Safety and environment conscious shops

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moorish8idol

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Hello fellow ScubaBoard-ers. I am just back from a diving vacation in Western Australia and need to start planning my next dive trip as I am missing it so bad! I am looking at the Philippines in March-April and have narrowed down several locations and am hoping you can provide feedback on suitable dive shops in each of them. I am looking for shops that prioritize safety, respect the marine environment and wildlife and can offer good, solid equipment for rental (BCD and regs – I have the rest) in the following locations:

- Donsol for diving at Manta Bowl/San Miguel Island
- Bohol area for diving at Balicasag
- Malapascua for diving at Monad Shoal (thresher sharks) and Calanggaman Island (I was also considering doing my Rescue/EFR course while here – I was looking strongly at TSD)
- Not sure if I would dive there but recommendations for El Nido on Palawan

And finally, does anyone have experience with the S/Y Sakura for Tubbataha liveaboard diving? I see someone else posted about this recently with no response. They appear to have solid reviews and are about half the price of all other liveaboards visiting Tubbataha. Not only is it friendlier on the budget but I was hopeful that this would attract more down-to-earth, young/young-at-heart fellow divers to share the journey with. Thanks for your feedback!
 

leebutler

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Hello fellow ScubaBoard-ers.

- Donsol for diving at Manta Bowl/San Miguel Island
- Bohol area for diving at Balicasag
- Malapascua for diving at Monad Shoal (thresher sharks) and Calanggaman Island (I was also considering doing my Rescue/EFR course while here – I was looking strongly at TSD)
- Not sure if I would dive there but recommendations for El Nido on Palawan

- Bohol area for diving at Balicasag
Take a look at Philippine Fun Divers, the owner Holger Horn tends to lead the way on a lot of conservation activity in the area, and is a member of the coastguard, safety shouldn't be a problem

- Malapascua for diving at Monad Shoal (thresher sharks) and Calanggaman Island (I was also considering doing my Rescue/EFR course while here – I was looking strongly at TSD)
TSD have a fantastic set up, you can't go wrong there, highly recomended

- Not sure if I would dive there but recommendations for El Nido on Palawan
I hear nothing but good things about Submariner Dive Center, and their dive safaris seem to attract the type of crowd you like.

Another (cheaper) option to Tubbataha, have a look here

If you feel like passing by Moalboal on your trip pop by Savedra
 
OP
moorish8idol

moorish8idol

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Location
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200 - 499
Thanks Lee! Also now looking a lot at Coron. Any recs for there?

Anyone on Tubbataha still? What about Stella Mares and Sakura? I don't need luxury, just a good group of fellow divers and a safe and secure boat (not one that will break down and make us miss dives!) Thanks!
 

leebutler

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In Coron be very careful who you go with, safety standards there can be quite low.

Look up Patrick Preston at Neptune, or Gunter from discovery, both good safety conscious guys.

On the topic of Tubbataha, I'm sure there are others on here more knowledgeable than I.
 
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