Awesome Wreck diving
Dive 1 or more of the 15+ wrecks sunk here during WW2 and feel like a real explorer!
Coron wreck diving!
Visit this easy-to-reach diving town, close to Manila, and explore more than 15 wrecks sunk in WW2!
- An impression of the diving scene in Palawan
Visit the main page for Coron / Palawan here!
Getting to Palawan.
To get to Palawan there are 2 major ports of entry. The easiest by far in my opinion is to fly to Coron island, Busuanga airport more specifically. Alternatively, you can enter Palawan from Puerto Princessa about halfway through Palawan.
If you decide to fly to Puerto Princessa, depending on your first location diving will take at least 2 hours by van/ bus. Just take a tricycle or taxi from the airport to the bus terminal, and dispatchers will take care of you from there.
I would aim to move north to Port Barton or the Mecaja Dive resort near Roxas.
However, if you want the "easier" route, I suggest flying to Busuanga airport on Coron Island. Once landed there, dispatchers will ask you in what hotel you're staying, and you will be assigned to the right van, dropping you off at your hotel for 250-300 pesos, per person.
There is also an airport in El Nido, not frequently serviced, but still an option if you want to skip Coron for example.
Palawan is very much designed for tourism, so getting around is usually quite easy.
An impression of the diving scene on Palawan.
In this paragraph I would like to give my honest and open opinion of the diving scene in Palawan:
Palawan is quite large, so different sites offer different scenes. I get asked the question often: Is Coron really as amazing? Is El Nido really that pretty?
To be honest, visibility and overall reef health is always my biggest attraction to a diving scene. People who want crystal clear waters and abundant marine life should perhaps try to look into other places to go diving. Is it worth going to Palawan for diving? The short answer: Yes! There's a "but" though.
In Coron, you will probably find the easiest way to go wreck diving in the Philippines. Subic is another place you can go, but you won't really notice the difference. The down part of Coron diving is that visibility usually stops at 10 meters and in bad cases 3-5 meters.
If you're a wreck diving enthusiast and/ or want to do a wreck diving specialty, go to Coron.
If you're more interested in marine life and healthy reefs and macro, you might be better off moving to Bohol, Cebu, Puerto Galera, or Boracay (which you can all find on the website).
Diving is good, don't get me wrong, but is it great? let's find out.
Staying in Coron:
Coron town proper is probably the place, most people visit to go scuba diving. You will find an abundance of hotels, restaurants and as of right now, 22 diving centers, operating. Before Covid-19, 33+ diving centers existed, and most will probably return the next season, so plenty to choose from.
To get to or from Coron town proper you can fly from Manila, Cebu, or El Nido depending on where you previously stayed.
Most people will arrive from Manila. Once in Busuanga airport, they will ask you to show a booking confirmation for your hotel and after paying an environmental fee at the next desk, you will be greeted by a dispatcher exiting the airport.
He will ask you in which hotel you'll be staying and assign you to a van/ bus accordingly. Once in Coron town proper or perhaps just outside, you can walk around and within no-time you will find your diving center.
Diving in Coron:
I can highly recommend Reggae diving center if you're looking for a good time. They offer day trips, including 3 dives (usually 2 wrecks and 1 reef), lunch, water, and an after-dive beer on board. Once back at the diving center, they will offer you another drink for good measure.
Diving in Coron is all about the wrecks. Lots of them were sunk, by the US military during World War 2, mostly between 1943 and 1945. Most ships are Japanese and are named accordingly.
Although visibility usually isn't great, wreck diving enthusiasts will still have a great time exploring these sometimes, huge shipwrecks. Penetrating most of them and honing their buoyancy skills.
There are over 15 shipwrecks to choose from! There are way more, but some of them are quite far away, so not seen very often. When you're diving multiple days, they will usually try to visit different shipwrecks, you haven't seen before, so make your wishes heard!
Expect visibility between 3-10 meters on a given day, 15 meters is exceptional but not realistic.