Best Diving sites in Indonesia – Scuba dive reviews by

If you believe variety is the spice of life, you have come to the right place – stunning Indonesia, where you can gaze your eyes upon over 3000 different species of fish! Compare that with 1500 on the Great Barrier Reef and just 600 in the Red Sea, and here you have an amazing array of diversity and rich teeming reef life just waiting to be discovered.

You also have the chance to spot graceful Manta Rays gliding through the water at many dive sites throughout the country as well as the mysterious Mola Mola in Bali. Reef sharks and big schools of pelagic fishes are also very common in various spots and the macro life is just as incredible with quite possibly some of the best muck diving spots in the world, such as Lembeh strait, Sulawesi.

The good thing is, you can dive just about anywhere in Indonesia! Check out this vid to get a small glimpse of this underwater paradise which may just inspire you to come and see the real thing!

Out of the water, if you are feeling ambitious you may want to experience an up-close encounter with the mysterious (and rare!) Komodo dragons in the Komodo National Park. There is plenty to explore in Indonesia, from the beautiful sparkling green rice terraces to the pristine white sandy beaches.

The coral, which is made up of over 600 species, is absolutely everywhere you go. In some places, part of the reef may have been heavily damaged by cyanide fishing and bomb fishing but places like Bunaken, Raja Ampat, Komodo and other spots in Bali feature unspoiled and outstanding hard and soft coral! These destinations are a must for underwater photography!

Beginners have the chance to learn scuba diving for very cheap in places like the Gili islands, Lombok.

Where to dive?

The best and main scuba diving destinations are:

  • Bali
  • Manado, Sulawesi
  • Komodo National Park, Flores
  • Raja Ampat, Papua
  • Wakatobi, Sulawesi
  • Pulau Weh, Sumatra
  • Gili Islands, Lombok

In this page you will find more detailed information about scuba diving in Indonesia.

Photos Indonesia

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    Blue Nudibranch in Lembeh Strait

    Photo by Rich Guest

  • Best Diving sites in Indonesia – Scuba dive reviews by

    Mola Mola And Moorish Idol

    Photo by Jihye Lee

  • Best Diving sites in Indonesia – Scuba dive reviews by

    Clown fishes waiting in front of their blue anemone house

    Photo by Jihye Lee

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    Beautiful & Colorful Mandarin Fish

    Photo by Rich Guest

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    Yellow Seahorse in Lembeh Strait

    Photo by Agnes Tjandranegara

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    Flying Ray Manta in Bali!

    Photo by Jihye Lee

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    Lion Fish swimming in crystal clear water

    Photo by Agnes Tjandranegara

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    Frogfish

    Photo by Jihye Lee

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    Surreal Life

    Photo by Jihye Lee

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    Moray Eel Closeup

    Photo by Agnes Tjandranegara

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Best Dive Review

Muck Diving in Indonesia

Indonesia offers terrific muck diving opportunities. The macro photographers will be delighted to find all the rare famous species such as the mimic octopus, the ornate ghost pipefish, the flamboyant cuttlefish and the pygmy seashore. The best location for macro lovers is the Lembeh strait in North Sulawesi.

This is a real muck diving paradise. Many rare critters and nudibranchs can also be found North of Bali at dive sites such as Secret Bay, P.J. and Seraya Secret. Another upcoming new dive spot is Raja Ampat with the highest biodiversity on Earth! Underwater photographers are coming from all over the world to shoot new and very rare species there!

Wreck Diving

You will find many wrecks to dive in Indonesia. The most famous one is the world class dive site of the US Liberty Ship in Tulamben on the North East coast of Bali. This is among the best wreck diving in the world. You can also find some wrecks to explore in Papua from World War II.

Best Diving sites in Indonesia – Scuba dive reviews by

Photo Credit: http://www.flickr.com/photos/neilspicys/2815969239/

How to dive Indonesia?

Indonesia is very easy to dive. There are numerous dive centres in the touristy areas. However some diving places are much better to explore via Liveaboard like Komodo, the Celebes and Raja Ampat.

I usually use this website to book in advance my liveaboards in Indonesia as they usually have the lowest rates I find. I like it because they have an easy booking system.

Your safety is important so keep in mind that some dive centres do have lower safety standards than others so choose your dive operator carefully.

Where to stay?

