Discovery Palawan, Philippines

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The MV Discovery Palawan, Philippines is an excellent liveaboard choice for exploring the rich dive sites of Tubbahata National Park, the spectacular diving of Apo Reef or the numerous wrecks of Coron. Divers can hope to see whale sharks, manta rays and hammerhead sharks as well as spectacular coral reefs on the Tubbahata dive cruise, and snorkelers are more than welcome to join in with the Apo Reef cruise to experience the underwater beauty of the Philippines. With a spacious dive platform and experienced guides, diving aboard the MV Discovery Palawan is sure to deliver a memorable vacation.

Having recently undergone a huge renovation, the M/V Discovery Palawan has a fresh, modern look, spacious relaxation areas and tastefully decorated cabins. At almost 50m in length there is plenty of room for relaxation on board, with an air-conditioned salon and dining area, camera room, sun deck, 2 shaded decks and a further outdoor dining area and bar to enjoy the sea air. There are 20 cabins aboard the MV Discovery Palawan, 16 lower deck standard rooms and 4 upper deck rooms. Each cabin has air-conditioning and en-suite bathrooms.

Call us or book online today to reserve your space on this Philippines liveaboard adventure.

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Included: VAT, Drinking Water, Tea & Coffee, Full-Board Meal Plan (All meals), Snacks, Diving Package.

Required Extras: National Park Fees (75-125 USD per trip).

Optional Extras: Gratuities, Airport Transfer, Hotel Transfer, Alcoholic Beverages, Soft drinks, Nitrox, Nitrox Course (260 USD), Rental Gear, Scuba Diving Courses (150-386 USD).

Book now, pay later: You can easily place your booking online. We will then hold the spaces for you and you can confirm with a payment later.

* Extra fees are shown per person.

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Boat features

  • Camera Station
  • Audio & video entertainment
  • Air Conditioned saloon
  • Aircon Cabins
  • Sun Deck
  • Indoor Saloon
  • Non-Diver (Snorkeler) Friendly
  • Warm Water Showers
  • Outdoor Dining
  • Camera room with table and charging point
  • Custom built for diving
  • Charging stations
  • En-Suite bathrooms
  • Seaview Cabins
  • Dedicated Local & International Crew
  • Leisure Deck
  • Observation Deck
  • Bar
  • Available for Charter

Food & Drinks

  • Western Food
  • Local Food
  • Vegetarian Options
  • Buffet style
  • Beer available
  • Vegan Options
  • Wine Available
  • Beach BBQ
  • Welcome Cocktails

If you have any specific dietary requirements whilst on-board your cruise, you can add this to your special requests on step 2 of the booking form. We advise limiting these requests to religious beliefs or food allergies.


Diving

  • DIN Adaptors
  • Nitrox available
  • Dive deck
  • Tenders for diving

The crew speaks English.


Gear Rental

There is diving gear available on this boat. Please provide your rental needs on the booking form. See below for further details on inclusions and pricing. Show prices.


Drawings & Vessel Layouts

MV Discovery Palawan Deck Plan floorplan

Boat Specifications

  • Year built 1972
  • Year renovated 2013
  • Length 49.2m
  • Beam 8.5m
  • Cruising speed 10 knots
  • Max guests 32
  • Number of cabins 20
  • Tenders 3

Boat Navigation and Safety

  • Radar
  • Depth Sounder
  • GPS
  • Radio VHF/DSC/SSB
  • E.P.I.R.B. Distress System
  • Emergency Rafts
  • Life Vests
  • Fire Alarm & Fire Extinguishers
  • Oxygen
  • First Aid Kits
  • Satellite & mobile phones
  • Crew trained in first aid
  • Emergency flares

Discovery Palawan Reviews

  • 9.0 Superb
  • 15 Verified Reviews
  1. Vessel
    8.3
  2. Crew
    9.5
  3. Food
    9.9
  4. Diving
    9.2
  5. Value
    8.1
  • 10 Exceptional
  • Andrew W
  • United States United States
Superb Experience!

