Coron & El Nido
Diving Coron & El Nido
Diving is possible year-round in Coron & El Nido. However, the best period and weather is between December and March. The visibility is great then especially in Coron because you will want to see those wrecks!
July - October usually is considered the worst time to go diving there, however, It's all about chances. I had a great time in September!
If you're in town, backtrack a bit down the road out of town and you will find a diving center named Reggae diving there that offers excellent day trips. The diving is a mix between wreck diving, usually with 1 reef dive to finish. You will hop on a boat and do 2 or 3 dives with lunch in between included.
While moving between dive sites you can enjoy the amazing scenery from the rooftop. Done diving? Grab a beer on board and enjoy on top of the boat!
Prices for diving are usually 4000 pesos for 2 dives, boat, transfer, deco drink, lunch and soda's. 4500 pesos for all the above and 3 dives. The boat ride is usually 1 hour from Coron, so all trips depart at 8 AM and return to port around 4 PM.
El Nido is a great little town easily accessible from Coron or Manilla. The town is situated along the coast with dive operators as well. The main boulevard runs behind the beachfront shops and the bay gives an amazing feeling of being secluded.
Diving is very versatile. You will have mini cave diving, and macro and reef diving. In crystal clear water and warm temperatures! I even did a few dives without a wet suit which is incredible!
Tourism in El Nido is increasing, as there is a sort of healthy competition between Coron & El Nido. Many new buildings, restaurants, and hotels are being built at this moment.
Diving is done in day trips: 3 dives per day, staying on the boat, lunch and drinks included. Prices are usually around 4800 pesos for a complete day trip, diving, food, and equipment.
How to get there?
To get to Coron take a flight from Manilla, or Cebu which will bring you to Busuanga airport. Dispatchers will be ready for you at the airport, asking you which hotel you want to go to. the fare is 250-300 pesos, and they will drop you off at your hotel.
El Nido has its own airport, serviced by Airswift. Flight from and to Coron, as well as to and from Manila, Puerto Princessa are offered.
From Coron to El Nido you can also take a ferry. As of right now, ferries only depart:
Departing at 6 AM from Coron and back to Coron again around noon.
Ticket prices are 2500 pesos one-way.
"Olympia Maru Wreck"
Olympia Maru is a Japanese cargo ship sunk on September 24, 1944. The wreck has deep parts around 30 meters, and thousands of small fish on top! There is also still cargo to be found inside, like rice in bags, still preserved somehow or planted there, you decide!
Depth: 18 - 30 meters