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Emperor Raja LautIndonesia
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- 9.1 Superb
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Liveaboard Diving in Indonesia
Liveaboard SCUBA diving in Indonesia boasts the greatest variety of marine life found throughout the world.
Indonesia is an undisputed liveaboard diving and SCUBA diving mecca. As the world's largest archipelago, Indonesia holds four times more ocean than land and stretches from Indian Ocean paradises to the Pacific's bursting biodiversity hotspots. This wealth of water makes liveaboard diving in Indonesia the best way to plunge into a kingdom of unparalleled sights and experiences. With 34,000 miles of coastline, 11,000 uninhabited islands, more than 500 species of coral and over 2,000 species of fish, this really is what makes scuba diving in Indonesia such a diver's paradise.
Liveaboard dive trips in Indonesia can speed you off to Komodo National Park for sharks, mantas, dolphins and tiny macro-critters, or to Raja Ampat's pristine coral gardens and record numbers of crazy coral reef species. Explore the gin-clear waters of the Banda Sea and its undersea mountains, or feast your eyes on Alor's rugged volcanic terrain while enjoying unspoiled diving below the surface. Pioneers may choose Indonesia's untouched 'Forgotten Islands,' accessible only by liveaboard. And don't forget Lombok Strait for amazing drift diving along the walls of dramatic ridges and canyons.
Liveaboard Diving in Indonesia
Komodo National Park, a celebrated UNESCO World Heritage Site, sits at the centre of the Indonesian archipelago. Its dazzling collection of offerings ranges from dugongs to seamounts, to the legendary Komodo Dragon. Attractions of Komodo diving include wildlife large and small, nourished by deep upwellings and nutrient-rich waters. Komodo dive sites enjoy an abundance of mantas, sharks, whales, turtles, and hundreds of fish and coral species. Komodo offers everything from unique macro critters to larger marine life such as Hammerhead or Whitetip reef sharks and dolphins.
The length of most Komodo dive safaris is 8 to 12 days. Diving in Komodo can be done year-round, but the most popular months for liveaboard boat trips coincide with the Southeast Monsoon, from May to October. At this time, the water in the north of the park is warm (up to 30 C), and visibility is at its best. Budgets for Komodo liveaboard trips range from 200 to 500 euros per. day; though especially luxurious boats can run over 900 euros per. day.
Komodo liveaboards depart from Bima Bay (Sumbawa), Labuan Bajo (Flores), or Maumere (Flores), all about one hour's flight from Bali or Jakarta. However, trips that include Lombok dive sites begin in the port of Benoa on Bali. Dedicated Komodo liveaboard trips often visit dive sites around Sangeang Volcano and Sumbawa island. On dive safaris departing from Bali, many Indonesian liveaboard trips additionally include Moyo, Satonda, Gili Banta, and Gili Lawa Laut dive sites.
Escape to some of the worlds most untouched scuba diving on a Raja Ampat liveaboard, where you will experience arguably the most pristine and diverse scuba diving in the world. The remote archipelago of Raja Ampat (also known as The Four Kings) in West Papua is considered the pinnacle of pristine biodiversity hotspots and the crown jewel of the Coral Triangle's many world-class dive areas. Jungle-clad islands brimming with tropical life complete the view above water.
Diving Indonesian liveaboards is truly an unforgettable experience that offers challenging dives for intermediate and experts and also easy diving for beginners. Many of the divers who visit Raja Ampat are well-seasoned, serious marine life enthusiasts treating themselves to a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity. At dive sites like Kri Island, Manta Ridge, and The Passage, you'll see a whopping 75 percent of the world's coral species, mantas and sharks, and hundreds of unique critters, creatures, and ecosystems that give Raja its claim to fame as the 'global epicentre' of tropical marine biodiversity.
The length of most Raja Ampat itineraries is 7 to 12 nights. Diving in Raja Ampat can be done year-round, but most Raja Ampat liveaboards run their trips between October and April when the sea and skies are calmest. The water temperature ranges from 27-30 C. The budgets for a Raja Ampat liveaboard ranges from roughly 200 to 500 euros per. day, though especially luxurious boats can run over 900 euros per. day. Raja Ampat liveaboards often depart from Sorong, reachable by domestic flights from Jakarta, Manado, Makassar, or Ambon. Liveaboards departing and landing in Sorong often spend their time between the well-endowed 1500 islands of Raja Ampat. Other boats offer adventurous tours that include the Banda Sea, whale sharks in Cenderawasih Bay, the Halmahera Sea, and more.
More Liveaboard Trips in Indonesia
- Be a pioneer and travel back in time to the Forgotten Islands, the most pristine, unexplored dive area in Indonesia and only accessible by Liveaboard boat.
