Bali is famous for many reasons, but if you are a dive enthusiast you will have heard about the wealth of marine life and diversity of dive sites that attracts divers from all over the world. However, planning your trip can be a little confusing if you don’t know much about where to find the best dive sites in Bali. Let us help you out by giving you the low-down on where to dive in Bali.
There 3 main areas around Bali that give divers the opportunity to see a range of underwater life and also experience everything from steep slopes, shallow sandy dives and shipwrecks. And one of the great things about diving in Bali is that divers of any level can enjoy the waters. It’s even an excellent place to get your dive certification.
The east coast of Bali is probably the most popular area for divers. From Padang Bai all the way to Tulamben there are tons of dives to enjoy and right in the middle is Candidasa, where Lotus Bungalows and Gangga Divers are located. This can be a great base if you’re planning a number of dives off the east coast.
For those looking to get certified or to increase their skills, this is one of the best areas of Bali, thanks to calm waters around Padang Bai and Amed. More advanced divers will love the drift dives around Candidasa and around the islands of Nusa Penida and Nusa Lembongan, which are both within easy reach of Candidasa and Padang Bai.
Amed also has plenty of muck diving for those who love to search for macro creatures in the shallows. You can expect to find ghost pipefish, clown frogfish, mimic octopuses, razor fish, huge stonefish, juvenile lionfish, and seahorses in this area.
It’s very convenient to stay on the east coast thanks to good roads and easy access to many dive sites and also other tourist stops along the coast like traditional villages and quiet white sand beaches.
Nusa Penida & Nusa Lembongan
Nusa Penida and Nusa Lembongan are just around 30 minutes by boat off the coast of Bali, and are spectacular places to dive. The waters are especially clear off of Nusa Penida, and most divers love to visit Manta Point, Manta Bay and Crystal Bay, where there is the best chance of swimming with Manta Rays. In the right season you might even see sunfish, or mola-mola as they are called in the local language.
The currents are strong around the islands, so these dives aren’t recommended for beginners. For those confident to dive here, the drift dives will take you over hard and soft corals of every colour and giant trevally, Napoleon wrasse, barracuda and sea turtles are often spotted feeding here.
At the northwest of the island there is a small island known for its population of rare Javanese rusa deer, and also for having some of the clearest water to dive in anywhere in Bali. As part of the West Bali National Park, you need a guide and permit to dive in the area, but these are easy to get.
The diving around Menjangan consists of walls up to 50 metres deep, as well as sandy slopes of around 4 metres deep, caves and an eel garden, where you’ll also find schools of mackerel, pipefish, giant trevallies and even some reef sharks thanks to the consistent current.
If you are planning a trip to Menjangan you will need to stay in the area because it’s around 3 hours drive from the other main tourist centres on the island.
Do you dream of diving in Bali? Ask us anything about planning a trip in the comments below!