The Philippines is home to many outstanding beaches and Palawan is unarguably one of its most-prized possessions. But aside from the beaches, this island province also known as the Philippines’ ‘Last Frontier’ is also a gem for adventurers and thrill-seekers. So, if you’re done exploring the wild and if you think you haven’t had enough of Palawan, it’s time to explore a whole new world under the sea. Read up as we give you a rundown of the best diving spots in Palawan.
Tubbataha Reef National ParkLocated at the Marine Protected Area (MPA) of the Sulu Sea, this UNESCO World Heritage Site is home to over 600 species of fish, 11 shark species, 13 dolphin and whale species and over 300 coral species. It spans an area of 97,030 hectares and considered as one of the most important underwater ecology as the global centre of marine biodiversity. The Tubbattaha Reef is among the bucket list of many divers around the world as it offers a wondrous diving experience.
Helen’s Garden at Honda BayIf you are doing some island hopping in Puerto Princesa, then chances are you will be directed to a private resort called Dos Palmas. In this area, you will find the Helen’s Garden, a small yet wonderful place to snorkel and dive especially for first-timers. Even kids can enjoy swimming around this area which is home to many colourful small fishes and corals down under. You can be sure to find many starfishes, stingrays, soft and hard corals and even Hawksbill turtles (if you’re lucky) in this 50-metre sunken reef.
Cuttlefish ShawlThe Cuttlefish Shawl in Puerto Princesa is a deep reef fit for divers who have many years of experience on their resumes. Many say that it is a challenging spot to dive due to its depth. However, the view down under is ridiculously awesome as the colourful reef is home to many marine wonders especially the cuttlefish. It is part of the squid family, and can easily camouflage itself when predators are around. While called a ‘fish’, cuttlefish is actually a mollusc since it has no backbone. We highly recommend getting a local guide to help your way around this area
Bulawit BayIf you want some sightings of unique underwater creatures such as barracudas, batfish, ribbon fish, eels, pipe fish and even starfishes, then diving into Bulawit Bay in Linapacan, Palawan is the perfect treat for you. With its shallow waters off the pier coast, this favourite diving spot has a seafloor covered with sea grass. It is ideal for families with kids who want to explore the ocean together and learn a thing or two about marine life.
Port BartonIf you like the beauty of El Nido yet not a fan of its energy especially when the sun goes down, then Port Barton is the place for you. Those who have been here say that it is much like El Nido without the crazy nightlife and crowd. The first order of business when arriving the area is getting your own private boatman that will take you to many islands where you can dive and snorkel. The locals definitely know their way around so make sure to put your haggling skills to good use when you get one. Ask your boatman to take you to Aquarium 1 and Aquarium 2 for the best snorkelling spots. Exotic and Paradise Islands offers an equally beautiful marine life so make sure not to miss these places in Port Barton.