November to February – 10 nights
Apo Reef, a UNESCO world heritage site, is considered by many to be among the best diving in the Philippines. The Japanese World War II wrecks around Busuanga Island, particularly in Coron Bay, have been one of Philippine diving’s best kept secrets whilst Anilao is well known for its numerous smaller creatures including blue-ringed octopus and Sargassum frogfish. The dive sites throughout our 10-night itinerary consist of wrecks from World War II, covered with soft and hard corals and home to schooling fish, a fresh water lake, steep reef walls and gentle sandy slopes and coral gardens; for a truly varied dive vacation.
The 40 metre S/Y Philippine Siren luxury diving liveaboard was designed and built using the lessons learnt from our first yacht the S/Y Siren and has been modified to better suit the growing needs of our guests. The 8 cabins are all situated forward of the engine room with 2 fixed double bed cabins located at the bow and 6 twin bed cabins throughout the remaining lower deck quarters, however we offer flexibility with 2 cabins which can be converted from twin to double should guests require (cabins 5 & 6).
The outdoor dining area offers a superb setting for all your meals, with comfortable bench seating set in a semi-circular shape. The dive deck is likely one of the most spacious you will have come across, excepting other Siren Fleet yachts!
We have improved facilities for underwater photographers and videographers, providing both indoor and outdoor designated areas for charging and preparation of your camera and video equipment. Large rinse tanks on the dive deck and a well trained crew!
Built on the Indonesian Island of Sulawesi, she is a traditional “gaft rigged Phinisi” handcrafted from ironwood and teak. Built by divers for divers the S/Y Philippine Siren is a modern and spacious diving liveaboard.
Aboard the S/Y Philippine Siren we welcome 16 guests on each trip to ensure abundant space for all divers.
Features of the S/Y Philippine Siren liveaboard include:
- 8 large air-conditioned cabins each with their own personal audio-visual entertainment system and ensuite bathrooms with hot water through our centrally ehated system. Overbed reading lights and individual controls for your air-conditioning unit are provided for your convenience, as well as several cupboards for clothing and personal items, an in-cupboard safety box and a hairdryer. Each guest is provided with 1 bath & 1 hand towel and a cotton bathrobe for use in the cabin
- Expansive shaded diving deck area, with individual stations and personal storage drawers. Guests are provided with a 12l aluminim tank, weights & belt. Basic Aqua Lung scuba equipment rental (BCD, Regulator, 3mm wetsuit, mask & fins) and SMB (safety sausage) are provided FREE of charge. Sizing requests can be submitted via the online application form when confirming your booking. For your convenience each guest is provided with a numbered deck towel and more towels are available upon request
- Spacious air-conditioned lounge with cocktail bar, sofas, 42 inch flatscreen & movie network and library of books & games
- Covered outdoor dining and refreshment area. All meals are served buffet style and guest may help themselves throughout the day to all soft drinks & snacks that are available
- Un-shaded Sun Deck with 8 cushioned loungers
- Enriched Air Nitrox is FREE for all certified Nitrox divers. If you are not a certified Nitrox diver all our instructors can certainly teach you the Enriched Air Diver Specialty during your liveaboard trip
- 2 high-powered Ridged-Hulled Inflatable Boats accompany the S/Y Philippine Siren
- Laundry Service – our housekeeper will launder your clothes and return to you the same day (0.50 euro per item)
- Massage Service – available for 3 hours daily* for 25 Euro/ hour
- Yacht Boutique, which includes a range of Siren Fleet clothing, reef hooks and nudi-pointers
- Kayaks, for guest use FREE of charge
* Excepting arrival and departure days
Coron Wrecks – Anilao Dive Site Highlights
Arkitsushima – Coron Bay, Busuanga. The seaplane carrier wreckage lays between 20-38m/ 75-130ft and is a true warship. Loaded with anti-aircraft guns and large crane there is plenty to explore on the outside of the wreck. Hazards from the sharp ragged metal and deep depth make penetration of the engine room only for the experienced and qualified wreck divers- however you are rewarded with an impressive sight of the 4 engines. Schools of batfish have made the Arkitsushima their home and large groupers can be also be found here.
Tangat Wreck, Coron Wrecks possibly the Olympia Maru, is a 120m (360ft) long Japanese freighter resting on the bottom at 24m (85ft). Her decks at 18m (60ft) provide a perfect site for divers of all levels to get some wreck experience, with open cargo holds to explore and masts which rise up towards the surface allowing for a multi-level profile. Covered with black coral bushes the wreckage attracts juvenile barracudas, dog tooth tuna and schools of squid.
