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Airplane Becomes Tri-Bird Dive Site off Boracay Beach 

Image courtesy Martyn Willes

Some three years ago a three–engine jet airplane suffered a heavy landing (only the airplane was hurt) at Caticlan airport – the closest airport to Boracay Beach. Unable to repair it with the facilities available at Caticlan and being unable to fly the aircraft out again without repair, the airplane waited patiently at the airport for a solution.

The Boracay Island Scuba Diving Association – an organization made up of all of the dive shops on the island – acquired ownership of the aircraft with the intent of sinking it off the reef, so that it may become a subterranean attraction for both marine life and scuba divers.

For surely, Boracay Island needs some other underwater attractions . . . as one dive shop operator told me, “Boracay is for beginners . . . we train them here and then they go elsewhere to discover the true beauty of Philippine diving”. That is not to say that experienced divers will find nothing of interest in Boracay; Boracay just lacks the variety and quality available at scuba diving destinations such as Busuanga/Coron and Puerto Galera. Hence the creation of the Tri–Bird dive site.

On the morning of 1st March 2012, the floatation devices – large blue, plastic drums strapped together with bamboo – were removed, piece by piece and the jet gently descended into the crystal clear waters, just outside the reef that encircles much of the West side of Boracay Island. Attending were the Philippine Coast Guard, the Philippine Navy and a whole bunch of divers intent on being one of the first to enter the “wreck”.

You will find the Tri–bird wreck approximately one mile West of Victory Divers, Station 2, Boracay White Beach, outside the reef in about 60 feet of water.


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