Diving in Bali - Menjangan
Menjangan is an Island part of Bali Barat National Park located in Bali’s Northwestern area. The island is quite small – roughly 3km long and 0.7km wide – and sheltered from the strong currents that run through the main strait that separates Bali from its biggest neighbor Java. The word Menjangan actually means “deer” in classical Javanese and the increasingly rare wild Java deer is supposedly spotted on the island from time to time. Apart from a small community of Hindu monks, its protected deer and some rabbits and iguanas, the island is uninhabited.
On a diving point of view Menjangan offers a huge diversity in fish and coral combined with an amazing visibility. Most of the dives are wall dives with a great opportunity to dive deep from 20 to 40+ meters. The walls are magnificent with great gorgonian sea fans, sponges and small caverns to explore with some awesome macro options.
As located so close to the straits between Bali & Java, deep water pelagic is a regular occurrence. The rainy season is the best time to have a chance to see rays and baby (±7 meters) whale sharks, but these like everything, cannot be guaranteed.
Diving in Menjangan is also very rewarding for beginners. Especially due to the fact that the current is very light and the visibility can be outstanding (50m +). Moreover, you can dive easily on the reef flats around 10 meters deep. From the shore, the boat trip over to Menjangan Island takes between 30 to 40 minutes.
Note however that from Sanur, it will take between 3 and 4 h to reach the area. Thus, Nico Dives Cool recommends including this destination in the Dive Safari North.
POS I Dive site
POS I refers to the ranger station at the southwest tip of the island.
It is a relaxing easy dive site and without any current most of the time.
The site is a sandy slope which has a good variety of hard & soft corals and goes down to about 30 meter.
The shallow water under the jetty is well worth checking out as it is host to a variety of critters including ornate ghost pipefish.
With its clear waters and pleasant reef slope, POS I is also a good snorkeling spot and adequate for beginners.
The eel garden is a a shallow area notable for its beautiful white sand planted with hundreds of White garden eels living here along with pygmy seahorses on the gorgonian and cleaner shrimps.
The Eel Garden is perfect for a deco stop. Typically, you will be dropped in on the northwestern tip of the island. Then you will be drifting smoothly westwards. You will explore the steep wall (12 – 60 m) which is rich in growth and offers much to see.
The most western point where the wall turns to the southwest is often declared as the best part of Menjangan Island. Reaching the southeast, it will be time to make your way up into the shallows. The dazzling white sand will tell you that you are in the large colony of garden eels that covers the slope from 20m to where it flattens out at 14m.
The coral garden between 5 and 12 meter depth makes it a good snorkeling site.
One of the best dive in Menjangan.
Cave point is situated in the middle of the South coast of the Island.
This is a very scenic wall, going in and out, with steep-sided gullies and small caves. The wall runs deep on this side of the island, Manta and Whale Shark have been seen here in the rainy season. Big Barracudas hang out; surgeons, snapper, grouper all are hiding in the many crevasses and overhangs.
With the sun behind, the wall takes on a surreal property with cathedral-like caves.
POS II Dive Site
This is a drift dive, where the usual gentle current will take you drifting along the wall eastwards. The dives start at 12 meters where the white sand slope meets the top of the wall going down to 40 meters.
The coral-covered wall has plenty of small caves to explore and is full of cracks and overhangs which is perfect for underwater photography. The variety of macro life is fantastic. Electric scallops have been spotted and you can find a huge variety of nudibranchs.
As you travel further down you may have the chance to see reef turtles, manta rays, sharks and occasional Mola-Molas.
Between 20 and 25 meters there is a profusion of gorgonian fans, sponges & soft corals. Close to the safety stop level there are numerous Titan Triggerfish (watch out for their nests… they can be very aggressive), fusiliers, trevally etc
Because of the mild conditions, this dive site is convenient for all levels.
BAT Cave / Temple Point
Bat Cave is near the entrance of a few shallow caves filled with hundreds of resting bats, Temple Point starts at the feet of a huge Ganesh statue on top of the cliff.
Usually, thanks to the gentle current, those 2 dive sites are visited at once.
The dive is drifting along a nice and rich wall full of life.
The reef top is at 3 meter depth.
At 14 meters, there is a beautiful cave with sandy bottom & light coming from above. Its walls are full of small critters like electric clams.
Coral Garden / PETI
Coral Garden dive site is located on the North side of Menjangan Island. It is a beautiful slope starting at 5-10 m with an amazing diversity of hard & soft coral, gorgonian fans and sponges habited by a rich and healthy reef life.
There are many cleaning stations with all their activities around!
Schools of fusiliers are a regular presence in the area and you will also see numerous trevally & snappers.
It is an easy & relaxed dive, perfect for beginners and also convenient for snorkeling!
Another popular dive is the Anker Wreck, a 19th century wood ship carrying bottled cargo and probably sunk during the World War II. But nobody really knows … The dark wooden wreck lies on a sandy bottom at a depth of 35 meters and below. The “Anker” name appears to come from the large rusty anchor that is in 6m of water at the start of the reef wall.
We will follow the chain down to 33 meters deep and see the flatten pieces of the wreck appearing. There are glass and ceramic bottles in cooper receptacles. One says that it might have contained palm wine or “arak”.
This dive site is actually not famous for the wreck itself but more for the impressive diversity the wall offers us. On the wreck, there is a nice array of marine life with huge schools of yellow strip snappers and whitetip reef sharks. There is also a great chance to see a green turtle.
For the safety stop, the wall to the west, at 5-10m, is rich with many overhangs, cracks and caves.
Although the current is not an issue, this is a deep dive, so the minimum level for this dive is advanced open water.
- Pick-up and Drop off at your hotel in Sanur or South Bali (Kuta, Legian, Seminyak, Nusa Dua) or close to the dive destination.
- Transport by car and by traditional boat (Jukung)
- High-Quality Diving equipment (for free if needed) – Apeks AT20
- Beach towel
- 2 or 3 dives guided by an experienced diving instructor or dive master
- Drinks and snacks between the dives
- Lunch in a nice restaurant on the beach or on the boat
- Safety kit and oxygen
- All diving taxes and fees
- All transport in air-conditioned car included
- Free pick up for area around Sanur, Kuta, Seminyak, Benoa, Nusa Dua & Jimbaran. For other areas, an additional fee may be charged.
- Underwater pictures and video services available on request: $40/Day
- Rental Diving Computer $10/Day
- 15 Litter tank: 5$ extra per tank
- Nitrox $5 extra per tank