Diving at Balicasag Island from Panglao

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Panglao, Philippines

Diving at Balicasag Island from Panglao Reviews

alexchan alexchan
122 reviews
Beautiful nice easy diving conditions Apr 18, 2017
If you're staying at Panglao Island near Alona Beach, you will have countless dive operators to choose from that can take you to Balicasag Island for diving.

I did two dives at Balicasag with Go Scuba at Alona. Their office is just on the right as you walk down to Alona Beach from the main road. The price was PHP1500 per dive plus PHP250 for the Marine Park fee. There was a credit card surcharge of 4% which I didn’t mind because the ATMs here impose a PHP200 per pop.

Divers met up at 0830 to fit their gear and we set off to a nearby beach with the equipment in a truck around 0900. From there we tendered into a small boat and transferred to a large spacious ive boat. With eight divers, we were still rattling it all that space. That’s the beauty of diving in the Philippines; their large traditional boats.

It was a short but beautiful ride to Balicasag Island. Our divemaster Bebo gave a good briefing taking it back to basics as there were people with very few dives.

First site was Royal Garden. We came across a large silver wall of jackfish. There were also three turtles and a small moray eel. Much of the dive was along a nice wall. Unfortunately visibility was only fair.

After a surface interval filled with bread rolls, bananas and coffee, we returned to the water.

The second dive was at Cathedral. This wall was beautiful, particularly this large lattice fan coral. It was teeming with colourful reef fish. There were a few nudibranches that were pointed out to us as well. Larger sea-life of interest were 2 lionfish, 2 turtles really closeup and a couple of mollusc softy things that were apparently fish attached to the rock (but I can’t remember the name).

While nothing compares to Sipadan, it was a beautiful day on the water and in it as well. Nice easy relaxing dives with a good crew!

My buoyancy control was excellent today; a little bit of a fluke perhaps with the right weight in combination with the shortie wetsuit, salinity etc. Too many variables to know what it was that made it just right.
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