Tubbataha

3.125
(2 REVIEWS)

Country: Philippines

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Tubbataha in a Nutshell - This isolated and protected marine park can only be reached by liveaboard. It has a short diving season of only 3 months per year. Known for its biodiversity and its dynamic underwater terrain, Tubbataha Reef also hosts large marine animals such as sea turtles, manta rays, and a variety of sharks.

Watch this awesome video to learn more about Tubbataha Reef!
 

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Diving Information 

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Tubbataha Marine Life & Dive Sites -  To sum up, the marine life's just fantastic. Each dive site boasts it's own things to see. Whether you're looking to see mantas and sharks - check out "The Washing Machine" - North Atoll to ride the currents and see all the big stuff. Or if you are a fan of macro, get some great shots at "Malayan" - Tubbataha Reef, for some nudibranchs, crabs and shrimps. More of a coral person? Don't forget to dive "Seafan Alley" - North Atoll which is just filled with gorgonian sea fans (keep a lookout for pygmy seahorses!)
 
 

Diving Conditions -  Tubbataha is a UNESCO World Heritage site, playing an important role in fish spawning and breeding. It holds significant importance in terms of marine life species diversity and richness. It consists of wall dives - dropping down to the deep blue where numerous shark species can be seen. As you move more shallow, you'll find the never-ending reef fish species, lobsters, stingrays, mantas and turtles. Some dive sites hold strong currents, while others are more relaxed.

 

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Travel Information 

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How to Get There - From Manila it’s a one hour flight to Puerto Princess, from which Tubbataha liveaboards depart. It takes around 10 hours to get to Tubbataha Reef from Puerto Princesa.
 
How to Dive Tubbataha -  It is only possible to get there via liveaboard, during a few of months in the year.
 

Best Time to Dive - The diving season lasts from March until June, when the sea conditions are quite calm. Those are the only months liveaboards can access Tubbataha Reef.

 

Topside & Non-Diving Activities - Because you can only get there via liveaboard, topside activities are limited to whatever entertainment your dive organization has to offer. Better bring a book and some sunscreen!

 

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Other Useful Information 

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Practical Information

Currency: Philippine Peso (PHP)

Electricity: The standard voltage is 220 V and the frequency is 60 Hz.

Vaccines: Please check the CDC website for updated information on vaccines, health concerns, etc. It is recommended that you are up to date with Typhoid, Tetanus/Diphtheria, Hepatitis and Polio for any trip to the tropics.

Visa: US citizens may enter the Philippines for purposes of tourism without a visa if they present a valid U.S. passport and a return ticket to the United States or an onward ticket to another country. Upon your arrival, immigration authorities will stamp an entry visa valid for 30 days on your passport.

Language: Filipino and English are the official languages in the Philippines

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Reviews (2)

  • Top Reviewer
Pacific Palisades, CA
United States
4
4
3
3

Spent 6 nights on the Philippine Siren at Tubbataha. Boat is comfortable but not 5 star. Has a huge dive deck though. Great food and friendly staff. No night dives at Tubbtaha due to all wall dives & current so generally made 4 dives a day with both a early AM dive as well as a sunset dive. Up at 0530 to 0600 most every day. If you don't like wall dives, you will be disappointed.
Not very much macro stuff. Lots of small sharks - whitetip, blacktip & grey reef sharks. They were generally sleeping and approachable and sometimes even saw them schooling up to a dozen at a time. A few folks saw a hammerhead in early morning, though tough to catch them here-generally shy & mostly deep and early morning.
Marbled rays were my favorite and new for me here. I missed the macro here, though a little was available.
Saw lots of large dog toothed Tunas, some jacks, anthias and moorish idols. Many huge spiny lobsters that would let you get as close as you wanted to photograph them. Moray eels and several spots with garden eels. Occasional bumphead parrotfish.

Visibility was generally good, though some days was only average. Currents variable and some dive sites (Washing Machine) were a big challenge even for an experienced diver. There are 2 small Islands that you dive here so after getting here not much travelling isneeded, so there is not a lot of cruising after the first night.

While this is a good spot for diving especially for bigger stuff, I have to say that Indonesia - especially Raja Ampat & Komodo were much better, especially when you favor in how remote a spot this is and long the connecting flights are. This is known as a site for big stuff, so for macro you wouldn't come here anyways.

Visited on 04/2014 - Submitted on 04/17/2014