The Philippines is a vast archipelago which consists of more than 7,000 islands spread across an area of 298,000 square kilometres, these islands are comprised of many different marine eco -systems, and support a huge variety of marine animal species, making the Philippines one of the bio-diverse regions in the World. And as the best diving is remote and spread across large areas, liveaboard trips are by far the best way to experience each separate area.
In the Phlippines, possible scuba dive destinations include Moalboal & Pescador Island, Cabilao, Bohol's Panglao Island, Alona Beach and Balicasag Island, Apo Island/Dumaguete, and Southern Leyte. All are in the central Visayas region of the Philippines and within relatively easy reach of Malapascua and Cebu. As well as Puerto Galera, Tubbataha Reef, Donsol and Apo Reef.
Liveaboard Diving Regions :
The entire country can be separated into 3 main diving areas: The Visayas and Cebu in the eastern part of the country, Tubbataha Reefs National Park in the Southern Sulu Sea, Coron and Apo reef located between Palawan and Batangas which is in the western part of the country.
Coron and Apo Reef
Coron is best known for the many Japanese WWII wrecks around Busuanga Island, which were sunk in the Battle of Coron Bay. Many of the wrecks are within normal recreational diving limits. There is also world class muck diving in nearby Anilao, where divers can see many unique species of Nudibranches and other rare animals. As well as some fantastic caves for recreational or technical divers.
Apo Reef Natural Park is the world's second largest coral reef, covered with a huge area of 34 square kilometers, with countless reefs and dive sites. Here you can dive on coral walls, coral outcrops, and gentle slopes with large schools of fish, reef sharks, and pelagic species like Manta and Eagle Rays.
Visayas and Leyte/Malapascua
The Visayas region is home to some of the best diving in the Philippines, the liveaboard highlights usually include Cebu, Cabilao, Panglao, Dauin, Balicasag, Pescador and Malapascua islands. The dive sites range from steep coral covered walls to gentle sloping reefs and muck diving hotspots.
There is a chance of Whale Shark encounters along the southern edge of Cebu Island. To the north at Malapascua Island, early dawn dives can have Thresher Sharks at meeting divers at well known cleaning stations, Dauin hosts outstanding macro life and numerous wonderful wall and reef dives.
Tubbataha National Park
Tubbataha is full of magic, it offers some of the most remote and pristine tropical diving experiences as anywhere. Consist of vertical walls or near drop off's rising out of great depths where hammerheads, thresher sharks, whale sharks can be seen. The shallow reef tops are teeming with colourful reef fish whilst at many dive sites stingrays, spiny lobsters, immature manta rays and turtles are found. It only open up for divers during early March to mid June each year, if you plan to go there, remember to book in advance!