Named as the Philippines’ ‘last frontier’, Palawan harbours very diverse and extensive species of flora and fauna. Home to a majestic bio-diversity is the Calamianes Group of Islands located at the northern tip of Palawan, where one’s experience of nature is simply the best!
Palawan prides itself with many dive sites to be explored and admired by both local and foreign guests. There are eleven Japanese shipwrecks from World War II, some found at the south west of Busuanga and one at the north east. Busuanga Island is said to be the best-kept diving secret in Asia. Shipwrecks aside, Busuanga is home to beautiful coral reefs, wine blue seas, white sand beaches, waving palm trees, limestone islands and cliffs and a world class resort – who would say you’re not in paradise?
Most of those who go to Busuanga are divers and for very obvious reasons. One will not have enough of each dive site because of the incredible wonder found beneath the sea. Some of the world’s best dive sites are in Busuanga.
Coron Bay has the best wreck diving in Southeast Asia, all packed into one relatively small area. There is nothing quite like the feeling of standing on a jetty, knowing that you have at least half a dozen huge wartime vessels lying within a short boat ride. Each wreck has its own special characteristics, but on the whole they are big, mostly intact, within reasonable diving depth and full of amazing artifacts.
If you prefer to explore the exterior of shipwrecks, these are ideal. The decks are wonderfully encrusted with coral and swarming with fish life. There are deckhouses, masts, cranes and lookout perches. The hulls have rows of portholes to give glimpses into the cabins. There are still anti-aircraft guns in place and huge circular gun mounts. Massive holds yawn beneath you, and in places the deck has been peeled back by the bombs, allowing you to float safely down into the belly of the ship.
If penetrating deep into wrecks is your passion, then Coron really is heaven on a stick. We’re talking 170m-long ships! With good planning and a knowledgeable guide, you can make the most of them. You can pick your way through the passageways; penetrate down to lower levels; and find engine rooms with massive boilers, workshops strewn with tools and kitchens replete with pots and pans.