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“scuba resort means, well, scuba resort”

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Sogod Bay Scuba Resort
Ranked #1 of 3 Hotels in Padre Burgos
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed April 20, 2012

i do not hesitate to recommend this place to anyone who comes to dive. it is a dive 'resort' plain and simple. aside from apo reef it is the best diving i experienced in the philippines - including coron wrecks, dauin, apo island, camiguin. the word among other divers who had been diving other places is the same. this is not the place to come for pelagics. the whale sharks were a bonus, and if it is whale shark season your chances of getting up close are good.
the food is good. the staff is good. the owners can be a bit tempermental but so what so can i. i wasn't treated like a baby on the dives. they check you out, see what you can safely do, and let you and your buddy go at it. the resort dm will rightly focus on the less experienced or less competent divers. if you don't have a buddy - as i didn't - you will before you jump off the boat. several people were working on their dm cert when i was there (and each of them were my buddy at one time or another), and i heard no complaints. i would not hesitate to take my dm training from sbdr.
i made my reservation a few months in advance. no money was exchanged. a couple of weeks before my arrival they emailed asking if i was still planning to come. i said yes and when i got there - at around midnight - the room was waiting. the next day i met someone who had been turned away the afternoon i was to arrive. no money exchanged hands until my checkout 5 days later. so they gave up a sure thing on the basis of an electronic handshake.
there is no night life to speak of, but there is a small, welcoming vkb a very short walk down the street serving good food and cold beer. didn't get into padre burgos, but i understand there are a couple of small places there as well.
if you take a day off diving there is a small scooter/motorcycle rental place a very short walk down the street as well. padre burgos is a few miles down the road (not walking distance). in the other direction the road stretches all around sogod bay so you shouldn't run out of things to do on an off day. did i mention it is quiet? or that the reason to come here is to dive? i look forward to returning and hitting one of the many sites i didn't get to see during my far too short 5 day stay.

Room Tip: beach facing room (they are called cottages but are not detached from the other rooms).
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  • Stayed: February 2012, traveled solo
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3  Thank xrcjdx
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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121 - 127 of 146 reviews

Reviewed February 2, 2012

Always look forward to returning to sbsr. Cottages on the beach.good food

  • Stayed: January 2012
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1  Thank islandsoft_2010
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed January 28, 2012

I spent 8 days at this resort and I have to say that it was excellent. The resort is in a beautiful position right on the beach. The rooms were spacious clean and very comfortable . The staff are probably the most helpful of anywhere I have been in the world. I cannot say too much about the diving because I had a chest infection and only did a handful of shallow dives but the rest of the guests said it was some of the best they have seen. What I did manage was the whaleshark watching which was fantastic. I did 4 days and on every day we had nunerous long encounters with these beautiful creatures. They were the best four days of my life. I have waited a long time to see them. The organisation of the trip with the local fishermen and welfare of these gentle giants were both taken great care of. I visited Donsol after here but the experience there was very disappointing and I felt that the whalesharks were only seen as a moneyspinner and nothing else. If you want to see whalesharks and are concerned about them then go to Sogod not Donsol.
So congratulations to Phil and his great team on a wonderful visit.

Room Tip: All the rooms were very good.
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  • Stayed: December 2011, traveled solo
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2  Thank Mike H
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed December 9, 2011

My wife and I are, I suppose, what one might call keen divers, regularly visiting the Philippines over the course of the last twenty five years. In that time we have dived many of the best known dive locations in the Philippines but one of the spots that has now become a virtual pilgrimage for us on our bi-annual trips to the Philippines is Sogod Bay Scuba Resort (SBSR).

The best description of SBSR I can offer is that it is a dive resort run by divers for divers. On this basis, in my opinion, it is an unqualified success. The diving is superb, the dive staff excellent as indeed are the house staff. The accommodation is large, bright, comfortable and spotlessly clean. And last but not least the prices are very reasonable. As a keen diver, that just about ticks all the boxes for me!

