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South Asia - Malapascua

An island situated in the Visayan Sea, located across a shallow strait from the northernmost tip of Cebu Island is Malapascua Island. The island is 3 kilometers long and 1 kilometer wide, with a population of about 4,000. The main beach (Bounty Beach) has white sand beaches and crystal clear waters. The west coast is ideal for swimming and snorkeling.

Malapascua is a developing island without basic infrastructure. It does not have a many of the things we often take for granted in our homes. This means you need to come with an open mind and be ready for things that may make you a little uncomfortable such as salty water, electric blackouts during the day etc. But you are on holiday, relax, it's not a problem.

It is beginning to get a worldwide reputation for incredible diving which means now is a great time to come, before it gets too famous. It is the only place in the world you can reliably see thresher sharks and is possible the best place in the Philippines for big fish encounters.

Malapascua is also long-familiar among the international dive society. Divers travel here to meet the friendly Thresher shark. These are big and up to 6 meters, but safe to humans. The Thresher lives in very deep waters but show up daily at Monad Shoal to be cleaned by cleaner fish. This is one of the few places in the world where we can have a glimpse of this splendid fish close-up at only 23 meters distance downward.

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We are now exploring more of the Philippines 7,107 islands, which takes us to MALAPASCUA north of Cebu. Take a scenic 4 hour drive and a 30 minute banca (outrigger) ride and you'll feel like you've landed in paradise! - Courtesy of Beautiful Malapascua Island in the Philippines. Famous for diving to see the thresher shark, Malapascua has many other things to do such as island hopping to Calangaman (Kalanggaman) Island, Higatangan Island and Lamanok. - Courtesy of

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Travel Information  Travel Information

It's about a 4 hour bus trip from Cebu City (from northern bus station near SM) to the port of Maya. Catch the Ceres Bus liner (yellow colour approx P 170 aircon or P 163 regular ) they have both air con and non aircon and they drop off right at the pier (port of Maya) to catch the pump boat to Malapascua (80 Peso). If you catch a taxi from Cebu City to Maya don't pay more than Php3000.00. Low tide you will need take another small boat onto the pump boat (another charge 20 Peso) as the pump boats cannot dock. Pump boats leave every 30 mins to an hour depending on passengers, so you may have to sit for a while. Scammers will try to tell you these boats are not running and try to get you to pay 1500 for the special trips. This happens on both sides the only time Pump boats don't run when you arrive late in the afternoon or in bad weather. You can arrange boat pick up at Maya with most hotels (check with hotel when making reservation) you can also arrange pick up from Cebu Airport. It’s about a 30 minute ride to Malapascua on the boat. You usually will arrive on Poblacion Beach (a 5 minute walk to Bounty Beach). Going back to Maya, there is an 8.30 am supply boat that leaves from Bounty Beach (near Blue Water Resort) and they charge P 100.00, locals will help to get the right boat.

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History: The name "Malapascua" is said to have been given by some Spaniards whose ship happened got stranded in the island on Christmas Day, December 25, 1520, due to bad weather. Because of their misfortune of having to spend Christmas away from their comrades and family stuck in a desolate island, the Spaniards called the island Mala Pascua, which literally means "Bad Easter". From then on the Spaniards and the non-locals would refer to the island as Malapascua, while the local residents insist that their place is called Logon.

English-Speaking?: YES

Weather: The weather on Malapascua is usually excellent. Typhoon season in the Philippines is from May to December, but Malapascua is rarely affected. The typhoons usually pass to the north and because there are no mountains nearby it avoids a lot of the rain that tends to fall on Leyte or Cebu. Occasional a typhoon will hit but it happens maybe a couple of times a year. Most people do not realize this and come between January and April. If you want a quieter holiday, come during 'typhoon' season. The diving is better at that time as well.

Currency: Philippine Pesos (no ATM on island, so bring cash)

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Little Mermaid Dive Resort  - Image coming soon! Little Mermaid Dive Resort 

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Brion H. wrote about Culebra:

"Amazing beaches! Friendly people. Great food and atmosphere! Easy to get around ($3 per person to Flamenco Beach from ferry drop-off). Best part of our Puerto Rico trip!


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