Rico’s Wall (Southwest Wall)
Southwest Wall or mostly known as Rico’s Wall is a deep drop-off wall within the southwest part of Balicasag Island in Bohol. It is a world class snorkeling and dive destination that can be reached through a pump boat at around 30 minutes from either Belleview Rock Resort or Alona Beach within Panglao Island. The land point of reference is the huge boulder marked with the stick facing the beach in low water. The reef top is extremely shallow along with several corals and is ideal for snorkeling. The entire site is not affected with dynamite fishing.
Begin the dive through the wall to the left heading south or right shoulder heading north. The wall is facing Belleview Rock Resort at the western part of the island. Rico’s Wall has several tiny caverns, ridges and reef outcroppings. If heading to the north direction, a dive can be finished at the Cathedral and if heading to the south direction, a dive can be finished at the Rudy’s Rock.
The coral garden of Rico’s wall is profuse with underwater life. There can be found stone corals, hard and soft corals, sea stars, small reef fishes, nudibranchs, clown fishes, feather fish, anemones, alabaster sea cucumbers and feather duster worms. There can also be viewed shoals of fusiliers, snappers, anthias, pennantfish, jacks, batfish and wrasse haunting the reef edge along with the lower regions of Rico’s Wall.
There can be found huge school of orange-striped tiger fish, angelfish, cornet fish, huge sweetlip fish, butterfly fish, Vlaming’s unicornfish and midnight snapper. If lucky enough, there can be encountered shoal of trevally in the area which might surround the diver for several minutes then would just swim away.
Deeper down below, a diver could encounter Napoleon wrasse and bigger groupers such as tuna and sporadically whitetip reef or grey shark. Barracudas as well as rainbow runners are often spotted here also.
Dive Experience Level: Novice-Experienced
Kind of Dive Site: Drop-off Wall
Visibility: 15 meters to 40 meters
Average Depth: 50 feet
Maximum Depth: 165 feet
Getting There: Air travel to Cebu and fast ferryboat to Tagbilaran. From Tagbilaran to dive site may take 1 hour either via sea transfer or road.
Accommodation: Liveaboards or various beach resorts