After 3 blissful nights at Baling Hai we moved a little closer to Boracay's White Beach and spent 5 nights at Frendz Resort. Frendz wasn't as shiny or quiet as Baling Hai but it was cheap and clean, the staff were friendly and amazingly helpful and it's a short walk to 'the Beach.'
White Beach is what Boracay's famous for. It's a 4 kilometre long stretch of white sand lined with resorts, restaurants, masseuses and hawkers selling sunglasses, pearls, tattoos and boat trips. It's touristy as all hell but it's gorgeous. Postcard gorgeous. Pinch yourself gorgeous. Heartbreak gorgeous. Okay, I'll stop typing and let the pictures speak for themselves:
The resort provided some beach chairs and for most of our 6 day stay we sat on the shore, sipping fresh pineapple juice, reading and swimming. The temperature was between 25 and 30 degrees and it was about right, I'd say. The water was a stunning blue and so clear, it reminded me a little of Kai Iwi Lakes. If I closed my eyes I could almost pretend I was in Pataua.
My wonky immune system wouldn't let me completely slip into a holiday coma, and I got some form of horrible strep throat lurgy thing (Tom got it too). The awesome staff at Frendz recommended a doctor and for 1300 pesos ($38 NZD) I got to listen to another tourist talk about his bowel movements for 15 minutes before getting treatment, awesome! I think we ate our way through about 30 bucks worth of paracetamol and I briefly missed Korea's super cheap medical system. Fortunately I had some godawful allergic reaction right before we left the 'pines so I got to go straight back to the doctor when we returned to Korea.
The weather was consistently warm but intermittently sunny so we took refuge from the showers by shopping and eating. Everywhere you walk there are people selling something, so we got hour-long massages and some sweet sunglasses for 350 pesos each ($10) and as promised to Lauren before we left Korea, we drank out of coconuts for 100 pesos ($3):
One of the things I really enjoyed was going to Lemoni Cafe in D'Mall, Boracay's shopping and dining district. It's like Cuba Mall but there's sand and palm trees instead of bricks and bucket fountains. I've missed a lot of things about New Zealand since being in Korea, but on Sundays I miss Wellington's cafe culture, when Tom, Cara and I used to go to Sweet Mothers' or Kiallas and get something delicious to eat. Lemoni filled that void, serving up great coffee, french toast, eggs benny and smoothies. The best thing about the place was it's dessert cabinet. Tom ate about 5 of their lemon tarts, and I fell for the tiramisu - almost every day we'd get dessert to go, and sit on the beach and eat it. It was fantastic.
I hope I've made you sufficiently jealous!
I've got a few more pictures to post but I'll let Tom write about some of the other things we did in between swims - diving, and visiting the fish market.