- Enjoy the unspoiled Banda Sea alongside Dogtooth Tuna and the Ambon Scorpionfish.
- Beat the crowds in Alor, and experience top-quality, crystal-clear diving all to yourself.
- Grab your camera for Lembeh Strait's unparalleled collection of wild and wacky critters.
- Take the plunge in far-flung Wakatobi's exclusive, vibrantly healthy reefs and tropical paradise islands.
Tips for Travellers
The best time to dive in Indonesia is between May and September; however, Indonesia dive safari season really is year around. Monsoon season usually hits in December and lasts through June. If you are looking to see sunfish, you should go between July and October. Water temperatures in Indonesia range between 20 and 28 degrees Celsius (71 and 85 degrees Fahrenheit) depending on what time of year and location. Visibility ranges between 6 to 50 meters (20 to 160 feet) or better with depths going up to 40 meters (140 feet). Currents are generally mild but can be strong in some areas.
Departure Ports and How To Get There
Bali is one of the main departure locations for liveaboard diving Komodo via Lombok. Bali's main liveaboard departure port is Benoa, in the south of the island. SCUBA diving off Bali can include a visit to Crystal Bay for a chance of Mola Mola (Sunfish) encounters, or a dive at the famously colourful Liberty Shipwreck, full of marine life in a shallow location. Bali dive sites hold a variety of underwater landscapes and special species; depending on where you choose, you can enjoy high-quality muck diving, large pelagics, or quiet, coral-filled bays. Expert divers will be challenged and excited by wild currents around Nusa Lembongan, and entry-level divers can find ample offerings of beautiful locations suitable for beginners and coursework.
International flights to Bali depart regularly from around the world, often with a transfer in a nearby Southeast Asian country like Kuala Lumpur or Singapore. If you're in Southeast Asia already, direct flights are available. Standard itineraries for liveaboards departing Bali are usually Komodo-bound. However, they stop at premier Lombok dive sites along the way, such as Moyo, Satonda, Gili Banta, and Gili Lawa Laut. Extended itineraries may additionally venture farther east from Komodo to Flores and Alor for serene, world-class diving without the crowds.
The port of Sorong, a city in the province of West Papua, is a major departure location for liveaboards in Indonesia travelling to Raja Ampat and Ambon. From Sorong, dive sites in Raja Ampat and nearby are easily accessible. Land tours for waterfalls and bird-watching add to the offerings, as well as Cassowary Cape, with its white-sand beach and cassowary trees. Snorkelers and divers alike can enjoy the area.
Domestic flights to Sorong depart from Jakarta, Manado, Makassar, and Ambon. Standard liveaboard itineraries departing Sorong are focused on the Raja Ampat area. Extended liveaboard boats departing or disembarking in Sorong offer a great variety of dive tours, some to/from Ambon and the Banda Sea, some to Cenderawasih Bay Bay for whale sharks, and some traversing the Halmahera Sea.
Indonesia Diving Reviews
- 9.1 Superb
- 298 Verified Reviews
My overall experience is very good. I think Indonesia is a great destination for diving. A scale of its own.
Diving Indonesia in December on the Teman
Fantastic, hands down the best diving of my life so far. And I have done Maldives, Red Sea, Palau, Far North Australia and so on.
Diving Indonesia in December on the Mermaid I
The density and diversity of life; coral, fish, and plants is incredible. There was not a single dive that couldn't find some interesting bit of life to observe. The currents were stronger than any previous experience, but the dive masters and crew were amazing at getting me up to speed. Fantastic experience and very fun experience.
Diving Indonesia in December on the Ratu Laut
Very good. We were also in Komodo where the visibility was much better.
Diving Indonesia in November on the Ratu Laut
This was some of the best diving we have done. There are a lot of currents - some of the drift dives we did were very fast. The guiding we had was excellent and thanks to this I think we got the best out of each dive site. We certainly saw a lot of life - big and small.
Diving Indonesia in November on the Lalunia
I love diving in Indonesia! However, it is very humbling - there is so much diversity to recognize and remember, and so much is macro stuff that takes a very keen eye to see. I know that it will take many visits before I will be able to begin to understand what is there.
Diving Indonesia in November on the Kira Kira
Diving in Indonesia is nothing short of amazing. All of the 14 dives completed with Tanaka offered fantastic underwater scenery!
Diving Indonesia in November on the Tanaka
Excellent opportunity to dive and enjoy the blanket rays, which seem to dance to the divers
Diving Indonesia in October on the Empress II
Komodo and Raja Ampat are the best dives I’ve seen in the world so far
Diving Indonesia in October on the Ratu Laut
Great, it was my first time in Indonesia and I only dived in Raja Ampat.
