10 Best Snorkeling Spots in the Fabulous Philippines

by Eileen Strauss on September 11, 2022

 

    

The Philippine Islands are made up of over 7500 islands, each boasting abundant coral reefs, crystal clear turquoise waters, and thousands of  marine life species, making it a bucket list topper for snorkeling aficionados.

From novice to native, regardless of your your skill set, snorkeling in the Philippines will never disappoint. 

We dove into the best and most beautiful snorkeling hotspots in the Philippines and these are spots we suggest not to miss.  

   


#1 - PALAWAN ISLANDS 

The Palawan Islands are one of the most popular destinations in the Philippine chain of islands. With surrounding waters teeming with marine life,   this spectacular nature reserve and heritage site is one of the most abundantly rich snorkeling destinations in Southeast Asia. 

Surrounded by a lush landscape of rainforests, mountains, cliffs,  and off-the-beaten-track beaches, the island’s majestic display of islets and reefs are filled with colorful sea creatures not found anywhere else on the planet.

    

   

 

  

#2 - SIETE PECADOS, CORON  

The most recognized and easy-to-reach snorkeling destination around Coron, Siete Pecados is a Southeast asian gem.  Like swimming in a giant aquarium, you’ll see countless tiny colorful fish as well as larger sea creatures like baby sharks, small squids, and octopuses.

Crystal clear turquoise waters make it easy to see hundreds of schools of fish swarming together above the corals from the surface, making this spot truly unforgettable. 

   

  

#3 - CORAL GARDEN, SAN ANTONIO ISLAND, PUERTO GALERA  

Known for being the top snorkeling site in Puerto Galera, Coral Garden is a narrow zone in Muelle Bay packed with spectacular marine life including an array of coral and colorful fish. Close to the city of Manila,  Coral Garden is a must-see for snorkeling buffs of all ages.  


 

   

#4 - APO ISLAND, DAUIN

Schools of rainbow-colored fish and fascinating sea turtles that have grown accustomed to humans’ attention welcome guests of Apo Island, making this a fun snorkeling destination for families with children. 

With crystal clear underwater visibility, Apo Island is fantastic for underwater photography buffs.  

 

   

#5 - MATINLOC ISLAND, EL NIDO

If there was ever an island that was made for snorkeling, it would be Matinloc Island, a thriving mecca of marine life and the longest remote island in El Nido.

Designed specifically for snorkel exploration, swimmers can safely get face-to-face with the fish. Like a life-sized aquarium, Matinloc Island offers  a truly immersive technicolor experience. 

The seafloor adjacent to the beach slants gradually, deepening at only after about 32 feet from the shore, beginners are encouraged to stay close to the shore where there is such an abundance of marine life that there’s no need to swim out to the more challenging depths.

 


#6 - ANILAO, MABINI, BATANGAS 

Looking for a prime snorkeling spot for beginners?  Anilao Batangas is a  convenient and affordable destination for families.

With easy access and spectacular underwater views, bring your waterproof camera with you and impress your IG followers with some of the most camera ready sights in Southeast Asia.

  

#7 - BALICASAG ISLAND 

An exceptional snorkeling abode where marine life is plentiful and crowds are few, Balicasag Island is home to some of the most magnificent marine life, from angles to parrots to clownfishes.

If you’re looking for a vacation destination that’s still relatively unknown and reasonably priced, Balicasag Island is a great option.

  

 

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#8  - TUBOD MARINE SANCTUARY, SIQUIJOR  

Very accessible with the greatest opportunities to spot a variety of starfish species, Tubod Marine Sanctuary in Siquijor is an exquisite spot for snorkeling adventurers and underwater photography enthusiasts. 

 

 

   

 

#9 - OSLOB


Are you daring enough to come face to face with the largest fish in the world? If so, visit Oslob in the Philippines to see whale sharks up close. These mythical sea giants can be found swimming along the island of Cebu in the tiny village of Oslob.

Growing as large as 50 feet long, swimming alongside these creatures is a bucket list experience and certainly an adventure you won’t soon forget. For the faint of heart,  shark feeding from tour-guided boats is also an incredible experience for those who’d rather look from a bit of a distance. 

 

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#10 -  MOALBOAL 

Southwest of Cebu Island, Moalboal is a relatively remote snorkeling hotspot for enthusiasts who don’t want to fight the crowds. Not as touristy as some of the other Filipino snorkeling destinations, the six-mile-long deep steep wall of healthy coral reef on the peninsula of Moalboal offers exciting green turtle sightings and exotic sanctuaries of vividly colored fish.

But, Moalboal is known best for its famous sardine run. Off the coast of Panagsama beach, visitors can watch schools of over one million sardines dance and perform. 

 


 



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