Apo Island In Dumaguete, Philippines – Visitor’s Guide

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Apo Island is a volcanic island located 30km off the coast of the southeast tip of Negros Island in the Philippines.

Notorious for its dive sites and snorkeling, a visit to this incredible island is not to be missed.

I have put together this complete guide including where to book an Apo Island tour, how much it costs, and what to expect when you arrive on the island.

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WHERE IS APO ISLAND?

Apo Island is located 30km off the coast of Dumaguete, Negros Island in the Philippines.

Click here to see the location on Google maps.

It’s a 45-minute boat ride from Dauin, a small coastal village just 30-minutes south of Dumaguete.

apo island map

 

WHERE TO BOOK AN APO ISLAND TOUR?

There are three options for getting from Dumaguete to Apo Island for a snorkeling trip.

OPTION 1: BOOK A TOUR WITH KLOOK

The easiest and most convenient way to reach Apo Island is to book a tour online in advance with Klook.

The Apo Island snorkeling tour from Dumaguete includes:

  • Lunch
  • Bottled drinking water
  • Chartered boat
  • Professional guide
  • One round of drinks
  • Entrance fees
  • Round-trip transfers to and from your hotel

First, you’ll get to stop at Turtle Point where you can swim with the turtles or marvel at them even from shallow waters.

Enjoy a delicious island lunch, after which you may choose to explore the island with a 30-minute trek to the Habagat Trail where you’ll be rewarded with a panoramic view of the coastline and marine sanctuary.

Then spend the rest of the day swimming, beach bumming, or just lazing at the white pebble beach before heading back to the mainland by mid-afternoon.

BOOK NOW: APO ISLAND SNORKELING TOUR

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OPTION 2: BUDGET DIY PACKAGE

If you are staying in Dumaguete, the cheapest option to get to the island is to take a 1-hour jeepney ride from Dumaguete to Malatapay and from here you can take a motorized outrigger boat over to the island which is a 30-minute journey.

Boats to and from the island run frequently throughout the day.

  • Cost for jeepney from Dumaguete to Malatapay: 20 pesos one way p/person
  • Cost for bus from Dumaguete terminal to Malatapy: 110 pesos return ticket p/person
  • Cost for the boat from Malatapay to the island (round trip): 3500 pesos per 3 pax
  • Cost for marine park entrance and snorkeling fees: 150 pesos p/person
  • Cost for snorkeling equipment and guide: 300 pesos p/person

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OPTION 3: WITH A DIVE RESORT

Atlantis Dive Resort in Dauin, just 20-minutes south of Dumaguete City, offers the ultimate package for scuba diving and snorkeling tours every day of the week.

The tour kicks off after a complimentary breakfast at the Atlantis Resort before jumping on the boat at 8 am for the 45-minute journey over to the island.

There are 3 stops throughout the day to different dive and snorkel sites around the island. A barbeque lunch is also included on the boat and the tour ends back at Atlantis Resort around 4:00 pm.

  • Cost for snorkeling: 4095 pesos / includes a tour guide, boat transfers, mask, snorkel, fins hire, barbeque lunch, and marine park fees.
  • Cost for diving if certified: 2300 pesos per dive / includes dive instructor, dive equipment, barbeque lunch, and marine park fees.

To book accommodation and a snorkeling trip to Apo Island with Atlantis Resort, Click Here.

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WHAT TO EXPECT ON APO ISLAND

Apo Island Dumaguete is so aesthetically pleasing to the eyes that you won’t want to close them!

Upon arrival, our skipper anchored the boat on the outer edge of the reef at Turtle Point. Shortly after anchoring, we all jumped off the side of the boat and were snorkeling with turtles in no time!

The Apo Island tour is an entire day of snorkeling or diving with sea turtles, reef fish, sea snakes, and hundreds of colorful corals.

Related Article → Best Dumaguete Tourist Spots

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There are also a few small mountain peaks on the island that you can choose to hike. As our boat didn’t actually take us right to the shoreline we had to paddle a kayak over from the boat to reach the shoreline.

Once on the island itself, it’s a short 10-15 minute hike to the highest peak which boasts panoramic views of the island and the neighboring islands of Negros Oriental and Siquijor.

A barbecue lunch and cold refreshments are included on the Apo Island tour which is served around 12 pm.

