Island hopping in the Philippines (Visayas)

An unforgettable diving vacation: Dauin’s beautiful underwater world combined with the thresher sharks of Malapascua.
Travel period
All year round
Boatdiving, Shore diving
Starting at
18 days from €1649,- p.p

Diving in the Philippines in 2 completely different locations!

During this 18-day diving vacation to the Philippines you will discover two unique dive sites: Malapascua & Dauin. By diving in both places, you will experience the rich diversity of the country and enjoy a diverse underwater world.

You will start your diving trip in Malapascua, a tiny island with white beaches and no motorized traffic,where you will dive with thresher sharks. At Monad Shoal, these rather shy sharks emerge in the morning. Malapascua offers coral gardens and wrecks in addition to thresher sharks. So here you will see not only thresher sharks, but also mandarin fish, pygmy seahorses and even if you are lucky manta rays.

After your visit to Malapascua, head to Dauin, a mecca for “muck diving. Here you will explore the dark bottom and encounter rare marine animals, such as flamboyant cuttlefish and unique nudibranchs. It is not just focused on the smaller marine life, also here you will find beautiful coral gardens, reefs and several wrecks so you will have plenty of diversity in diving.

Best travel time for a diving vacation to the Philippines:

The best time to dive in the Philippines is during the dry season which runs from December through mid-May. Nevertheless, you can dive well year-round and there are also some great highlights in terms of diving to see during the rainy season, such as the octopus mating season in Dumaguete that takes place in October.

Dive on this trip with Sea Explorers

In both Malapascua and Dauin you will dive with the Sea Explorers dive center . With more than 30 years of experience in the Philippines, this 5-star PADI dive center is an authority on diving in the Philippines.

The dedicated team ensures that every dive is a special experience. They offer up to four dives a day. And with a favorable ratio of four divers per dive guide, you are assured of personal attention and guidance.

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Average Temperatures

Wetsuit advice for the Philippines

We recommend a 3mm year-round.

What will you experience on this trip?

View itinerary here

Day 1 & 2 - The journey to Cebu

Today you will fly to Cebu on an overnight flight. Depending on where you depart from, you fly direct or with a short stopover to Cebu in 16-18 hours. Upon arrival, you will stay the first night in a hotel near the airport to recover from your trip.

Day 3 - Transfer to Malapascua

After a refreshing breakfast at your hotel, your diving journey to the Ocean Vida Beach & Dive Resort begins. The five-hour drive from Cebu is more than just a transfer; it is a glimpse into the life of the Philippines. Villages glide by, children wave from the side of the road and daily life unfolds before you.

The journey takes a scenic turn as you leave Cebu and get ready for the final leg to Malapascua by boat. The sea breeze is refreshing and the view of the bounty island in the distance promises adventure.

Upon arrival at the resort, there is a brief stop at the dive center to complete some formalities for your diving sessions tomorrow. After that, the time is yours. Go exploring and discover what the island has to offer. The day ends quietly with the promise of the underwater adventure that awaits tomorrow.

Day 4 to 9 - Fox Sharks and a night dive at Dakit Dakit

For the next few days you can dive in the early morning hours to admire the fascinating thresher sharks (thresher sharks). Malapascua became world famous for these sharks, unique and only seen in a few places in the world. Thresher sharks spend the night in shallow parts of the reef, where they let parasites eat off their bodies, before diving to depths between 200-500 meters in the morning. Thresher sharks can be found year-round between Cebu and Leyte. Of course, you can also go diving on the reefs around Malapascua or do a night dive at Dakit Dakit so you don’t have to get out of bed early every day. It is vacation, after all!

Day 10 - Transfer to Dauin

After a hearty breakfast, get ready for your trip to Dauin. The 9-hour journey, by cab and boat, is not just a means of getting to your destination; it is an adventure in itself. As you travel overland, you’ll feast your eyes on the beautiful landscapes, local villages and daily life passing by. The trip will give you a unique glimpse of authentic Filipino life.

Once you arrive at the Pura Vida Beach & Dive Resort, check in and make your way to the dive center where the friendly staff will help you with administrative matters. Once everything is settled, it’s time to relax. Because tomorrow you will be diving again!

Day 11 to 15 - Diving around Dauin, including Apo Island

During the next five days, you will dive around Dauin. Located on Negros, the second largest island in the Visayas, Dauin reveals itself as a hidden gem, especially for muck divers. The sandy bottoms here serve as the hiding place for rare and exotic sea creatures that deftly hide from the untrained eye.

But there is more than sand! Similarly, you can dive at Apo Island, a popular dive site. Apo Island is a volcanic area stretching over 72 hectares. This island is a treasure trove of unique rock formations, more than 650 species of fish and about 400 varieties of living coral.

With more than 30 dive sites perfect for both macro and night diving, Dauin is truly a diver’s dream location.

