Puka Beach is one of the better known beaches in the island of Boracay because of the unique shells that cannot be found anywhere else in the island. Located at the northern tip of Boracay, it is a very picturesque beach with its stretch of white sand, crystal clear water, and without the overly-populated number of travelers that regularly flock in droves to White Beach, Boracay’s most popular location. Local and foreign tourists come to Boracay for the 4-km long White Beach, which is famous around the world for its fine white sand and azure water. It is the perfect beach for snorkeling, diving, strolling and partying. The only downside of White Beach is that it’s never without a crowd.
From sunrise to sunset, tourists walk the stretch of White Beach enjoying the beautiful view of the Ocean on one side and checking out the shops, bars and restaurants on the other side. Compared to the other world-famous beaches in the Philippines such as El Nido in Palawan and Panglao in Bohol, Boracay is known to be a party place, with loud booming music and overflowing drinks along the powdery white sand beaches. It is not a place, unfortunately, where you can find a respite, never mind a nice and private stroll along white sand shoreline.
Luckily enough, a nice and private stroll along white sand shoreline is exactly what Puka Beach has to offer.
Puka Beach, also called Yapak Beach since it is located in Yapak, is named after the puka shell. The puka shell is unique for having a hole or a “puka” which makes it perfect for stringing into necklaces or trinkets. The sand here is not as fine as that in White Beach because of the puka shells. A number of local vendors walk along the shoreline selling local souvenirs, necklaces, and trinkets made from the shell, which are wonderful to take home to Western countries that are not blessed with beautiful beaches.
There are definitely fewer swimmers and divers here since the water is a bit rougher. Yapak is not popular among divers, swimmers and snorkelers. Likewise, there are very few establishments or forms of entertainment here. There are no major resorts and the only restaurant is Tesebels, but it does serve delicious sea food, including calamari, crab, and garlic prawn.
Island-hopping trips around Boracay on board outrigger boats always pass by Puka or Yapak Beach. Island hoppers are usually pleasantly surprised to see another white beach at the northern tip of Boracay and with not many people around. It is a good place to have lunch, picnic, doze off, take photographs or walk around looking for shells with interesting shapes. Travelers must bring their own cold drinks, though, since there are no cold sodas or ice cream vendors around. There are also very few trees to offer shade.
Tricycles can also bring travelers to this location but for an exclusive round-trip ride that could cost Php100 (USD2.25). It is about 15 minutes away from White Beach by tricycle.
In other words, Puka Beach has less-inviting water and sand compared to the other 12 beaches in Boracay, but tourists will enjoy the relieving emptiness of it in more private or philosophical moments. And there are countless puka shells that the collector in every tourist can find and bring back home.