The staff were incredibly attentive, personable, and helpful, including everyone from the stewards to the divemasters. For example, within hours of stepping onto the boat, every staff member greeted me by my first name and asked if I needed anything! The Discovery Palawan is a big boat, 150 feet long, and my first LiveAboard Experience, so I had a lot of questions. I was always treated respectfully and never dismissively, even though I was one of more than 30 guests. The food was endless; early breakfast, full breakfast, lunch, snack, dinner as well as a bar area. At every meal there were at least 3 main dishes and all the food was thoughtfully presented and tasted great (I am not a "foodie" and was impressed!). The ship itself is not brand new and shows some wear and tear but my quarters were great (small private room in middle of ship on lower level with its own air conditioning and bathroom). Of course, the diving in Tubbataha is wonderful but maybe a little disappointing as the water was not crystal clear as it appears in many videos and the schools of fish less prominent than I imagined. We had one Manta Ray encounter and no whaleshark encounters. We did see sharks on most dives, including white tip, black tip, and grey reef sharks, but no Tiger or Hammerheads. At times, there were too many divers at each divesite, which I mentioned to the organizers. A dozen or more divers at a dive site almost guarantees that some creatures will be scared off and diminishes the dive experience. I was told that there were limited dive sites and because of currents it was difficult to space out the divers but I think this could be improved. I shoot underwater video and it was challenging to obtain great "National Geographic Quality" videos as part of a dive group of 5 or 6 divers. The divemasters were very attentive and helpful with gear, setting it up before each dive. Nitrox percentages were a bit variable (32% could be 31% or 33% and had to be confirmed before each dive, but this is routine practice anywhere). I always dove on Nitrox and found it preferable to air (less fatigue and longer bottom times). There were always tanks ready to go and equipment was never broken (if it was, it never interfered with my diving experience). This trip is not for a newly certified diver as there may be strong currents and there's a lot of putting on and taking off equipment, sometimes in very deep water where dropping a weight belt or camera would be a problem. While most diving is at 50-70 feet, I went to 100 feet on a few dives to film some sharks. I also found my shipmates to be very courteous and interesting and fully enjoyed their company at mealtimes and breaks. It was fun to meet new people who all love diving! As it turned out, I was the only US citizen on board, the rest were Filipinos with the exception of 3 Israelis, so it was a great international experience. I would highly recommend Discovery Palawan and would return again, although next time with my own divemaster to have time to shoot more unique footage. N.B. There is no cell phone signal and no internet at the reef, which means 5 days or so of digital isolation! You may want to download some movies before you go! (I returned to Palawan and 1,700 emails waiting...so you might want to budget some recovery time after your trip.)

Recommended for
Personalized service, Fantastic Food, Well-organized diving
  • 9.2 Superb
  • Robert B
  • United States United States
Great friendly people

The crew friendliness and attention was spot on. The food was great with 3 main course options every night. Their dive site maps where excellent and DM very specific with inflatable captains on drop points.

Recommended for
Happy Hour, Great knowledge of dive site, Served buffet style alfresco dinning
  • 8.8 Fabulous
  • Jere L
  • United States United States
Hi end ship at a reasonable price

Seeing Marble Rays up close and a great group of divers

Recommended for
Big boat, great food, attentive staff
  • 8.8 Fabulous
  • Casey D
  • United States United States
It's a shame they use 2-stroke motors

The use of 2-stroke boat motors on its 3 inflatable dive tenders makes Palawan Discovery customers party to the exhausting of (lubrication) oil directly into the ocean and onto the reef. Great crew, great diving, but please DP - ditch the 2-strokes, as a favor to everyone and everything.

