1 best diving sites in cebu

7 World-Class Diving Spots in Cebu

On September 2020, the Philippines bagged the “Best Overseas Diving Area” recognition during the Marine Diving Awards 2020 which was hosted by Marine Diving Magazine in Japan! Of the 4 spots from the Philippines, 2 can be found in Cebu – Moalboal and Malapascua.

So if you are up for some world-class diving experience, here are the 7 best diving spots in Cebu.

1. NALUSUAN ISLAND

Perfect even for beginners, Nalusuan Island is a part of the Olango Island Group, located between Mactan Island and Bohol. It is a marine protected area with beautiful corals and a colorful reef top. It’s accessible by boat from Mactan, approximately 20-40 minutes. The marine life here is off limits to fishermen because Nalusuan Island has been declared as a marine sanctuary.

The island is popular for the numerous schools of snappers, grouper, and barracuda, and if you’re lucky, you may get to see stingrays and sea turtles.

  • Diving fee: (depends on where you will avail diving packages)
    • P2000 – P2500 per person (Nalusuan Island Resort)
    • P4256 per person (Scotty’s Action Sports Network)
  • Contact details:
  • Exact location: Olango Reef, Cordova Mactan, Cebu
  • How to get there?
    • By Taxi: Book a flight to Cebu. From the airport, take a taxi to Movenpick Hotel Mactan Island Resort. Beside the resort is the port where you can ride a boat to Nalusuan island (travel time 40-45 mins).

2. HILUTUNGAN ISLAND

Also another marine sanctuary and a part of the Olango Reef, Hilutungan Island is perfect for both newbies and advanced scuba divers. For beginners, there are shallow parts of the island where you can snorkel.

For expert divers, prepare to witness an astounding underwater show – sea turtles, parrotfishes, schools of jackfish and a whole lot more! Within 3-7 meters from the shore, you can already feed numerous fishes, a perfect activity for beginners. Hilutangan Island is accessible by a 30-minute boat ride from Mactan island.

  • Entrance fee:
    • Snorkeling only – P100
    • Diving – P300
  • Diving fee: (depends on where you will avail diving package)
    • P4256 (Scotty’s Action Sports Network). It is also most convenient if you arrange your diving agency for your airport pick-up.
  • Contact details:
  • Exact location: Olango Island Group, Cordova, Cebu

3. OLANGO GROUP OF ISLANDS

These group of islands are home to a wide variety of marine species. The coral reefs here are teeming with life and color. However, this site is best only for experienced divers. The strong current and surge as well as the limited visibility in some of the diving spots will make it risky and difficult for beginners.

  • Diving fee: (depends on where you will avail diving package)
    • P1700 (Mokie Dive Center); add P250 for night dives; inclusive of boat tours around neighboring islands
  • Contact details:
  • Exact location: Olango Island Group, Cordova, Cebu
  • How to get there?
    • By Taxi: From Mactan Cebu International Airport, hop on a taxi that will take you to Movenpick Hotel. Beside the hotel is Hilton Port or Movenpick Port. From here, ride a boat headed to Santa Rosa port (travel time is 15-20 minutes and fare is around P15 pesos).
    • Recommended: Mokie Dive Center arranges pick up at Mactan Island. We recommend that you arrange your transfers to and from Olango Island especially if it’s your first time.

4. CAPITANCILLO ISLAND

This small islet is located in Bogo City and accessible through a 20-minute boat ride. This diving site takes pride in colorful corals, different kinds of reef fishes, as well as reef sharks!

Capitancillo Island is popular for frequent sightings of yellowfin tuna and mackerels. Adding to this is a deep wall approximately 55 meters down called Rendez-Vous. Adding to the attraction is a lighthouse that is sure to give you some perfect background for photos.

  • Diving fee: Contact Devocean Divers for fees (contact details below)
  • Contact details:
    • Devocean Divers
      • Cellphone: 0917-322-5161
      • Website:https://devoceandivers.com
  • Exact location: Bogo City, Cebu
  • How to get there?
    • By bus: Ride a bus bound for Bogo City at the Cebu City’s North Bus terminal(3-hour travel). In Bogo City proper, hire a pedicab to take you to Brgy. Siocon Bantay Dagat Outpost. There are stationed boatmen here who can take you to Capitancillo Island.

5. MACTAN ISLAND

Connected by a bridge from the main island of Cebu, Mactan is one of the most popular diving spots in the province. Divers do not need to travel far from the island to have an amazing diving experience because their shore-based diving is very easy to access.

Mactan has underwater caves, colorful corals, tuna, squirrelfish, and barracuda to name a few. Extra bonus here are two wrecks which will surely fascinate you and make your experience even more magical.

6. MALAPASCUA ISLAND

Perfect for beginners, Malapascua is a good starting point for newbies because of the many diving schools in the area. The main highlight is the dive in Monad Shoal that is fairly easy to do and will give you a glimpse of thresher sharks!

Aside from these, the Gato Island located nearby is also popular for the abundant sea creatures that you will encounter – blue ring octopus, xenon crabs, frogfish, sea snakes, sea hares, and a whole lot more!

  • Diving fee: Contact Devocean Divers (contact details below). They offer a wide range of diving courses in Malapascua ranging from beginner to advanced divers to rescue courses.
  • Contact details:
  • Exact location: Malapascua Island, Brangay Logon, Daanbantayan, Cebu
  • How to get there?:
    • By bus: Ride a Ceres bus bound for New Maya Port at the North Bus Terminal of Cebu City. Fare is P210 and takes 4 hours. Upon arrival, take a tricycle going to the exact location of New Maya Port (P20). It is recommended that you arrange your travel in coordination with your diving agency.  

7. MOALBOAL

The town of Moalboal is considered as one of the best diving sites not only in Cebu, but in the Philippines. Their Pescador island is a marine park that is home to hammerhead sharks and of course, for the very famous and jaw-dropping sardine run!

The numerous schools of sardines is crazy! Being surrounded by them is an amazing experience and it really should be on your bucket list! Aside from these, Moalboal also has different tunnels that divers can traverse, as well as a lively and colorful marine life and corals, it’s just surreal! The marine life is very rich and well-protected.

Photo by Jubert Valmores
  • Diving fee: (depends on where you will avail diving package)
    • The Blue Orchid Resort – P39,900 (2 guests, 5 days/4 nights accommodation, and 12 dives)
    • Savedra Dive Center – Starts at P13, 100 (4 days 3 nights accommodation, 5 dives)
  • Contact details:
  • Exact location: Moalboal, Cebu
  • How to get there?:
    • By bus: Ride a Ceres bus bound directly for Moalboal in the South Bus Terminal of Cebu. Fare is around P120-P130.


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IMPORTANT NOTE: The rates, contact details and other information indicated in this post are accurate from the time of writing but may change without Sugbo.ph's notice. Should you know the updated information, please message us on Facebook.


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Phrexus
"The Samareño who fell in love with Cebu."

Writer | Eastern Samar

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