The main attraction for us though is obviously the diving itself. Sogod Bay is blessed with some of the best hard coral we have ever seen in the Philippines. Turtle Rock, Coral Garden and Heaven's Gate are particularly worth a mention. In addition, there are some really top class dives sites such as Napantao Wall and Max's Climax with their prolific fishlife. Add in the excellent possibility of sighting whalesharks (depending on the time of year) and you really do have a the complete package. Oh, I just left out possibly the most renowned of Sogod's dive sites, the night dive at Padre Burgos Pier!

A word of warning! If you are a non diver there really isn’t very much to do in the area. Reading some of the negative reviews on the resort, it looks to me that they were written by non-divers who made a poor choice of destination in the first place and then ,when disappointed with their choice, decided to take it out on the resort itself. This seems very unfair to me. As far as I am concerned, SBSR has always delivered exactly what it said it would on the tin!

  • Stayed: November 2011, traveled with family
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2  Thank LangladeMontboyer
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed December 1, 2011

I have stayed at Sogod bay scuba resort 3 times, and I´ve had a great time every visit.

I like the relaxed and friendly atmosphere, as well at the resort as on the diveboat.
I have stayed both in the rooms in the two story building across the road, and in a beach room, and I find them clean, fresh and comfortable. And the view from the beach room verandas can´t get much better.

The diving has been really good, lots of macro and nice corals. Good service on the boat, the guys always had the gear ready for us with a smile.
And the resort managers and staff are environmentally conscious and cares about the conservation of the area.

The bay is a good place to spot whalesharks, when they decide to show up, (they are wild animals).
I have been to the resort in three different months. February, april and november, and have been lucky enough to see them every time.

Besides diving, there´s not that much other tourism in the area yet. But it has some potential, and there might be some things there that I don´t know about.

I can certanly recommend this place to anyone thinking of a dive vacation in the Philippines!

  • Stayed: November 2011, traveled solo
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4  Thank Nik77_11
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed November 24, 2011

We had emailed all 3 dive shops around Padre Burgos (Peter's, Sogod Bay Scuba Resort, and Southern Leyte Divers), and SBSR gave us the best and most extensive response to all our questions, so we went there (flight to Tacloban at noon, taxi to the bus terminal, minivan to Sogod, and finally the local bus that dropped us right at the gate at 6pm - yes, it's a bit of a journey, but easy to do even for one who has never been to the Philippines. We found the room new, nice and clean (looking directly out on the beach), the restaurant fine (and the Kinilaw excellent), the diving perfectly organized, and the staff very friendly and competent. And the bill after 3 days of diving - very reasonable. Overall we liked SBSR very much and would recommend it to any diver (or whale shark aficionado). Seriously: I have no idea what went wrong with the other guys (see the negative reviews), but our stay was perfect.

  • Stayed: November 2011
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1  Thank wweber99
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed May 23, 2011

Sogod Bay Scuba Resort,Lungsodaan, Padre Burgos, Southern Leyte 6600, Philippines

I have been travelling and diving all around the Philippines over the past four years and have been attracted back to Sogod Bay Scuba Resort (SBSR) over and over again ... on average 2 times each year.

Sogod Bay, S. Leyte, Philippines was in fact my very first Philippine dive location. Yes I know ... "the first time is the best time". But that's not it. I go back because it is one of my very favourite dive locations. Here's why:

In short, the positives ...
- looks marvelous from the sea: the one place you wish was yours
- run by real people: seemingly with an interest in the success of the resort & the community
- staffed by genuine locals: with the great charm of smiles and Filipino hospitality
- professionally-run diving: properly managed, staffed by PADI professionals
- great dive-sites: for "macro" and a huge variety of creatures both large & small

In short, the negatives ...
- highly oriented toward divers (not a negative, except for non-divers)
- a three-hour / P3,500 van ride from the nearest airport (or five-hour / P130 by bus)
- lack of off-resort dining & entertainment
- fish-sellers blowing conch-horns at day-break

SBSR proper is a beautiful bungalow with a plank-floored open-plan bar & dining room (bare-footed is best) flanked by a wide and airy tiled terrace, with large tables and comfortable chairs ... all sitting just three-meters from the broken-coral shoreline. The white plaster walls, glass & wood door & windows and tiled areas give a "Mediterranean" feel. The water is crystal clear with one of the very best Sogod Bay dive-sites located directly in front of the resort within the Marine Protected Area (MPA).

