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Cebu cruise

Introduction

The Philippines - an archipelago of 7.107 islands - were discovered in 1521 by the Portuguese navigator Ferdinand de Magellan. This cruise takes place in the Visayas area (with islands of Cebu, Apo, Panglao and Cabilao).

The corals are absolutely amazing: lots of soft and hard ones. Impressive coral tables often have a surface larger than 100 square meters. The fauna is also very rich, and lots of juvenile fish can be spotted in shallow waters. But as for pelagics, it's much less impressive: we saw only two sharks - and the second was really far from us! Ten years ago, a lot of them could be seen. Unfortunately, intensive dynamite fishing made them disappear almost completely. The government is now enforcing the law which forbids this method of fishing as well as the anesthesia of the fish to sell them alive in Hong Kong or Beijing.

Anyway, this destination is definitively attractive. Furthermore, the local people are extremely friendly.

Travel facts

Calendar

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best period
acceptable period
not recommend
air temperature
water temperature

Diving type

Destination
easily accessible
easily accessible
bargain destination
bargain destination
Diving level & type
for beginners
for beginners
for advanced divers
for advanced divers
shore diving
shore diving
liveaboard
liveaboard
Diving Characteristics
pelagics
pelagics
lots of fish
lots of fish
lots of corals
lots of corals
interesting underwater scenery
interesting underwater scenery
Other activities
attractive natural spots
attractive natural spots
gastronomy
gastronomy
night life
night life
beach
beach
snorkeling
snorkeling

Map

map

Infrastructures

  • travel agency
    Abyss
    Abyss (travel agency)
    telephone : 4122 733 00 08
    fax : 4122 733 09 67
    rating : 4 / 4 starsrating : 4 / 4 stars
    comments :
    The organization provided by Abyss was perfect, under all aspects. The journey from Zurich to Hong Kong lasts 12 hours - but sleeping in the plane makes things easier. After a three-hour flight from Hong Kong, we reach Cebu, where someone is in charge of meeting and bringing us to the hotel. The whole program was in conformity with the announced one. Our divemaster, Marc (from Fribourg - Switzerland) was not only competent, but also friendly. Dives were perfectly well arranged - more than 200 bars each time, steel or aluminum tanks - and everybody on the boat was very helpful.
    After the first dive, which is used as test dive, Marc has got a fairly accurate idea of the level of each diver. This is very important as a lot of freedom is given to the divers when they plan and enjoy their dives. Of course, there is always a maximum depth allowed (30 meters), but divers have to be responsible as no control is made... and no hospital is available in case of emergency. Maximum diving time is 60 minutes (50 for night dives), which is really a plus as most of the life is encountered between 2 and 10 meters...

    The program of the cruise was as follows:
    - 1 night in Cebu. In the morning, we crossed the island (pass at 400 meters) in a mini-bus and reached Moalboal. The rest of the journey was made by boat.
    - 4 nights at Moalboal.
    - 2 nights at Apo Island
    - 2 nights at Panglao
    - 2 nights at Cabilao
    - 1 night at Cebu."

Diving Sites

  • rating : 4.0
    Coconut

       [(Apo Island)
    rating : 4.0
    visibility : 25 m
    description :
    Steep slope falling to about 60 meters, but with a flat area at 10-5 meters. Lots of corals. Entering the water was a little tricky, due to the presence of a strong current. Two large turtles, 4 snakes. A couple of large boxfish. A bumphead parrot of a respectable size (80 cm). Finally, a school of jackfish was encountered.

  • rating : 4.0
    Kasai

       [(Moalboal)
    rating : 4.0
    visibility : 20 m
    description :
    Two big turtles. A lot of clown-fish and angelfish, and a large boxfish. A couple of scorpionfish. In fact, this dive site really exhibits an aquarium at the depth of 3 meters.

  • rating : 4.0
    Pescador Island South

       [(Moalboal)
    rating : 4.0
    visibility : 25 m
    description :
    Pescador is a small island located at one kilometer by boat from Moalboal, and at 3 kilometers from our hotel. Vertical wall plunging down about 45 meters, followed by a gentle slope to more than 200 meters. On the top of the wall, there is a nice flat area between 6 and 3 meters, where most of the underwater life is concentrated. This area is also colorful and displays a lot of micro fauna. Two white tip sharks, the first one coming very close to us while the second was seen in the blue. Two big turtles. A lot of clown-fish, as well as angelfish. Nice gorgons.

  • rating : 4.0
    Sanctuary

       [(Cabilao)
    rating : 4.0
    visibility : 15 - 20 m
    description :
    Coral wall with a couple of swim-through. Huge tables made of corals (more than 200 m2), yellow, blue, rose with a lot of juvenile fish inside them. Also a large number of angelfish, anemones with clownfish. Really a lot of fish. Tuna at deeper depths.