I usually use this website to book in advance my hotels in Indonesia as they usually have the lowest rates I find. I like it because it's free to cancel and change the dates.

Best time to dive in Indonesia

It is possible to dive in Indonesia all year round. Although it is important to remember that the country is a very large country and weather conditions varies greatly from place to place so check the conditions in advance. The basic rule for many areas is:

  • Rainy season from November to March
  • Dry season from April to October.

For more specific weather information on an area, refer to the destination pages. For example, in Moluccas (Maluku), seasons are reversed. Bali has also it’s own weather patterns and is actually much less affected by monsoon.

As you can imagine the best time to go diving is during the dry season and the worst time during the rainy season when the visibility is usually not as good. However destinations like the Komodo islands are really exciting to dive during the monsoon because this is the Manta Season!

Komodo and some of the Raja Ampat Liveaboards in Indonesia are running all year.

Best Diving sites in Indonesia – Scuba dive reviews by

Top liveaboards in Indonesia according to divers reviews

Scuba Diving conditions

Air temperature: 25°C to 35 °C depending on the location and the season

Average Water temperature: ranges from 26°C to 30°C year round, places like Nusa Penida, Komodo islands or Lembeh Strait can be much colder as low as 16°C!

Average Visibility: You can expect from 10m to 60m depending on the season and location.

Current: Depends a lot on tide and location, ranges from none to fierce

Snorkelling in Indonesia

Snorkellers need not worry – you can also see and experience all of the amazing marine life right off the shore in many spots in Indonesia. In most places it is possible to arrange a day trip to go snorkelling with local people or you can rent cheap snorkel gear for the day and explore yourself. Some of the great snorkelling locations include Amed, Bunaken, Tulamben and Padang Bai in Bali, Gili Islands for the numerous turtles, and Komodo for the amazing coral.

Best Diving sites in Indonesia – Scuba dive reviews by

Photo Credit: http://www.flickr.com/photos/rnugraha/2049786537/

Diving Safety

If you are planning an upcoming dive trip or travelling to Indonesia, it is a really good idea to invest in travel insurance for scuba diving, because you never know what could happen and when you might need it (because accidents do happen!). I recommend this diving insurance as they offer worldwide coverage and focus on providing scuba divers a quality insurance and medical assistance service.

Travel Guide

Now that you know all about the underwater world, you might want to start planning your scuba holiday! Check out our Indonesia Travel Review for information about how to get there, activities and excursions, where to stay, and more.

Best Diving sites in Indonesia – Scuba dive reviews by

Diving Reviews for this region

Best Diving sites in Indonesia – Scuba dive reviews by

Wakatobi

Wakatobi has some of the finest coral in the world, amazing biodiversity and one of the best places in the world for macro photography! On the right day, the visibility can be outstanding!

Wakatobi Diving Review

Best Diving sites in Indonesia – Scuba dive reviews by

Bunaken, Manado

Diving in Bunaken is just fantastic for wall Diving, Coral gardens, endless visibility, incredible biodiversity. Also staying on an isolated island is something really special to experience!

Bunaken, Manado Diving Review

Best Diving sites in Indonesia – Scuba dive reviews by

Tulamben

One of the best Wreck Dives in the World!!! And the most easy for sure, 30m from the Shore and starts at 4m deep! Fantastic Marine life and great Coral!

Tulamben Diving Review

Best Diving sites in Indonesia – Scuba dive reviews by

Padang Bai

Night Diving, Underwater Macro Photography, Resident Whitetip Reef Sharks, Huge green Turtles, and crystal clear water! Also a great Snorkelling spot!

Padang Bai Diving Review

Best Diving sites in Indonesia – Scuba dive reviews by

Candidasa

It is all about action! Big pelagic fishes, hunting action in the current, and many Sharks! Regular seeing of Hammerhead Sharks and Mola Mola!

Candidasa Diving Review

Best Diving sites in Indonesia – Scuba dive reviews by

Bali

Diving in Bali is incredible for BIG Fishes, Macro Diving, Drift Diving and Excellent Visibility!

Bali Diving Review

Best Diving sites in Indonesia – Scuba dive reviews by

Amed

Magnificent coral, no current, relaxed and easy diving, possibilities for night diving, good place for underwater macro photography, and a great snorkelling spot.

Amed Diving Review

Liveaboard Reviews in Indonesia

Diving centers in Indonesia