Coron Wrecks a Japanese Oiler, thought to be the Taiei Maru, was actually sunk after being hit by several bombs in two separate attacks. During the first attack she caught fire and was still visible however on the 9th October a second attack proved fatal and she sunk down to 26m (85ft). An interesting dive, the wreck offers several features and the possibility of deeper exploration attracting schools of snappers and sweetlips she is also home to smaller creatures including seahorses, nudibranchs and skeleton shrimps. With a typically mild current the Okikawa Maru is suitable for both day and night dives.
Siete Pescados South, Coron Wrecks provides an easy relaxed die, though with typically lower visibility (5m / 15ft) than other dives in the area. Schools of snapper, sergeant majors, banner fish and sweetlips are amongst the regular fish species seen, along with coral groupers, rabbit fish, ribbon eels, squat lobsters and banded sea snakes. Travel overnight across the Mindoro Strait to Apo Reef.
Apo Menor. The sloping reef wall is where we are surrounded by schools of surgeonfish, jacks, fusilleers and triggerfish. Whitetip reef sharks scour the reef for prey or can be found resting in the many crevices. Dogtooth tuna cruise by in the deeper waters and lobsters are found hiding along the reef wall, whilst at the surface the action continues as sightings of spinner dolphins and whales are a common occurance.
Secret Bay – Anilao Batangas. A perfect macro creature spotting site for night dives. The shallow sandy area hosts cuttlefish and nudibranchs, pipe fish and dragonets, seahorses and gurnards. Sunset dives are also on the agenda to see mandarin fish mating. Simply a superb site to tick those critter sightings off your “Must See” list.
Twin Rocks – Anilao Batangas. This small diving area of 2 large rocks laying just 1 metre apart forms one of the best sites in Anilao. At a maximum depth of just 15m / 50ft hours can be spent here watching the snappers and jacks as they school about you or taking a closer look amongst the corals for frog fish, devil fish, ghost pipefish, nudibranchs, shrimps, ribbon eels, gobies, orang-utan crabs and several species of anemone fish.
Anilao Pier, Anilao provides a superb site for night diving. Bobbit worms, snake eels, bobtail squid & stargazers can be seen lurking out of the sandy bottom, whilst coconut octopus, pipehorses and schools of catfish are also commonly seen.
Koala, Anilao offers a relaxing dive with typically mild current affording divers the time and to search the many whip corals, barrel sponges and crinoids for xeno crabs, pink squat lobsters, clingfish & crinoid shrimp. Commonly seen are pygmy seahorses, cowfish and mantis shrimp.
Verde Island’s “Drop Off”, Anilao provides for a fast-paced drift dive along the steep reef walls of this small island in the passage formed between Luzon and Mindoro islands.
Beatrice Rock, Anilao close to Sombrero Island offers schools of bannerfish, Moorish idols, triggerfish and plenty of butterfly fish varieties as well as many species of moray eel including fimbriated and snowflake. Currents can be strong here!
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Itinerary & Schedule
Coron, Apo and Anilao Liveaboard Diving Itinerary
coron-sm Just a few hours south of Manila, lies the World renown muck diving area of Anilao. It is here that many new species, particularly nudibranchs, have been discovered. There are numerous dive sites to explore including Secret Bay, Twin Rocks and Kirby’s Rock where xeno crabs, seahorses, mimic octopus and many more odd looking critters can be seen. After 2-3 days diving in Anilao the S/Y Philippine Siren cruises southwards to Apo Reef, the second largest of the World’s continuous reef systems. 33Km from the coast of Mindoro Occidental the reef teems with life. Rocky walls with huge seafans and barrel sponges attract schooling snappers & white tip reef sharks. Manta rays and eagle rays are also known visitors to the reefs for cleaning.
philippines-blueringTo the far north of Palawan lies the Calamian group of islands, to which Busuanga and Coron are a part. During the Battle of Coron Bay in 1944, 24 ships of the Japanese supply fleet were sunk including the armed Arkitsushima and the oil tanker Olympia Maru. Up to 12 wrecks are within recreational diving depths and we spend up to 3 days diving the bay along with dives in the north part of the island for the chance to see dugongs and a trip to the inland Barracuda Lake – a freshwater site offering great visibility within the cave systems and some interesting thermoclines.
Trips start in either Coron and culminate in Batangas or vice versa. A one-way domestic flight is required.