The Philippines is an archipelago of 7,107 islands located in Southeast Asia. Being an archipelago, it’s very rich in marine biodiversity and has a span of 40,000 square kilometres of coral reefs. The Philippines is well known as the gateway to the Coral Triangle or the world’s centre of marine biodiversity. A sublime dive site is found in the Tubbataha Reefs, which is a UNESCO World Heritage Site. This dive site offers what is known to divers as high-voltage diving. It sports plentiful marine biodiversity such as turtles, sharks, manta rays, whale sharks and perfect coral gardens.
Another marine reserve park is found in El Nido, Palawan. This is the most popular dive site for beginner divers sporting crystal clear waters for seeing various marine life. Being rich in WW2 history, wreck diving can also be experienced in Coron in Palawan where you can see sunken Japanese WW2 ships.
To see the rare and spectacular critters such as the colourful cuttlefish, red ghost pipefish, needle shrimp, frogfish, mandarin fish and seahorses, you can visit the The Ducomi Pier in the city of Dumaguete in Negros Oriental which is just a 45 minute flight from Manila, the capital city of the Philippines.
Another popular dive sites for beginner divers is in Donsol near Legazpi city, less than 40 minutes flight from Manila. Donsol is the whale shark capital of the world. The gentle giants can be seen during the months of November and April as they feed on plankton.
For the greatest visibility to fully enjoy the sight of magnificent pelagic fishes such as pygmy seahorses, frogfish, ghost pipefish, stargazers, nudibranchs and soft corals, Verde Island - accessible from Puerto Galera, is a must dive.
The Tubbataha Reef is a well renowned UNESCO World Heritage Site. It sports the world’s most beautiful coral reefs and a very rich marine biodiversity.
The Philippines has a tropical climate.
There are three seasons that affect the diving conditions in the Philippines. The northeast monsoon brings strong winds from December to March. The southwest monsoon is affecting the months of July through November which is wet but the waters are warm. April through June is the dry months with very little winds.
Water temperature is generally warm being a tropical region.
Depending on the weather and particular location, the Philippines has a year-round diving season.
Natural hazards include earthquakes, violent typhoons and heavy flooding.
The major airports in the Philippines are Ninoy Aquino International Airport in Manila, Clark International Airport in Angeles City, Mactan-Cebu International Airport in Lapu-Lapu City, Cebu and the Francisco Bangoy International Airport in Davao City.
There are many shuttle services and taxis going to and from the airports. For those looking for fun, there’s the jeepney which is the flagship of the Philippines mass transportation.
It is advisable to take airplanes for faster travel time since the Philippines is an archipelago.
There are also ferries travelling to and from the three major islands namely: Luzon, Visayas, and Mindanao.
In Metro Manila, there are several metro train stations connecting many cities in the capital region.
Use the following links for more information about;
- More about the Philippines (Wikipedia)
On a general note, while in Asia, please do not support Elephant abuse by riding Elephants or supporting Elephant performance.
You can help these magnificent animals by making your travel companions aware of what lies behind this industry; the main problem is a lack of awareness.
Dive Report is committed to raising awareness to the abuse suffered by Elephants used in the tourist industry. If you want to know more you can find out more here, here, here and here. Also see a PETA documentary video here.
Anilao is on the island of Luzon, about 3 hours' drive south of Manila, in the Batangas province of the Philippines. It is best known for muck diving. Anilao is known among divers for its macro life and muck diving. There are...Go>
Apo Reef is the largest atoll in the Philippines and the world's second largest single coral reef; clearly this represents a significant attraction to tourists and divers alike. The Apo Reef Natural Park was given Protected Area status in 1996. The park is famous for...Go>
Boracay is a small island located in Aklan Province of the Philippines, roughly 315km south of Manila. It has been ranked as one of the best islands in the world for relaxation, tranquility and nightlife – in addition to having great scuba...Go>
University town Dumaguete is locally referred to as the city of gentle people. Many different bars and restaurants in town, live music at different locations most nights. With modern facilities such as hospitals, doctors, dentists, supermarkets and immigration office, Dumaguete is an...Go>
Donsol is a small rural costal town situated in the province of Sorsogon at the southern end of Luzon Island. People come to this little town mainly to see and swim with the Whale Sharks who come in huge numbers to...Go>
El Nido has been ranked one of the best beach and island destinations in the Philippines. The stunning beauty of the island is perfectly complimented by fantastic dive sites, which vary in intensity and style. El Nido is famed for its...Go>
Mactan Island is located in Central Visayas. All dive sites are on the east side of the island and can be reached by boat or shore, depending on which dive center. Shore diving is popular with deep walls with reefs starting...Go>
A small exotic island famed for being the only place in the World with daily Thresher Shark sightings! This along with the Pygmy Seahorses and other cute critters makes the waters around Malapascua a diver’s paradise. Malapascua is a small island in...Go>
Moalboal is situated on the south western side of Cebu Island, a central Philippine island. Cebu Island is mountainous and covered with areas of dense jungle and is one of the most developed of the Philippine provinces. It is a hot tropical...Go>
The name Puerto Galera means “Port of Galleons”, and was used by the Spanish during colonial times as a safe haven for their ships during the typhoon season. Puerto Galera is located on the northern tip of Mindoro Island in the Philippines. It...Go>
Although lots of visitors seem just to pass through here on their way to Coron, Busuanga, El Nido and Roxas yet there are certainly many good reasons to spend a while. The city has many beach resorts, beautiful beaches and...Go>
Sipalay is known as 'jeweled city in Southern Negros,' with a range of dive sites that are suitable for beginners. The 1km-long Sugar Beach is seldom visited and its gentle slope makes it suitable for swimming. Visitors can relax at...Go>
Subic Bay is widely known to be the second best wreck diving location in the Philippines. Better yet, it one of the highest concentrations of war wrecks easily accessible to both SCUBA and Tech divers! Subic Bay is a larger town...Go>