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Indonesia :: Bali : Menjangan Island

Menjangan became Bali's first internationally known dive spot in 1978. The island in the Barat National Park is surrounded by coral reefs that drop down as deep as 60 meters in places. This spot is most renowned for is wall diving where huge gorgonians can be found clinging to the coral crevices. Pygmy seahorses and morays are often spotted in the cracks and under overhangs along the walls here. Other marine inhabitants include batfish, titan triggerfish and fuseliers. Visibility is usually good here often beyond 20 meters.

Menjangan used to be famed for flat reefs however since the popularity of island has increased more anchoring vessels in the area have caused damage. This coupled with a crown of thorns starfish outbreak in 1997 then El Nino in 1998 which lead to coral bleaching. The reefs today are recovering well and the attractions are now a lot deeper. The island is protected from the cold currents coming in from the open sea so sightings of bigger fish here are rare.

Garden Eel point is one of the more popular dive sites where coral growth is healthiest. Longnose hawkfish can be found on the gorginians here and whitetip sharks are often seen on the sandy bottom at around 35 meters. The garden eel colony is on a slope in roughly 20 meters of water.

Pos II (park service guard post), off Menjangan's most southeasterly point, is usually done as a drift dive in the gentle current along the wall. An explosion of colour from the wall of soft coral can be seen here and thermoclines are present where an upwelling of cold waters from the deep are met. This often brings in bigger visitors such as mantas and sharks. Just west of Pos II are a couple of caves at around 18 meters that are worth a look.

The Anker Wreck
This wreck is actually named for the anchor that still lies about 6-8 meters from the surface. Follow the anchor chain down the steep slope to the flattened remains of the shipwreck at 35 - 50 meters, which lie across about 60 meters of sand. The Anker isa 25 metre long 19th century wooden ship, that carried ceramics and copper, parts of which can still be seen across the site.

Depths: 10 - 50m

Viz: 15 - 40m

Currents: Variable

Getting there : 30 minutes from Labuhan Lalang Jetty.

Best months: Apr to Oct