Thirty kilometers long, with four municipalities and an unending rare seascape, Panaon Island is a hidden gem of Southern Leyte.

Although small, the island is surrounded by wonderful and booming coral reefs. Because of its natural underwater beauty, the Oceana organization raised awareness to the Philippine government to protect Panaon. With only an estimated 56,000 locals living in the area, Panaon strives to maintain the natural beauty of its oceans while still welcoming tourists.

So, here’s what you can do when you visit Panaon Island:

Support the local industry

Photos from Pintuyan Dive Resort’s Official Facebook Page

Stay for a night or two at local hotels such as the Pintuyan Dive Resort to support the local business. You can even take diving lessons and enjoy a sip of their famous calamansi-ginger shake to quench your thirst!


Contact Number: 0927 494 1960


Official Facebook Page: Pintuyan Dive Resort

Email Address:

Exact Location: Barangay Caubang, Liloan – San Ricardo Rd, 6614 Pintuyan, Southern Leyte

Watch the Tikitiki

Photos from Pintuyan Dive Resort’s Official Facebook Page

Locals refer to whale sharks as “Tikitiki,” and these gentle giants are found in the area year-round! With just about 15 minutes from the diving spots, you can already witness the whale sharks in their natural habitat. The best part is that you can book snorkeling activities. However, it is not entirely guaranteed that you’ll swim with them; it’s still worth the try though, especially since you can also enjoy the beauty of the untouched coral reefs below, bringing us to the next one on our to-do list!

Admire the seascape

Photos from Pintuyan Dive Resort’s Official Facebook Page

Delicate sea fans in shades of sunset, pristine reefs, and vibrant corals will greet you as soon as you swim deep down into the seas of Panaon. But, of course, the local government advises against touching anything under the ocean floor, especially when sea turtles are swimming along. So, always be a responsible laagan!

Drift dive under the Wawa Bridge

Photo from

The Wawa Bridge is the main bridge connecting Panaon Island to Leyte. It is also where the strong ocean currents are, which makes it a good spot for drift diving. The currents can also get tougher, so the locals highly recommend bringing a professional diver with you when you do decide to dive.

Snack on an ampaw

Photo from

An ampaw is a native delicacy found on Panaon Island. It is a type of rice puff that’s sweet in flavor and mixed with a few peanuts to add a crunch to every bite. This very affordable snack can be bought anywhere, including at the Pintuyan Dive Resort.

What are you waiting for? Your journey to Panaon Island awaits, where every moment is a discovery and every experience is a treasure.

Looking for a place to stay in this island? Click here to get the best room deals.

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