  • rating : 4.0
    South Point

       [(Cabilao)
    rating : 4.0
    visibility : 55 m
    description :
    Beautiful wall covered with coral from 25 meters. Some current. Lots of fishes. Small tunnel and swim-through. A huge number of sardines, which created what looked like an underwater typhoon.

  • rating : 3.0
    Doljo

       [(Cabilao)
    rating : 3.0
    visibility : 25 m
    description :
    Between Panglao and Cabilao. Huge gorgons. Schools of multicolored fish. Moray.

  • rating : 3.0
    Le Sanctuaire

       [(Apo Island)
    rating : 3.0
    visibility : 20 m
    description :
    This site is located in a reserve: divers must pay an entrance fee of 170 pesos. Especially famous for the huge amount of clownfish that can be seen in the numerous anemones. Some jackfish. 1 snake, which we saw swimming close to the surface. The underwater landscape is really beautiful between 6 and 3 meters. Dive on a sandy bottom, between small pinnacles.

  • rating : 3.0
    Pescador Island Cathedral

       [(Moalboal)
    rating : 3.0
    visibility : 20 m
    description :
    Chimney from 15 to 35 meters, with an exit on a coral wall. A lot of nice corals. Clownfish. Schools of multicolored fish. Soft corals. Scorpion-fish. Gorgons.

  • rating : 3.0
    Rock Point

       [(Apo Island)
    rating : 3.0
    visibility : 25 m
    description :
    Located at the south tip of the island. 30 minutes by boat from the lodge. Wall and garden at 5-10 meters. A lot of marvelous corals, mainly soft ones.

  • rating : 3.0
    Tongo

       [(Moalboal)
    rating : 3.0
    visibility : 12 - 15 m
    description :
    Usually, diving in the Philippines has to be planned in function of the tide. This is especially true for this site, located 3 minutes by boat from the Sumisid Lodge. Wall falling down to 30 meters, with a nice flat area between 6 and 3 meters. A lot of beautiful hard and soft corals, all very healthy. But it is really their diversity that makes this diving site so attractive. Of course, a lot of reef fish, some jelly fish and an interesting micro fauna.

  • rating : 2.0
    Balicasag nord

       [(Panglao Island)
    rating : 2.0
    visibility : 10 m
    description :
    Wall going down to 45 meters, then a gentle slope. School of jackfish. Some tuna fish. Small moray. Blue-spotted ray. Quite a lot of fish, including 3 morays, scorpion-fish, lion-fish, angelfish and crocodile-fish.

  • rating : 2.0
    Between Mamsa and Le Sanctuaire

       [(Apo Island)
    rating : 2.0
    description :
    Slope with nice corals until 30 meters. A small blue-spotted stingray. Overall, this diving site has only limited amount of fish. As it is often the case, the best part of this dive is the time spent between 3 and 10 meters.

  • rating : 2.0
    Estrella

       [(Cabilao)
    rating : 2.0
    visibility : 25 m
    description :
    Night dive. Small puffer fish. Tetrodons. Hermite. Small scorpion-fish. Crabs, including a huge one. Small jellyfish and a school of squids. Three morays in the same hole. Conger eel. Large cat-fish. A shrimp with orange eyes.

  • rating : 2.0
    La Chapelle

       [(Apo Island)
    rating : 2.0
    description :
    Night dive, located in front of the lodge. Sandy bottom. Swimming between nice pinnacles, on a slope that plunges down to 30 to 40 meters. 1 jellyfish, some shrimps, a couple of crocodile-fish - they are always impressive - and some lion-fish. One hermit, numerous parrots.

  • rating : 2.0
    Seaquest House Reef

       [(Panglao Island)
    rating : 2.0
    description :
    Night dive, starting from mooring in front of the lodge. The site is 150 meters from the shore. Lots of lionfish. Shrimps. Crabs. Crocodiles.

  • rating : 2.0
    Shark Point

       [(Cabilao)
    rating : 2.0
    visibility : 15 m
    description :
    On this site, the visibility was reduced (less than 15 meters). Vertical falling to 40 meters, where a flat area can be seen. A sea horse and a manta. On the deep flat area, a nice garden with some special type of scorpion-fish and snake. Finally, even a barracuda next to the surface.

  • rating : 1.0
    Barracuda

       [(Cabilao)
    rating : 1.0
    visibility : 10 m
    description :
    Strong current, the sea was rather rough. Flat area with juvenile fish.

  • rating : 1.0
    House Reef

       [(Moalboal)
    rating : 1.0
    description :
    Night dive. Starting from the mooring in front of the hotel. Very few fish, some crabs.

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