Photo: No need to even get wet!

Snorkelling and Diving Nusa Penida

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Nusa Penida is positioned within The Coral Triangle, host to an astounding abundance of marine life and offers impressive diving and snorkelling at around 20 official sites.

Among the underwater stars, manta rays and unusual looking mola mola (oceanic sunfish), turtles and sharks are the big drawcards, but a ton of other marine life and beautiful coral gardens are also worth investigating. Huge volumes of water flow through here from the Pacific to the Indian Ocean, know as the Indonesian Throughflow bringing plankton and larvae in the waters, a feeding ground for the tremendously diverse species (and sometimes also sadly bringing piles of rubbish, but just as quickly washing it away again). Volumes of up to one million cubic metres of water per second have been measured, so due to these strong currents many of the sites are only suitable for experienced divers, but enough sheltered areas will keep both novice divers and snorkelers happy. Water temperatures can be cool here too for tropical waters ranging between 18º–28ºC.

A fun outing with the kids. Photo taken in or around Snorkelling and Diving Nusa Penida, Nusa Penida, Indonesia by Stuart McDonald.

A fun outing with the kids. Photo: Stuart McDonald

Several spots around the island are suitable to snorkel directly from the beach, and if you haven’t bought your own equipment, it can be hired at numerous places, although prices seem to be higher from beachside warungs. For snorkelling, the most popular spots are Crystal Bay and Gamat Bay, two bays that face towards Nusa Ceningan. The former offers crystal clear water and beautiful coral plus the opportunity to see mola mola between the months of July and September and the latter boasts and impressive wall at the edge of the bay and tends to have less current than Crystal Bay though it can get a bit cold in the water here. Both these sites are favoured for boat trips too, so keep your wits about you and make sure you are visible in the water if you see a boat bearing down at you. People have been hit by boats and died around this ... please log in to read the rest of this story.

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Popular attractions in Nusa Penida

A selection of some of our favourite sights and activities around Nusa Penida.

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A selection of some of our favourite places to stay in Nusa Penida.

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Where to next?

Where are you planning on heading to after Nusa Penida? Here are some spots commonly visited from here, or click here to see a full destination list for Indonesia.

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