Article in Plongee Dive Magazine

The Diving Capital of Cebu: Moalboal

The history of Moalboal, like the rest of the Philippines, as a town is closely linked to the 350-year old Spanish occupation of the Islands.

The name “Moalboal” itself is thought to be a tongue twisted Spanish version of the word “bocal bocal”. Oral tradition states that a Spaniard was around when he met a local townsman close to a bubbling underwater spring, which was located along the town’s coast. Thinking that the Spaniard was asking about the bubbling spring (when he was actually asking about the name of the place), the townsman replied it was a “bocal bocal”.

Still, another version indicates that Moalboal has its roots in the word Bol-anon, since its first settlers came from the neighboring province.

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The Island

The Republic of the Philippines is an archipelago of 7,107 tropical islands and islets set in deep blue waters that contain some of the richest marine-life systems on earth.

Its strategic position separating the South China Sea and the Pacific Ocean with the Celebes Sea to the south, is reflected in the history as a regional trading centre, battleground and cultural meeting point (and melting pot). Off the eastern shores lies the Philippine Trench; one of the world’s deepest points reaching 10,500m below sea level.

The Visayas islands, where Moalboal, Cebu is located are a closely packed island group between Luzon in the north and Mindanao in the south.

The Philippine’s most outstanding feature is its people; a mixture of Malay, Chinese, Spanish and American. Its people are a fascinating blend of east and west, with ancient and modern ways and a spontaneous love of fun and singing.

The Philippines is the world’s third largest English speaking country and most Filipinos speak this foreign language aside from their local languages such as Cebuano in Cebu.

 

Climate

The Philippines is set in a tropical belt at latitude10° N in the Northern Hemisphere. The average year round temperature is around 32° C / 90° F. Cebu Island is sheltered by other islands on all sides and thus has balmy weather for much of the time.

 

Currency

The currency of the Philippines is the peso. You can change dollars, euro and other currencies upon arrival at Mactan airport. There are ATMs in Cebu City but none in Moalboal or the provincial towns. Turtle Bay Dive Resort will change dollars and euro. Visa and MasterCard are widely accepted in the cities but in the provinces it is better to have cash.