Diving the Deep at Nogas Island in Antique

Jul 15, 2013 by

The first time I tried diving was in 2002 in Boracay. It was a fun dive – indicating the easy and shallow dive for a first-timer like me. I never had the chance to have a follow-up dive. So when my friends and I drew out a plan for a weekend dive here in Nogas Island in Anini-y, Antique Province, we found ourselves driving south to the lovely coastal province in Panay.

Anini-y town is approximately 2 hours away from Iloilo City. Its sleepy charm intrigued me because this is a part of the province that has so much to offer yet it hasn’t earned the attention it deserves from the many adventurous souls in the region (and in the country). Driving through to our destination, we at the passenger seats stayed awake exploring the communities along the way.

Nogas Island from the shores of Anini-y in Antique.

Nogas Island from the shores of Anini-y in Antique.

The diving school is called The Divehouse. It has a quaint wood-and-brick set up for its structures that made us feel like we were totally at the right place. Our diving instructor is a good friend as well, AJ Terol. So upon setting foot at The Divehouse, we were pampered like bosses. And we liked it.

The Divehouse lets out a quaint island feel with its tropical structures.

The Divehouse lets out a quaint island feel with its tropical structures.

What sets The Divehouse above the other dive centers/destinations that I have visited is that it isn’t too crowded. It offers its guests some good amount of peace while enjoying the whole diving experience. There were two diving groups that weekend: one group from Bacolod and the other group comprised of the 7 of us from Iloilo. Our dive package was for two days, so our overnight accommodation was also in that same center facing the beach. While The Divehouse has world-class certified dive instructors, it has reasonably affordable dive rates for everyone. I must say that what we spent for that weekend was totally worth it.

Our dive instructor, AJ Terol, teaching us some diving basics before going really deep.

Our dive instructor, AJ Terol, teaching us some diving basics before going really deep.

Some of our dive groupie: Irene Bel Ploteña, myself, Cristabel Parcon, Toto Ulangkaya and Kirstine Lim.

Some of our dive groupie: Irene Bel Ploteña, myself, Cristabel Parcon, Toto Ulangkaya and Kirstine Lim.

Taking the plunge! Thanks to Lala Terol for taking this wonderful shot!

Taking the plunge! Thanks to Lala Terol for taking this wonderful shot!

 

Finding myself 30 feet below deep blue fantastic waters. I can do this again. (Bobby Rodriguez)

Finding myself 30 feet below deep blue fantastic waters. I can do this again. (Bobby Rodriguez)

 

Some of the views underwater at Nogas Island in Antique.

Some of the views underwater at Nogas Island in Antique.

After the standard operating procedures for beginner divers, we set ourselves off for a 10-minute boat ride to the dive spot at Nogas Island (other than diving, the island is also known for its lighthouse and its natural arrangement that would look good on pre-nuptial photoshoots). Our first dive was primarily introductory and we were just too excited for all sorts of calming down and equalizing activities. The view down there was superb. Underwater is always majestic and huge. We had a great time as AJ and Mike Hwang (our other dive instructor/guide) showed us around the reef walls like absolute underwater lords. Once we have found ourselves comfortable in the dive suit and the the oxygen tank and the breathing techniques and the underwater pressure, we were well on our way to becoming Dora-the-Explorers with the metal backpack! It was indeed an awesome experience! I’m planning to do it again with my other friends who have been convinced about our diving gig.

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Our dive instructor, AJ Terol guides Cristabel and Ew Magbanua underwater.

Our dive instructor, AJ Terol guides Cristabel and Ew Magbanua underwater.

Happy divers! Lala Terol, myself, Cristabel, Irene and Ew Magbanua.

Happy divers! Lala Terol, myself, Cristabel, Irene and Ew Magbanua.

 

For more information and contact details about The Divehouse, please click here.

 

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1 Comment

  1. I love this place so much

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