Often called Ambon’s best macro dive site is Laha, situated in Ambon Bay’s murky depths. Divers can make their way along a sandy slope to find small orange painted frogfish perched on coral branches as shrimpfish and white cockatoo waspfish sway idly in the light water movement. Further into the dive, approach the jetty where 10 species of moray eel await in the company of stonefish, spiny devilfish and the spotted devilfish. As dusk approaches at this dive site, mandarinfish brighten the water performing their mating dance.
Directly west of Laha is Rhino City, known for the rare species of weedy rhinopia that can be found on the sandy slope. Inspect anemone for shimps and porcelain crabs while ribbon eels are known to burrow close by, flashing bright yellow bodies when they peer out. Rummage in the shallows for the very rare black razor shrimp, hairy crabs and orangutan crabs as jawfish burrow in the sand shying away as you come near.
In southern Ambon Bay, visit the small settlement of Silale and the areas two dive sites. On the rubble slope, there are many brilliantly coloured nudibranch as well as many varieties of frogfish from orange, black to grey. Wonderpus move from one crevice to the next and tiny seahorse cling to the remnants of trees lying on the sandy seafloor. Leaf fish are also known residents, in a wide variety of colours, while the black ornate ghost pipefish’s tiny body avoids detection from even the most eagle-eyed of divers.
After you’ve fulfilled your muck diving dreams, switch it up by diving the SS Duke of Sparta. The huge cargo ships sunk in 1958 and allows adventurous divers to enter the wreck into cargo compartments via fun swim-throughs. If you want to dive deep, the bow of the boat sits at over 40-metres where hard and soft corals now thrive. At Pintu Kota, which translates to ‘Gate of the City’, you can dive a series of underwater arches. With excellent visibility, divers can immerse themselves in the incredible range of reef fish in Ambon’s highly biodiverse waters.