Bali Diving

The Island of the Gods, Bali’s array of dive sites are a diver’s dream; offering vibrant coral reefs, WWII wrecks, schooling pelagics, world-class muck dives and options for Tec divers. With marine life highlights including huge Mola mola, tiny macro treasures and rare sharks, Bali is simply unmissable. 

Amed

A popular base for divers visiting the Liberty Wreck, Amed offers incredible muck dive sites with abundant macro life. Explore black sand seabeds or head further offshore to experience easy drift dives with sharks along walls and deep drop-offs.

Candi Dasa

For adrenaline-filled dives with vertical walls, swim-throughs and caves, look no further than Candi Dasa. This exciting dive destination is packed with pelagic highlights including numerous shark species, plus colourful critters and even huge Mola mola.

Lovina

Lovina offers spectacular reef dives perfect for novice divers while providing an excellent base for divers wanting to explore dive locations further west and east in Bali. Discover deep wall dives at Menjangan and weird and wonderful creatures among volcanic black sand before returning to watch dolphins from Lovina’s idyllic beach.

Menjangan

Plummeting walls, WWII wreck diving and huge flat coral shelves, all covered in macro life, make Menjangan Island a playground for underwater photographers. Dive there to discover spectacular coral formations, highly sought-after critters and occasional passing pelagics.

Nusa Lembongan

At Nusa Lembongan, divers can revel in swift currents while novice divers can relax in sheltered bays. Cool waters reveal the extraordinary oceanic sunfish as sandy depths hide the elusive frogfish and platoons of manta ray glide past.

Nusa Penida

Nusa Penida allows divers to experience thrilling drift dives among otherworldy pelagics before resting in sheltered bays in search of macro critters. Within the 296 species of coral and 576 species of reef fish known to the area, oceanic sunfish, manta rays, frogfish, and devil scorpionfish all await below the surface.

Padang Bai

Padang Bai is an ideal spot for both new divers and experienced underwater photographers. As well as having unusual megafauna and rare macro critters among thriving reefs, Padang Bai is easily accessible for visitors to Bali.

Pemuteran

Move away from Bali’s more visited dive sites to the calm and intimate dive experience found at Pemuteran. Novice divers can enter by shore onto multi-coloured reefs, while others will find themselves at incredible muck dives in the tranquil waters of Pemuteran Bay.

Sanur

With many of Bali's dive centers based in Sanur its central location is ideal for advanced divers to head further afield to Bali’s more famous dive sites. The calm dive sites around Sanur are perfect for hosting novice divers in a range of dive courses.

Seminyak

Seminyak’s streets, home to boutique shops and restaurants, also host a number of dive centers. Sign up to scuba diving trips in Seminyak to find yourself in fast currents at the Nusa Islands, completing dive courses in Padang Bai or descending upon the famous Liberty Wreck at Tulamben.

Tulamben

Known for the impressive USAT Liberty wreck and world-class black sand muck diving, Tulamben is one of Bali’s best known dive destinations. Easy shore dives offer reefs teeming with colourful life, whilst hammerheads, eagle rays and thrilling wall dives lie just offshore.
 

Diving in Bali

Bali, located in it's own Province on the westernmost end of the Lesser Sunda Islands, is the most famous of the thousands of islands in the Indonesian archipelago. Known as the Island of the Gods, the fertile land has magnificent volcanoes, picturesque rice paddy fields while underwater the diversity and beauty of Bali’s dive sites is unparalleled. The extensive list of dive locations in Bali provides everything a diver could dream of - colourful coral reefs, encounters with schooling pelagics, muck diving, technical diving as well as sites for novice divers to participate in dive courses.
 
The epicentre of mass tourism in Bali is found in Kuta and Seminyak, which boasts beaches and amazing nightlife. There are a few dive centres in the Kuta area, yet there is no diving locally and all diving arranged here finds visitors heading out to one of Bali’s many other stunning dive locations. Those who want to try Bali diving can travel south to Nusa Dua where calm conditions will settle the nerves of first timers.
 
Leaving the hustle and bustle of Kuta, head along the east coast where you’ll find yourself in the relaxed coastal ambience of Sanur. Here, novice divers can learn in the calm waters of Sanur as experienced divers take a traditional ‘Jukung’ boat into the ripping currents of the Lombok Strait from Candi Dasa. If you’re the former don’t be too disheartened when your friends come back with tales of hammerhead sharks and oceanic sunfish sightings - that’ll be you one day.

Best time to dive

Scuba diving in Bali is best during the transition period between the wet and dry seasons. Through April to July and October through to November, the winds are generally weaker, seas calmer and visibility at its peak. At most diving locations diving is possible all year-round but for sites like Candi Dasa, where currents are strong and conditions already rough, it’s best to head out when the sea is calm. 
 
When the water is cooler, from July through to October, there is the peak number of mola mola, hammerhead sharks, manta ray and whale shark. With the wet season from October to April, you can miss the rain while seeing your favourite megafauna.

