Boracay water sports activities must be booked through hotels, accredited agencies

ABS-CBN News

Posted at Nov 03 2018 06:30 PM | Updated as of Nov 05 2018 08:55 PM

Workers who helped clean Boracay island during its six-month closure watch as visitors arrive at Cagban port on the formal reopening of the famed beach destination on October 26, 2018. Fernando G. Sepe Jr., ABS-CBN News

BORACAY ISLAND - (UPDATED) Bookings for water sports here must be coursed through hotels and resorts, not peddlers on the beach, authorities said Saturday, as the ban on water activities was lifted.

This is to avoid the proliferation of illegal tour coordinators and commissioners, said Al Orolfo, deputy ground commander of the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) in Boracay.

Water sports may also be booked through Department of Tourism (DOT) accredited travel agencies.

There will be designated pick-up points for each activity at Stations 1 and 3 on White Beach to prevent overcrowding the beach line, he said.

Water sports that use motorized equipment like jet skiing and diving will be allowed to resume starting November 7, Environment Undersecretary Benny Antiporda said.

Island-hopping tours will, meanwhile, resume on November 15, he said.

The government earlier banned all water sports on the island while the environment department undertook marine biodiversity tests.

Select activities resumed Saturday, a week after the island was reopened to tourists.

The island, one of the top tourist destinations in the country, was closed to tourists in April for a half-year rehabilitation after President Rodrigo Duterte said its once pristine waters have turned into cesspools.

- with a report from Cherry Palma, ABS-CBN News