TheLoneRider
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Scuba Diving

Scuba Diving Balicasag Island with SeaQuest Dive Center June 15, 2017

Scuba Diving Balicasag Island with SeaQuest Dive Center

Dive Shop: SeaQuest Dive Center
Website: seaquestdivecenter.com
Email: info@seaquestdivecenter.com
Phone: (63) 38 502.9069
Mobile: (63) (0)999.380.2420 (Smart) / (63) (0)927.309.6383 (Globe)
Location: Alona Beach, Panglao, 6340 Bohol, Philippines
GPS waypoint: 9°32'54.5"N 123°46'23.6"E

SeaQuest Dive CenterSeaQuest Dive Center
SeaQuest is the sister company of Oasis Resort, where I stay. It's got its own boat which is the biggest in all of Panglao. It's long and wide, I could practically hold a yoga class there. "Big", "spacious" and "luxurious" seem to be trademark of these companies. It was also clean, organized and well-maintained. SeaQuest also offer PADI dive courses and yes, Freedive courses! They were the first few ones to establish a dive shop in Alona 27 years ago when there was nothing yet on the island! Their long experience is evident in the professionalism to everything they do. 2 thumbs up to SeaQuest and Oasis!

Balicasag Island
Since my Dumaguete days in 2008, I was already hearing about the great dives in Balicasag Island - the pencil-shaped coral reef sticking out from the ocean floor at over 100m deep (in some areas) and onto the island top. I even heard about a marine biologist back in the 70s who was towed by a slow pumpboat around the island with his mask/snorkel. He said it was raining fish, and that every 50m, he would see a Volkswagen - a moniker for a giant Grouper as big as a Volkswagen Beetle. Just a few years ago, I actually met this guy - and the story is true! We're talking nearly 50 years ago. Now, of course, as excited as I am to finally make this dive, I had to manage my expectation.

Scuba Diving Balicasag Island with SeaQuest Dive Center
Black Forest Dive - photo by Leilei Show

Cathedral Dive
Dive Master: Jerson
Depth: 18m
Visibility: 25m
Duration: 53mins
Dive No.: 38

Cathedral Dive is a vertical wall that plunges down 60m. I couldn't see the bottom as we hovered on the 18m depth. The feel and visual spectacle was something similar to the Catherdral Dive of Apo Island - both are simply wonderful. Plant life and marine life are thriving with all their vivid colors. From the small ones like the nudibranch to the big groupers, and every size in between, you see them all.

Black Forest Dive
Dive Master: Jerson
Depth: 15m
Visibility: 20m
Duration: 55mins
Dive No.: 39

Black Forest was a lot of fun with its strong current. It was a drift dive where you still have to do a lot of steering to coast along the drop-off area. Although the drop-off descends down to a dark-blue abyss, we only hovered where the drop-off began, roughly 15m. The coral reef was intense and colorful...very healthy and animated. There were thousands of little fishes of different species just clustered along the reef system - you had to wade through them! The big stuff I saw were a Green Turtle, Titan Triggerfish and Marbled Grouper. The Titans were not hostile this time around. This dive is a winner!

Ending Thoughts
Finally, I could check-off Balicasag off my "must-do" list. And yes, it lived up to its reputation! My wish for this island? Do whatever it takes to ensure the re-emergence of the Volkswagen! Just think what that will do for tourism! Big thanks to my dive master, Jerson, the boat crew and to SeaQuest for the memorable experience!

--- TheLoneRider

** all photos by Leilei Show



Facebook Users

Google Map Bohol, Philippines

tourist attractions in Bohol tourist attractions
  • Danao Adventure Park in Bohol Danao Adventure Park - zip lining, cable car ride, caving, river rides/trekking, off-road buggy ride, root climbing, rappelling and ultra-glide rides
  • Alona Beach in Bohol Alona Beach - hub for tourists with hotels, resorts, restos, bars and dive shops
  • Chocolate Hills in Bohol Chocolate Hills - hills side-by-side shaped like giant Kisses chocolate
  • Tarsier in Bohol Tarsier - pocket-sized marsupia looking like a monkey
  • Balicasag Island in Bohol Balicasag Island - one of the best dive spots in the Philippines
  • Loboc River in Bohol Loboc River - river cruise on a boat
  • Anda Beach in Bohol Anda Beach - fine white sand beach with resorts, restos and cottages, 3 hours by bus from Tagbilaran
  • Cabagnow Cave Pool in Anda, Bohol Cabagnow Cave Pool - brackish water pool about 5ft deep inside a limestone opening on the ground, 8 feet deep, P50
  • Lamanok Island in Anda, Bohol Lamanok Island - walk on a 100m bamboo bridge on stilts to a resto area to take a boat tour to caves and nearly attractions, P300
  • Combento Cave Pool in Bohol Combento Cave Pool - cave pool with underwater cave system, P20
  • Can-umantad Falls in Candijay, Bohol Can-umantad Falls - long narrow drop until it hits a bulbous mound spreading it into a a curtain-like water canopy and down into a splash pool
  • Canawa Cold Spring in Candijay, Bohol Canawa Cold Spring - deep refreshing cold spring with developed pool area
  • Firefly Tour in Candijay, Bohol Firefly Tour - evening boat ride into the river to watch fireflies
hotels in Bohol hotel
  • Fox & The Firefly Cottages Fox & The Firefly Cottages - SUP paddle boarding, luxury riverside native cottages, mountain bike tours, SUP yoga
    Baranggay Valladolid, Loboc, Bohol
  • Bohol Tropics Resort Bohol Tropics Resort - seafront location, manicured surroundings, swimming pool, resto/bar
    0133 Graham Avenue, Brgy. Cogon, Tagbilaran, Bohol 6300
  • Oasis Resort - Alona Beach location, dive center, resto / bar
    Alona Beach, Panglao, Bohol
yoga in Bohol yoga
  • Jing Yoga - health & well being through yoga
    Jing Yoga The Courtyard - Airport Road fronting the church
    Jing Yoga Bohol Meditation and Yoga Center - 2nd Floor Lim Magtajas Bldg. CPG Avenue

