Dive sites in the Komodo National Park


The islands of Komodo - Padar - Rinca

Could be on the page of Sumbawa to Komodo already find some descriptions of dive sites in the Komodo National Park. This page is a little further in detail with an update of information concerning the sites that I visited in January 2008.

Komodo Nationaal Park met van links naar rechts de eilanden Komodo - Padar - Rinca

Komodo National Park with from left to right the islands of Komodo - Padar - Rinca



This island is just south of 'Gili Lawa Laut' area. We explored the north bay of Komodo which looked quite nice. Beautiful coral garden with large amounts of reef fish. In shallow or limited damage to the reef noticeable. We found there to our surprise also mandarin fish. The passage between Komodo and Gili Lawa Darat is a narrow passage and beautiful bays formed along both sides. The panorama is breathtaking. Underwater I, however, was totally surprised. The eastern bay is totally destroyed and one finds difficulty with a piece of upright coral. Fields sea urchins group on the coral rubble and in the shallow end I found a sand area with a very large colony kaakvissen.Hoewel the reef in poor condition wrong I found at the end of the coral strip a sandy area with there two kraboog gobies ( Signigobius biocellatus).

The first time I was able to observe in the wild them yourself.

By Batu Bolong

The islands of Komodo, Padar and Rinca are separated by vast sea channels that form the connection between the Indian Ocean and the Pacific Ocean. The tides provide a massive displacement that is clearly visible here. Tornadoes of swirling water, banked water bodies make the surface look like a boiling whole look.

In the midst of this great flow Batu Bolong. Is A dive for 'daredevils' and one that is certainly not suitable for novice divers. A small island just a few meters in girth sits in the flow and diving here must be carefully planned. The guidelines of the dive leader must be strictly adhered to.

It is important to dive the sheltered side of the rock and not to venture too far out so as not to be dragged into the flow. The site is wonderful.

Beautiful unspoiled coral in crystal clear water. When one looks at the corners it looks mantas in the flow just go backwards in an attempt to swim forward. Napoleon wrasse and several shark species feel in their element.

Kareng Macassar

When the Komodo National Park inland from north to south is seen in the west a large shallow water area with several small islands. Near these islands is one of the best manta diving spots in the world, Kareng Macassar. The flow can also be quite to extremely strong. This is the playing field of the mantas in strong currents where they gather their food. The shallow area here is quite large and the best way to be sure is to see the mantas by slowly go over the area with the dinghy. Once manta rays observed from the surface will be there to water. The ground is sparsely covered, due to the dominant flow and permit enables divers to find a place on the bottom to see the manta spectacle.


On the north side of Kareng Macassar hiding behind the islets is a very quiet bay with beautiful coral growth alternating with areas of heavy algae growth.

Here we discovered a paradise where slugs. Nembrotha's, Elisidae's, Chromodoris could be found numerous. Among the many beautiful species of algae Polyclad flatworms. Also many juvenile cuttlefish.

Fully protected for flow, this is a great dive site for those who want to see a lot of slugs and / or photographs. The reef slope starts at 3m depth and bodemt out at about 15m depth.

Duikstekken in de nabijheid van Komodo baai en het nationaal park office

Dive sites in the vicinity of Komodo bay and the national park office

Pantah Merah (Pink Beach)

Before the bay inland, near Komodo, where the office of the national park is located one passes one Pantah Merah. It is one of the most famous dive sites of Komodo: Pink Beach (pink beach). The short stretches of sand indeed have a pink appearance from which the name of the dive site. Currents can be quite strong here too. This dive is usually started on the northeast side and then southwestern drifting along with the current. At the start there is a sandy area with beautiful hard corals. After a while you will reach the highlight of this dive. A large rock formation brimming with life. Frogfish, beautiful nudibranchs, schools of snappers and sweetlips.

It's all there. If one lets himself drift with the current one comes back after some time on a sandy area. The dive usually ends there. I had to have the pleasure of exploring the further part in a very strong current dive. Again, beautiful hard corals in good condition with masses smaller rifvisjes.Een not so known part is the other side of 'Pink Beach' that is affected by some boats as a night dive. However, night diving is not as spectacular as the predominant soil planted with one type of soft coral. Is It is not easy to find anything.

