Travel in ASEAN, “Swim with Whale Shark” at Donsol, Philippines


“Whale Shark” is said to be a largest fish in the world. If you have an opportunity to swim with and get close to this gigantic fish, that would perhaps be one of the fondest memories and experiences in a lifetime.

And that opportunity is not so difficult to seize since, at Donsol (the province located at the south of Luzon island, Philippines), there are troops of whale sharks swimming around and the tourists can come and meet them here.

DonsolSea, Beach and Whale Shark

“Donsol” is one of the very interesting tourist attractions in Philippines. With its beautiful beaches, the tourists often come for cruising and breathing in the nature environment. At night, there are lots of fireflies beaming their lights from the trees which thrills and impresses the visitors.



Is whale shark danger?

“Whale Shark” has a length from 4-12 meters and the pattern of white dots on its body is the distinctive spot. It eats plankton as its meal. It doesn’t have aggressive nature and it frequently swims slowly near the surface of the sea which allows us to swim close to it. Whale sharks can be easily seen from November to June.

Want to watch whale sharks? What to do?

There is a procedure before you can get to see the whale shark (also known as Butanding). You must make a registration at the Visitor Center 1 day before or on the morning of the day you want to make a visit (the registration fee is about 300 Pesos). You will get to learn the history of whale sharks and how to approach tem through videos. After that, you can either charter a boat or share the rent with other tourists before you can begin your journey to the sea. The boat can support the tourists up to 6 persons, and if you do not have diving gears you can rent them here too. And when everything is ready, the staff will take you to the sea, and the search for whale sharks begins here.

When the staff finds a whale shark, he/she will give a signal for you to wear your flippers and diving mask. Thereafter, you can swim with the whale shark closely and the staff will be around for your safety.


Travelling to Donsol

You can travel to Donsol via a flight from Bangkok to Manila and make a flight transfer to Legazpi City. After that you can take a public transportation or a taxi to Donsol which approximately takes about 1 hour.

Swimming with whale shark is an exciting experience and you should try it at least once if you have a chance because you can travel to Philippines, our neighboring country in ASEAN, easily.