The Double Barrier Reef of Danajon Bank
The Danajon Bank Double Barrier Reef lies 30-40 minutes by boat from Mactan Island. It is 20 kilometers (11 nautical miles) from our Scotty's Dive Center Headquarters in Lapu-Lapu City, heading 89° on the compass.
This double barrier reef is unique to the Philippines. It is also only 1 of 3 in the Indo-Pacific region and only 1 of 6 in the entire world. It has an area of 271 square kilometers (105 square miles) and a length of 380 kilometers (205 nautical miles). It consists of 2 large reefs, up to 4 kilometers (2 nautical miles) wide, plus 5 small reefs. The deepest depth is only 26 meters (85 feet).
While heading to or from Danajon Bank in the morning or mid-afternoon, keep your camera ready. If the weather and water conditions are right, you may see one or more pods (groups) of dolphins. Measuring 2 meters (6 feet) in length, these dolphins are a very dark gray color.
Double barrier reefs are rare, because they are two adjacent barrier reefs. A barrier reef protects against typhoons and other weather conditions. Danajon Bank Double Barrier Reef is the largest of the world's five double barrier reefs. It is also in the best condition.
Danajon Bank: The Cradle of Life
This rare geological formation is a must to see. The Pacific's fishes, corals, invertebrates, algae, and other marine biodiversity evolved here!
Today, the seagrass beds are a food source and nursing sanctuary for many aquatic animals. Also, pathways for many migratory birds pass through Danajon Bank Double Barrier Reef.
Furthermore, a majority 54% of Philippines fishermen catch their tropical fish here. Danajon Bank Double Barrier Reef has been a food source for Filipinos for centuries.
Your Danajon Bank Double Barrier Reef Excursion
The Danajon Bank Double Barrier Reef has over 27,000 hectares of coral reefs, over 5,000 hectares of natural mangroves, almost 5,000 hectares of fishponds, and over 2,000 hectares of manmade mangrove forest. The species biodiversity includes:
- anemone fish
- blue crab
- branch coral
- bullet tuna
- coral reef fish
- crocodilefish (De Beaufort's flathead, Giant flathead)
- crustacean, other
- elegance coral (wonder coral, ridge coral),
- feather duster worm
- finfish (true fish, fin fish)
- fish, other
- gorgonian (horny coral)
Snorkeling at the Double-barrier Reef of Danajon Bank
The unique features of the Danajon Double Barrier reef is a must to see. But, more than that, it is a must to swim and snorkel, as you'll see the following marine life:
- hard coral
- invertebrate, other
- messmate pipefish
- mollusk (mollusc)
- mushroom coral
- nudibranch (sea slug)
- parrot fish
- rabbitfish (spinefoot)
- sea cucumber
- sea fan
- sea urchin (urchin, sea hedgehog)
- shellfish, other
- tiger tail seahorse
You may see a lot of biodiversity while on vacation in the Philippines or elsewhere in the Pacific. Remember: much of it evolved right here at the Danajon Bank Double Barrier Reef! That's amazing!