Big Blue Trip

Anilao - Macro Heaven

The small fantastic world is always there, you just need to look, join us in Macro diving - Anilao of Philippines to spend a Big-Small adventure diving trip!

Just a two-and-a-half hour drive south of Manila, Anilao, is regarded as the birthplace of diving in the Philippines. There is something for everyone here - from snorkeling, to sites for both novices and the experienced diver.

In the mid-1960's, a whole coral reef was transplanted onto a large rock formation close to the shore. Contrary to popular belief at the time that the adventure would fail, the coral has flourished. As a result, diving has developed and is at the forefront of the industry in the Philippines to this day.

Visibility is good and the opportunities for photography are excellent. Unfortunately, as the area has developed, so some of the more negative aspects of this have become evident. In particular, dynamiting, collection of corals and shells and over fishing are just some of the challenges that Anilao and Batangas must face. Luckily, these are being addressed. Most of the best dives are actually found around the islands of Sombrero and Maricaban, a short boat trip away from Anilao.

A short drive north of Anilao is the quiet town of Nasugbu where good diving is abundant, so get out your magnifying glasses and your cameras and be prepared to swim with your head down.

Liveaboard Tubbataha

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Tubbataha Reef is situated almost in the middle of the Sulu Sea with the islands of Palawan to the west and Panay, Negros and Mindanao to the east. The 33,200 hectare site was declared a National Marine Park in 1988 and a World Heritage Site in 1994. Thanks to local efforts, illegal fishing and coral collection have been stamped out and the gradual destruction that was taking place before 1988 has been halted and the reef is now back in pristine condition. The diving here is considered some of the best in the world.

The reef lies 182 km southeast of Puerto Princesa, the capital of Palawan Island and it is only reachable by live-aboard boats that can be found in Puerto Princesa itself. Despite its inaccessability, the reef is now extremely popular with adventurous divers. So, early booking of a live-aboard vessel is advised to avoid disappointment.

Tubbataha is made up of two reefs, simply referred to as the North and South Reefs or Islets, that are separated by 4 nautical miles of water with surrounding depths that descend to around 1,200 meters. The North Reef is 4-5 kms wide and completely encloses a sandy lagoon. The reef is shallow and some of it is uncovered at low tide. The South Reef is 1-2 kms wide and also encloses a lagoon. On the southern tip is an islet with a lighthouse. This is used as a rookery for birds and is frequented by turtles.

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