracay beach, with less development, only a five-minute stroll from the shops, bars and amenities of White Beach.
Come for a day or stay longer at a choice of accommodation including the Palm Breeze Villa Boracay, a small luxury resort set in a slightly elevated position at the northern end of the beach. Or try Cobiba Villas, located on a cliff overlooking Bulabog Beach.
Discover this quiet and peaceful white-sand beach just south of Bulabog Beach. Just a short walk over a rocky promontory lies neighbouring Tambisaan Beach, which nestles in a pretty jungle-clad cove.
Escape the crowds on this secluded, palm-fringed crescent of powder-white sand that shelves gently into the azure waters of the south coast. Sunbathe, swim and snorkel the rocky coastline that is indented with interesting caves to explore.
Latest update: Best beaches in Boracay Island: 1 June, 2022