Maluku Tropical Paradise for Diving

December 10, 2011 No Comments » – Maluku Islands were the original Spice Islands. Every clove in the world came from Maluku islands. This region features unique reef formations, with visibility 20 – 30 m, and water temperature of 27 – 28 degC. Plenty of macro and micro subjects for UW photographers.

Now, these tropical paradise islands are coveted for their spectacular diving and snorkelling on some of the world’s richest reefs, unspoiled corals, and large pelagic fish. Steep drop offs, impressive hard coral and some fast currents make this area absolutely breathtaking. Schools of jacks are a familiar sight, as are large tuna, many turtles, Napoleon wrasse, groupers, rays, sharks and large lobsters.

The Banda Sea is surrounded by islands from the large islands of Buru, Halmahera, Ambon and Seram in the north towards Gorom, Kei and Aru in the east, the islands of Tanimbar, Wetar and Reong, and a series of smaller islands such as Babar and Moa, touching East Timor in the south. Ambon Bay is host to some of Indonesia’s best critter diving. The nearby island of Halmahera is still largely unexplored and has recently produced some stunning sites.

Gunung Api is an isolated volcanic peak rising from the heart of the Banda Sea. Surrounded by crystal clear waters this uninhabited island is home to thousands of nesting seabirds. Exuding sulphur both above and below the landmark, the water is also home to extraordinary numbers of banded kraits (sea snakes), which have become a special attraction for divers. It’s not unusual to have swarms of these non-aggressive sea snakes around you while diving on Gunung Api.

The 5 tiny atolls of Lucipara in the middle of the Banda Sea are the tops of undersea mountains rising up over a mile from the ocean floor. The uninhabited beaches are ideal green turtle nesting sites, while the reef’s breathtaking drop off to ocean waters is ideal for diving and snorkeling. A highlight here is night diving with the rare Photoblepheron bandanensis or more commonly known as the “flash light fish”.

Best time to dive: October – December; March – April

•    Wall diving with great visibility
•    Excellent and colourful hard coral
•    Very healthy fish life
•    Spectacular island backdrops with many volcanoes
•    Beautiful uninhabited beaches for sunset strolls
•    Enjoy the combination of superb diving and intriguing history

How to get there
Flights: From Bali or Jakarta to Ambon (stopover in Makassar), or from Manado to Ambon

Happy Green Travels!

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