Diving Indonesia in August on the Ratu Laut
Some of the best diving with a diverse and colorful variety of sea life.
Diving Indonesia in October on the Solitude Adventurer
Indonesia is the best place i have dived and a hard one to beat!
Diving Indonesia in October on the Lalunia
This was our third diving holiday in Indonesia and we love it for the professionalism of the dive schools, instructors and dive masters. We were recently in the Seychelles over the summer and were shocked at how different it was. Often no use of SMBs, no real dive briefing and an insistence on surfacing at 45min regardless of air supply. Indonesia is more professional and we feel safer diving here.
Diving Indonesia in September on the Moana
Nice current dives with macro and as well big life. Mantas, reef sharks, octoous and turtles. We saw ghost pipefish, juvenile frogfish, juvenile lobater, porcelain crab and electric clams in Menjangan.
Diving Indonesia in September on the Tanaka
wonderful! especially when we saw ten mantas together, it was just great!
Diving Indonesia in August on the La Galigo
Loved it..so beautiful and loads of cool stuff to see! This was why we started diving in the first place. Amazing! Definitely the most challenging diving we had done (only had eight dives before the trip!) so it was a real learning curve diving with currents etc. But it was brilliant! So glad we did it!
Diving Indonesia in July on the Empress II
I thought I'd had some amazing dives in the past, but this trip hit it out of the park. Visibility is amazing, the water is warm, the underwater world and life seems to be untouched so far by human destruction - it was life-altering. I sincerely hope it stays that way!
Diving Indonesia in July on the Cajoma IV
The visibility ranged from good to excellent, depending on the amount of plankton present. Every site had plenty of life and the hard and soft corals were brilliant. Currents could be very strong and sometimes unpredictable, so their request that divers have advanced cert. and at least 50 dives is appropriate. I truly enjoyed diving there and highly recommend it.
Diving Indonesia in July on the Emperor Raja Laut
We had some amazing dives, beautiful reefs, exhilarating drift dives.
Diving Indonesia in July on the La Galigo
So-so. I did not like diving in Bali. Too many divers, too commercial, destroyed dive sites.
Diving Indonesia in July on the Jaya
Never experienced any negative things, high professional standard
Diving Indonesia in July on the Tarata
I've really enjoyed diving in Indonesia. I spent quite a bit of time doing my DMT in Lembongan, which has incredible reefs and lots of opportunities to see reef mantas - the only problem is there can be quite a bit of trash in the waters, depending on the currents and weather. Tulamben was also pretty amazing -- especially the night and sunrise wreck dives with all the bump head parrot fish.
Diving Indonesia in April on the Jaya
It was arguably the coolest adventure I have been on. Getting to be in the aquatic environment and see sharks, mantas, turtles, cuddle fish, and all the macro life was incredible. This trip has really inspired me to continue to seek new travel and dive trips.
Diving Indonesia in June on the La Galigo
Overall, diving in Indonesia is wonderful! We are already planning our next trip to explore more of what Indonesia has to offer!
Diving Indonesia in June on the Empress II
Very rich and colorful underwater world with vibrant corals and water animals sightings.
Diving Indonesia in June on the Moana
Indonesia has the most diverse and exciting diving in the world. All level of divers can find exciting dive sites.
Diving Indonesia in January on the Pearl of Papua
I loved it and would definitely go back. Very little pollution and the animals and reefs look healthy.
Diving Indonesia in May on the Lady Denok
Part of my favourite diving spots in the world. Amongst the best coral gardens for sure.
Diving Indonesia in June on the La Galigo
This is our third trip to Indonesia and that probably says it all, given the amount of time it takes to get there from the east coast of the United States.
Diving Indonesia in May on the Samambaia
Overall I would definitely recommend to anyone. There was a good mix of no current to high current diving but we felt safe and had an amazing time on every dive.
Diving Indonesia in May on the Lady Denok
I only dove in Raja Ampat on this trip. It was beautiful, and I hope to visit again.
Diving Indonesia in April on the Manta Mae
I absolutely love diving in Indonesia. It’s one of my favorite places to dive after having gone to some of the top spots in the world from French Polynesia to Thailand.
Diving Indonesia in May on the Moana
This experience was a little different than our last trip in 2012. We were happy to return to 5 of the same dive sites that were at the top of our list last time, which did not disappoint in the least. Citrus Ridge, Melissa's Garden, Anita's Garden, Mayhem & Blue Magic are at the top of the list for great dives here in Raja Ampat. Indonesia diving has such variety, living coral of all types and good diving conditions for all levels of divers. Everything is still so alive in Indonesia!
