Palawan has come up a lot lately, particularly since Travel + Leisure named it “The World’s Best Island”. A substantial part of that decision comes from the unbelievable diving available, and El Nido is the gateway to the majority of those sites. Enter Palawan Divers, El Nido’s premier dive shop, and our hosts for three unforgettable dives.
The changing weather, rain, and rough seas played a role in our dive site options. Between our boat captain and Divemaster Joel, they found us the perfect places to avoid the storm. Our three locations were Entalula, South Miniloc, and Twin Rocks, or Stingray Airport as Palawan Divers know it. This would be my first time doing a triple dive; I had only ever done doubles in the past. Heather was feeling pretty disheartened as she was going to have to sit this one out due to an ear infection. She still managed to enjoy herself though as the dive shop let her tag along and snorkel at each of the sites.
All three-dive locations presented unique experiences, and all were teeming with life. Entalula was more like your classic wall dive. We headed out following along the wall at one depth and then on the return we were at another depth. This gives you an excellent opportunity to start to understand the many numerous levels of sea life. For the Twin Rocks adventure, we put in on one spot on the reef and then navigated our way along it until we reached our exit point and the boat moved to pick us up.
South Miniloc was my favorite by far; it was also the most work I have ever done while diving. The reef is situated in-between two islands with a constant current flowing through delivering a smorgasbord of grub to its residents. While the current is the quintessence for the reef and keeps it stacked with life, you have to put in some effort to swim up it. A field of Funnel Coral that looks more like a giant lettuce patch is spread out over the reef giving it an otherworldly feeling. What takes this dive to the next level is on your return when you get to glide back over the field and through the schools of fish.
The quality of people and care provided by Palawan Divers was top notch, right down to some of the most comfortable rental gear I have ever used. Snacks, coffee, tea, all the water you could drink, fresh fruit and a hot cooked lunch were provided to keep us all going for the day. I found the crews demeanor spot on and refreshing, while they nudged us in the right direction to keep us on some kind of schedule. There was no big fuss when all the divers decided to take a fifteen-minute impromptu break and drift around the boat discussing our experiences. For some reason, in the Philippines, I was using more air than normal. Divemaster Joel did some quick calculations and adjustments to keep my safety the lead priority and still managed to maintain the overall experience.
Website: Palawan Divers
Locations: There are 2 locations in El Nido. The Dive Shop is located on Calle Hama street and the Freediving Center is on G. Del Pilar St.
4 out of 5 Travelationship High Fives. I would be hard pressed to come up with a negative thing regarding my time with Palawan Divers. Type of traveler rating – diver, adventure, romance, relaxation, bucket lister, conservation, animal lover, sea lover, sun lover
* Thank you to Palawan Divers for the complimentary dives. As always, our opinions are ours – honest, not biased and as we experienced.