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Dive Review of Mantangale Alibuag Dive Resort. in

Mantangale Alibuag Dive Resort.: "Best Soft Coral Garden in the Philippines", Jun, 2019,

by John C Crossley, FL, US (Sr. Contributor Sr. Contributor 28 reports with 9 Helpful votes). Report 10972.

No photos available at this time

Ratings and Overall Comments 1 (worst) - 5 (best):

Accommodations 3 stars Food 4 stars
Service and Attitude 5 stars Environmental Sensitivity 4 stars
Dive Operation 5 stars Shore Diving N/A
Snorkeling N/A
Value for $$ 5 stars
Beginners 4 stars
Advanced 4 stars
Comments Mantangale Alibuag Dive Resort
Balingoan Philippines
I had not been to the Mantangale Dive Resort for a couple years and Iím glad I went back this June. It turns out that all the good stuff was just as good and a few new things have been added. The good stuff includes great service, very good food, great diving, and very reasonable prices. The new stuff includes some new lodging options (ocean suites), a renovated dive center, and a better access route for getting to Mantangale.
Traditionally, international visitors have flown from Manila or Cebu on Cebu Pacific Airlines or Philippine Airlines to Cagayan de Oro, then a ground transfer of about 2.5 hours to the resort. The new option is to fly into Butuan and have about an hour less ground transfer time.
After diving at 14 different Philippine dive destinations, I still think that the Medina Springs dive at Mantangale has the best flowery soft corals in the Philippines. Itís a bowl shaped area about 50 yards in diameter, just wall to wall with every color of soft corals. The bowl starts in about 65 feet and drops down to about 105 feet maximum. A nearby site, the Aquarium is less deep, also with some excellent soft corals, but also with some macro-critters.
A great wall dive can be had at Mantigue Island and that can be combines with some good dives at Camiguin Island. Most of the dives closest to the Mantangale resort are good for macro-critters such as frog fish, nudibranchs, crabs, pipefish, small shrimps, wire coral gobies, etc. Once in a while a whale shark cruises through the area for a couple days.
The primary dive boat is a large banka with padded seats, camera rinse, and a marine toilet. I used some rental equipment this time and it was good quality. Water temp was 84 in mid-June and visibility was typically 50-80 feet, but can be more at the Mantigue and Camiguin sites. Nitrox is free for all qualified divers. The dive crew handled all my equipment going to and from the boat. Resort owner/manager Dodong Uy is usually the dive guide and he is excellent at finding interesting critters. Two and three tank dive trips include a free lunch, typically a sandwich and drink.
Lodging ranges from pretty standard rooms in duplexes to nicer garden suites and ocean suites. All are air conditioned and have dependable hot water. I stayed four days in a standard room which have two single beds and include a good breakfast for about $50 per night.
For a small resort, Mantangale has an impressive number of very good menu choices and they are well prepared, with very fair prices.
Overall, the Mantangale Resort is one of the less known Philippine resorts but it is a very good dive destination and a great value.

Websites Mantangale Alibuag Dive Resort.   [same]

Reporter and Travel

Dive Experience Over 1000 dives
Where else diving Australia, Fiji, Truck, Yap, Palau, Bali, Lembeh, Hawaii, Florida, Red Sea, Soloman Islands, PNG, Caymans, Bonaire, BVI, Philippines and others
Closest Airport Butuan, Philippines Getting There Connections from Manila or Cebu to Butuan or Cagayan de Oro, then land transfer by resort

Dive Conditions

Weather sunny Seas calm, choppy, no currents
Water Temp 84-°F / 29-°C Wetsuit Thickness 2
Water Visibility 40-80 Ft/ 12-24 M

Dive Policy

Dive own profile yes
Enforced diving restrictions [Unspecified]
Liveaboard? no Nitrox Available? yes

What I Saw

Sharks None Mantas None
Dolphins None Whale Sharks None
Turtles 1 or 2 Whales None
Corals 5 stars Tropical Fish 3 stars
Small Critters 4 stars Large Fish 1 stars
Large Pelagics 1 stars

Underwater Photography 1 (worst) - 5 (best):

Subject Matter 4 stars Boat Facilities 5 stars
Overall rating for UWP's 5 stars Shore Facilities 3 stars
UW Photo Comments Fresh Water Camera rinse tub on the boat and at the dive center. I did all my camera servicing in my room.
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Note: The information here was reported by the author above, but has NOT been reviewed nor edited by Undercurrent prior to posting on our website. Please report any major problems by writing to us and referencing the report number above.

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