Note: This itinerary may vary depending on weather conditions, flight timetables and other unforeseen circumstances.
Your journey begins when you board the stunning Tiaré in Bima, on the island of Sumbawa. After settling into your accommodation you’ll get ready for some world-class muck diving off the coast of Bima in the Bay. After checking the diving conditions you may dive Bethlehem or Tanjung Batu Putih, 2 other great muck diving sites. A night dive will also be chosen depending on the water conditions.
Waking up you’ll be treated to views of the island of Sangeang off the northeast coast of Sumbawa. This island is home to Gunung Api, one of Indonesia’s many active volcanoes. The volcanic activity here has created the perfect conditions for a number of excellent dive sites with healthy reefs of soft and hard corals as well as many types of anemones. You’ll take 4 dives around the island, including Bubble Reef with underwater vents emerging from the black sand, Critter Creek and Pohon Merah. This are great dives for finding creatures hiding in the black sand. Bontoh Reef on the west side of the island is an excellent final dive of the day with the fabulous sunset.
It’s another 4 dive day, this time off Gili Banta, an island between Sumbawa and Komodo. In the morning you’ll dive GPS point, Highway to Heaven, and Small World. GPS Point and Highway to Heaven are challenging dives as currents can be strong, but the payoff is the possibility of seeing sharks, schools of barracuda, dogtooth tuna and more larger predators. Small World is a more sheltered dive where you might find stargazers buried in the soft sand.
After lunch head under water again for a beautiful drift dive at Golden Passage followed by a night dive off Gili Lawa Laut or choose to take a short trek to the highest point on Gili Lawa Laut for a wonderful view over the Komodo-Flores channel.
On day 4 you will dive some challenging sites off Gili Lawa Laut. Crystal Rock (named for the rock jutting out from crystal blue water) and Castle Rock both boast a wide variety of very healthy corals and an impressive array of marine life. Couldron (sometimes called Shotgun) and Gili Lawa Laut Lighthouse are two of the other thrilling dives in this area and can be dived in the evening or at night. Here you might see crocodilefish, lion fish, sometimes eagle rays and reef sharks and even manta rays. Between dives you’ll have the chance to trek to the highest point of Gili Lawa Laut to see the gorgeous views over the Komodo-Flores channel if you didn’t do it the day before.
Today you’ll be diving off Komodo Island where currents can be quite strong. Dives must be timed in accordance with tides and weather conditions so there are a number of dive sites you may visit. Takat Makassar Reef, Batu Bolong and Tatawa Kecil are all stunning dives with soft and hard corals. You’ll have the chance to see white and black tip reef sharks, manta rays, turtles, giant trevally, snapper in various environments, from shallow reefs to canyons and caves. Dive at night at the mini wall at Pulau Sebayur where you should Look for leaffish, ghost pipefish and nudibranchs.
Get up early and dive at Sebayur Besar and then Batu Tengah. Batu Tengah is right in the middle of the Komodo National Park and slopes into a stunning coral garden. Divers often see turtles, cuttlefish, white tip reef sharks and large groups of Napoleon wrasse and snapper here.
In the afternoon, the outgoing group visit island of Rinca to meet Komodo dragons up close and personal, while the group staying for the longer cruise carry on to a night dive in Wainilu. This dive is situated off northern Rinca. In the shallows hard corals house juvenile harlequin sweetlips and batfish, while starry night octopus, mray eels and demon stingers live in the soft corals of the sandy slope.
Wake up to the beautiful sights of the straits between the islands of Komodo and Rinca. You will dive here at the stunning Manta Reef (Karang Makassar) and the spectacular Batu Bolong, where you will see an incredible amount of coral and tropical fish. Rest and have lunch on board before an afternoon dive at Three Sisters; 3 underwater ridges with massive steps, and towers of stone, caves and overhangs covered in soft corals. Expect to see nudibranchs , frogfish and larger marine life like reef sharks and bumphead parrotfish. Your third dive of the day will be a night dive in Padar. Water temperatures at these sites can drop to around 20°c, so be prepared for the possibility of chillier dives. You might also notice the water is greener here than other areas. However, this means there are far more nutrients in the water, which in turn means incredible biodiveristy!
On day 3 you will have 4 dives off Nusa Kode Island, where you’ll see some of the most incredible marine creatures in the archipelago. During the day you’ll dive at Canninbal Rock, which has often been listed as one of the top 10 dive sites in the world! With its sand slopes, rocky areas and a plateau covered in marine life, you can expect to see hard and soft corals, sponges, tube anemones, and a huge variety of nudibranchs. Yellow Wall at southern entrance to Horseshoe Bay is your next stop, where you will see the yellow and orange corals that give the site its name. This drift dive allows you to slowly take in all the ladybugs and nudibranchs covering the wall. Entering in to the bay Boulders is home to resting rays and sometimes even hiding nurse sharks. Head back to Tiaré for a rest before a shallow night dive in Torpedo Bay (sometimes called Torpedo Alley). This site is named after the torpedo rays that are found here. You can also expect seahorses, coconut octopus, squid and the odd bobbit worm burrowed into the volcanic black sand.
Day 4 has another 4 incredible dives in store for you: weather permitting of course. This morning you’ll be south of Komodo Island at Manta Alley and German Flag. Manta Alley is in Tora Langkoi Bay and is the most popular dive for spotting the majestic manta rays. There is also a possibility of spotting mantas at German Flag, as well as Malabar groupers, schools of potato cod, red snapper, surgeon fish. In the afternoon you will dive Tanjung Lehoksera or Batu Gajah depending on the weather conditions. At night discover the wreck of a 100-foot wooden Pinisi boat.
Day 10 & 11
A more restful day 10 includes 2 dives at Pulau Hantu and Pantai Merah (Pink Beach) off of Komodo Island. Pink Beach is famous for not only its beautiful pink sand, but its mini wall in the middle of the reef where the crevices make the perfect home for glassfish, nudibranchs, frogfish, crocodilefish and scorpionfish. In the sandier area opposite the wall juvenile harlequin sweetlips and mandarin fish live. After so many amazing dives it’s time to meet the magnificent Komodo dragons on their own turf. Tour the island before heading back to the boat and sailing overnight to Bima.
After breakfast on board it’s time to check out and leave the Tiaré behind. Departing from Bima.
IT’S ALL AROUND YOU