Apo Island: A Diving and Snorkeling Paradise in the Philippines

Apo Island: A Diving and Snorkeling Paradise in the Philippines

Apo Island is a small volcanic island located in Negros Oriental, Philippines, that has become a popular destination for snorkeling and diving enthusiasts. The island’s pristine waters, vibrant coral reefs, and diverse marine life make it a paradise for underwater explorers.

One of the most popular spots in Apo Island is the Apo Island Marine Sanctuary, established in 1982 to protect the island’s marine resources. Covering over 72 hectares of coral reef, the sanctuary is home to over 650 species of fish and 400 species of coral. Snorkeling and diving in the sanctuary offer visitors a chance to see some of the most beautiful and diverse marine life in the Philippines, including sea turtles, colorful fish, and vibrant coral.

Aside from snorkeling and diving, visitors can also explore the island’s lush vegetation and hike to the island’s highest point, which offers stunning views of the surrounding sea and nearby islands. The island is also home to a small fishing community, where visitors can learn about the local way of life and enjoy fresh seafood.

Apo Island offers several accommodations options, ranging from basic guesthouses to luxurious beach resorts. Visitors can also choose to camp on the island, which offers a unique and memorable experience under the stars.

While Apo Island is a popular tourist destination, it is important to note that the island is a protected marine sanctuary. Visitors are encouraged to follow responsible tourism practices and avoid damaging the fragile marine ecosystem. Visitors are also required to pay an entrance fee, which helps fund the conservation efforts of the marine sanctuary.

In conclusion, Apo Island is a must-visit destination for anyone interested in snorkeling and diving. The island’s rich marine life and stunning underwater scenery make it a paradise for underwater explorers. Whether you’re an experienced diver or a beginner snorkeler, Apo Island offers a unique and unforgettable experience that is sure to leave you with lasting memories of your trip to the Philippines.


How to go to Apo Island from from Dumaguete City if you do it without hiring a travel agency or a personal guide:


  1. Go to the jeepney terminal of Dumaguete City and ask about the jeepneys that go to Zamboanguita.
  2. Once in the Jeepney, tell the driver to drop you off in Baranggay Malatapay of the town of Zamboanguita, it’s a place right before the town proper.
  3. Once you are in Baranggay Malatapay, walk from the highway to the drop of point. From there, take a boat to Apo Island.The boat ride takes around 30 minutes. There are no regular boat schedule so expect to wait for some time to get your chance for a ride. It’s still best to contact some boat operators or just get a guide to make sure you don’t wast so much time or a day.

    Many tour operators in Dumaguete City offer day tours or overnight packages to Apo Island, which include transportation, meals, and accommodatio

It is also important to note that the boat ride to Apo Island can be rough and choppy, especially during the rainy season. Visitors are advised to wear appropriate clothing and bring motion sickness medication if necessary. Additionally, it is recommended to book accommodations in advance, especially during peak season, as options on the island can be limited.


About the residents there and the accommodation:

Apo Island is a small island with a population of around 1,000 people, mostly fishermen and their families. As a popular tourist destination, there are also several accommodations options available on the island for visitors who wish to stay overnight.

Most of the accommodations on Apo Island are small guesthouses or cottages owned and operated by local families. These accommodations are usually simple but comfortable, with basic amenities like electricity and running water. Some guesthouses have shared bathrooms while others have private bathrooms.

In addition to guesthouses, there are also a few resorts on the island that offer more luxurious accommodations. These resorts usually have amenities like air conditioning, hot showers, and swimming pools. They also typically offer meals and activities, such as guided snorkeling and diving tours.

For visitors who prefer to camp, there is a camping area on the island that offers basic facilities like a cooking area and shared bathrooms. Camping on Apo Island is a unique experience that allows visitors to sleep under the stars and enjoy the island’s natural beauty.

It is important to note that accommodations on Apo Island can be limited and it is recommended to book in advance, especially during peak season. Visitors should also be prepared for basic facilities and rustic living conditions. However, the warm hospitality of the local residents and the island’s natural beauty make Apo Island a unique and memorable place to stay.


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