During the day, this is also not a high dive but the place is well known for regular sighting of blue-ringed octopus. I was there himself, for the 2nd time ever, come across a copy. On a sea squirt there was one on lookout.

The next day I returned to the same rock and true .... the blue-ringed octopus was still around.

Blauw geringde octopus - Komodo Nationaal Park Foto: Danny Van Belle - Duikstek: Pantah Merah - 01/02/2008

Blue ringed octopus - Komodo National Park Photo: Danny Van Belle - Dive site: Pantah Merah - 01/02/2008


Not known as a dive site but discovered through their own exploration, this is one of the best muck dive sites in Komodo. During one dive I came ambon scorpionfish against it, several beautiful nudibranchs, a hunting 'broadclub' sepia, hunting egg shells fell on a crab and a meal of. In this part of the bay practically never dived before and so here we were exploring. There is a fairly shallow not as spectacular area on the north side of the bay. In the north-east (near the big rock as a large wall near the beach state) we were pleasantly surprised. This is a dive site for experienced divers, photographers and filmmakers looking for the extremely rare! An absolute must.


When visiting Komodo is everyone ashore to go and see the Komodo dragon.
When the boats anchored in Komodo Bay they see the pier where dinghies construction to bring people ashore. Left of the pier a few hundred meters are on the beach two large boulders together. This is the landmark for this dive site. Here, too, never dived before and we went self explore. The reef in the shallow end very badly damaged but once people go to the deeper part (5m +) one is surprised by beautiful large hard corals and numerous fish.
Different types of cardinalfish, butterfly fish and goat fish. But in different stages also juvenile batfish and angelfish development.
We also found hidden under a block coral coral Nursehound (Coral catshark).
The dive site is fully protected and flow is almost nonexistent. It is an easy and relaxing dive with many beautiful things.

Koraal kathaai - Komodo nationaal park Foto: Danny Van Belle - 12/02/2008

Coral Nursehound - Komodo National Park Photo: Danny Van Belle - 12/02/2008


We have left of the pier the whole beach strip explored and had one of the most disappointing diving. Much damage to the coral. Plus point is that noticeable is that the protection of the reef in place and entered the old rubble stabbing numerous small coral twigs appeared. A reef in full repair phase.


Padar is the smaller island in the group of three islands that form the Komodo National Park. It is located between Komodo and Rinca. It is a beautiful island with an impressive mountain relief. Were some very interesting dive sites can also be found nearby Padar.

Duikstekken rond Padar

Dive sites around Padar


A dive site exposed to swell and flow. Forming impressive rock formations there under and above water a spectacle of canyons and ravines. It is also quite deep and one can consider this as a medication. To escape flow one seeks protection in the deep-cut gorges that separate the rock formations. It is a place to see larger marine life such as sharks and manta rays. Interesting discoveries to do well in the lower animals. So I saw here for the first time the slug 'Rostanga halgerda. Because of difficult conditions this dive site by many 'liveaboard' rarely visited.


This is a small island located on the south side of the bay of Padar. The exploration dive that we made was rather disappointing and was characterized by poor visibility and little interesting marine life. It is a protected area that is exempt from currents and swell. Is


The beach area of ​​the bay is lined with a bright blue line, characteristic of a shallow area. Again we went to investigate. This section is mainly a sandy bottom with coral sparse vegetation. Quite unexpectedly swam a manta over. The visibility was not exceptional and limited underwater life earlier. In the very shallow part to the presence of huge numbers of Picasso trigger fish was very striking.


This is the top dive site of Padar in my opinion. Near the eastern tip of the bay are two small islands. The dive site is located on the southwest side of the islands. It is a vast field of coral that juts into the abyss to a sandy area. There is also an impressive ridge starting at about 10m depth and that leads to the depths. There are wonderful range and other soft corals are found. We found there also beautiful nudibranchs, many species of reef fish and a manta swam slowly past. For the first time I saw here a juvenile 'velvet angelfish (Chaetodontoplus dimidiatus).

This place is suitable for all diving levels. You can deep (30m +) to go around and look at the shallow end. Beautiful dive site.


On the north side of Rinca, the easternmost island of the Komodo group are still several smaller islands. Some of them also have beautiful dive sites.


A beautiful dive site, this reef formed by huge boulders covered with coral formations. The sand is white and the beautiful colors of the vast quantities of small reef fish that frolic above the coral reef are breathtaking spectacle.

