Scuba diving in Palawan

Scuba diving in: Palawan


Regarded as one of the last unspoiled frontiers in the Philippines, Palawan is a mecca for divers. With its jagged limestone cliffs, pristine beaches, and vibrant marine life, this archipelago offers some of the country's most breathtaking underwater landscapes.

Best Scuba Diving Spots for Experienced Divers

Tubbataha Reefs Natural Park
: A UNESCO World Heritage Site located in the middle of the Sulu Sea, Tubbataha is considered one of the world's top dive spots. The park is only accessible from late March to early June and offers wall dives, drift dives, and the opportunity to see big fish such as manta rays, hammerhead sharks, and whale sharks.

Barracuda Lake
: This freshwater lake on Coron Island provides a unique diving experience. It's renowned for its thermoclines - layers of water with different temperatures. The surreal underwater landscape and temperature changes make for an exciting dive for those with experience.

Best Scuba Diving Spots for Beginners

Coron Bay
: Coron Bay's numerous Japanese WWII shipwrecks provide an extraordinary opportunity for novice wreck divers. The shallowest parts of some wrecks, like the Kogyo Maru and the Olympia Maru, are suitable for beginners.

El Nido's Miniloc Island
: Known for its large limestone formations, Miniloc offers a variety of easy dive sites. The Big and Small Lagoons are beginner-friendly and host an abundance of fish, including sergeant majors, damselfish, and clownfish.

Marine Life

Palawan's marine life is rich and varied. Tubbataha Reefs alone boast over 600 species of fish and 360 species of corals. You can encounter manta rays, barracuda, lionfish, nudibranchs, various species of sharks, and occasionally, dolphins and turtles. The reefs around El Nido and Coron are home to a myriad of tropical fish and macro creatures.

Dive Conditions

Diving in Palawan is possible all year round, but the best conditions are generally from December to May. The water temperature is warm, ranging from 79 to 86°F (26 to 30°C). Visibility is excellent, particularly in Tubbataha Reefs, where it can exceed 114 feet (35 meters). Currents can be strong in some areas, especially in Tubbataha.


The cost of diving in Palawan varies depending on the location and the dive shop. A single dive, including equipment rental, can range from $30 to $50. A PADI Open Water Diver course usually costs between $400 to $500. It's important to choose a dive shop that prioritizes safety, employs experienced instructors, and practices responsible tourism. With its wealth of underwater treasures, Palawan offers unforgettable diving experiences for everyone.

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