About two-and-a-half hour drive south of Manila, Anilao, is regarded as the birthplace of diving in the Philippines. There is something for everyone here – from snorkeling, to sites for both novices and the experienced diver. In the mid-1960’s, a whole coral reef was transplanted onto a large rock formation close to the shore.

Airport: Manila Airport - NAIA (MNL)

Trip Duration: 6 to 10 Days Trip


Beginner to Advanced Diver

Destination Info 

Anilao is a Marine Protected Sanctuary and it is best known in the Philippines for underwater macro photography. However, Anilao definitely isn’t just for macro photography. Anilao also offers some great reef and wall dives, sea mounds and coral gardens..

What to see

Here you will find vibrant and colourful Nudibranchs and a huge variety of Critters like Crabs, Shrimps and Cuttlefish. It is not rare to observe the rather strange looking Hairy Frogfish, Blue-Ringed Octopus as well as Mimic Octopus and Rhinopias. Mantis Shrimp, several species of Gobies and Bobbit Worms are also common encounters. The best place for muck diving is Secret Bay also known as Mainit Muck. This is also a great spot for an exhilarating night dive.

Visibility is good and the opportunities for photography are excellent. Unfortunately, as the area has developed, so some of the more negative aspects of this have become evident. In particular, dynamiting, collection of corals and shells and over fishing are just some of the challenges that Anilao and Batangas must face. Luckily, these are being addressed. Most of the best dives are actually found around the islands of Sombrero and Maricaban, a short boat trip away from Anilao.

Sample Itinerary
  • Day 1:  Arrival at Manila. Pick up and transfer to Buceo Anilao (2.5 to 3 hours journey to Anilao)
  • Day 2-4: 4 boat dives.
  • Day 5: 2 boat dives.
  • Day 6: Check out and transfer to Airport.
Dive Site Information
  •  Best time to visitMay till October.
  • Water Temp: 22-30°C
  • Air Temp: 25-30°C
  • Visibility: 5-20 meters
  • Current: mild to strong
Getting There
  • Manila Airport > 3 hours transfer by car
Health & Insurance
  • Dive Insurance compulsory for this trip. We also strongly advise you get adequate travel insurance. Please check your travel insurance policy for your diving needs. If not covered then we recommend DiveAssure for single trip policy cover.
  • Dive Computer compulsory on this trip.
  • Follow Safe Diving Practices at ALL times plus No Deco Diving and No Solo Diving.
  • Exposure Suit recommended to bring your own 5mm long semi-dry, rash-vest & hood for diving during January & February for cold water (between 22-26°C).

Our Recommendation

Best time to dive is during April and May but dive sites can get crowded during weekends. Expect colder water in January and February with temperatures going down to 22°C and 24°C on average but less crowd. October to May is the main dive season for Anilao. July and August is when monsoon season is in full effect. Check your calendar for major public holidays in the Philippines as the resorts are likely to be crowded during Easter holidays and so on.