It is also a very easy dive site where the reef starting at 5m depth and then slowly slide at an angle of 45 ° a beautiful reef slopes up to 30 meters depth.

Under the white sand I found there to everyone's surprise a telescope.

Sterrenkijker - Komodo nationaal park Foto: Danny Van Belle - 27/01/2008

Stargazer - Komodo National Park Photo: Danny Van Belle - 27/01/2008


Sebayor Besar is slightly larger island located east of Sebayor Kecil. Here again we explored a reef slope. Here, however, there is markedly less coral growth and will dive more over a sandy area with very sparse vegetation coral.


Also on Rinca one can go ashore to see the Komodo dragon. Guided tours are organized on both Komodo and Rinca on. The rangers on Rinca get in my opinion less than the rangers on Komodo. Visit When visiting Rinca the boat stops near a buoy at the height of the island Wainilu. This island is located on the north side of the small bay that provides access to the national park office. We made near Wainilu dives. More current and poor visibility were typical. There is also damage to the coral reef and the great hordes of sea urchins that inhabit the reefs also are proof. In the bay itself near the pier we also took a dive. This exploration dive was an experience. The view was with difficulty one meter. There were, however, here masses juvenile zesstrepen emperor fish present. There were also several slugs but not rare.

SOUTH Rinca - Horseshoe Bay

The most outstanding dive sites 'horseshoe bay' on the south side of Rinca are already described on the pages of Sumbawa to Komodo.

However, during this tour in January 2008 we also explored some places never dived in 'horseshoe bay.


On the northwest side of Nusa Kode, the island south of Rinca, is a dive site formed by a smaller island which is a channel formed between Nusa code and Nusa Kode Kecil. The flow can be pretty but the supply of nutrient-rich water results in an extremely healthy piece of coral reef with numerous reef fish.

The bottom of the channel is a maximum of about 20m deep. One can not, however, hide the flow and this dive the necessary planning must also get along.


A very wide sandy anticipation can be seen in the northwest side of the bay.

As on all the beaches of Rinca one sees regularly Komodo dragons wander around looking for a possible prey. Underwater, this stretch of sand is also too bare.

It is a stretched expanse of sand at about 5m depth which extends fairly flat across a large area. We found large number of naked snails belonging to the species Gymnodoris and Chelidonura. An absolute highlight was the sighting of two mimic octopus who stayed at about 5m apart in a hole in the sand.


This dive site I visited before and found when ghost moray eels, pygmy zeenaaldpaardje and slugs. Now back no different. There were ghost back to see moray eels.

The variety of nudibranchs is huge and we found there is a bubble shell.
This dive site is situated on the other side of the rock which forms the north-eastern side of the dive site 'Torpedo alley'.Op recommend I visited South Rinca during the supposedly low season in January.
Rinca is south by the predominantly westerly winds more protected. The conditions to sail around there are generally rough and boisterous. This was no different.
However, the underwater visibility was compared to the month of August very different.
Cannibal rock, torpedo alley showed their best side himself with a visibility of about 25 to 30m underwater. In August, this is usually limited to 10 to 15m. A big difference.
However, another major difference is the presence of strange critters. In August Cannibal rock and Torpedo alley were real treasures rooms to small weird critters. Of them, however, in January no trace. The large amounts of torpedo rays (torpedo) also no trace. We saw a grand total of just one!

During the months of the high season (May to October), the sea is usually very rough and small fishing boats can not reach the bay. Now in January of this was possible, however, and they were also always present. It's really sad to see that dive sites by some magazines placed in the top ten best dive sites in the world may still be fished by locals.

Duikstekken in horseshoe bay

Dive sites in horseshoe bay


On the way back to Labuan Bajo on Flores we took the route along the east side of Rinca. A very small island would be a separate fauna and flora have formulated and that I wanted to see here. We caught our dive on a sandy reef slope. There was also a reasonable flow. Several beautiful nudibranchs and mantis lobsters we saw but really extraordinary animals we took not true. It was only at the end of the dive when we came in a rather sheltered Reef zone that the fauna and flora began to very distinctive look. However, not enough time to thoroughly delve around. Hopefully I get the chance to do so at the next opportunity.

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