wrecks in Coron Bay are alive with soft and hard corals
and variety of exotic wild marine can be found. The
wrecks in Coron Bay are some of the finest sites in the
Philippines today. Some of the wrecks are huge up to 160
meters in length. Coron Bay is located in North of
Palawan that lies between Busuanga and Culion Islands.
On World War II, Twelve Japanese supply ships are
anchored in Coron Bay where US Navy launched a massive
air strike. These ships were sunk at depths of 10 to 43
meters. Eight of these ships are discovered in Coron Bay
where it is now became a wreck diving paradise in the
country. All the wreck ships are still intact
structurally and some stunning penetrations and swim
throughs are possible. Some wrecks have huge blast
holes, allowing masses of natural light to penetrate
deep into the wrecks, making for a magical experience
for the novice wrecker!
The Coron wrecks are one of the best kept diving secrets
in the World and, as a result, you will be unlucky to
find another dive boat at any of the wrecks you visit.
Today, Coron is not only famous for its wreck diving, it
is also become popular for its reef diving too. Coral
reefs are re-establishing itself because of the fish
sanctuaries that are being implemented. Spectacular and
beautiful artificial reefs can be found outside the
wrecks and are laden with both hard and soft corals and
an abundance of fish life.
Irako Wreck: This is a Japanese refrigeration ship
which is about 147m long. This is probably the best
wreck dive in the Philippines. Irako is located at the
mouth if Coron Bay. This shipwreck is still intact and
has a good visibility. This is the best of any wreck in
the area and also popular with diver enthusiast.
Spectacular marine life is varied and you can see big
groupers, schools of tuna and yellow fin, lion fish and
scorpion fish live around this wreck. Sea turtles live
in the crumpled and folded metal of the superstructure.
The best to explore in this wreckage is the underneath
of the superstructure. It is possible to go down into a
cargo hold at 36m and swim through to the galley. There
are still pots, pans and wiring to be seen. From here,
you swim out through a stairway amidships. There is a
beautiful deep penetration through the engine room for
trained, experienced and properly equipped divers.
Maru Wreck: This wreckage was a civilian tanker/oiler
which was sunk near Sunk near Busuanga Island, 2 miles
south of Conception, near Coron Bay. The ship is 160m
long. The shipwreck is lying upright in 26m of water and
by length, width and volume is the largest of the Coron
wrecks and an hour long dive is possible. This wreck
site is also known as Conception wreck. This wreckage is
totally covered with beautiful corals and offers a
variety of marvelous marine life.
The deck of this wreckage is between 10m and 16m and is
good for wreck dive beginners. For advance wreck divers,
many penetration are possible including the propeller
shaft from the outside of the ship all the way into the
engine room. A spectacular swim through is possible from
the front portion of the ship which is accessible,
starting at a cargo hold on top and coming out of the
twisted wreckage at the front.
In this wreck dive site, you will ecounter sweetlips,
grouper, lionfish, surgeons, wrasse, tang and
soldierfish. In addition, the whole wreck is covered
with soft and hard corals and sponges.
The Akitsushima Wreck: This is the only Japanese
warship sunk in Coron Bay. This ship is 118m long. The
ship was hit directly towards the stern where the flying
boat was kept but still the ship was intact. The ship
was almost torn into two pieces and the flying boat
disappeared. This is a beautiful wreckage to dive
because the wreck also attracts a good amount of marine
life. You will experience a magnificent marine life like
giant groupers, schools of barracuda hiding under the
bow, yellow fin tuna, yellowfish, grouper, snapper,
batfish and a huge assortment of smaller reef fish.
Kogyo Maru Wreck: This Kogyo Maru was a Japanese
freighter carrying construction materials for building a
airfiled for the Japanese and was sunk into Coron Bay.
The ship is 158m long, displaces 6,353 tons and situated
to the north of Irako Wreck, just off Tangat Island.
