Perhaps the first thing that comes to mind for foreigners visiting my home country – Philippines – is the fine white sand and crystal clear beaches of Boracay in Aklan Province in Western Visayas. While I cannot argue with this statement, I have always thought there are equally better places to go to for a vacation in the Philippines – one of which is Little Boracay in Mindanao at Sta. Maria, Davao Occidental.

If you like a low-key sand and beach experience (away from the bustling night and city life) and simply enjoy moments of pure serenity – then this secret cove is right for you. It doesn’t boast expensive and top-rated amenities, but rather decent and affordable ones which is truly enough. In my case, this has been our go-to place with my friends.

Accommodation is not a problem at Little Bora. Renting of nipa huts and well-ventilated cottages are available for day tour and overnight stays. There is a small convenience store for your other needs but I strongly recommend that you bring your own food and drinks for the whole stay. The resort charges on corkage fees but not to worry, I’m very sure it won’t break your budget altogether.

Nipa Huts at Little Boracay in Mindanao
Little Boracay in Mindanao is a wonderful piece of beach property nestled in Sta. Maria. I love seeing fishermen dock their small boats and would gladly give you a boat ride should you want one. Truly, Filipinos have their own way of earning something for a living. I bet you also wouldn’t miss the chance to ride one for sheer adventure!

A secret hideout in Sta. Maria, Davao Occidental in the Philippines - Little Boracay in Mindanao.

How to Get There:

From Davao City via bus: Ride a bus going to Malita at Ecoland Terminal. When in Malita, switch buses that will take you to Sta. Maria bus station. Alight a habal-habal – a motorcycle ride that takes up to 3 passengers (including the driver) – that will take you to Little Boracay.

Honestly, I really don’t know another way of getting there aside from bus and arranging your own ride. However, if you are in the other parts of the country – perhaps in Luzon or Visayas region – then you can readily book a flight straight to Francisco Bangoy International Airport in Davao City. There are other vacation spots in Mindanao and I’m pretty sure the experience will be totally the same, if not much more than going straight to Boracay.

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There are certainly a whole lot of beautiful places in the Philippines – Little Boracay in Mindanao is just one of them. I seriously wish I will have the chance to visit all these 7,100+ islands and proudly share it with everyone. So if you’re going to Philippines anytime soon, try to include Little Boracay in Mindanao in your itinerary.

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