The Calamianes, the Philippines, comprises eight islands and Coron Island is the third largest. Even then, it is still only around 12 miles long by 5.6 miles wide. It is situated around 200 miles southwest of the country’s capital, Manila.
However, this little-known Far Eastern paradise is full of highlights. This tiny area has lakes and lagoons that are among the cleanest and most beautiful you’ll find anywhere.
Take Kayangan Lake, for example. This crystal clear freshwater lake is nicknamed The Blue Lagoon. It is surrounded by tall limestone formations. It is reputedly the cleanest lake in Asia. With underwater rock formations, caves and islets, it’s a firm favorite of photographers.
Also, for divers, snorkelers and swimmers, there is water so clear that it’s possible to see down to a depth of 10 meters. Boat tours of the lake are also available, while hikers can take in incredible views of the area from the overlooking mountain.
Sitting next door to Kayangan Lake, Luluyaun “Barracuda” Lake is accessed from the nearby beach, along a wooden walkway to a platform perched over it.
The few barracudas that live in the lake tend to be elusive, though divers are occasionally treated to an appearance, as they enjoy the otherworldly sensations of contrasting water temperatures (known as thermocline), since the water becomes warmer the deeper you dive.
Divers can also explore dramatic rock formations along its silky sand floor. The lake is also notable for its curious mix of salt and fresh water.
Both lakes offer unrivalled tranquility for regular tourists, stunning picture opportunities for photographers and endless curiosities for snorkelers and divers. However, no visit to Coron Island can be complete without a trip (by boat only) to Twin Lagoon. As its name suggests, it is home to not one, but two lagoons.
Separated only by a narrow cliff, swimmers can get between the two by either climbing wooden steps over the cliff, or swimming beneath it, depending on the tide.
If you don’t fancy swimming, there is an option to kayak. However, it is a popular place, so timing a visit to avoid the busier times is crucial, if you’d rather avoid taking the plunge.
Regardless of how you experience Twin Lagoon, the dramatic limestone cliffs that cling to the edges of it, combined with the warm and inviting turquoise of its saltwater are likely to leave you spellbound.
Indeed, whichever of these three beauty spots your visit to Coron Island takes in, they may just leave you believing that if there is a heaven somewhere on Earth, it might just be there.
There is no direct connection from Manila to Coron Island. However, you can take the car ferry to Coron, take the walk to Coron Boat Station, then take the ferry to Kayangan Lake.