Puka Shell Beach is a place where you can still experience the purity of Boracay. It may have some hints of civilization, but there are still parts that have preserved their true serene self…
In this guide I’ll share my local knowledge about the beach, so that you know where and when to go to make the most out of your experience there.
About the Beach
Click play to see what Puka is like through the eyes of a drone
Puka Beach is 800 meters long and fronted by a big cliff with a forest alongside it. At dusk you can see flying foxes (very big bats) flying across the top of the cliff.
The sand is coarser than that of White Beach due to the small bits of coral mixed in with it. In the past the beach also used to be lined with puka shells, which is where it got its name from.
It’s also worth knowing that the water increases in depth quickly. So if you’re not confident in your swimming abilities I recommend staying close to the shore.
The Entrance Area
As you exit your tricycle and enter the Puka Beach area you’ll first walk past a few artsy looking stores that sell souvenirs, food, drinks and other things that you may need on the beach.
Then as the full beach comes into full view you’ll be greeted by the Puka Beach sign, which is made of drift wood, shells, corals and other things the locals thought would fit in it. This is a popular spot to take pictures.
The 2 Must-See Areas
Puka Beach has 2 beautiful must-see areas that are easy to overlook if you’re not familiar with them. In this section I show and describe both areas, plus I tell you where to find them.
The Far Left Area
At the far left of the beach you’ll find an area which has kept most of its untouched beauty. The beach is more spacious there and has more green nature. There are also far less establishments and people around.
This part is a must-see if you go to Puka for some peace and quiet. Its spaciousness also makes it the best spot for a picnic, just clean up afterwards if you hold one.
Looking from Bil-At Beach to Puka Beach which is behind the rock in the distance
Bil-At Beach is a beautiful little beach located just right of Puka Beach’s entrance area. It’s only connected to Puka Beach during low tide though. During mid to high tide you’ll have to wade through the water or swim to get there. You can check when it’s low tide on this page.
Things To Do
A small hidden beach left of Puka Beach
These are most of the things to do on Puka Beach other than beach bumming:
- Kayaking or paddleboarding: A fun way to explore Puka’s coastline and to get to see it from a wider, more distant perspective.
- Watch the sunset: While sunset is the busiest time on White Beach, on Puka it’s the quietest time. So if you’re looking for a romantic or quiet and peaceful sunset getaway, Puka Beach is one of, if not your best option.
- Swimming: Cool off and see the clear blue water from up close. Be aware that you can only stand about 5 meters in though.
- Volleyball: Where there’s a beach, there’s volleyball. And Puka Beach didn’t miss the opportunity to have volleyball nets set up for those who wants to enjoy the beach and be sporty at the same time.
- Massage: After all that moving around your body may ache a bit. What’s the best way to fix that? The ever famous beach side massage of course 🙂
Restaurants and Bars
There are a few restaurants on the beach, most of which are located closer to the entrance. And where there’s food, there are beers and cocktails too.
It’s worth keeping in mind that food and drinks are relatively pricey there though. Alternatively you can bring your own and hold a picnic.
The Best Times to Visit and a Time to Avoid
Not all times of day are equal when it comes to the experience you’ll have on Puka Beach. So here are my recommended times to visit, and one time period to avoid…
- Morning: Especially in the early morning the beach can be very serene. The earlier you go the more you’ll feel like having the beach all to yourself.
- Noon till afternoon: This is the busiest time of day, with the most amount of people visiting via both land and island hopping boats.
- Late afternoon till sunset: This is a good time to visit because it’s both quiet and you can enjoy the sunset. It can be a bit of a challenge to find a tricycle ride back if you stay for too long after the sunset though, so don’t wait too long unless you already have arranged for someone to pick you up.
How to Get There
Puka Beach is located at the northern tip of Boracay, about a 20 minute ride from the center. Below I describe the 3 different ways to get there…
- By Tricycle: This is the best choice if you’re going with 2 or more people. They usually charge ₱150 (~USD $3). There are also electric tricycles which carry more people and are more comfortable, plus they’re more eco-friendly too 😀
- By Motorcycle: Some locals offer trips anywhere on the island on their motorcycles. Going to a place as far as Puka, they usually charge around ₱100-150 (~USD $2-$3), depending on which part of the island you come from. They can carry 2 people max.
- By Private Boat: You can rent a private boat to take you there or drop you off and collect you later. Renting a private boat also enables you to visit other more secluded beaches.
- Via Island Hopping: Puka Beach is one of the destinations included in island hopping trips. But if you go there via island hopping, they’ll only give you a limited amount of time to enjoy the beach before they move on to the next place.
Conclusion & Summary
As you can see, where and when you go will have a big impact on your experience. If you want to experience the beach in its most serene setting the best times to visit are early mornings or late afternoons, while the best areas to visit are the far left, and Bil-At Beach during low tide.
P.S. Did you know that Boracay has 17 beaches in total? Click here to see Boracay’s 12 beautiful beaches, and 5 lesser ones to skip.