Day 16 - Excursion to Lake Balanan

On your No-Dive day, for example, you can visit Lake Balanan. This lake is a beautiful freshwater lake located in Siaton, in the southern part of Negros Oriental. Located 285 meters above sea level, the lake is surrounded by mountains and fed by several mountain streams and waterfalls.

Visitors can hike at the lake, take a boat ride, kayak and swim in three man-made natural freshwater pools. There is even a zip line where you get great views as you glide across the lake.

Prefer a different activity?
There are plenty of exciting activities nearby. For example, consider a day trip to the enchanting Twin Lakes, or spend half a day exploring the vibrant Malatapay Market. For water lovers, Apo Island offers snorkeling in crystal clear waters, while in Oslob you have the unique opportunity to snorkel with whale sharks. And don’t forget to visit the Malabo Waterfalls and Red Rocks for a refreshing mix of nature and adventure.

Day 17 & 18 - Return home

As you prepare to leave the Philippines, look back on a fantastic diving vacation in this paradise. From the muck dives in Dauin to the thresher sharks of Malapascua, it’s a trip that will remain in your memory for a long time. Should you feel that you are not yet ready to leave this diver’s paradise, we have good news. In fact, there are numerous options to extend your stay in the Philippines. At EWDR, we like to think with you!

For now, after a final delicious breakfast, get ready for the return trip. The transfer to Cebu airport takes about five hours. With the images of your diving adventures still fresh in your mind, board your overnight flight home in the evening. Safe travels!

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The accommodations

The stay and surroundings

Ocean Vida Beach & Dive Resort

Ocean Vida Beach & Dive Resort, located on Bounty Beach, has 12 sea view rooms (Sea View Rooms) with southward views. These rooms are equipped with a private balcony or terrace, a spacious bathroom with both hot and cold shower facilities, air conditioning, a fan, minibar, safe and towels.

In addition, the resort has eight garden rooms (Garden View Rooms), located in a quieter part of the complex, behind the reception desk. In terms of amenities, these rooms are similar to the ocean-view rooms, but just a bit quieter.

In terms of facilities, the resort offers a restaurant with panoramic views of Bounty Beach, which serves a buffet breakfast for hotel guests between 7:30 a.m. and 10 a.m. The beach bar, open from 8 a.m. to 11 p.m., offers a variety of drinks and has special “Happy Hours” during sunset and moonlight hours. Vida Café, adjacent to the beach bar, serves homemade delicacies and coffee drinks. Every afternoon from 3 p.m., the team provides an atmospheric ambiance on the beach, ideal for relaxing and sharing diving adventures.

Pura Vida Beach & Dive Resort

Rooms at the Pura Vida Beach & Dive Resort vary, with options for garden view, families and even for four individual travelers who want to stay together. However, the recommended choice is often the standard room. These 12 rooms, spread in both double bungalows and individual cottages, are nestled between the garden and the beach. They are equipped with modern amenities, such as split air conditioning and a minibar refrigerator. Depending on guests’ preferences, some rooms feature two single beds that can be joined, while others have a queen-size bed.

The resort offers several facilities. After a day of diving, indulge in relaxation at the Vida Spa, hidden in a lush garden. For the active, a state-of-the-art fitness center offers the chance to stay fit. And after exercise? Relax at the 99er’s bar overlooking the ocean, enjoy a game of billiards or feast on delicious food. The highlight for divers is undoubtedly the Saturday “DIVER’S NIGHT,” with live music and special offers.

Travel costs

What is included

This dive vacation to the Philippines is available from €1649 per person based on two people in one room. The diving trip can be expanded as desired. A number of things are included by default in this travel package.

Prices are subject to price changes, increases or changing exchange rates. Flights are always based on the cheapest possible booking class.

Want to know more about the possibilities? Get in touch with us!

Included in this trip, from €1649, p.p.

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Frequently asked questions about this diving vacation

Diving general

In Malapascua you will do boat dives and in Dauin a combination of shore and boat dives.

In Malapascua 15 minutes to 1 ½ hours (no house reef), in Dauin beautiful and interesting house reef (beach entry), shore diving from 5 minutes to 1 hour boat ride, to Apo Isl. 35 to 40-minute boat ride.

Up to 4 dives per day

On Dauin yes, on Malapascua no

Yes. All basic Padi courses are offered

Both diving schools are located in the resort itself.

Diving equipment

There are combined valves, DIN with INT insert, so you don’t have to carry an adapter.

There are a few 15-liter tanks in each establishment (air and Nitrox), so far they do not charge extra. Do have this reserved in advance.

yes, Nitrox costs +/- 2,50 € per dive extra

Other activities & excursions

At Dauin yes ( ask on location for the possibilities) , at Malapascua you can enjoy the island and its inhabitants.

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