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Liberty Dive Resort Tulamben

Southern Bali

Blue CornerCrystal BayPedSampalanMalibu PointManta Point
To the south of Bali lie the islands of Nusa Penida, Lembongan & Ceningan.

These islands lie at a meeting point of waters from the Indian & Pacific Oceans, meaning strong currents and relatively chilly water temperatures of 15 - 26 degrees Celsius.

Strong currents and cooler seas often mean big fish however & the area has fantastic drift-diving, with the chance to encounter Barracuda, Sharks & Manta Rays, plus the areas most famous visitor - the Mola Mola.
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Nusa Penida is by far the largest of the three islands, with Lembongan & Ceningan situated off its north-western coast, closer to Bali. It is this north-western area that has the majority of the dive sites, many of which follow-on from each other, allowing 2 dive sites to be visited in one dive when the current is really flowing.

The area is characterised by sloping reefs that get steeper as they get deeper, eventually disappearing into oblivion. Coral cover is generally superb due to the nutrient-rich currents, with spectacular hard & soft corals, huge barrel sponges & impressive bommies. Reef-life is also very excellent, with a wide variety of colourful & interesting species. Ped, SD & Sampalan are all popular drift dives.

The real action here happens in the blue though. Exposed sites such as Blue Corner promise large pelagics, along with regular sightings of the elusive Mola Mola, or Sunfish. Mola Molas are one of the ocean's oddest fish - weighing up to 2 tons, they sport an ungainly appearance, with small dorsal & pectoral fins supporting their huge, spherical frame. They visit the area seasonally to be cleaned.

Currents can be very strong here, including dangerous down-currents to unfathomable depths, so take all the appropriate safety measures on your dives and always follow the instructions of your guide.

Just to the south, Crystal Bay is a more sheltered site which normally has sparkling visibility. The corals & reef life here are excellent, while the site is also known for regular Mola Mola sightings in season.

Further south again are more good sites. Manta Rays can often be seen at Manta Point & Malibu Point has excellent, but difficult diving with plenty of big fish encounters. These areas are visited less often by dive centres though due to the distances from Bali & the tricky conditions.

Dive Bases Icon Dive Bases
The dive sites of Nusa Penida, Lembongan & Ceningan are the closest dive sites to Bali's tourist hotspots on the south of the mainland. As a result, there are numerous dive centres on the island and diving can be booked from many resorts & tour operators.

It is sometimes also possible to arrange trips from dive centres on Bali's east coast.
  • Southern Bali
  • Eastern Bali

Map PhuketDirectory Find Dive Centres in Southern Bali

The south of Bali is the heart of it's tourism industry, with thousands of visitors each year, especially to Kuta and the surrounding area.

Dive Phuket  Dive
There are quite a few dive centres and the dive industry here is well established. Day trips are usually made to Nusa Penida & Nusa Lembongan. It is also possible to arrange trips to other areas in Bali, especially trips to Tulamben. Due to the travel times however, some people prefer to make an overnight trip or longer.

Southern Bali is also the departure point for Liveaboards making trips to Komodo National Park to the east, as well as the pick-up point for visiting Wakatobi by Liveaboard.

There are now quite a few well-established Liveaboard operators making trips to Komodo & Rinca. Trips run throuhgout the year & usually last for around 7-10 days, taking in Lombok & Sumbawa in addition to the sites of Komodo, before returning to Bali.

Stay Phuket  Stay
There is a huge range of accommodation available in this area, from top-end luxury hotels to simple guest houses. Kuta is the main tourist hub of the area, with the biggest range of accommodation and the most amenities. Nusa Dua and Sanur are a little quieter and a little more upmarket.

Travel Phuket  Travel
The area has its own international airport in Denpasar, the capital, with flights all over Asia plus Australia & Europe. From the airport, a bus or taxi can take you to any of the well-toursited areas. Antiquated ferries run between all of Indonesia's major islands, including Lombok directly to the east of Bali and Java to the west.

Do Phuket  Do
Aside from diving, there is a huge amount to do here. Activities include great shopping, amusement parks, surfing, all sorts of adventure sports and plenty of other attractions. There are some very nice beaches in the area, especially to the south and Kuta is known for its lively nightlife.

Map PhuketDirectory Find Dive Centres in Eastern Bali

Bali's east coast has a few small villages that make popular bases for divers, with the star attraction being Tulamben's WWII Liberty shipwreck. In addition to Tulamben, it is possible to stay and dive from Amed, Candi Dasa, Seraya & Padang Bai.

Dive Phuket  Dive
All of these spots have a few dive centres offering a combination of shore diving and diving from simple local boats.

Stay Phuket  Stay
Accommodation tends to be in mid-range hotels. There are also a few cheaper options for those on a budget, but only limited choice for those seeking luxury.

Travel Phuket  Travel
The closest airport is in Denpasar, Bali's capital, which has many regional and international flights. From here, it is possible to arrange a car or taxi, or take a bus to the east coast, around 2 or 3 hours away. Buses also make the trip from Lovina in the north of Bali.

Do Phuket  Do
The main attraction aside from diving is a visit to Gunung Agung volcano and trips can be made to Ubud, an interesting town inland. Bali also has many interesting festivals throughout the year.

Western Bali         
A little off the beaten track, western Bali offers unspoilt dive sites, some great macro dives, and Bali's best wall diving to keep budding divers entertained...

The Coral Reef Recipe

Coral Reefs are the most complex and productive of all eco-systems on earth. As divers, we often marvel at the incredibly beautiful and complicated coral reef structures we see and maybe wonder how how they came to be...


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