The natural beauty of Coron Island is beyond words. This unspoiled wonder has an imposing, mysterious skyline that wouldn’t be out of place in a Jurassic Park film.
Coron island is located at the northern tip of Palawan in the Philippines. The island, only a 20-minute Bangka ride from Coron Town, hosts immaculate white and clear blue water beaches, impressive jungle-clad rocks and 11 pristine lakes nestled in the rugged terrain.
The entire island is the ancestral domain of the Tagbanua, an indigenous tribe who are primarily fishermen. They also gather the very lucrative balinsasayaw or bird’s nests. Concerned about the impact of tourism, the Tagbanua are managing Coron island in a sustainable way and keeping visitors at a distance and offshore at night.
Lake Kayangan is one of Coron’s primary attractions. The crystal-clear emerald waters of Kayangan are nestled into the imposing mountain walls. Underwater is like a moonscape. This jewel of nature has been considered as the cleanest lake in the Philippines and in Asia for 3 years and running. Accessible by a steep 10-minute climb, the site offers a wooden walkway and platform to stash your things if you go for a swim.
Another highlight of Coron island is Barracuda Lake which rests in a former crater. Barracuda lake is a very unusual dive site famous for its thermocline with unique layers of fresh, salt and brackish water and dramatic temperature shifts, which can reach as high as 38°C. It got its name from a story that been passed from generation wherein 2 giant barracudas lived in the lake.
If you want to experience the truly magical work of nature, Twin Lagoons must be on your island-hopping tour list. As its name implies, they are two bodies of water separated by a wall of karst. The bigger lagoon is where the outrigger boats pass, and has deeper, darker waters. The smaller lagoon can be reached by swimming through an opening visible only during low tide. On high tide, this lagoon can still be easily entered through an opening accessible by ladder.
Other common spots in Coron island are Banol beach, a small sandy area with shelter from the sun, Kalachuchi beach and Sunset beach.
Scuba Diving in Coron
Coron is one of the most visited destinations for wreck diving in the world. The aquatic views from the sunken Japanese shipwrecks of World War II off Coron Island are listed in Forbes Traveler Magazine’s top-10 best scuba diving sites.
Several Japanese ships are lying on the seabed in the tropical waters surrounding Busuanga and Coron, all within recreational diving depth limits. However most wrecks are at a depth that require at least an advanced open water certification. Exceptions are the Okikawa Mara and the Tangat Gunboat which are laying at depths within reach of beginners.
The area around the wrecks has rock formations which provide for snorkeling opportunities, with underwater visibility extending up to 24m. Skeleton Wreck is a popular snorkeling spot in Coron Bay as the top of the sunken ship is only 5m deep.
Now it’s a great time to visit Coron Island and discover the most beautiful island in the world before it gets a mass tourist destination. It’s easy to rent a Bangka at Coron Town port for an affordable price in order to create your own itinerary.