Bali, an underwater photographer's paradise
With several million tourists a year, Bali is often overlooked by the experienced diver who prefers to stay out of the "popular" dive destinations. In reality, what many of those divers ignore is that the many dive sites in Bali "are among the richest and most exciting dive sites in the world," as defined by award-winning underwater photographer Michael Aw.
Last update: March 17th, 2021
EVERYTHING ABOUT DIVING BALI
1. DIVING IN THE ISLANDS OF THE GODS
The many and varied dive sites in Bali offer splendid thrills to divers of all skill levels. From quiet, well-protected bays that are home to exotic scorpion fish, octopus and nudibranchs to deep dives with sharks, stingrays and mola mola, as well as the famous Liberty shipwreck in Tulamben. It is possible to organize a diving safari or diving tour customized on request touching all the dive sites on the island, with stops during transfers to visit temples, waterfalls, terraced rice fields. Detailed information below.
2. MENJANGAN & SECRET BAY DIVE SITES
Menjangang, a small island in northwest Bali, part of the Bali Barat National Park, was Bali's first international diving destination.
Menjangan - Wall dives
Menjangan is famous for wall diving, with excellent visibility conditions and pleasant temperatures. The walls sink in some points up to more than 60 meters, they are rich in ravines and crevices with soft corals, sponges and gorgonians. Good variety of reef fish.
On the north coast of Bali there are other sites that complete the diving offer for those who decide to stay in the area:
Secret Bay - Gilimanuk
Secret Bay is located in Gilimanuk Bay, near the departure of the ferries to Java, on the black sand seabed at 10-12 meters depth you can find nudibranchs, Banggai cardinal, scorpion fish, dragons, pipe fish , mimic octopuses and many other organisms. Excellent place also for night dives.
Puri Jati - Seririt
Diving in black sand, excellent macro. Octopus, scorpion fish, toad fish, mantis lobster -stomatopoda-, great variety of pipefish, blue-ringed octopus, many nudibranchs.
Dive stay in Menjangan
There is no accommodation on Menjangan Island, diving centers and hotels are located in Pemuteran and Banywedang. Diving in Menjangan is done by boat (20-30 minutes of navigation), while in Secret Bay and Puri Jati it is done from land.
From the Bali airport and the tourist areas to the south of the island (Kuta and Sanur) it takes about 2-3 hours by private car. On the way we offer stops and excursions to visit the terraced rice fields and the island's temples, taking the opportunity to photograph some of the most picturesque landscapes of the Island of the Gods.
Menjangan can be included in a diving tour of Bali, along with other destinations, using transfers to visit the main attractions of the island and some less touristy places, which allow you to know the true culture of Bali.
3. TULAMBEN & AMED DIVE SITES
The small town of Tulamben offers volcanic sand beaches with the best macro on the island and the wreck of the Liberty, a 120-meter ship sunk during World War II.
The USAT Liberty shipwreck is located 20 meters from the coast of Bali and offers an extraordinary density and variety of marine life.
Although not intact, the wreck is encrusted with coral and is a haven for many species of fish. There are often schools of carangidae -jack fish-. The black sand seabed is home to garden eels, frogfish, nudibranchs, harlequin shrimp, and much more.
Seraya Secrets offers the best macro in Bali, on the black sand seabed at 20-25 meters you can find everything! It is the favorite place of great photographers. Nudibranchs, shrimp of all kinds, crabs, scorpion fish, all species of juveniles, rhinopias. In addition, the "clean station" or cleaning station where diverse marine life congregates, to receive the cleaning service of solicitous polishing shrimp, is very famous.
The area dedicated to diving in Tulamben is expanding rapidly along the north coast. Alamanda, Batu Kelebit, Emerald Point, Tianyar. More and more dive sites are being mapped. The whole area is ideal for the macro and quiet for a relaxing holiday. Cruising Indonesia is always active in the search for new dive sites, there may be interesting news very soon.
Diving in Amed
A series of fishing coves nestled between the hills that descend to the sea, Amed has become in recent years the vacation alternative to the busy destinations in the south of the island. Amed offers good diving: Amed Reef, Amed Wall and Gili Selang. Lots of macro, but also reef and pelagic sharks.
Diving stay in Tulamben and Amed
Tulamben and Amed are 120 km from Bali airport and can be reached in 3 hours by private car. Many small resorts with dive centers and guest houses offer stays in the area. The area of Tulamben and Amed is very quiet, black beaches, lined with coconut trees, the great Agung volcano rises in the immediate interior..
It is possible to organize excursions to the Besakih temple, the most important of the island, to some beautiful waterfalls, and to the Water Palace of the Raja in Tirta Gangga and Taman Ujung. Tulamben is one of the destinations included in the Bali Diving Tour.
4. CANDIDASA DIVE SITES
Located on the east coast of Bali, overlooking the Straits of Lombok, washed by strong currents, Candidasa offers some of the best sites in Bali.
Three rock pinnacles emerging on the surface, corals, abundance of fish and the possibility of spotting pelagics.
A 300 meter long rock, cold water, strong currents. A canyon with white tip sharks, large schools of fish, in season Mola Mola. Diving only for experienced divers.