Bohol FYI / Tips

Tagbilaran Port to Panglao

You can charter any tricycle from the port all the way to Panglao (~P300), but if you want to do it on the cheap,
  1. don't take the tricycles lined-up inside the port. Walk past the port gate and immediately outside, you'll see many tricycles. Take one to the bus terminal in Dao (~P15)
  2. in Dao, take the jeep that plies the Panglao route (~P20)

Tagbilaran (Bohol) to Cebu City by boat

** schedules and rates keep changing, call for latest schedule
  1. Weesam Express - departs 6:15 AM, 11:30 AM, 4:00 PM
    one way: Economy (aircon) P500.00, Economy (non-aircon) P400.00, First Class P600.00
    round trip promo (at least 2 days advance booking): Economy (aircon) P600, Economy(non-aircon) P500, First Class P1200
    round trip promo (1 day or on the day booking): Economy (aircon) P800, Economy (non-aircon) P700, First Class P1200
  2. Ocean Jet - departs 6-7:05-8:20-9:20-11:40AM, 1-2-3:30-4:20-5:30-6:30PM, 2 hours, arrives Pier 1 in Cebu
    Open Air / Tourist Class P800, Business Class P1000
    +63(32)255 7560 / +63 (32) 255 0115 / 0917 638 0000
  3. SuperCat (2GO) - departs 5:50-11AM, 3:45-5:25-8:15PM, arrives Pier 1 in Cebu
    P 500.00
    +63 32 233 7000

Things to do, Places to go in Bohol

  1. Chocolate Hills - this is a clustering of more than 1200 hills within a 50km2 area. They range in height from 30-50 meters. What's unusual is their near-perfect conical shape resembling an individual chocolate chip. No one knows how they were formed. Entrance is P50/pax.
  2. Tarsier Conservation Area - located Upper Bonbon, Loboc. The tarsiers are no longer being played at by tourists as circus props, but instead, visitors now view them in cordoned-off areas in their natural 6ha habitat. As they are territorial and nocturnal, they are predictable on where they can be viewed. P50/pax.
  3. Alona Beach (Panglao) - Alona Beach is the tourist hub of Bohol. It has 1.5 kms of white sand beach lined-up by bars, hotels and restos. Alona is also the jump-off point for Balicasag Island, a world class dive destination.
  4. Danao Adventure Park - located in Barangay Magtangtang, 72 kms (2 hours ride) from Tagbilaran. Adventure activities include river trekking, tyrolean traverse, rappelling, bouldering, rock climbing and ziplining.

Bohol

    Anda
  1. Exploring Combento Cave Pool June 29, 2017
  2. Visiting Cabagnow Cave Pool of Anda Jun 28, 2017
  3. Exploring Anda, Bohol June 25-30, 2017

  4. Candijay
  5. Roadtrip from Candijay to Ubay July 1, 2017
  6. Firefly Tour in Candijay, Bohol June 30, 2017
  7. Freediving Canawa Cold Spring of Candijay, Bohol June 30, 2017
  8. Splashing at Can-umantad Falls, Candijay, Bohol June 30, 2017

  9. Carlos P. Garcia Island
  10. Exploring Carlos P. Garcia (CPG) Island by Bike Dec 1, 2017

  11. Corella
  12. Cycling to the Tarsiers of Corella Oct 26, 2017

  13. Dauis
  14. Cliff Dive at Molave Cove Feb 11, 2018
  15. Freediving at Molave Point, Dauis Nov 6, 2017
  16. The Return to Hinagdanan Cave Nov 5, 2017
  17. Exploring Hinagdanan Cave Oct 24, 2017

