PHILIPPINES: Rejuvenated Boracay reopens to Tourism
World’s famed Boracay island in the Philippines is once more open for tourism and business but with restrictions in place– like no to wild beach parties.
Tourism numbers will be strictly limited for the next 12 months. People will be scaled down to 6,000 from the 19,000 the island had previously been able to accommodate.
The island reopened today, Friday, six months after closing for a cleanup operation to reverse the fortunes of a destination once labeled a “cesspool
” by Philippines President Rodrigo Duterte.
There’s a host of new by-laws, some of which might leave travelers wondering if they will still have fun visiting.
Visitors will have to limit drinking, smoking and raw sewage and there’s a few casinos and beach vendors.
The environment, tourism and interior departments accredited at least 157 resorts and hotels
to accept tourists.
Flights are fully booked and the new maximum tourist capacity of 19,000 may be met by the
weekend, said Environment Undersecretary Benny Antiporda.
Boracay, which major tourist magazines consistently rate as among the world’s best beaches, measures a mere 1,000 hectares (2,470 acres).
Yet it was seeing up to 40,000 sun worshippers at peak times, with tourists spending $1 billion a year but also leaving mountains of garbage and an overflowing sewer system.
(NEWS AND PHOTO SOURCES: CNN and ABS-CBN)