Diving in Bunaken, North Sulawesi, Indonesia

Imagine a thin strip of property made by intense volcanoes and now covered at a pristine tropical rainforest. You get a notion of the extraordinary beauty of North Sulawesi. A stone’s throw further north, you’ll come across a small number of small islands boasting some of the richest untouched coral reefs available in the 17.508 islands. Which makes up the Indonesia archipelago. It’s appropriate here, in which currents meet, producing rich upwelling of nutrients, which has given rise to a few of the very varied ecosystems on the planet.


The Bunaken Marine Park, the Bangka, Talisei, and Gangga islands all are all blessed with white sandy beaches, palm trees, and the most transparent seas you’re ever going to visit. Further afield, the Sangihe islands that form a natural stepping stone in the Southern Philippines are still mostly unexplored by sailors.

If this wasn’t enough, there’s another place that can’t be left from this logbook of some respectful scuba diver seeing Bunaken Marine Park – a stretch of ocean covering the west coast of Sulawesi plus also a tiny island a brief boat ride from the shore. At first glance, the place at the strait of Lembeh, using its muddy seashore, looks uninteresting; however, hiding in such waters is a monster as impressive as it’s odd.

On dry soil, there are a few superb day excursions. You can go to the Tangkoko National Park, which is home to the Tarsier (adorable primates that may rotate their mind around 180° and have bigger eyes than its head ). Also, consider going to Lake Tondano, or even cross rice paddies and traditional villages set against Sulawesi’s dramatic all-natural background. For the game enjoying, the Mahavu and Lokon volcanoes make superb treks.

Diving Sites of Northern Sulawesi

  1. Bangka

Located on the northern tip of Sulawesi, Bangka and the neighboring islands are exposed to the climate and open to strong currents from all possible directions. Large pelagic fish are frequent traffic, traveling with all the feeding and currents on the nutrients. The coral reefs across Bangka are rich in color. Dive sites off the shore offer steep pinnacles with walls coated in highly colored corals that provide protection from the strong currents to big shoals of fish such as snapper, fusilier fish, and the surgeonfish.

  1. Sangihe Archipelago

The Sangihe Archipelago is a series of 40 spectacular volcanoes 136 miles (220 km) in Sulawesi, forming a natural bridge connecting Indonesia and the Philippines. The beauty of this Sangihe Archipelago is its natural isolation and the truth that’s totally untouched and uncontaminated from the modern world. Here, in the depths of this sea spike, towering volcanoes, including the active Siau Volcano.

These forested islands touch 1,400 meters in height. The night time here put on a stunning show due to the stone and lava coming out of the volcanoes. From depths of 400 yards, the summit extends just under the surface. The surrounding region is desolate, with hundreds of bubbles bringing volcanic gases into the surface. Upon closer inspection of the region, you’re likely to locate small starfish, algae, tiny worms, and corals, indicating that a new coral reef is being created in Mahangetang. Dives from the Sangihe Islands are incredibly rich and diverse. The surrounding waters are seen frequently by large cetaceans like sperm whales, whale sharks, melon-headed whales, and many dolphin species.

  1. Bunaken Marine Park

Founded in 1991, the Bunaken Marine Park occupies 89.065 hectares (343 square kilometers) of the sea, 97 percent of which can be clear warm tropical waters. It is possible to see almost any form of Indonesian sea life to the reptiles in Bunaken, including white and black-tipped reef sharks, giant sea turtles, napoleon fish, and dugongs (manatee). You may even get yourself diving in a pod of dolphins or an occasional departure whale.

There are 22 official dive spots within the Bunaken Marine Park. Dives are usually wall and current/drift dives. Schools of barracuda and jackfish, green turtles, sea shark, sea lions, and napoleon wrasse will often join you throughout your dive. The waters of Bunaken will also be full of magnificent corals, sea fish of all colors, sizes, shapes, and enormous sea fans and sponges. Even the Bunaken Marine Park is superb both for macro and wide-angle photography.

Vacation is more than just the scenery. It’s about making long-lasting memories. Discover more adventures in Bunaken by visiting Wonderful Indonesia.

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