Breaking News

Adventure | Scuba Diving in Puerto Galera

It was a great saturday morning in Puerto Galera.  Sunshine crept into our room to announce the start of an exciting new day.  Our day to do Discover Scuba Diving (DSD) at Arkipelago Divers.  

A DSD is composed of 3 parts.  First is the lecture, where various basics of Scuba Diving is discussed, from the science and then the art of it.  Second, some basic things are taught and practiced in the pool.  You have to go underwater at the shallow pool, then to the deep end of the pool.  When your instructor deemed that you're ready, he will guide you to the open ocean.  3 simple steps.  Now on to what really happened in Puerto Galera.

Months back this writer was invited to do it with the Miss Scuba Philippines candidates but I declined then.  My excuse was that I let the women have all the fun.  Actually the true reason was that I was scared of the ocean in general.  I don't know how I would react in front of the candidates thus I excused myself from doing it. LOL.

So when I was invited to go back to Puerta Galera with just me going, I got to conquer my fear of the ocean so I said yes.  

In reality I really love the Ocean.  I love the marine animals in it, I like the videos of the underwater as I see them on Youtube.  As long as I am above it, I'm fine with the ocean.

Now I have heard a lot of good if not great things about our instructor, Pedro Magsino.  So before jumping into this, I had lots of respect for the Man.  He personally did the required lecture and he answered all my nagging questions, God bless him.  

Then we practiced in the pool just behind us.  We did all the basic things, like how to use the BCD, regulator, clearing water from your mask, and the use of fins, and oh the very important hand signals.

Thanks to our instructor, we passed the basic things that need to be learned underwater.  I was happy when we satisfied him just enough for him to finally clear us to head into the ocean.

Thump thump thump goes my heart.  I kept my cool, but I know I was silent most the time.  I saw the videos and pictures, I was so serious. So serious in my whole life.  I never looked like this when I had my 4 kids at the hospital when they were born.  My mind was blank and I was more scared of this more than my gall bladder operation.  Wow.  I would be lying if I said I was cool with it at first.

Before we dived, our instructor told us that he will be observing us in our dive session, then we are guided by dive masters from his dive shop.  This allayed some fears and I headed out to the ocean with all the diving gear with me.  When I hit the water, I was not scared anymore.  I said to myself, this is it.  Let's do this.

When we went underwater for the first time, there was silence really.  Only the sound of the exhaled bubbles could be heard.  I was floating as if I was flying underwater.  I can see the corals and some fishes underneath me.  We were really diving I said and I was like a child in a candy store happy when we finally found Nemo!!! I can't describe anymore the feeling, just watch the video here.

There were many things going into my mind when we were at the beach, but then all went blank underwater.  I was absorbing all these new experience, the sights and sounds.  I can hear my breathing and gone was my fear of the ocean,  it was replaced with joy and happiness.  We even did a group shot underwater!!!!

Time stood still while you are underwater, and before I knew it, we were given the signal to surface.  We went under till 8 meters when we were told already on the surface.  Oh well, all great things must end, our joy had to end as well.  I have lots to tell however it's difficult to simply tell it here.  

When we were back at the dive shop, the Course Director (our instructor), Pedro Magsino gave us a certificate of bravery (completion) that we had the DSD with him.  What a great ending to an exciting adventure.

So if you haven't tried scuba diving, I will tell you, you should.  Do it in Puerto Galera, a great diving site and do it with Arkipelago Divers.  They have a great instructor in Pedro Magsino, and along with other dive masters therein, I know you will have a great DSD experience.

Arkipelago Divers are located in Small Lalaguna,  in Sabang Puerto Galera.  All you have to do is take a bus from Cubao or Buendia and head off to the Batangas City Pier or Port.  From there, take the Father and Son Lines (FSL) ferry to Sabang Port.  

To have a better experience, have all the arrangements made with Arkipelago Divers beforehand.  They can also handle your hotel reservations.

They can be reached through the following;

All the experience are brought about by Arkipelago Divers and their wonderful hosts and owners, Pedro and Amy Magsino.  A wonderful couple and I miss them already.

All pictures and videos underwater were taken by Pedro Magsino.

I can't thank Pedro Magsino enough for being so patient in teaching me.  Again thanks.  You took away my fear of the ocean and replaced it awesome memories.  Hope to do it again with you in the near future.