Philippines 2013: Coron island-hopping tour (Part 1) – Siete Pecados, Kayangan lake

Date: 31st May 2013

I woke up today morning feeling quite hungry. I was going to be swimming and snorkeling a lot later today, so I needed some energy.

Bacon eggs breakfast Coron
I had a filling bacon, eggs and baguette for breakfast

After that, I was picked up by the tour operator for my island-hopping tour.

Tour boats docked Coron Palawan
We boarded our tour boat docked at Luahati Park
Tourists boat tour Coron
But it was a long wait before we departed because we were waiting for some more people
Tour guide Coron island tour Palawan
Eventually we did set off and begin our tour. This was our guide for the day.
Sleeping giant island Coron Philippines
This is the “Sleeping giant” island, not too far from Coron’s shore
Siete Pecados marine park Coron Palawan
Our first stop was at the nearby Siete Pecados Marine Park
Siete Pecados Marine Park Coron Philippines
Siete Pecados Marine Park is a snorkeling site
Snorkeling Siete Pecados marine park Coron
I took out my underwater camera and jumped in

Coral fish swimmers Coron
The water looks like this because of the camera’s colour reproduction. That said, the water was quite emerald green.
Coral reef fish Coron
Like most coral reefs, you’ll find it largely populated by scissortail sergeant fish
Scissortail sergeant fish underwater photography
Hmm, did that boat just anchor down on some corals?
Corals rocks Coron Palawan underwater
They look like rocks, but they are corals
Striped coral damselfish Coron
The fish do get pretty close
Coral formations Coron Philippines
I know its hard to make out the colours of these corals, but the camera I was using is far from a professional camera

Coron corals fish Palawan PhilippinesCorals Coron black fishCoral reef fish Coron Palawan

Broken corals Coron Palawan
Broken corals?

Here’s a video I took underwater:

For the following photos, I applied this technique of photo processing.

Fish Siete Pecados marine park Coron
It brings out the colours of the objects (like fish) better but at the same time, the water wasn’t a clear blue either
Siete Pecados corals Coron Palawan
But this gives you a better idea of the colourful corals
Corals Siete Pecados marine park
I was enjoying myself none the less
Yellow tail fish Siete Pecados marine park Coron
I finally spotted a Yellowtail Damsel

Siete Pecados marine park corals Coron

Small fish hiding from big fish Coron
Well would you look at that. The law of nature playing out right in front of me — big fish trying to eat small fish — and it’s hiding to stay alive 🙂

Coral fish Siete Pecados marine park Coron

Siete Pecados corals Coron Philippines

Swimming in sea Coron Philippines
I was starting to enjoy underwater photography
Jumping into sea Coron Philippines
Someone jumped in the water
Coral reef Siete Pecados marine park Coron Philippines
Although snorkeling in Siete Pecados Marine Park beats what I saw in Boracay, I would visit even better snorkelling sites later on this tour

Black fish coral reef Coron PhilippinesCoral reef bed fish Coron islands

Rainbow fish Coron Philippines
A rainbow fish having a stare stand off with me

Parrot fish Coron underwater

Small fish corals Coron Philippines
Lots of small fish
Scissortail fish Siete Pecados marine park Coron
I was so enjoying drifting in the water…
Philippines tour boat Coron
… that I forgot it was time to leave.

I went back to the boat as most of the other tourists in our group had gotten out of the water.

Islands Coron Philippines
We moved on again
Coron islands Palawan Philippines
We were going to an island to see Kayangan Lake next
Entering twin lagoon island Coron Philippines
This is where I would get my postcard photograph of Coron
Coron islands Cove
We docked
Coron island stilt house
We disembarked

Docks lagoon island Coron

Lagoon island ticket counter Coron
There is an entrance fee, but we didn’t have to pay as it was all included in our tour
Kayangan lake Coron island
We now had to climb up a few steep steps
Coron island viewpoint tourists
Then we reached a point from where we could get the famous sight of what is popularly photographed as ‘Coron’
Coron islands postcard Palawan Philippines
This view! You will find this backdrop used in many Coron descriptions, tour promos, etc.
Coron islands clear emerald water
Look at that colour
Mithun Divakran Coron Philippines
“I was in Coron!” shot done
Climbing down Coron island
We then descended down the narrow stairs
Getting to Kayangan lake Coron
And there it is
Kayangan lake Coron Philippines
This is Kayangan lake, supposed to be the cleanest lake in Palawan
Kayangan lake Coron Palawan
We would get some time to swim in the lake
Kayangan Coron island map
That’s the island map
Steps Kayangan lake Coron
I put my DSLR back in and went in with the underwater camera
Swimming in Kayangan lake Coron
Above water…
Kayangan lake bottom rocks Coron
…and under
Swimmer blowing bubbles underwater Coron
Swimmers were trying all sorts of things
Tying thread under water Coron
Leaving memorabilia?
Limestone rocks Kayangan lake Coron
It was mostly a rocky bottom. No corals.
Kayangan lake Coron
Kayangan lake is pretty big though. I don’t know how far long visitors are allowed to swim.
Tourists bamboo raft Coron
These tourists were about to fall off this bamboo raft
Falling off bamboo raft Coron
Splash!
Small fish Coron lake swimming
As for fish, these small ones were the most common

Kayangan lake fish Coron Philippines

From under water ripple photo
A fish’s view of what the outside world looks
Small lake fish Kayangan lake Palawan
A lot of fish were congregating nears the steps
Small gold fish Kayangan lake Coron
These gold-coloured fish were playing hide-and-seek under the steps

I got out of the water and made my way back to the boat. Since I was carrying a heavy backpack, I would take time climbing the narrow stairs, and I didn’t want to delay my group.

Bangka katig Coron Philippines
It was nearing lunch time. The cooking is all done on the boat.
Coron island tour lunch pork fish
Grilled fish, pork, seaweed salad and rice
Wooden hut Coron Philippines
We ate in here
Filipino tour boat staff eating lunch Coron
The boat staff ate theirs on board the boat itself

After lunch, we set off for the next coral reef. But I’m keeping that for a separate post. I ended my day by climbing Tapyas Hill, so it’s quite a lot of photos to cram into one post.

Previous posts in this series:

Philippines 2013: Aerial view of Mount Mayon; arriving at Coron

Philippines 2013: Lignon Hill Park, Cagsawa Ruins and Mount Mayon

Philippines 2013: Arriving at Legazpi; going to Donsol to see whale sharks

Philippines 2013: Leaving Boracay; Kalibo to Angeles City

Beachfront hotels and resorts on White Beach, Boracay

Philippines 2013: Bulabog beach, Mount Luho viewpoint and sunset at White Beach

Philippines 2013: Boracay island tour, Puka beach and snorkelling

Philippines 2013: Flying from Manila to Boracay, White Beach

Philippines 2013: Taal Lake Volcano and Peoples Park, Tagaytay

The crap I went through to get my Philippines tourist visa this time

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