Philippines ↣ Puerto Galera and Anilao
Updated: Apr 7, 2020
For years I'd dreamt of diving the Verde Passage in the Philippines. Popular with researchers and recreational divers, the area is known for having the most marine species per square meter out of anywhere known worldwide. Scientists discover new species here daily - perhaps we came across a few ourselves over the few times we've visited! The conditions at the Verde Island drop off itself were the most challenging I’d ever experienced - the currents that result in the high rate of marine diversity can be unexpected and fierce. But it was by far the most rewarding of any dives we've done - anywhere!
Exploring closer to Puerto Galera and Anilao, we spent dozens of dives discovering new critters each time. What we saw seemed otherworldly. We shot footage of an electric scallop, its shell flashing like bright red lightening. Though tricky at first, it seemed every dive we found camouflaged scorpion fish hidden in corals. Taking a break from colorful coral, we surveyed the sandy bottoms spotting tiny seahorses and magical flamboyant cuttlefish. We swam with dozens of giant (4 foot!) clams, their shells adorned with colorful coral.
Between dives we rested on idyllic deserted islands. And just when we thought it couldn't get much better, we witnessed a vivid sunset over the ocean while heading out to a fantastic night dive. Uncrowded and off the tourist track, this area is a gem for serious divers. I can't wait to return again!
Below is a glimpse of some of the fascinating creatures we spotted - enjoy!