Beautiful dives, lots of fish, pelagic, walls with excellent coral.
Dive stay in Candidasa
Candidasa is 80 km from Bali airport, can be reached in 90 minutes by car. Many accommodation options, from small locally run guesthouses to some luxurious 5 star hotels. Virgin Beach, a hidden beach of white sand, has become Candidasa's seaside resort that is worth a visit.
5. NUSA PENIDA & NUSA LEMBONGAN DIVE SITES
The two islands are located in the center of the Straits of Lombok, in one of the main currents between the Pacific and the Indian Ocean. Cold waters, with a minimum of 19 degrees, strong currents that provide nutrients and marine life.
Near the west coast of Nusa Penida there are 2 manta points, the landscape is dominated by the imposing limestone cliffs, which plunge into the sea.
Crystal Bay is famous for the sighting of Mola Mola during the season from July to October. You can also see sea eagles. Colorful schools of reef fish and excellent corals.
In the southeast of Nusa Penida it is the best place to see different varieties of sharks, big trevallies and large schools of raibow runners.
Optimal site for stingrays and Mola Mola. Little frequented by the distance from Bali and from the ports of Lembongan and Penida.
Lots of soft and hard coral, excellent visibility. Moray eels, sea snakes, turtles and nudibranchs. One of the most popular dive sites in the zone..
SD, Pet and Sental
Three dive sites on the north coast; lots of soft coral, schools of sweetlips, stone fish, moray eels, scorpion fish, and reef sharks.
Diving stay in Nusa Penida and Nusa Lembongan
1. Staying in Sanur or Kuta, on the south coast, for those who want to have trendy restaurants and clubs in their spare time. In this case it is necessary to take into account longer times for transfers to the port of Sanur and the boat trip to the islands.
2. Staying on one of the two islands. Nusa Lembongan offers an excellent variety of hotels and villas, while Nusa Penida has recently been preparing to welcome tourism. Here the pace of life is much more relaxed than in the rest of Bali.
In the second case, the cost of diving is lower due to the proximity of the dive sites..
6. DIVING SAFARI: THE BETTER WAY TO DIVE BALI
Bali Diving Safari is a proposal of Cruising Indonesia, which includes stay+dives in Candidasa, Tulamben, Pemuteran and Nusa Lembongan or Nusa Penida. 2-3 days of diving are dedicated to each destination, with excursions organized in the afternoons free and in the days of transfer from one location to another that are dedicated to visiting the main attractions of the Island of the Gods: traditional temples and villages, waterfalls, terraced rice fields, lakes. The price of the Island of the Gods tour is included in the Bali diving tour. Book a Bali Diving Safari by Cruising Indonesia now!
Escursioni a terra organizzate nei pomeriggi liberi e nei giorni di trasferimento da una località all'altra nel Bali Diving Safari by Cruising Indonesia
7. DIVE CRUISES IN BALI
Some DIVE cruises depart from Bali to Komodo, with stops along the route at Moyo, Satonda, Bima, Sangeang, and Banta to finish at Labuabajo.
Oceanic Liveaboard dives in Moyo, Satonda, Bima, Sangeang and Banta passing through the Bali-Komodo and Komodo-Bali routes
Adelaar Liveaboard operates diver cruises on the Bali-Komodo-Bali route
Samata Luxury Liveaboard in Bali, Indonesia
8. BALI VILLAS by CRUISING INDONESIA: A VERY SPECIAL SOJOURN
For those who wish to extend their stay in Bali, we can organize stays in the beautiful villas on the island. Bali has become the center of elegant tourism, the value for money reaches levels of excellence, not even imaginable in Europe or Western countries in general. At an affordable cost, you can stay in luxurious villas surrounded by beautiful tropical gardens, sumptuous swimming pools, and managed by a staff of 3-4 dedicated to making your stay as easy and relaxing as possible. Depending on the number of guests, we have villas that vary from 1 to 5 or more rooms. We offer personalized estimates according to your needs and budget.
If you have a group of friends traveling or diving together, or perhaps you run a dive club or center, Cruising Indonesia can organize a dive safari to meet all your personal demands in Bali, combining dive sites and travel days, the possibilities are endless. If you have a particular interest, lead a group or have special needs to satisfy, contact us and we will work with you to build an itinerary that suits your wishes and those of the group.
9. BALI DIVING SEASON
Diving season: From April to November. But it is possible dive Bali all year around. Rainy season: From November to March. Water temperature: 27-30°C. A 3mm shorty should be more than enough. If you feel the cold easily a 5mm shorty is advisable. Visibility: 5-30m. Depths: 5- >40m. Currents: Can be very strong. Surface conditions: Can be rough. Dive conditions vary with the tides, throughout the day. Diver level experience: All levels. Dive sites: >60. Length of stay: Recommended 7-14 days of safari diving.
10. HOW TO GET BALI
Airport: Denpasar International Airport. Weather: 27-32°C. The dry season runs from April to October and the wet season runs from November to March. Time zone: Lesser Sunda Islands GMT +8.