This wreck site is good for beginners and most swim
throughs are large. You can see cement bags are evident
and you'll come across a bulldozer, tractor and air
compressor, all of which are intact and encrusted.
Swim through the cavernous engine room and look at the
hardware then out through the bridge. If air is low go
up to the port side of the bridge and look at the soft
corals growing there and the fish life living on this
artificial coral reef at 22 meters.
Wonderful marine life can be seen in this wreckage like
giant pufferfish, waspfish and barracuda. Soft and hard
corals are everywhere as are sponges.
Olympia Maru Wreck: This was Japanese army cargo
ship which was sunk in Coron Bay. This ship is 120m long
and lies on her starboard. This wreckage is located
south of Busuanga and west of Tangat Island. Penetration
in this wreckage is easy at the cargo holds. This
wreckage is a very good wreck dive site because it has a
fantastic variety of marine life with large shoals of
banana fish, scorpionfish, giant bat fish and giant
puffer fish, especially around the mast, bow and stern.
The superstructure of this wreckage is covered with
beautiful soft corals and bushes of black corals.
Kyokuzan Maru Wreck: This is a Japanese army
cargo ship which was sunk in Northeast of Busuanga
Island. The ship is 136m long. This wreck site is far
from Coron Bay in which that it is not often visited by
divers. This is a beautiful wreck dive site. This huge
ship is still intact and offers a good visibility. You
will discover various cars and trucks from a bygone age
in the cargo room.
East Tangat Gunboat Wreck: This is a Japanese
gunboat or a submarine hunter and is located off the
eastern side of Tangat Island. This wreckage is ideal
for novice divers. Beautiful coral reefs can be seen.
Nanshin Maru Wreck: This is a Japanese oil tanker
which is located close to Black Island Beach and can be
reached in a day from Coron. The ship is 50m long that
sits upright on a sandy bottom. This is a good wreck
dive site for beginners. Photography is good in this
area because the water is clear. Exotic marine life can
be seen in this area like scorpionfish, batfish,
groupers, lionfish and trumpetfish. Night diving is
excellent as well.
Japanese Freighter: This is an unknown Japanese
Freighter but some say that this is the Taiei Maru, The
Morazon Maru or even The Mamiya Maru. But no one seems
so sure if what is the name of ship. This ship is
located not far west off Tangat Island in 25m of water
and is 140m long. The massive boilers in the center of
the ship are still intact and are a big attraction to
the divers. If you time your dive between 10am-2pm and
it's sunny, the wreck is lit up like a cathedral.
This is an impressive wreck dive site because variety of
marine life can be experience. Hard corals cover the
port side and you'll also see groupers, sweetlips, sea
snakes and the occasional turtle. See if you can find
the two resident trumpet fish that hang out half a meter
over the part side corals. Many scorpion fish hang out
around the wreck area.
Lusong Gunboat Wreck: This is a Japanese gunboat
or a submarine hunter which is sunk in the east side of
Lusong Island. This wreck site is good for snorkeling
and photography. This site has a good variety of hard
corals and marine life.
Skeleton Wreck: All that remains of this 25m
steel-hulled boat are the keel, ribs and stringers. This
wreck was beached with the bow a dozen meters from Coron
Island. The stern points directly away from the island.
A pass through on the starboard side of the hull at 14
meters allows you to swim from the inside of the boat
out over the coral reef.
Cathedral Cave: This site is an unusual sites
which is located on the south end of Coron Island on the
east side. This cave illuminates when a shaft of
daylight penetrating from a fissure higher up the
outside rock face. Breathtaking colorful corals are
visible in the area and look out for lobsters and cowrie
Barracuda Lake: This is also one of the unusual
dive site. Firstly, you will have to climb up a
limestone mountain in full gear for 15-20 minutes until
you arrive at the lake. Then there's a 33m dive to a
cave with 30m of penetration. The cave is situated on
the north wall of the lake and so named for its resident
barracuda who may deign to show you around. The
opportunities for photography at this point are