Recommended for
Lots & lots of passenger space, top-notch tank fills, and ... there's a bar!
  • 9.2 Superb
  • Margaret T
  • Canada Canada
An amazing trip

The beautiful scenery was an incredible part of the trip and a definite highlight. Another unexpected highlight was the fact there were only 6 passengers - we all got to know each other well and were well-looked after by the 30 crew! Colin, the manager of the ship, did a fantastic job of looking after us and dealing with the aftermath of the typhoon. Also, the New Year's Eve festivities (involving karaoke of course!) were a part of the trip I will never forget!

Recommended for
1. The crew were fantastic; helpful and friendly. 2. I enjoyed the diving, particularly the wreck diving, the freshwater lake, and Apo Reef. 3. The food was fantastic and there was always plenty.
  • 10 Exceptional
  • Kevin L
  • Canada Canada
A great memorable Trip

Whalesharks!

Recommended for
Friendly staff, good food, great management
  • 9.6 Exceptional
  • Craig H
  • Canada Canada
Excellent Diving in Tubbataha

Above water the highlights were a well run, if older, boat. Excellent and friendly crew that worked hard the whole week. Food was good, plentiful and varied. Below water the exceptional high quality reefs, enormous schools of fish, plentiful sharks and whale sharks on 4 of 18 divers were all highlights.

Recommended for
Excellent dive guides, friendly and helpful crew, stable boat in rough waters.
  • 9.6 Exceptional
  • Ngung Chia S
  • Singapore Singapore
Great diving with whaleshark for 40 mins

Pros: 1 - Excellent DM Chris. Found whaleshark twice for us and manage to 'play' with it for more than 40 mins in second encounter. 2 - Excellent food. The best soup and ice cream ever. Joel and crew serve us like kings and queens. 3 - Excellent safety standards. Deployed extra chase boat as safety watch out and enforcement of no deco diving. Cons: 1 - Dinning and bar areas can do better with some fans. It can get really hot during meals. 2 - Some boats offers free flow soft drinks and titbits e.g. chips, peanuts. Only coffee, tea and biscuits are free here 3 - For the many deep dives we had on liveaboard, Nitrox should be included in the package rather than charged separately.

Recommended for
Diving with whaleshark; Good food; Great staff
  • 8.8 Fabulous
  • Audrey H
  • Singapore Singapore
Fantastic diving with a fun and friendly crew

Whale sharks, in fact just lots of sharks. Friendly and very service-oriented crew.

Recommended for
Diving, crew, switching off
  • 8.4 Very good
  • Yaro W
  • Germany Germany
Super diving and beautiful atoll

Lots of pelagic fish, no dive without at least a handful of reef sharks (mainly grey reef, and whitetip sharks). Also a few hammerheads, whale sharks, a manta, and tiger sharks were sighted (mentioned sightings in total by the boat, i.e., not every diver saw it all). Apart from that, tunas and barracudas, bumphead parrotfishes, and big schhools of jacks were among the highlights. The foot was also outstandingly good, with a great hospitality manager, "Joel". And the boat manager "Colin" did a great job to take care for everybody, from nice stories to medical advice. Only negative aspect: some DMs were relatively novice, especially to the reef.

Recommended for
1. Great dive sites (lots of sharks, tuna, barracudas), 2. hands-on staff, 3. great food
  • 8.0 Very good
  • Mirosław K
  • Poland Poland
Unforgetable experience!

Beautiful reef with huge sponges and fans of corals, whale sharks, great visibility in the water, strong currents with the "railway" effect.

Recommended for
High level of the service, beauty of the place, good people on the boat
  • 7.6 Good
  • Alexander B
  • Switzerland Switzerland
Nightmare from Hell

We saw lots of Manta Rays and the staff was really good. There were 20 customers and 27 staff. The boat operator really, really messed up. They knowingly let a diver on board that had tested positive for Covid, and apparently they do this all the time. The resulting Covid outbreak ended with 15/20 of the customers being quarantined for 8 days. I would NOT recommend booking this until well after the pandemic is over (in the Philippines) as the boat operator is very irresponsible.

Recommended for
The staff was amazing, the service was superb. The food was pretty good too.
Origin: US