LUSONG GUNBOAT SHIPWRECK & LUSONG CORAL GARDEN IN CORON

Lusong Shipwreck is a WWII vessel that is now an amazing dive site and snorkel site in the Coron region. The Lusong Coral Garden is one of the top-rated reefs in Coron that is lightly visited due to its location compared to the popular lagoons and beaches of Coron Island. Both locations were unbelievable for freediving and we did our best to capture the sheer drop-offs of Lusong Coral Garden and the depth of the Lusong Gun Boat in our photos.

 

LUSONG GUNBOAT SHIPWRECK FREEDIVING

We arrived at the Lusong Gunboat Shipwreck and our guide had told us that it was only 2-feet underwater but also 25-feet underwater. I didn’t know quite what to expect after hearing those measurements. When we first got a glimpse from the boat we could see a small outline of a bit of the wreck on one side. Our guide told us to wait till we were in and we would understand. Boy, was he right!

As soon as we hit the water it was right there. A huge gunboat from WWII encrusted in corals, barnacles, and marine life. It was magnificent and incredibly breathtaking because of the sheer size of the ship. You could start at the shallow part and slowly make your way to the deeper end. This angle made it perfect for snorkelers who like to stay at the surface or freedivers who prefer to get down deeper while exploring. You can actually dive down inside the wreck, which was super cool.

Lusong Gunboat Shipwreck is one of the twelve World War II Japanese Supply Ships that were hit by an airstrike while anchored in Coron Bay. The ship sunk to a depth of 10-meters where it now lays on an angle on its side.

It’s possible to spot lots of marine life at the Lusong Gunboat Shipwreck such as Parrotfish, Damselfish, Stonefish, Nudi Branch and the beautiful Lion Fish. 

Unlike the Skeleton Wreck near Coron Island, this wreck is close to the surface so all snorkelers, free-divers and scuba divers can get a really close look!

 

LUSONG CORAL GARDEN

Just around the corner from the shipwreck is a beautiful reef known as the Lusong Coral Garden. Here you can find crystal clear water with incredible visibility. There is a huge variety of coral that grows up and down the drop-off wall. Many guides claim that Lusong Coral Garden is the best snorkeling site in Coron where the colorful Corals outnumber the fish. 

There is a really handy current here that pushes you along the shelf so you almost don’t have to kick with your fins if you and your guide can manage to drop in at the right spot. I was really surprised by just how good the snorkeling was at this site.

 

WHERE IS THE LUSONG GUNBOAT SHIPWRECK AND LUSONG CORAL GARDEN

The Lusong Gunboat Shipwreck and Coral Garden are located on the southwest side of Busuanga. Although they are close to the coast of Busuanga they are much further from Coron Town that Coron Island. Most tours don’t get out there so it is still a pretty quiet spot although dive boats and snorkel groups to visit it daily. Compared to the thousands that frequent Coron Island this is a gem worth visiting if you are trying to avoid the crowds. I have pinned the location of the Lusong Gunboat shipwreck and 

 

 

HOW TO  GET TO THE LUSONG GUNBOAT SHIPWRECK AND CORAL GARDEN

There are a couple of options for how to visit Lusong Gunboat Shipwreck and Lusong Coral Garden and I will detail them below.

Big Dream Boat Man (How I visited): Big Dream Boat Man is a 3-night Coron island hopping tour expedition that is different from the rest. Instead of battling the crowds, the sea of life-jackets and the lines, Big Dream Boat Man takes you to the hotspots such as Kayangan Lake and Twin Lagoon before the crowds come. After spending one day at the hotspots, Big Dream Boat Man veers away and guides you on an expedition to some of the hidden gems such as Lusong Gunboat Shipwreck and Lusong Coral Garden and off-the-beaten-path locations in Coron, which in my opinion were equally as impressive if not more so than the famous spots on Coron Island. We free-dived at WWII shipwrecks,  camped on secluded beaches, swam with stingrays, counted the stars from the beach at night and ate like kings during our island hopping tour with Big Dream Boat Man.

 To check the itinerary of trips and make a booking with Big Dream Boat Man you can Click Here.

Daytrip: There are a few tours you can book in Coron Town that offer a day trip to Lusong Coral Garden, Lusong Gunboat Shipwreck and Pass Island. These trips can often be regular snorkel and sightseeing trips or can be scuba/free-dive focused. They aren’t as common as the island-hopping tours of Coron Island but you will be able to book them in Coron Town.

 

WHERE TO STAY IN CORON TOWN BEFORE YOUR CORON ISLAND HOPPING TOUR

Coron Town is the base for all of your adventures in Coron. It is a little bit more expensive than some areas in the Philippines but there are still budget options. In Coron Town you have the bars, restaurants, transport, places to book tours and you are close to Mt. Tapyas and Maquinit Hot Spring. It is also just a $3 shuttle to the airport. Below are my three picks plus one all-inclusive resort (I’ve stayed multiple times) that includes private island hopping.

Budget Pick: Fat Monkey Hostel – The Fat Monkey Hostel has great vibes and you can get a really cheap dorm room or a basic double room at pretty much the lowest price in Coron. It is in the city-center so you are close to all the bars and restaurants.

Value Pick: Kokosnuss Garden Resort – A huge swimming pool in front of a hotel that looks like a castle. A highly-rated breakfast is included with your private room. Just 1.2km from the direct town-center it is close to lots of bars and restaurants. For just $40 a night this represents about the best value you will find in Coron.

Luxury Pick: Coron Soleil Garden Resort – I stayed at this resort in 2018 and it was incredibly nice. A huge pool stretches down the length of the resort and it’s a relaxing place to chill out after island hopping. We spent the nights at the bar here and chilling in the pool before heading out to dinner. The rooms are very luxurious but this resort is actually only just over $100 per night for a double room.

All-inclusive (Includes private island hopping): Casa Fidelis Resort – I had the most amazing stay at Casa Fidelis. After spending one night in the busy Coron city I packed up and headed out to Casa Fidelis. A 20-minute drive from the city, the rustic resort has a genuine family atmosphere. We were greeted by workers, family, and friends upon our arrival.

The villa had a large patio area that looked out over the garden. Stepping stones led you from the room to the dining area, where we had decadent spreads of gourmet food for every meal. One night we even enjoyed a great sunset from the garden at the resort.

I highly recommend this resort if you are looking for an entire Coron experience. You won’t have to worry about what to do in Coron. It is a perfect resort if you want to see the best of this beautiful region and you can also enjoy the luxury of having every detail taken care of. 

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