Thursday, June 20, 2013

Lembeh, Indonesia

World of critters, that's what this place is, black volcanic sand cover the bottom of the sea, rubbish covers the surface (my first impression) the contrast of black against any colorful subjects makes the creatures stand out so easily. But for some they are perfectly camouflage with the black sand.
Lembeh is easily accessible, one direct flight from Singapore to Manado and a 1.5 hour car ride away, you are there in a beautiful resort next to a world top dive site. I have been here 4 times, twice with a day trip from Manado but to gain full accessibility of the dive sites here, it is best to stay in Lembeh. The dive sites are 5 to 10 minutes away by speedboat.

The resort is tucked in a coconut plantation with the view of Lembeh strait. I loves their rooms. The duplex units have a large spacious layout, with an Air Conditioned bedroom and a separate Fan-Cooled Living Room. The large bathroom is attached to the bedroom and has a big stone walk-in shower. There is a large veranda with the beautiful views of the Bay and the Strait and beyond. The room can easily fit 6-8 person. :-)

Dive boats
Yellow Frogfish
Muck diving is the main focus here, it's the best place to discover weird creatures, nudibranch, seahorse, devil fish, scorpion fish, octopus, frog fish, shrimps, crabs, eels, mandarin fish, stargazer and many more. The action didn't stop until you are low on air and climb onto the dive boat. It was hard for me who was using a film camera when I finished my 36 shots before the end of each dives and something nice will appear right after that. :-( It was hard to pick what I wanted to shoot as well. The local DMs were excellent, you just need to prepare a wish list and they will try their very best to fulfill it. I have got all what I wanted to see except for the blue ring octopus. :-) Nudi Falls, Nudi Retreat and Hairball are my favorites. The night dives here are extraordinary! One that you shouldn't miss! I promise you, it's a twilight zone out there. There are also some wall dives at the northern coast of Lembeh Island, the Angel Windows is a submerged pinnacle that has pretty good wall and a few wrecks in the strait.

During my trip to Lembeh Mar 2005, I shot about a dozen roll of films. Had the most amazing muck dives I ever had, I looked forward for my photos to be developed but to my excitement, I was slammed with zero photos as a result of a failed battery in the camera!! I held my tears back and told myself that I will be back again. In Nov, I return again for another round of shots.

Travel date :  23-27 Mar 2005 , 24-29 Nov 2005
Travel route : Singapore -F-> Manado
Accommodation : Kungkungan Bay Dive Resort (
Dive Center : Kungkungan Bay Dive Resort
Type of diving : Wreck, Muck, Wall
Water temperature : 26-28°C year round
Best time to dive : Diveable all year round

-F-> Flight -B-> Boat

Photos of the trip
Gelastocaris paronae shrimp
Periclimenes scriptus shrimp
Hairy Frogfish

Baby Frogfish & Nudi
Periclimenes psamathe shrimp
Pliopontonia furtiva shrimps
Lauriea siagiani
Pontohi Seahorse
Chelidonura electra
Philinopsis cyanea

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