Diving with Thresher Sharks in the Philippines

Malapascua Island is the only place in the world where you can dive with thresher sharks every day. It is a small island with very few tourists but it is gaining fame, so come before it gets too busy! Malapascua’s thresher sharks have been featured many times on TV including on National Geographic, Monty Halls, Animal Planet, the BBC, Shark Gordon and have featured in many diving magazines worldwide.

Thresher Shark Divers is the premier award winning PADI diving facility on Malapascua Island and can arrange your trip of a lifetime!

Thresher Shark Malapascua
Thresher Shark by Brandon Cole
Available Trips and Reservations
Thresher Shark Dive

5am – 7am – Thresher Shark Dive

This unique first dive of the day is at 5.30am and it is well worth getting up for. We provide plenty of coffee and tea, and as the boat goes directly east, you will see an amazing sunrise.

On the dive you are almost guaranteed the rare sight of thresher sharks! There are often many on one time and they often come almost close enough to touch.

You will be back in time for an early breakfast. If you wish to leave earlier or later we are very flexible. In hammerhead season we often leave earlier to catch them at the break of dawn.


Day Dives

10am and 2pm

Day Dives During the day we have single dives at 10am and 2pm, or 2-3 tank day trips, depending on the dive site . See our list of dive sites for more information.

Thresher Shark “Randy Mandy Dive”

5pm – 7pm 

In the late afternoon we dive Lighthouse, where the rare and psychedelic mandarinfish are guaranteed. Do not miss the exotic mating dance of the male and his adoring females.

Many of our divers have told us this is the best night dive they have ever done.

Mandarinfish mating Malapascua
Mandarinfish mating by Jeremy Cuff

Night Dive

5:30pm – 7:30pm

We also regularly run full night dives to other sites around Malapascua. The sites are very different in the dark, so it is a great idea to do a few of these both by day and by night!



Why are the sharks in Malapascua and nowhere else?

No-one really knows, but we aren’t complaining!

Thresher sharks are usually a deep water shark, but Monad Shoal is home to many cleaning stations and in the early morning, the sharks come up to shallow water for a scrub. Whitetip reef sharks, grey reef sharks and devil rays are often seen, as well as the usual great macro that is common in Malapascua’s waters.

Thresher Sharks are shy, retiring sharks and searching for them on Monad Shoal is akin to going on safari. As you ‘stalk’ them over the reef, the sense of anticipation grows and grows, until finally, one of these magnificent creatures swims lazily out of the ‘mists’ in your direction, huge eyes coming towards you and tail extending forever behind it. You gasp, your heart skips a beat or two, and without realizing it your breathing stops as you gaze in awe at this magnificent creature.

Where is Malapascua?

Malapascua Island is located in the central area of the Philippines, the Visayas.

It is easily accessible if you fly to Cebu-Mactan International Airport – many international airlines flights to Cebu including Singapore, Cathay and Emirates and within Asia there are many budget options. Another option is to fly into Manila and get one of the many daily internal flights to Cebu. You can contact us for more details.

When to come

Malapascua’s thresher sharks can be seen year round and diving is possible throughout the year Sightingds are consistent and good sightings are had by someone pretty much every day of the year. .

Although we still see them often in January and February, there are generally not as many. 2008 and 2009 were an exception to this when sharks were plentiful all year. Also, although it is not a hard and fast rule, there are less sharks around full moon.

Generally you will get a good sighting, if not the first day, then within 3 days. But to make sure you do not miss them, particularly if you are after that ultimate shark photograph or video, you should plan 1-2 weeks.

Diving on Malapascua Island

If you want to dive on Malapascua Island, the award winning Thresher Shark Divers is the place to go. As their name suggests, their focus is thresher sharks! Finding your shark is the reason for their existence!

They can arrange a complete package including resort, airport pickup and of course shark diving!!!

Aside from the thresher sharks, there is a lot of good diving in Malapascua. Whitetip sharks are almost guaranteed at Gato Island. Hammerhead sightings are between December and May, peaking in March and April. And the diversity of marine life is incredible with reef, walls, wrecks, macro, muck dives and much more.

Why Thresher Shark Divers?

TSD is British owned and run; one of the country’s top PADI 5 Star IDC Dive Centers and a multiple award-winning dive shop. We consistently win PADI’s top annual award for “Outstanding Contribution to the Dive Industry” and have many customers who return again and again. Our DMs are highly trained, each with thousands of dives around Malapascua and laser eyes to find all that hidden macro!  And our instructor team is the most experienced on the island. So you can be assured that with us, you will have only the best: top quality service, unrivalled professionalism and a safe and most of all fun diving vacation from start to finish!

Special dive spot for thresher sharks!

TSD has a very special spot where they dive for threshers and they believe it is the best shark experience you will get on Malapascua!


  • Most other shops go to one of two very small cleaning stations to see  the sharks. Here the divers stay in the same spot and kneel behind a rope waiting for a shark to appear. There are usually 4-8 boats at each spot so you will see a lot of other divers and there is not much to see if you do not see a shark.
  • At TSD’s spot dives there there are rarely any other boats and it has many cleaning stations. So it’s never too busy.  We have spectacular, often close up sightings almost every day, in a much more private setting. It’s is also more interesting as it’s a “swimming” dive with the chance to see many other creatures like frogfish and ghost pipefish as well as other pelagics like rays and other sharks!

Thresher Shark Specialty Course

Thresher Shark Divers offers a unique PADI Thresher Shark Diver Specialty Course. This was written by TSD’s owner in conjunction with PADI and has been fine-tuned by their head instructor, Angus, over his 7 years diving with the thresher sharks. You will leave a lot about sharks in general, and of course more specifically about threshers.  Everyone who takes this course loves it and it is the only place in the world where you can do it.