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.
Diving in Sanur
Stretching along the South East of Bali is Sanur, one of the main dive resort towns in the Denpasar area of Bali. Whilst diving nearby is not optimal, it is possible on local reefs and are sometime used for training or for those short on time. A lot of dive centers are based here which can offer both dive courses and dive excursions to the best areas that Bali can offer. Sanur is also one of the major departure points for heading across to the nearby diving areas around Nusa Penida and Nusa Lembongan with opportunities to see amazing coral reefs and schools of Manta Rays.
Certified divers who want to dive deeper into Bali’s fantastic dive sites can ask Sanur dive centres to arrange trips to other incredible locations. Descend down onto the Liberty Wreck in Tulamben, drift in strong currents at Candi Dasa, search for strange critters in Padang Bai and Amed’s silty seabeds or sail to the Nusa Islands to find yourself among the majestic oceanic sunfish and manta rays.
A wide selection of diving is available from one of Sanur's numerous dive centers or resorts located here.
Best time to dive
The best time for scuba diving from Sanur is in the transition period between the rainy and dry season, around April or October. During this time, the seas are calmer and the winds are gentle, which leads to the best visibility. During the monsoon season, from December through to February, strong rain can cause bad visibility in some of the dive sites.
If you're using Sanur as a base and want to head to Candi Dasa, the best time to see hammerhead sharks is from August to October. While, for those hoping to see mola mola at Candi Dasa, the Nusa Islands or Padang Bai, dive into the waters between July through to November. Manta rays can be seen year-round at Nusa Penida, yet the prime time is April to May.
Types of diving
Sanur diving will find you in shallow sandy sea beds interspersed with coral reefs and bommies. The calm conditions and shallow sites make Sanur an ideal location for dive courses, where you’ll find a range of courses taking place at Channel Point or Sanur Bay.
Choose to take a day trip to the Nusa Islands and experience swift drift dives or head to Tulamben for world-class wreck diving at the Liberty Wreck. At Padang Bai, divers can encounter stunning reefs, incredible macro life as well as wreck dives - ideal for underwater photographers. The rocky islets and pinnacles at Candi Dasa, offer adrenaline-pumping drifts, caves, canyons and rugged topography for experienced divers to enjoy while a trip to Amed will find you submersed in the famous Japenese Wreck or uncovering incredible macro critters.
What to see
While scuba diving in Sanur, you can almost always see the resident schools of batfish, big round pufferfish as well as wide-eyed porcupinefish. Often white-tip reef sharks, sea snakes, and moray eels are seen in the area while you may be lucky enough to see dancing shoals of catfish among the large variety of thriving hard and soft corals.
At Tulamben, head further offshore where you can discover dogtooth tuna, eagle rays and even whale sharks in the strong currents while Nusa Lembongan and Nusa Penida offer the chance to revel in the presence of manta ray and the enormous oceanic sunfish. The cold water and strong currents in Candi Dasa invite hammerhead shark and mola mola to the area while a whole host of weird and wonderful creatures can be found at Padang Bai, Amed and Tulamben. Everything from frogfish to ghost pipefish can be sighted.
Best places to dive
If you have plans to take part in a dive course at Sanur, you may find yourself diving in Sanur Bay. Here, a coral reef runs along the border of the dive site before sloping off into a large sandy platform. Many rescue and navigation specialty courses are scheduled in this easy topography. The sandy bottom interspersed in coral bommies at Channel Point is great for refresh dives. Head further offshore where you can find yourself in a thriving coral reef with superb macro life at Penjor Reef or search for nudibranch, octopus, and scorpionfish at Jeladi Wilis.
Further afield at the Liberty Wreck in Tulamben you can explore all 120-metres of the intact ship. Less experienced divers can examine the shallow areas of the wreck while experienced divers can head down to 30-metres and delight in schooling barracuda, trevallies, and the occasional passing reef shark.
At Blue Corner dive site, Nusa Lembongan, discover slopes and walls teeming with tuna and giant trevally while drifting in a swift current. In the right season, there’s the opportunity to see mola mola or head to Manta Point near Nusa Penida to see the majestic manta rays which are present all-year-round.