Whale Sharks in Donsol Philippines
Philippines | May 9 - May 12, 2023

Bianca R.
Australia | Reviewed on May 21, 2023

After a lot of research, my family and I booked this trip to Donsol for an ethical experience with whale sharks and we are so grateful that we did. I highly recommend this trip as it does not have a negative impact on the natural behaviour and environment of the whale sharks.

Our overall experience from the booking process to the trip itself was positive and enjoyable. Cami, our local specialist was very professional and organised meaning that we could relax and have a great time.

Our guide Arisa was absolutely fantastic. She was very kind, thoughtful, helpful and friendly. She made us all feel very welcome.

Our accommodation at Elysia Beach Resort was serene and peaceful and the staff were so lovely and accommodating. My family and I are vegan and they went above and beyond to make sure we had food that we could eat which was much appreciated.

I loved how flexible this trip was. As scuba divers, we wanted to incorporate some dives into the trip and Cami easily organised this for us. Our dive master Bobby was fantastic and made sure we had a great day of diving. We did three incredible dives. One at Bobby’s Wall at San Miguel Islands followed by two drift dives at Manta Bowl Ticao Pass where we were lucky enough to see three giant oceanic manta rays!

We were very excited to see whale sharks in a natural calm environment and we were not disappointed. Our guide Joseph and the rest of his team were very experienced and we were lucky enough to swim alongside a beautiful whale shark, an experience we will never forget!

Thank you to everyone who made this trip possible!

Hotel Review
Elysia Beach Resort

Elysia Beach Resort is absolutely stunning! I felt very relaxed and peaceful during my stay. The staff were so lovely, friendly and accommodating. My family and I are vegan and they went above and beyond to ensure we had suitable food to eat during our stay. I actually didn’t want to leave! I highly recommend them if you travel to Donsol!

Authenticity & Character
Cleanliness & Comfort
Activity Reviews
Diving & Snorkeling in Ticao Island

Diving Bobby’s Wall at San Miguel Islands and Manta Bowl at Ticao Pass was incredible! Our dive master Bobby was professional and he ensured we had a fantastic day of diving. We saw a lot of beautiful corals and marine life including three giant oceanic manta rays! The non divers also had a great time and were able to snorkel, relax and enjoy the beautiful weather. Overall it was an awesome experience!

Quality of Experience
Beautiful weather, wonderful dive master and crew, amazing dive sites and an incredible encounter with giant oceanic manta rays!
We really appreciated the effort to accommodate us as vegans. We had rice and some eggplant but we were still a little hungry as it was a big day out diving and the portions were a little small. We also needed more drinking water.
Guides, Drivers and Staff
Our dive master Bobby was fantastic. I felt safe diving with him and he ensured our dives were fun and positive. The rest of the crew were also great.
The boat ride was fun and we felt safe getting from one dive site to another.
Swim with Whale Sharks in Donsol

Swimming alongside a whale shark has long been a dream of mine. But for me, the most important thing is to engage in positive experiences with wildlife to ensure we do not negatively impact their environment and natural behaviours. This experience fulfilled my lifelong dream and it was incredible. Our guide Joseph and his team were professional and very experienced. There were only me and my family on the boat and when we finally found a whale shark, it was just us in the water so the experience was calm and stress free. Seeing the whale shark swim on the surface alongside us for about a minute before descending into the deep is a memory that will always stay with me!

Quality of Experience
Although there were other boats also looking for whale sharks, there were not huge groups of people in the water and the number of boats were limited. What made this experience special was the fact that it was a natural encounter.
Guides, Drivers and Staff
Our guide Joseph was very calm and relaxed. It was clear that he and his team were experienced.
Take a paddleboat down Firefly River

This was a nice addition to our trip to Donsol. Seeing the fireflies was a magical experience.

Quality of Experience
Guides, Drivers and Staff
Local specialist: Cami Sarmiento
Cami Sarmiento
Local specialist in Las Vegas, NV | Replied on Jun 02, 2023

Thank you very much for your wonderful review Bianca! I’m very happy to hear you and your family had an amazing time in Donsol, and that you enjoyed the activities planned for you. It was a pleasure to organize your trip.
Thank you for choosing to travel with us. I look forward to organizing another unforgettable trip for you in the future!