The heavenly blue waters of Bali have some incredible diving spots to explore. Be blown away by the colourful underwater world that Indonesia has to offer. From Manta Ray to Whale Sharks, Parrot Fish, Bat Fish and even the famous Ocean Sunfish – you will be astonished by the rich marine life found under the shores of Bali’s coastline.
The tropical weather of Bali keeps the water warm and has diverse spots for beginners to professional divers. You can find shipwrecks, limestone shorelines, coral ridges and volcanic outcrops that boast of a stunningly diverse underwater ecosystem.
Where to Dive in Bali?
No matter what your skill level or interest is, the diverse diving spots in Bali will certainly have something that suits you. Majority of the dive sites in Bali are located on the North Coast and the East, but with so many sites to choose from, deciding where to dive can be quite a challenging task on holiday.
Bali’s Best Playgrounds For Diving
The beautiful transformation of wood and steel from a warship into a coral wonderland will leave you speechless. USAT Liberty is the most popular diving spot on the East Coast of Bali and is easily accessible from the shores of Tulamben beach. The 120 metre long sunken memorial was an American cargo ship that was torpedoed by the Japanese in 1942. The site has almost no currents so it is quite safe for beginners.
Plunge in the waters at this shipwreck and you’ll realise that your expectations of seeing ruins of a ship have been surpassed by a beautiful playground of corals, emperors, batfish, parrotfish, gargonia fans and big-barrel sponges.
Home to an abundance of exotic marine species, this site is located on the opposite end of the bay from the Liberty Wreck. This bay is situated on one of the richest marine biographic zones in the world. It receives plankton-rich waters and the lava flow of Mount Agung explosion in 1963. The three dive sites here – Liberty Shipwreck, Drop off and Coral Garden have absolutely different physical environments, undoubtedly creating a great site for professional divers.
Imagine finding whale sharks swimming in waters at a 9 metre depth and as you plunge deeper, you’ll discover a school of sunfish, dog-tooth tuna, gorgonians, corals and other marine life. Make sure you opt for underwater photography to take back memories of this thrilling experience.
Padang Bai, one of the busiest ferry terminals in Bali has some great diving spots – Blue Lagoon, Jepun, and Ferry Channel. Blue Lagoon is great for first time divers and the area is bustling with dive schools. If you’re an adventurous traveller, a night dive in Blue Lagoon is worth exploring along with a long photo excursion.
Manta Point at Nusa Penida
If you’ve dreamt of a nerve-racking adventure to swim with Manta Rays, hop onto a ferry from Padang Bai and in about 45-minutes you’ll reach Nusa Penida. The popular diving spot here is Manta Point. This diving site guarantees a close encounter with Manta Rays as it has plenty of plankton that serves as a thriving home for these underwater creatures. The water here is calm, but sometimes it transforms into a giant whirlpool with a strong current which means the site is suitable for divers with professional skills only.
Menjagen island is a treat for exploring spectacular corals. The drop offs here are full of deep crevices and water caves that hide a wide range of marine creatures and bats. This island is now protected and accessed only by guarded boats. The island boasts a popular dive spot known as the Bat Cave Drop-off, home to hundreds of bats and a favourite among many divers for drift diving. Big-eyed jacks are often found in the nooks and crannies amidst the darkness.
Taking a Dive
There are numerous diving schools and diving centers in Bali with experienced dive guides and safe diving gear. Depending upon your experience level, the guides will train you on breathing, safety instructions and technical basics before your first dive.
Dive centers also offer Dive Safaris where you choose your accommodation close to the dive sites and enjoy early morning and late night dives. They offer a pick-up service from the villa and take you to different dive spots to experience the diversity of marine life in walls, wrecks, reefs and drifts. Villa Stella, Villa Juking and Villa Lucia in Candidasa are great options for those planning a dive safari from Padang Bai.
Diving gives you a beautiful feeling of freedom, a feeling that will mesmerise you and satisfy your curiosity about life that exists below the surface. You have to experience it to believe it!