Macro and Pelagic Paradise
One of the most beautiful islands in the world, Bali is Indonesia’s most popular dive holiday destination. Many visitors find the attraction of good shore-based diving set against a stunning back drop of huge, magnificent volcanoes and picturesque rice paddy terraces, simply irresistible.
The greatest feature of scuba diving in Bali is the rich and varied sites – deep drop-offs and steep banks, coral ridges and bommies, one of the most famous wrecks in the world, volcanic outcrops and seagrass beds. With the colourful and diverse marine life, there’s enough here to keep you coming back for more.
To the east of the island lies the Lombok Strait, the first deep water trench directly to the east of the Asian continental shelf. Through this channel flows the greatest volume of tidal water on earth. This Pacific Ocean water can create some powerful currents and rollercoaster rides that characterise some Bali scuba diving sites. It also means regular visits from large and unusual pelagic fish like the incredible mola mola, or sunfish. The strong currents can also clean the water and create fantastic visibility.
If you wanted to record all the animals you can see here, you’d need to bring along a mini-library of marine guide books. From hairy frogfish, cockatoo leaf fish and pygmy seahorses in Secret Bay and Menjangan on the north west tip of the island, to bumphead parrotfish and reef sharks in the north and east at Tulamben and Candi Dasa, to the sunfish and trevallies of nearby Nusa Penida and Lembongan islands, the Bali sights are truly fascinating. Allow yourself to be surprised for you really never know just what you might see in this ever-changing underwater jewel.
• Bali tourist information
• Map of Bali
How to Dive Bali
Most non-diving tourists base themselves in the urban south in Kuta and Sanur. Unfortunately there aren’t any good dives nearby and to base yourself here will mean long and uncomfortable daily journeys to the sites by minibus. We recommend you choose a combination of resorts near to the best sites, in the east, the north west and nearby Lembongan Island, to avoid this unnecessary travel. If you must stay in Kuta, you can always do that after your diving break.
Bali Diving Season
The Bali dive season runs all year round. Overall, the best diving conditions exist from April to December, with sunfish, sharks and other pelagic fish visiting from June to September.
December to March is rainy season, reducing visibility in the north and northwest – Tulamben, Amed, Gili Selang, Pemuteran and Menjangan. From June to September dry monsoon winds bring rough seas and nutrient rich upwellings to Nusa Penida, Padang Bay and Amuk Bay.
Great for: Large animals, small animals, drift diving, visibility, advanced divers and non-diving activities
Not so great for: Underwater photography and snorkelling
Depth: 5 – >40m
Visibility: 10 – 45m
Currents: Can be very strong
Surface Conditions: Calm
Water Temperature: 19 – 26°C
Experience Level: Beginner – advanced
Number of dive sites: ~50
Access: Dive resorts
Recommended length of stay: 1 – 2 weeks
More detailed information on the Bali diving sites:
|• Amed||• Biaha|
|• Candi Dasa – Amuk Bay||• Lembongan Island – Nusa Penida|
|• Liberty Wreck||• Menjangan|
|• Padang Bay||• Pemuteran|
|• Secret Bay||• Gili Selang|
Dive The World Recommendations: Nusa Penida, Tulamben, Amuk Bay and Menjangan.
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