Diving Indonesia in April on the Sea Safari 8
Komodo diving has both of the worlds with macro diving with low visibility on the south and extremely clear visibility on north komodo with some big stuff
Diving Indonesia in April on the Cheng Ho
Excellent from the liveaboard POV. Traveling to Raja Ampat takes several days and the internal flights are not reliable, so you need to build in time for cancellations and rescheduling (happened both coming and going).
Diving Indonesia in April on the Emperor Raja Laut
Excellent. Highly recommend as a top diving location on par with Vanuatu or the Great Barrier Reef.
Diving Indonesia in April on the Moana
Overall, Indonesia is an amazing place to dive. Traveling to Raja Ampat is time consuming but worth it. the secluded nature makes sure than it all the better as dive sites are not crowded at all. I'd recommend going to Raja Ampat, and going with Mari, to all my friends.
Diving Indonesia in March on the Mari
Komodo is the best diving I have experienced so far - incredible!
Diving Indonesia in March on the Tanaka
Overall it was a most enjoyable experience and we look forward to coming back! The only challenge is it takes 3 days to get to the morning of the boat departure from the U.S.
Diving Indonesia in March on the La Galigo
Very good. Excellent small stuff, plenty of fishes and corals
Diving Indonesia in March on the Lady Denok
Good - after this trip we were in Manado diving at Bunaken - very nice, with lots of turtles
Diving Indonesia in February on the Amira
Exceeded expectations, which were quite high. I dove without a wetsuit the whole week and saw creatures that I thought were only found by National Geographic photographers!!
Diving Indonesia in March on the Samambaia
We saw more marine life in one dive than we did on our last vacation to another Pacific region.
Diving Indonesia in March on the Ambai
Overall the diving was excellent. Lots of fish, both large and very small. The coral was extremely healthy.
Diving Indonesia in February on the Mari
my third trip to Indonesia (I also visited Comodo ,Bunaken and Lembeh) I consider Indonesia as the best tropical diving ever. Also one of the best values for your money.
Diving Indonesia in March on the Kira Kira
Fantastic! Awesome coral and life everywhere, some of my best diving ever. After Indonesia and Fiji, I might be becoming not just a blue water snob but a South Pacific snob too. :-p One thing I did not like was the dive masters interfered with the life too much.
Diving Indonesia in February on the Indo Aggressor
Indonesia diving is absolutely out of this world. Pearl of Papus was my 3rd liveaboards in Raja Ampat in the space of 6 years. I have also gone on liveaboards at the Komodo islands 2X during that period as well! It is unbeatable! (I would like to check out diving in Sulawesi, Wakatobi, Ambon and perhaps Cendrawasih in the future!)
Diving Indonesia in January on the Pearl of Papua
When it comes to diving destination, I feel that if Indonesia is either the top or if not, it is near the top! There are 17,000 islands, surrounding by the Western Pacific and Indian Ocean, with its rich marine life! It’s a diver’s dream coming true. Honestly I have not yet come across anyone who did not enjoy their times diving in Indonesia! I myself have dove in Raja Ampat 6 years ago and I was so impressed with what I saw that I’ve come back for more! 6 years later, it was just as good. I am happy! One more thing---Indonesians are the nicest people and our dive masters and the crew were all hard working and very kind and friendly to us! I will be back (again and again, that‘s for sure!)!
Diving Indonesia in January on the Epica
Very nice, but would have appreciated a bit more muck diving.
Diving Indonesia in February on the Jaya
Very helpful crews and everything were good! Recommended to all!
Diving Indonesia in February on the Sea Safari VI
I love it :) I have previously been to Tulamben, diving on the USAT Liberty and on Nusa Pendida, Nusa Lembongan, in Candidasa and in Padang Bai. Diving these places have been great experiences but the Komodo National Park easily beats them all :) The USAT Liberty wreck dive is great, and so is Manta point on Pendida - been there twice. Komodo is better.
Diving Indonesia in January on the Pratiwi
Loved the Indonesian experience and really enjoyed the level of service they provided.
Diving Indonesia in January on the Samambaia
Travel to an Indonesian dive trip and the diving itself is difficult and may not be for everyone. But the sea life diversity is worth the effort.
Diving Indonesia in December on the Amira
We have dived in Indonesia before and generally the corals are the best we have ever seen. The diving with mantas was very special.
Diving Indonesia in January on the Raja Ampat Aggressor
Indonesia has many nice place for diving. Most site with current so the corals are still in good condition. You can expect to see most kind of sea creatures from Indonesia from big mammals to nudies.
Diving Indonesia in January on the Euphoria