The food & drinks menu is varied. All the bases have be covered from English meat-pies and Bangers & Mash to Thai Fish Cakes and Pancit Canton. There are always two "daily" specials, which can be ordered on their own or with freshly home-made soup or other starter and desert. Fresh fruit juices and shakes are always available. There is a (limited) beer, wine and liquor selection.

Next to the bungalow are five shore-line rooms, simply furnished but spacious, with ceiling fan and air-conditioner. Each room has twin-beds, side-tables & reading lamps, bamboo occasional table & chairs and a water kettle with gratis coffee & tea. Outside these rooms is a tiled terrace with a drying-rack for towels and swim-wear (nice touch) overlooking a shaded area complete with hammock. The laid-back deck-chairs & table are perfect for a favourite evening tipple while enjoying the cool sea-breeze and lapping shores.

Additional rooms are a short walk along the road from the resort proper and located in a private compound attached to the Dive Manager's residence. This "annex" has three floors, with the ground area encompassing a bar, tables & chairs and a pool-table. Above this are two floors of two rooms each; in every way identical to those at the shoreline ... but including a stocked refrigerator and cable TV.

All bed-rooms include "comfort rooms" (CRs) including hot & cold showers, sink, toilet-bowl, mirrored toiletry cabinet and clothes shelves & hangers. Common areas also have CRs ... avoiding the need to run to your own room to freshen-up. The dive-shop is beside the resort proper and has all the necessary washing & hanging facilities, including showers.

The resort's two large native-style outrigger motor-boats (Bancas) are moored off the resort and approached aboard a shuttle boat pulled by hand along a tethering line. Nice touches found on-board are a CR, a barrel of fresh water for rinsing masks & cameras and free drinking water, coffee, tea & biscuits. Up-front is absolutly the best lay-out ever for divers to gear-up and on either side super-easy "exit" ladder configurations. With an on-time departure time, divers always seem to be in good spirits as they embark for the day.

This is not a review of the diving in Sogod Bay but, in my view, it is very, very good; especially for "macro". The dive operation is professionally run and I have always felt very safe when diving with SBSR. In addition to Whale Shark excursions there are various minor local attractions for off-days with sail-boat & motorbike rental nearby. Free WiFi is available but relatively slow. The nearest "shopping" is in Maasin Town; about one hour by public transport (jeepney or multi-cab).

In my experience, divers have come to dive ... and this is the priority for this resort.

Room Tip: As for a sea-front room.
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  • Stayed: April 2011, traveled solo
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5  Thank SaranganiDiver
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Sogod Bay Scuba Resort

Address: | Brgy. Lungsodaan, Padre Burgos, Southern Leyte Province 6602, Philippines
Location: Philippines > Visayas > Leyte Island > Southern Leyte Province > Padre Burgos
Amenities:
Beach Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Spa
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 3 Hotels in Padre Burgos
Price Range: $20 - $34 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Number of rooms: 12
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Our accommodation has been designed with quality and comfort in mind. Since opening in February 2006 all of our guests have been impressed by the quality of our accommodation. Our cottages are equipped with air-conditioning and a fan and each cottage overlooks Sogod Bay, just a few metres from the shore.Similarly, the resort staff have all been hand picked to ensure that our guests feel welcome and our restaurant serves a variety of cuisines.Last, but certainly not least, the Sogod Bay Dive Resort is at the forefront of a number of environmental initiatives designed to maintain and enhance the local dive environment. Specifically, our resort is the sole sponsor of four recently established marine sanctuaries, three of which are within either walking distance or a ten minute boat ride of the resort. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Sogod Bay Scuba Hotel Padre Burgos
Sogod Bay Scuba Resort Padre Burgos, Southern Leyte Province, Philippines

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