Types of diving

With so many dive locations on the mainland and surrounding archipelagos, while scuba diving in Bali you are spoilt for choice. Nusa Dua, Padang Bai and Pemuteran offer beginner divers the chance to enrol in dive courses while there are a number of locations for more adventurous divers. 
 
At the four rocky islands of Gili Tepekong, Gili Biaha, Gili Mimpang and Gili Selang, reached from Candi Dasa, fierce currents will test your buoyancy as you drift around unusual rock formations. For those who love to drift dive, you will find yourself pushed by the force of the ocean at almost every dive site in Nusa Lembongan and Nusa Penida. Dive dramatic deep walls at The Drop Off in Tulamben after diving the famous USAT Liberty Wreck or head to Menjangan Island to investigate the long-lost cargo of the Anker Wreck.
 
Excellent macro sites can be found at Blue Lagoon in Padang Bai, Seraya Secrets at Tulamben or the Secret Bay at Menjangan Island while thriving corals can be found everywhere while scuba diving in Bali. To showcase Bali diving at its best, liveaboards stop at the fantastic dive sites in every region of the Island of the Gods.

What to see

Take a traditional ‘Jukung’ boat out into the depths at Tulamben or the tricky dive sites at Candi Dasa to be confronted with hammerhead sharks and oceanic sunfish watching you from the blue. At locations with strong currents, find yourself immersed in the world of schooling dogtooth tuna, giant trevally and barracuda as a myriad of small reef fish flit around. To witness two incredible underwater giants, head to the Nusa Islands where you can find manta ray in numbers and mola mola bathing in the cool water. Reef sharks frequent most of Bali’s dive locations and the rare cat and wobbegong sharks have been spotted at Candi Dasa and Padang Bai.
 
The keen-eyed divers among us definitely won’t be disappointed. At muck dive sites frogfish, dragonets, juvenile cuttlefish, scorpionfish, stonefish and a myriad of nudibranch all lurk in the sandy depths. In Tulamben watch the squat anemone shrimp doing his signature dance while mimic octopus fool even the most knowledgable of macro divers who pass by without noticing the stealthy presence.

Best places to dive

Arrive in Amed, a quiet fisherman village on the black sand coast of easternmost Bali and enjoy magnificent drop offs and muck diving in a relaxing atmosphere. During your time in Amed, ask one of the local dive centres to take you to Seraya Secrets. The silty seabeds of this dive site create the perfect environment for many juvenile species to grow and get ready for their life in the deep. Underwater photographers can bring out their cameras ready to photograph pipefish, nudibranch and seahorse as they search in the black volcanic sand. To discover even more amazing species, head out as the sun sets and hunt by torchlight for an array of weird and wonderful critters.
 
From the shore at Tulamben, explore the USAT Liberty wreck. Sitting 30-metres at its deepest point, the wreck is accessible for beginner divers, who can stay in the shallows, as well as the more experienced. During World War II, the American ship was torpedoed by a Japenese submarine, where it was then towed onto Tulamben beach to be salvaged. However, in 1963 Mount Agung erupted and a lava flow pushed the wreck underwater where it now rests. It has since become encrusted with an array of hard and soft corals with schools of bumphead parrotfish and jackfish schooling above the wreck. Keep an eye out for passing black-tip reef sharks as you admire the unusual marine life sheltering on the wreck.
 
On the north coast of Bali, scuba diving can be arranged by dive centres and dive resorts in Lovina, who will take you to Pumuteran. The coral here suffered damage from the 1998 El Nino but there are still many calm dive sites with recovering coral great for undertaking dive courses. Certified divers can also arrange trips to Menjangan Island in West Bali National Park with most Lovina dive centres. Here, there’s the chance for technical divers to dive to 60-metres while macro photographers capture frogfish and various nudibranch on camera.
 
Padang Bai is a popular dive area with many dives to suit all levels. Beginner divers can take dive courses in Blue Lagoon while underwater photographers can delight at Padang Bai’s many muck dive sites such as Jepun, Bias Tugal or Secret Jetty. This is also where boats leave regularly to take excited tourists to the island paradises of the Gili and Nusa archipelago.
 
At Nusa Penida you can descend into the depths of Crystal Bay for your chance to meet an oceanic sunfish. In the crystal clear water of the small bay you will start the dive surrounded by flourishing corals before heading towards the channel to spot a mola mola. As the current here can be strong and often downward, dive centres will only take advanced divers. If you are not lucky enough to see mola mola, sea turtles, scorpionfish and nudibranch have all made the site their home.
 
For a roller coaster experience in the Lombok Strait, make your way to Gili Biaha in Candi Dasa. Adrenaline seekers can brave the strong currents and be awarded with a myriad of marine life. Descend down into Gili Biaha, where your first stop will be a cave at 8-metres. Sheltering from the current, you will find several white-tip reef sharks as well as lionfish and lobsters that now call the cave their home. Head back into the current to find a wall decorated with sponges, whip corals and crinoids as mantis shrimp peak out of the crevices. Finish the dive after making your way along the tapestry wall, grateful to Gili Biaha for testing your buoyancy skills.