LEMBEH STRAIT: WORLD’S BEST CRITTERS DIVING and much more!
Its reputation as the best place for muck/critters diving in the world may give a false impression because Lembeh has much more to offer including beautiful coral gardens, walls and shipwrecks. You can dive Lembeh Strait all year round. Water temperature is around 27-29 Celsius with coldest months around July – August when it can drop down to 26 Celsius. A 3 mm full suit is good enough but we would suggest 5 mm full suit especially if you are a photographer or are sensitive to cold.
CRITTERS DIVE SITES IN LEMBEH
A typical dive site of Lembeh Strait is often sandy bottom (rich black volcanic sand or white sand) with small patches of rubbles, sponges and reef; and there is almost no current. Underwater world is full of rare and extraordinary marine organisms that will surprise you as you may have not seen them in other places.
Lembeh Strait is a real heaven for underwater macro photographers. When you see a picture of a pygmy seahorse, a hairy frogfish, a delicate Flamboyant cuttlefish, a ghost pipefish or a mimic octopus, it’s likely that the picture was taken at only one of Lembeh’s fifty dive sites. Our policy of 2 divers per guide (or 1 diver per guide) will surely benefit both photographers and non-photographers. Even as shallow as 2-3 meters our well trained dive guides will show you various interesting critters but mostly you will dive at depth 14-22 meters. Maximum depth is often around 22-26 meters but as you will probably do long dives (we do not have dive time limit) using Nitrox is a good choice, especially if you take photos.
Diving at night you will see different critters and different behaviours like hunting or mating. They are often the most spectacular dives here, so don’t miss night dives in Lembeh Strait!
Critters dive sites in Lembeh: Teluk Kembahu, Pantai Parigi, Jahir, Rojos, Air Bajo, Air Prang, Batu Lubang, Police Pier, Hairball and many more including our housereef especially for Mandarinfish (mating at dusk time).
CORAL REEF DIVE SITES IN LEMBEH
Yes, Lembeh also has beautiful coral reef with crystal clear water, big gorgonians (sea fans), walls, sponges and many reef fish (occasionally large fish such as whitetip/black tip Shark, Napoleon, Tuna, schooling Baracuda, schooling jacks and also turtles and eagle rays).
Coral dive sites in Lembeh Strait: California Dreaming, Angel’s Window (pinnacle with a small cave of swim-through), Pulau Makawidey, Nudi Retreat, Magic Rock, Batu Merah, Batu Kapal (at North tip of Lembeh island, rarely dive here due to very strong currents) and a few others.
The special location for coral dive sites in Lembeh is also the east side (ocean side) of Lembeh island which is just 10 minutes away from Divers Lodge Lembeh. A large area remains unexplored and there are almost no other divers from other resorts diving here because of its secluded location and long distance. You can spend a whole day diving with an interval for a picnic on the beautiful white beach of Pulau Dua (a small island with two dive sites) and Jiko (on Lembeh side). However these dive sites are only accessible from October till April. From May till September there might be strong south wind that may make it impossible for us to dive the east side (The Strait remains unaffected by any wind direction). For even more pristine coral reef check out our Weda Reef & Rainforest Resort in Halmahera. We offer very attractive combo package Lembeh + Weda.
WRECK DIVING IN LEMBEH
Lembeh Strait offers you the opportunity to dive interesting shipwrecks, overgrown with beautiful corals and resting at comfortable depths of 14 to 30 meters.
The Mawali wreck is the most commonly dived wreck in the Strait. This Japanese freighter from WWII is lying on its portside and has a length of 90 meters. Descending and ascending is through the mooring line and you will find the wreck body starting at around 14 meters depth down to 30 meters. The wreck is still complete with propeller, beams, bridge and engines. The melted glasses we found in the kitchen shows that the ship burned before she sunk. This may explain the huge hard corals that are growing on the wreck. The cargo holds are safe to visit, but the machine room is unstable and should be avoided.
The topside of the wreck acts as a very nice artificial reef overgrown with beautiful corals, many nudibranchs, critters, schooling baracudas and reef fish so it is still very attractive even for divers who are not particularly interested in wrecks, or do not want to get inside the wreck.
Divers need to be careful when ascending as large ships or small boats may pass very close to the wreck. There might current so for your comfort it is better to wear hand gloves at least on one hand to hold on to the line while descending and ascending.
MANDARINFISH ON OUR HOUSEREEF and many more
Dives on our 4 hectares big housereef are getting better and better! Since 2007 fishing is strictly forbidden and apart from the famous Mandarinfish more and more species make it their home such as Blue Ringed Octopus, Wonderpus, Hairy Squat Lobster, Tiger Shrimp, Hairy Octopus, Ghost Pipefish and many more! Dive depth 2-30 m.
Unguided housereef dive from our beach (7.00 am – 17.00 pm): Eur 15,-/person minimum 2 person (incl. tanks & weights). Guided house reef dives by boat (any time of the day): Eur 25,-/person).