Magic Island Moalboal, Philippines
We spent a partial week at the Scuba Resort of Magic Island Located in Moalboal, Cebu, Philippines after a week of diving in Tubbataha. Magic Island is located about 1 1/2 hours from Cebu airport. Magic Island arranges transportation from the airport. The location of Magic Island is a bit remote and it is about 1 mile down several dirt roads from the closest town. Magic Island is a beautifully landscape oasis. Lots of stonework, gazebos and flowering plants and trees. We were a bit concerned about the effects of the massive typhoon that struck here 6 months prior, but there was not evidence of any damage at the resort Another couple spent a night next door at Turtle Bay Resort which was pushed by a local dive travel company. They stated that Magic Island was much nicer that Turtle Bay and that they were glad they were spending most of their vacation at Magic Island. Personally, I did not see Turtle Bay.
Meals and Food at Magic Island
Originally we thought we would skip the full board meal plan so that we could explore the local restaurants. This is totally impractical. With the diving schedule and the amount of time it would take to get into town, you would constantly be rushed and you would miss dives. I highly recommend getting the full board meal plan. It is the only way to go at Magic Island. Meals were served family style at dinner with a choice of 3 main dishes and dessert. Food was excellent. Lunch and breakfast was ordered off of a menu. There were a few local dishes to choose from, but most were western style dishes. They did an excellent job dealing with special food requests. The Rooms were Very nice. Clean and spacious. The only negative was powdered insecticide that was around the inside of the room. Being in the tropics, this is understandable as they have a constant battle with bugs here. The area was pretty much bug free. No issues with mosquitos or other bugs on most days. One night we sat on the patio for dinner and a swarm of flying ants decided to join us. Other than that one swarm, there were no bug issues.
The Diving at Magic Island, Moalboal
The diving around Moalboal is boat diving and the resort does have a house reef. It required a 50 meter or so walk out over crushed coral during low tide. During high tide on our trip we were on boat dives. We did 2 shore dives. The walk out is not pleasant. The crew there will assist with the walk if you ask. Moalboal is a muck and critter diving area. There is reef, but very little fish life due to massive overfishing. During the day, the island is ringed with small fishing boats pulling out what little is left. However, there are plenty of small critters to keep you interested.
There were large bait balls of sardines and more. However, the visibility was not great during our visit. We were there during a full moon and we think this contributed to poor vis due to the tidal volume. Vis varied from a low of 15 ft to a high of 30 feet.