LIVEABOARD HOLIDAYS IN INDONESIA
Indonesia consists more than 17,000 islands - most of them uninhabited, and many barely explored - and becomes the largest archipelago in the world with at least 80,000 kilometers of coastline. The special conditions of this strategic zone are the reasons for the fish population to be extremely abundant here.
Indonesia is a remote paradise that offers an incredible and quite unique underwater environment. The water is a constant warm temperature all year round - a perfect breeding ground for an incredible range of fish species. No two dives are ever the same.
Particularly good for macro lovers, Indonesia boasts pygmy sea horses, mandarin fish and more nudibranch than you could hope to record in a single trip. The coral is pristine thanks to the singular focus on conservation and the astounding health and richness of the marine life is a testament to this.
Over 3,000 fish species and 600 species of coral, steep walls, deep water trenches, underwater volcanic mountains, World War II wrecks, and an endless variety of macro life, scuba diving Indonesia is truly excellent and inexpensive. Indonesia is one of our most exotic scuba diving destinations with heavenly diving guaranteed. This area is home to some of the most luxurious liveaboard holidays you will ever experience. Liveaboards are the best option if you want to explore this beautiful region.
DIVING SEASONS IN INDONESIA
Best time to go: from April to December
Great for: Small animals, underwater photography, wall dives, wreck diving, drift dives, reef life and health and advanced divers
Not so great for: Beginner divers
Depth: 5 - >40m
Visibility: 10 - 80m
Currents: Can be very strong
Surface Conditions: Calm
Water Temperature: 19 - 30°C
Experience Level: Intermediate - advanced
Number of dive sites: ~500
Recommended length of stay: 2 - 4 weeks
Diving in Indonesia is unforgettable, whatever time of the year you visit. The season for scuba diving in Indonesia runs all year round. Overall, the best dive conditions exist from April to December, as many provinces have a rainy season from January to March.
Straddling the equator, Indonesia tends to have a very even climate. High rainfall and tropical heat lend a high humidity and mean that most of the country is covered in tropical rainforest - an area second largest only to Brazil. The wet season runs from October to April, with rain falling in short and sudden downpours interrupted with sunshine. The dry season is from May to September. The water temperatures experience little variation through the year, averaging from 26-29 degrees.
MARINE LIFE OF INDONESIA
Prepare to be blown away by this extraordinarily vibrant underwater world. About 4000 different species are found in the Indonesian waters (over 25% of the planet's fish species), in comparison to the 1000 found in the Red or the 400 from the Caribbean
Apart from this, invertebrates proliferate throughout the hundreds of patch reefs, sheer walls and barriers reefs Colourful nudi branch, pipe fishes and seahorses roam amongst the chrynoids, gorgonias and soft corals, a whole rainbow hue covering the entire extension of the reef walls. Big fish pop up every now and then, offering superb sights of big tunas, shoal or barracudas, manta rays and sharks galore.
There is such a great biodiverity it is impossible to list them everything but some of the most popular finds include:
- Pygmy sea horses - Bargibanti, Denise & Colemans
- Ghost pipefish
- Blue ringed octopus
- Mandarin fish
- Sea snakes
- Eagle rays
INDONESIA DIVE SITES
There are so many dive sites and lots are still being identified! Main areas of interest for divers on a liveaboard are Manado, South Sulawesi, Komodo, Flores, Raja Ampat...
Right in the heart of the award-winning Bunaken Marine Park, the diving offers beautiful corals, lots of fish, amazing small critters, and some larger exciting creatures including reef sharks, turtles and barracudas.
The southwestern part of Sulawesi offers some fine wreck diving around Makassar and beautiful coral reefs around the rocky island of Selayar and the atolls around Takabonerate.
Komodois an island famed throughout the world for its legendary dragons, and all liveaboard trips include going ashore to see these incredible creatures in their natural habitat. But it's not all about monitor lizards. Diving around Komodo means world-class reefs full of colour and life with pinnacles and walls, manta rays and maybe even dolphins and dugongs!
The coasts of Flores are mostly unexplored and practically all the diving is done on the north coast because the south coast is very rough. There are two main diving areas - Maumere and Labuan Bajo. Flores is one of the most rugged island of Nusa Tenggara with a collection of 14 active volcanoes. The island is well worth a visit for its nice landscape, the high volcanoes and fine ikat weavings.
The Raja Ampatin Irian Jaya attracts more than their fair share of praise from experienced divers. Said to be home to the greatest number of fish and coral species anywhere in the world, the beautiful and remote mushroom-shaped islands of Irian Jaya harbour dense schools of fish and countless World War II wrecks.
The waters of the Banda Islands and Ambon promise riches beyond the wildest dreams of many dive destinations worldwide. Big pelagics and large schools of fish abound, and the reefs are healthy and thriving. You will see squadrons of mobula rays, good shark action, and some impressive dog-toothed tuna. The volumes of reef fish in the Banda Sea need to be seen to be believed.
It is well worth thinking about having a few days on arrival to relax from your flight before your diving starts. Or why not combine 2 diving options and see more of this incredible country.
Some of the dives can be quite challenging, suiting only more experienced divers in exciting, bizarre and unpredictable currents.
What about passport and visa requirements?
Passengers travelling to Indonesia and Timor-Leste should have minimum six months valid on their passport from the date of return to the UK, plus one full page free. Hotel receptions may be required to take a photocopy of your passport for registration purposes.
What about vaccinations?
There are no compulsory vaccinations for travel, but we recommend protection against typhoid, tetanus, hepatitis A and polio. Vaccination requirements are subject to change.
Is Indonesia a safe place to visit?
The vast majority of Indonesians are honest people with a strong sense of right and wrong. Tourism however does attract pickpockets and thieves the world over so to ensure an enjoyable stay, use some common sense. Be aware and don't leave valuables unattended.
What clothing should I bring?
Indonesia is hot and humid so light, loose cotton clothing is most recommended. When exploring the night-life, tight dresses, shorts, and miniskirts are no problem. However, naked sunbathing or topless appearance in public places is considered offensive, especially when you are outside the main tourist areas. You must wear conservative clothing when in temples or mosques.