  18. Loay
  19. The Ride to Morning Hill Oct 22, 2017
  20. The Ride to the Old Spanish Tower Oct 21, 2017

  21. Loboc
  22. The Silent Killer has Arrived Feb 19-22, 2018
  23. 24+ Days at Lyn's Backpackers Inn Jan 23 - Feb 16, 2018
  24. All Day Fun with the Loboc Crew Feb 11, 2018
  25. 20-Minute Rope Skipping w/ Pranayama and Meditation Feb 9, 2018
  26. Calisthenics with Jeffrey Feb 7, 2018
  27. Abs-Core Workout with Jeffrey Feb 5, 2018
  28. High Intensity Cardio Workout Feb 2, 2018
  29. Ride to the Landslide with Jeffrey Jan 31, 2018
  30. Farm Tour with Mr. Raymond Cal Jan 29, 2018
  31. Cacao Drum Roasting Jan 27, 2018
  32. Making Sikwate: from cacao fruit to a hot dark chocolate drink Jan 25, 2018
  33. 5 Weeks at the Fox and Firefly Cottages Dec 13, 2017 - Jan 23, 2018
  34. In-House Yoga Teacher at the Fox and Firefly Cottages Jan 22, 2018
  35. Mountain Bike Rides from Tagbilaran to Loboc Jan 18, 2018
  36. Firefly Tour on a Stand-Up Paddle (SUP) Dec 19, 2017
  37. Playing Mountain Bike Tour Optimizer Dec 18, 2017
  38. Back to Loboc Dec 13, 2017
  39. 37 Days in Loboc - Thank You and Goodbye Oct 8-Nov 14, 2017
  40. Exploring Busay Falls, Loktob Spring and Jimili-an Spring...on Foot Nov 11, 2017
  41. Stand-Up Paddle Yoga with Joan Christine Nov 3, 2017
  42. Loboc River Cruise on a Stand-Up Paddle Oct 29, 2017
  43. Exploring Guimba and Sog-ong Caves of Loboc Oct 22, 2017
  44. Ziplining and Cable Car Ride at Eco-Tourism Adventure Park Oct 22, 2017
  45. Savouring Villagio Pizza Oct 19, 2017
  46. Wet and Wild Bonbon-Alegria Downhill Ride Oct 18, 2017
  47. River Cruise on Loboc River Oct 17, 2017
  48. Back Road Ride from Loboc to Loay Oct 17, 2017
  49. Leisurely Ride to Loktob Spring Oct 14, 2017
  50. Sweet Ride to Busay Falls Oct 13, 2017
  51. Bike Climb to the Virgen de Guadalupe Oct 12, 2017
  52. The Ride to Cruz Daku (Big Cross) Oct 11, 2017
  53. Exploring Loboc, Bohol Oct 8, 2017

  54. Panglao
  55. Coastal Cleanup with Plastic Free Bohol Sept 16, 2017
  56. Exploring Panglao June 12-18, 2017
  57. Yoga with Ging and Rai at Oasis Resort June 18, 2017
  58. Freediving with Ben Meerhaeghe at SeaQuest Dive Center June 16, 2017
  59. Scuba Diving Balicasag Island with SeaQuest Dive Center June 15, 2017
  60. Bohol Revisited June 12, 2017
  61. Exploring Bohol Nov 28-30, 2015

  62. San Miguel
  63. Visiting Bayongan Lake Nov 22, 2017

  64. Sevilla
  65. Killer MTB Ride from Sevilla Oct 30, 2017

  66. Sikatuna
  67. Solo Ride to the Sikatuna Tree Park Nov 2, 2017

  68. Tagbilaran
  69. 30 days in Tagbilaran, Thank You! Oct 8, 2017
  70. Breakfast Talk with Tagbilaran's Finest Oct 8, 2017
  71. Exploring the Cafe Scene of Tagbilaran Oct 7, 2017
  72. Yoga for 60+ Students at the University of Bohol Oct 4, 2017
  73. Chocolate Overload at Dalareich Chocolate House October 2, 2017
  74. Talk on Philosophy and Spirituality to 12-Graders at the University of Bohol Sep 27, 2017
  75. Celebrating the International Day of Peace Sep 23, 2017
  76. Judging a Student Debate at the University of Bohol Sept 15, 2017
  77. Fitness Workout with Chie at Bohol Tropics Resort Sept 13, 2017
  78. Modified Ashtanga Primary Series by Jing Yoga, Tagbilaran Sept 12, 2017
  79. Tagbilaran Revisited Sep 7-12, 2017
  80. Hello Tagbilaran! June 19-25, 2017

  81. Ubay
  82. Goodbye and Thank You, Ubay Nov 14-Dec 13, 2017
  83. Visiting the Ubay Stock Farm Dec 8, 2017
  84. Exploring Cambugsay Healing Hills with Lars Jensen Nov 22, 2017
  85. Visiting Ubay Green Park Nov 18, 2017
  86. The Ride to Sinandigan Boardwalk and the Yamashita Treasure Hunt Nov 18, 2017
  87. Ubay in a Nutshell Nov 17, 2017
  88. In Search of the Next Destination Nov 14, 2017
  89. 2 Days in Ubay July 1-3, 2017
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