Coral Triangle – Tropical underwater heaven

People are always looking for the most beautiful places for snorkeling and diving where they can see healthy coral reefs. The Coral Triangle is an extensive marine area, offers its visitors lifetime underwater experience : large number of different coral species and extraordinary biodiversity.

Coral Triangle overview

The Coral Triangle is not an exact spot, it is a huge region in the western Pacific Ocean. It includes the waters of Malaysia, Indonesia, Philippines, Papua New Guinea, Solomon Islands and Timor-Leste, covers 5.7 million square kilometres.

People say the coral reefs are the rainforests of the seas, this is such a meaningful statement! The Coral Triangle is often called as the “Amazon of the Oceans”.

The area consists of two geographical regions: The Far Southwestern Pacific and the Indonesian-Philippines region. The whole region is half size of the USA!

The Coral Triangle is an important economic area, the nature sustains the lives of more than 120 million people here. Of course the tourism is the main source of income , but the tuna-export is also significant.

Philippines Coral triangle


In the Coral Triangle the underwater world is full of life: approx 600 different corals (76 % of all known coral species) , more than 3000 species of reef fish live here, manta rays, whale sharks, coelacanth, dugongs, humphead wrasse, and six out of the world’s seven marine turtle species. Some single reefs have more species than the entire Caribbean.

Coral triangle Philippines

coral triangle 3 Philippines

coral triangle Philippines

Where to stay tips

It does not matter which destination will you visit in the Coral Triangle Area, the stunning underwater life is guaranteed!

If you also take care of the environment and think about the sustainable future, book your stay in an eco-resort! There are great environment friendly resorts in the region, let’s see some of them:

Nihiwatu Resort (Sumba, Indonesia) : the Sumba Island is located about 1 hour from Bali. The resort was built from recycled materials, the power comes from biodiesel. They serve organic food and there is a turtle hatchery down at the beach.

Misool Eco Resort (Papua, Indonesia) : abundant reef, sandy beaches and blue lagoons, these things are waiting for you on the privat island of West Papua. Most of the 9 luxury cottages were built from salvaged hardwood, the roofs are from coconut fibres. They are using wind turbines and solar panels on the island. This resort is a good place to stay if you plan to discover the Raja Ampat, the world’s epicentre of coral diversity!

raja ampat

Lagen Island Resort (El Nido, The Philippines) : If you prefer active holidays, the Lagen Island Resort will fit you! The eco resort has a great marine sports centre where you can get equipment for all watersport activities. The rooms and suites are made from antique wood. The resort sets in cove fringed by primary forest, houses are built on stilts line on the cove. The El Nido Resort participated in the Zero Carbon Programme in 2011 and was awarded for environment friendly solutions by tourism organizations.

Conservation projects

The corals are in danger worlwide, and we are loosing parts of the underwater world every day. Unfortunately the situation is the same in the Coral Triangle as well, so the conservationists work on high-level in the region. The main threats are the climate change, overfishing and pollution, but the lack of political will and the poverty in area are also important factors.

The local government, international organizations (like WWF, Conservation International, Nature Conservancy) are working continiously to save the reefs and many other companies and individuals donate their projects. The local people should understand that we must think about the next generations and not just live for the present. The organizations are working on sustainable solutions which are good for the inhabitants and help to save the marine life. To protect our nature, ocean and marine life is an urgent issue in the Coral Triangle as well as all around the world. It is a good sign, that more and more photographers and filmmakers discover how unique the region is, show the people all the beauties and draw the attention to the area.

If you visit the site, you could get more informations about the region and the conservation projects!

Anett Szaszi

Anett is a certified scuba diver, freediver and an expert in snorkeling with more than 10 years experience. She fell in love with the ocean when she put her head underwater in the Red Sea in 2008. Since then , she is traveling all over the world to discover our waters. Wherever she goes, she takes her mask, fins and underwater camera with her. Visiting mega-cities is not her style but getting lost in tiny coastal villages, capturing the beauty of the sea while snorkeling. She is interested in sustainable traveling and marine conservation. She is hoping to inspire people to protect our oceans by sharing her underwater stories. Find her photos on @anett.szaszi Instagram too!

2 thoughts on “Coral Triangle – Tropical underwater heaven

  • 2019-10-13 at 05:47

    Thank you for the helpful article. I’m also trying to determine which of these countries around the Coral Triangle would be the safest to travel to and explore portions of the triangle from. Can you speak to the safety for travelers in this area?

    • 2019-10-30 at 22:17

      Hi Kimberly,
      I’ve been several times in the area and never experienced bad things. Especially Bali, Lombok, Flores, Java (where most tourists go) are very safe. There are many solo travelers and backpackers in the area, so if you travel alone, I would recommend establishing a conversation with others and joining them when using local transportation if you don’t feel the situation comfortable. Most businesses like hotels and dive shops are managed by foreigners, so there is always someone around to talk to or ask help if needed, but my experience is that the locals are very friendly. They might seen a “bit too much” when they try to sell you something, but if this happens, just say clearly no and they will leave you. If you take the normal precautions (like wearing proper clothing, no expensive jewelry, not carrying too much cash, closing your bags, room etc…) it is as safe as any other more developed country.
      Hope this helps,


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