Scuba diving in Coron, Busuanga, Palawan
Coron boasts some of the best Wreck Diving in the world, period. There are 12 magnificent Japanese shipwrecks to be explored . (Details further down) as well as some great reefs with corals and fish
(even non-swimmers) can go on a Discover Scuba Diving trip. This lets you try scuba, and is a simple mini-course which lets you safely experience the underwater world in the capable hands of a fully qualified Instructor. Most people opt for a 2nd dive on this trip. The 2-dive trip takes only one day and includes lunch on the boat and all equipment.
can complete their basic Open Water Diver license in 3 or 4 days, and will normally get to dive the easier wrecks in the process. The Instructors in Coron are total enthusiasts who emphasise fun and safety and lots more fun during your course. Courses are available in several languages (English, French, German, Italian, Tagalog, Korean, and more. All materials and equipment are included.
can go on day trips to dive on 2 or 3 of these massive wrecks, accompanied by experienced Divemaster guides. Barracuda Lake provides a ‘once in a lifetime’ dive. You can also expand your skills on training courses like Wreck or Nitrox etc. There are also Safari trips to the world famous APO REEF. These 3 day live-aboard trips let you experience world class reef and wall diving, including many sharks, turtles, large tuna, barracuda, jacks and even manta rays, whale shark etc.
Apo Reef from 8,000ft! – single biggest reef in Asia.
Dive the Barracuda Lake, Coron
Location: North end of Coron Island. The scenery around the lake is spectacular and the under water terrain has been likened to flying over the surface of the moon. The top 4 meters is warm fresh water. Below 4 meters the water is salt. There are dynamic changes of water temperature in the lake with temperatures ranging from 28 to 38 Celsius. You can even see the thermoclines at 4 and 14 meters. At 34 to 35 meters the water changes from crystal clear to tea brown due to the tannic acid in the leaves that fell into the lake. After cooking and boiling, you will meet the “king of the lake.” It is a barracuda approximately 1.5m long that likes to guide divers around his domain. It is a good chance for underwater photographers to get a close-up of the big barracuda. A unique dive that you should not miss!
Wreck dive sites in Coron
Irako wreck dive
Japanese refrigeration ship, displacement 9,570 tons, length 147 meters. Possibly the best wreck dive in the Philippines. The Irako is quite intact and because of the good visibility you know you are on a big shipwreck. There are usually large shoals of jack (trevally) on this wreck. Big groupers, schools of tuna and yellow fin, lion fish and scorpion fish live around this wreck. Many grouper live in the crumpled and folded metal of the superstructure. This wreck boasts regular sighting of whale-shark, especially from Feb to June. There is a challengingl deep penetration through the engine room for trained, experienced and properly equipped divers.
Max depth: 43 meters on the bottom, deck level at 25 to 30 meters.
Japanese tanker, 168 m long. In length, width, and volume the largest of the Coron wrecks This is the biggest wreck in Coron, a massive 168m long!! This wreck is totally covered with beautiful corals and offers a large variety of marine-life. The deck is between 10m and 16m and is good for wreck dive beginners. There are many penetration possibilities for advanced wreck divers including penetrating up the propeller shaft from the outside of the ship all the way into the engine room. Strong tidal currents often affect this wreck. Diving in strong currents lets you see the most fish. At the bow you may see the resident large turtle and a school of snappers holding position into a slight current. Large fish shelter out of the current behind crumpled metal and inside of the deckhouses. There are many nudibranch all over this wreck – a macro photography heaven.
Max depth 9 – 15m on deck. 27m on the bottom.
Japanese Seaplane Tender 118 m long The Akitsushima is a very big warship that lies on her port side. She was hit near the stern where the flying boat rested on the metal tracks and sank immediately. The ship was almost torn into two pieces. The flying boat disappeared. Only half of the metal on the starboard side and half of the metal on the bottom of the ship kept the stern from separating from the rest of the ship. The internal damage is impressive. The crane used for lifting the seaplane out of the water is intact. The crane is lying on the sandy bottom and attracts schools of giant batfish and barracudas. One mounting of a 3-barreled AA (antiaircraft) gun is still present at the bas of the crane. This is a fascinating dive where you can see giant groupers, schools of barracuda hiding under the bow, and yellow fin tuna. Wreck divers can make an impressive penetration into the engine room to see the four engines. The gears and machinery for operating the crane are the main objects of interest for a penetration into the stern. Max depth: 35 or 36 meters, average depth about 26 to 28 meters.
Kogyo Maru was a Japanese freighter carrying construction materials for building a runway for the Japanese war effort in the Pacific. Kogyo Maru was built in 1938 and is 158 m long with a displacement of 6,353 tons. Lying on her starboard side in 36 meters of water the Kogyo Maru offers swim throughs into all six holds and through the engine room and bridge area. Kogyo Maru’s second hold contains an incline of cement bags which tumbled as the ship sank. A small bulldozer draws your attention as you swim into the hold. Complete but encrusted, you can imagine the operator sitting in the seat and working the control levers to carve a runway out of a tropical island. Engrossed in the bulldover you might fail to look up the incline of cement sacks and so miss the tractor and air compressor perched above it. Take the time to swim up and look at both pieces and see how many of the engine parts you can identify. It’s complete. Check out the metal wheels on the tractor. You pass over hard and soft corals covering the side of the ship. On this dive keep your head and eyes moving like a fighter pilot’s to see the school of barracuda which will swim by. Max depth: 34 m, average 24-26m
Japanese Freighter sitting upright with a length of 122 meters. A very good dive spot with a variety of marine life. Large shoals of banana fish and glass-eye tuna, giant bat fish and giant puffer fish, especially around the mast, bow and stern. Easy penetration into the cargo rooms. It offers a good opportunity to discover wreck diving. Max depth: 28-30 meters, deck level 18-24 meters.
Japanese freighter 137 meters long, lying on its starboard side
This is a beautiful wreck dive site where you can observe groupers, sweetlips, occasionally turtles and sea snakes. Hard corals cover the port side, which is only 12 to 16 meters below the surface. Many scorpion fish hang out around the wreck area. Keep your eyes open and stay neutrally buoyant!
The big cargo rooms and the engine room allow easy penetration of this wreck. If you dive from 10 AM to 2 PM on a sunny day you get a cathederal like effect from the beams of sunlight entering the cargo holds through the holes in the port side. The two massive boilers in the center of the ship are a big attraction on this dive. You can pass behind the boilers and see the damage resulting from one of the bomb strikes that disabled the ship. It is possible to do a swim-through and pass from bow to stern without exiting the ship.
Max. depth: 25 meters, average about 15 meters.
East Tangat Gunboat
This ship was a small gunboat or submarine hunter 40 meters long. Location: Inclined on the coral reef on the east side of Tangat Island.
This dive site is good for wreck diving beginners and underwater photographers. It is also a lovely dive between deeper wreck sites. The wreck starts at only 3 meters down so even snorkelers can see the shape and explore the bow of the ship. Max depth: 22 meters.