The Philippines, being an archipelagic country surrounded by various bodies of water, is home to a diverse and vivid underwater word. In fact, our entire country lies in Coral Triangle, the global center of marine biodiversity. With the Philippines on its core, we are on the center of world’s marine biodiversity.


I spent a weekend in Dumaguete late last year on a trip made possible by Go Hotels and Cebu Pacific. On that trip, I was able to rediscover the city and had a taste of what’s the southern Negros has to offer – the foods, churches, historical spots and other places that define the city and the province. Known as the City of the Gentle People and University City, Dumaguete is the capital of the province of Negros Oriental in Central Visayas, a city by…Continue Reading “Rediscovering Dumaguete and Beyond”

School of Jackfish in Coconut Point

In our continuous pursuit for great diving spots in the Philippines, Ate Claudia and I set foot in the central Philippine province of Negros Oriental to dive in one of the infamous dive sites in the country – the Apo Island.

School of Jackfish in Coconut Point

Straight from an hour flight from Manila, I arrived in Dumaguete City past eight in the morning and headed to the Scuba Ventures Dive Shop, just beside our hostel – Harold’s Mansion in Hibbard Avenue to meet Ate Claudia, who arrived earlier from Cagayan de Oro City Cebu. It was my first time in the Negros Island, and I was so anxious to finally set my foot in Negros!

An hour and a half away (by land and by boat) from provincial capital Dumaguete City, Apo Island is an inhabited island under the jurisdiction of the town of Dauin. It has land area of approximately seven hectares and a population of less than a thousand. The water surrounding the island is an underwater paradise teeming with very lively and colorful marine life where almost everything seems over sized. A Marine Protected Area and considered as one of the world’s best diving sites, the area has around ten dive sites.

Hawksbill in Coconut Point

With the Scuba Ventures guys, we drove down to Barangay Matapay in Zamboanguita, the jump-off point to Apo Island, where we transferred to our dive boat. Ate Claudia and I were the only divers of Scuba Ventures that day, we were scheduled for three dives around the island.

It was already half past the hour of ten when we reached the first dive site – Coconut Point. Located in the northeast of the island, Coconut Point is home to colorful soft and hard corals, huge Angelfish, Groupers, Jacks, Wrasses, Snappers, Parrotfish, Triggersfish, Batfish, schools of Bigeye Jacks and Sea Turtle.

When we descended, Samuel, our Dive Master pointed a very huge Bluefin Jack from a distance. We were around ten meters away from it but it looked so huge that I estimated it to be around three to four feet. It was a very big welcome.

School of small Stripe Fish in Mamsa Point
Continue Reading "Diving in Apo Island, Negros Oriental"