Dumaguete is a university town. The population is somewhat more than 100,000 people, with 30,000 of these constituting the student population. Foremost of the city's educational institutions is Silliman University, the oldest American private university in the Philippines, as well as the first Protestant school to be founded in a predominantly Catholic country.
Among the famous landmarks of its campus are the Silliman Hall (built in 1903) which houses the Anthropology Museum, the Luce Auditorium (considered as the Cultural Center of the South) and its Marine Laboratory Museum which houses the 2nd largest whale bone collection in the world.
Located in the southern Visayas, along the southern coast of Negros Island, the waters near Dauin and Dumaguete offer one of the best places on earth for macro enthusiasts and those seeking out weird and wonderful creatures, often found during what is known as 'muck diving'.
The dive sites near Dauin consist of sandy, silty bottoms with the occasional coral reef, but the stars of the show are the rare and bizarre critters found in this unique, volcanic environment. From all types of frog fish to flamboyant cuttlefish to ornate ghostpipe fish, photographer or not, you will be amazed by the creatures found here.
Oslob Whale Sharks
The world famous place to see whale sharks is only 2 hours away by boat. In Oslob, divers and snorkelers have the chance to get a close up experience with the gentle giants. More than 10 whale sharks daily can be spotted in just a small area. Since the whale sharks are being fed by krill, there has been a 99%sightings rate through the last few years. Ideal depth is around 5m. Trips to Oslob are usually combined with dives in Sumilon.
One of the highlights in the area is the world famous Apo Island. There are different dive sites ranging from beginner level to experienced levels. Depth ranges from 15 feet down to 90 feet. A complete contrast to the sandy shores of Dauin.
Apo Island is surrounded by coral walls and sloping reefs overflowing with marine life. The well preserved condition of the marine life in Apo makes is always an unforgettable dive experience. From fascinating soft coral gardens to sea snakes, turtles, huge schools of jacks and barracudas, along with the occasional frog fish! Apo island has it all.
The Island has a unique protected reef with intact coral garden and reef fishes. The marine reserve began as a project of Silliman University in 1985.
This is also the place of the famous Clown Fish City, a rare phenomenon with hundreds of clown fish living together.