Philippines Liveaboard Itineraries
Philippine liveaboards remain the best way to experience as many of the mesmeric dive sites as possible. As you get more time in the water and greater access to the otherwise unattainable areas - a liveaboard itinerary can offer you far greater value with more bespoke choice. With some of the world's most bio-diverse and life-packed waters, the added dive time when travelling on a liveaboard means you get to more remote locations to appreciate the magical underwater wonderland of the Philippines. The social aspect of a luxury cruise boat is another benefit of diving on a liveaboard, as the chance to meet new, like-minded people who share your passion for Philippine diving can provide a lot more than just great conversation and diving hotspot tips.
The Tubbataha Reef National Marine Park is made up of two atolls rising in the middle of the Sulu Sea, and measures 385m² in size. Considered by UNESCO a World Heritage Listed Site, the importance of this structure in the entire marine ecosystem cannot be underestimated (as many scientists agree that this is a nursery of young marine life). It is generally believed that this fascinating atoll gave the Sulu-Sulawesi Triangle its young fish and coral larvae - providing one of the most important fishing grounds of the Philippines, stretching as far South as Malaysia and Indonesia. The convergence of currents here brings in a full and consistent stream of nutrients along with fresh waters - which are perfect for developing a healthy reef and its later inhabitants. In near isolation, the monopoly held by this fantastic atoll ensures plenty of pelagic visitors amongst many of the other inhabitants. The well protected area has been manned 24/7 by guards and radars since 1998, a law which was enforced to preserve the life-giving haven by the president at the time. The only access is by liveaboard, as the nearest point is almost 100m away. During March to early June, the seas and skies are a little clearer and allow divers to visit. However, the strong winds and swells throughout the rest of the year naturally deter unauthorised visitors.
Apo Reef & Coron
Apo Reef and Coron are the perfect place to stop on your liveaboard diving holiday, as the mixture of fantastic marine life along with the incredible shipwrecks prove one of the most impressive and popular of trips to the Philippines. Apo Reef is under the Municipal Jurisdiction of Sablayan Occidental Mindoro and remains an isolated haven, as it continues to plentifully fill the Sulu and South of China's seas. Japanese Imperial Navy wrecks from WWII litter the seabed of the Calamianes Islands group, and make for some truly fascinating diving. Of the 24 camouflaged wrecks that sank back in 1994, 12 are diveable - and prove some of the finest underwater marvels found anywhere around the Philippines.
Diving in Anilao is popular amongst diving enthusiasts due to the vibrant reefs and the diversity in marine life sustained. With some of the most intricately built ecosystems and fascinating macro-critters found around the area, the diving here is as exciting as it is enthralling. The drift dives around Puerto Galero are quite spectacular, as the strong currents that flush so much of the water onto the South China Sea are packed full of life and magnificent underwater visuals. Situated on the northern peninsula of Mindoro, the area is separated from Luzon by this Verde Island Passage. As this passage is so deep, the water is very clear and visibility is excellent - especially with the variety of dive sites along the Puerto Galero.
Southern Leyte is a province of the Philippines, located in the Eastern Visayas region and comes extremely highly recommended as a top dive site for large fish and pelagics. In the peak of the season, you have a strong chance of snorkeling with whale sharks. Whale sharks are something of a local resident to Limasawa, Napantaw, Padre Burgos and Liloan - and make some quite spectacular company on your liveaboard trip to these waters. Starting with Panaon Island, the Napantaw Marine Sanctuary has walls and slopes that are packed with both hard and soft corals. Covered with great gorgonians and black corals, the incredible waters are densely packed with thousands of fish species - including the wonderful giant frogfish. The protected area has been guarded for more than a decade now, and has continued to flourish as an untouched haven for marine life in astonishing proportions! Limasawa Island is another of the top sites here, allowing you to get up close and personal with more whale sharks, manta rays and many other fascinating creatures. Part of the largest sanctuary in Southern Leyte, this stunning area has some incredible steep walls and is blessed with many fantastic marine life visitors. Padre Burgos Jetty is another of the most popular dive spots, as the maze of piers is covered in soft corals that house many types of seahorses, juvenile lion-fish, frogfish, pink cowries and snake eels; making the spectacular underwater seascape one of the hottest night dive locations in the Philippines.
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