Komodo liveaboard dive trip
You'll want to dive Komodo if you enjoy the widest variety of diving environments on a single trip. From current-swept deep water sites to gentle shallow reefs, Komodo has it all. You'll encounter everything from the tiniest macro critter up to sharks, manta and even whale sharks. Other frequent visitors are Mola mola (Oceanic Sunfish), turtles and dugongs. You'll be blown away by the massive marine diversity as you encounter literally hundreds of different species every day you dive. There are approximately 1000 species of reef fish in the area, which means that Komodo on its own is far more diverse than the whole of the Caribbean.
In addition to the great marine life the underwater scenery is dramatic and the corals are refreshingly healthy. You can expect huge boulders, dramatic pinnacles, vast reefs as well as numerous small sheltered bays. With more than 250 species of coral you can enjoy colourful reefs on every dive. Komodo is officially a National Park and a World Heritage Site and so receives the highest level of protection against potential environmental threats. This means you can enjoy some of the healthiest and least damaged reefs in the region.
Another great thing about diving Komodo is that it is open all year so you will always find a trip to suit your schedule, either North Komodo or South Komodo.
North Komodo diving
If you have the luxury to choose then the best months to dive the northern part of Komodo are during the southeast monsoon which runs from late March to early May and late September to early November. You can expect to encounter some strong currents at this time and water temperatures around 24 to 29° C (75-85° F) and visibility 20 to 25m (65-85 ft). In addition to all the usual tropical water fish, large pelagics and sharks you'll also find some great macro beauties such as pygmy seahorse, miniature frogfish, nudis galore and various species of pipefish. The hard corals are rich and healthy and the water is often crystal clear. Among the many dive sites in this area you'll find Castle Rock with its schooling barracuda, mackerels and trevally, and Crystal Rock where you'll find masses of anthias and sweetlips and common sightings of moray eels, scorpionfish, tuna, mackerel, eagle rays and even dolphin.
South Komodo diving
For diving the southern part of Komodo the best period is during the northwest monsoon from mid November to early March. During this period you can expect the water temperature to be between 21 to 27° C (70-80° F) with visibility 10 to 15m (15-50 ft). This colder water brings in plankton which means you'll find masses of feeding fish including schools of manta rays. Although manta can be seen throughout the year the most likely chances of an encounter are December to February and for Mola mola (Oceanic Sunfish) August is the best month, as it is in Bali. The soft corals in this region are incredibly colorful and are host to masses of featherstars, sponges and sea fans. The most well-known dive sites here are Manta Alley (the name speaks for itself) and a sheer wall of black rock known as The End of the World.
Which should I choose, North Komodo or South Komodo?
It's difficult to choose because they both offer great diving and anyway some of our trips cover both North and South Komodo. During the booking process we'll give our best advice based on seasonal marine life and weather and ocean conditions at the time of year you plan to come.
Weather in Komodo
Komodo is a notoriously dry area which means you will usually enjoy sunny blue skies throughout your trip followed by a glorious sunset. However you can expect some rain from December to March. Despite this, we often find the best months for underwater visibility are November, December & January.
Who should dive Komodo?
Because of the possibility of strong currents and cold waters in Komodo (both North & South) we recommend all divers have at least 50 dives experience. You will find most things in Komodo however if you are a fan of shipwrecks it isn't the place for you. We assume you have your own diving equipment, but if you need to rent it won't be a problem. You'll want to bring a 5mm wetsuit and hood if possible.
How to get to Komodo
To start your Komodo liveaboard you need to take a short flight from Bali International airport (Ngurah Rai) to Labuan Bajo, where we will be waiting to transfer you to your boat. The scenic flight from Bali to Labuan Bajo in Komodo is a great way to start your adventure so make sure you have your camera ready. We'll take care of all the flights within Indonesia so you just need to get yourself to Bali. Many divers choose to take a short dive & accommodation package in Bali at the start and/or end of their trip so let us know if you are interested in this.
How long are the Komodo liveaboard dive trips?
For the time-challenged the shortest trip is just 3 days / 2 nights. However if you have more time available it's much better to take a longer trip so you can choose either a 7 days / 6 nights program or an 8 days / 7 nights program. We're running six or seven trips every month in 2013 and 2014 so you'll be sure to find one which suits your available dates. However please be sure to book well in advance because our trips get fully booked very quickly.
How many dives will I do?
It takes only two hours to fly from Bali to Labuan Bajo so you'll be able to squeeze in a couple of dives on the first day - usually one day dive and one night dive. For the rest of the trip you'll be doing 3-4 dives per day, including night dives. The final night is spent on the boat in Labuan Bajo harbour. On the final day you'll be transferred from the harbour to the airport for an early flight back to Bali so obviously no diving is possible on the last day. You'll be back in Bali by lunchtime.
How much does it cost?
You won't find a better deal! It costs from $210 to $250 per person per night based on a twin sharing cabin. These prices include your overnight stay on the boat, all diving costs, tanks, weights, weights belts, dive guide, all meals on board, drinking water, land excursion to see the Komodo Dragons, and transfers from Labuan Bajo airport to the boat in Labuan Bajo harbour.
Are there any extra charges?
All prices are approximate: Return flight from Bali to Labuan Bajo ($200), airport taxes ($10), soft drinks or beer (the sky's the limit), rental dive equipment (price depends on what you need to rent), Komodo National Park fee ($25). There will also be an additional charge of $95 to $165 per night if you stay in a cabin on your own.
What are the facilities on the boat?
All the boats are strong wooden Bugis phinisi sailing boats plus engine-power, ideal for Indonesian conditions. All are equipped with everything you need for a liveaboard dive trip; a dive platform, a place to gear up, and for photographers there is a dedicated camera table and rinse tank, and battery charging stations (both 110V and 220V). There is a sundeck with awning for those lazy afternoons and a DVD player for evening entertainment. Each cabin is air conditioned and has an ensuite bathroom. The cuisine is mixed Indonesian and Western.
Komodo land trips
When you aren't diving, don't forget to take time out to visit the Komodo Dragon, which is the largest monitor lizard in the world. It's a fearsome beast so we'll make sure that you are accompanied by a wildlife ranger during your land excursion. As the name suggests, you won't find them anywhere else in the world so take this chance while you can. This trip is free-of-charge.
What do I do now?
Fill in the form below or email us at email@example.com and we'll get back to you walk you through all the steps of planning your Komodo liveaboard dive trip.