Interesting Fact: Apo is the longest-lasting community-led marine protected area in the Philippines since 1986.

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WHERE TO STAY IN DUMAGUETE

Dumaguete has hundreds of accommodations to choose from, so I have narrowed it down to a few of the best places to stay to fit the needs of budget backpackers, luxury travelers, and everyone in between.

See the list of accommodations below that I personally recommend:

LUXURY: ATLANTIS DIVE RESORT

CHECK PRICES ON AGODA

CHECK PRICES ON BOOKING.COM

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MID RANGE: SIERRA HOTEL

CHECK PRICES ON AGODA

CHECK PRICES ON BOOKING.COM

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BUDGET: OPTIMUM PENSION HOUSE

CHECK PRICES ON AGODA

CHECK PRICES ON BOOKING.COM

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WHAT TO PACK FOR THE PHILIPPINES

When visiting the Philippines, here is a list of items I highly recommend bringing with you;

  • Sunscreen – the Philippines sun is very strong, so make sure to pack some high-quality sunscreen.
  • Quick-dry travel towel – a must for drying off after a dip in the ocean or lying out on the sand.
  • Reusable water bottle – stay hydrated by bringing along a reusable water bottle.
  • Dry bag – protect your gadgets from any water damage while you’re at the beach.

If you’re interested in taking awesome photos and videos on your travels, this is the camera gear that I use and recommend;

  • GoPro HERO10 – the most popular camera on the planet for action-packed adventures.
  • Canon EOS R – perfect for traveling, this is the most affordable, compact camera on the market.
  • DJI Mini 3 Pro – take your photos and videos to new heights with this user-friendly drone camera.

 

MORE PHILIPPINES TRAVEL GUIDES

 

TRAVEL RESOURCES FOR YOUR NEXT TRIP

Whether you’re a seasoned traveler or it’s your first trip overseas, here are some useful travel resources to help you kick-start your next adventure!

  • BOOKING.COM – search and book accommodation worldwide
  • SKYSCANNER – compare and book cheap flights to anywhere
  • VIATOR – find tickets, tours, and experiences around the world
  • BOOKAWAY – book buses, trains, and transfers online in advance
  • RENTAL CARS – search all rental cars in your next destination
  • GROUP TRIPS – join one of my epic small group trips
  • TRAVEL INSURANCE – purchase World Nomads travel insurance
  • TRAVEL MONEY CARD – get a Wise card today for free

Looking for more? Check out my Travel Resources page for further help with your trip planning!

 

FINAL THOUGHTS

I hope you enjoyed reading this article and if you have any questions, please leave me a comment below and I will reply as soon as I can.

For a quicker response, be sure to join Jonny Melon’s Travel Tribe on Facebook and post your questions or recommendations to our awesome community.

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THANKS FOR READING

Hey friend, thanks for reading this guide!

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Many thanks!

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6 thoughts on “Apo Island In Dumaguete, Philippines – Visitor’s Guide”

  1. Hello thank you for your tips and explanation, it was useful.
    To update your data, as of today the prices have increased:
    Boat in Malatapay min 3,500 pesos for 3 pax then 4,000 pesosup to 6 pax, 5,000pesos for 9 pax + 5 pesos terminal fees.
    We took the bus from Dumaguete terminal to Malatapay flea market return 110 pesos.
    Last but not the least, the location of the Snorkeling gears with a guide 300 pesos per person (no change for admission fees) . Thank you for taking the time to share your experience.

    Reply
    • Hi Aude, thank you for the updated information, it’s much appreciated and I have made the amendments to the post. Hope you had a great time!

      Reply
  2. Hello Jonny, thanks for your blog, it’s very helpful. Though I am a Filipina but I have never truly explored Dumaguete. I am married to a Brit and we are going on a tour with his family, along with our soon to be 1 year old baby. Would you recommend going on a boat tour to Apo island with the baby? Thanks.

    Reply
    • Hello, glad you found this Apo Island guide useful! Yes, I think it will be fine to go with the baby as you’ll be able to hang out on the boat. Enjoy 🙂

      Reply
  3. Hello! First let me say thanks a lot, your website is amazing!
    Do you know if it’s possible to stay overnight in apo island from siquijor? Thanks!

    Reply

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