The former fishing village Tulamben is located in the northeast of Bali on the main road to Singaraja. It lies about 1 hour from Candi Dasa towards north. On your way to Amed or Tulamben you will have magnificent views over rice fields in beautiful valleys up to the steep mountains. On some lookouts you have a breathtaking view to the Mount Agung. In Tulamben you find some good accommodation for all budgets and a costal reef with the U.S.A.T. Liberty shipwreck. More quite you can stay in the only a few kilometres distant fishing village Amed.
In Tulamben you can dive three dive sites from the shore. Sometimes the waves are a little bit bigger and to entrance the water can be a little more difficult. It is better to ware the dive shoes on the slippery stone beach.
1. U.S.A.T. Liberty Shipwreck
One of the best known dive sites in Bali is the U.S. Liberty. The original freighter was 125 meter long and 16 meter wide.
The American ship was torpedoed in the Lombok-Street at the 11th of January in 1942 from a Japanese submarine. Because the boat had a load of military charge the crew tries to bring it into the harbour of Singeraja. But it starts to sink faster and faster therefore the crew decided to go ashore in Tulamben. Nobody of the crew was hurt and they safe all the military cargo.
On the beach of Tulamben the steel shipwreck began to rust. The lava of the 1963 erupted volcano Agung brought the ship back into the sea.
You can easily reach the shipwreck from the beach and you can dive around it or into it. Because there is usually no current this dive can be recommend for beginners as well as for experienced divers. In the area of the shipwreck you will have a look on lots of big fish like barracudas, napoleon wrasse, surgeonfish and many other reef fishes which have found a safe home inside the wreck.
The wreck is wonderful encrusted with soft and hard corals. We dive the shipwreck from 3 until 32 meters. The safety stop will be in five meter in an interesting eel garden. We can highly recommend this dive site for snorkelers as well because you can reach the ship from three until five meter under the surface.
2. Tulamben Drop off
At the south end of the bay of Tulamben we start our dive directly from the shore. When we enter the water from the beach we usually find a really big group of Jackfish. They are swimming in circles and inside you can see sometimes other fishes looking for protection. In the shallower water several small spurs lead off into the bay. We only swim around the corner of big volcanic rocks and dive down to a wonderful and rich wall. This drop-off is an old lava flow as well. The wall goes down from fifteen meters about seventy. It is a steep, rough and even undercut a bit what makes this dramatic topography of this beautiful reef. Here you will find impress hard and soft coral formations, huge gorgonians, amazing big sponges and Agropora species. Interesting is the variety of different reef fishes as well. Sometimes we see here a bumphead parrotfish group. These are amazing fishes. They are huge and with there bumphead they are looking very majestic when they pass by. We will find here and in Jemeluk many different kinds of Angelfishes like king angelfish, emperor angelfish, yellow-mask angelfish, regal angelfish or the blue girdeled angelfish. Colourful as well are all the different kind of butterfly fishes and all the other reef fishes. Here you can also find the blue stripped snapper.
It is a very easy dive. You only need to have a look on your depth and your buoyancy when you are diving. We will dive against a smooth current and he will bring us back to the place where we have started.
The safety stop will be at the corner of the protected bay in shallow water where you will see lots of fishes in the corals as well.
3. Tulamben Coral Garden
Directly in front of the hotels stretches a shallow slope along the beach down into a coral garden. This coral garden in Tulamben is a perfect place for snorkelling. The coral garden starts in two meters and falls down until app. 15 meters.
In this nice coral garden live lots of reef fishes in spectacular hard and soft corals. Here you can see very pretty blue, yellow and black ribbon moray eels. The blue ones are the females and the black ones are the males which can become 120 cm. You can see here also a lot of different ghost pipefish and box fishes. In a weld fuselage you can see some small and big reef fishes as well.
This dive side is a perfect place for introductory, for beginner and dive refreshing courses. And it is perfect for everybody who takes his time to look for all this huge variety of smaller critters.
4. Kubu / Monkey Reef
North of Tulamben you will find a little fishing village called Kubu. Here you will find two wonderful dive sites which we can enter by the shore. This is one of the most interesting places in Bali to see all the different kinds of hard and soft corals in which lots of small animals have found there home. You can see nudibranch, pygmy seahorses, harlequin shrimps, durban hinge-beak prawns or banded boxer shrimps, etc. Sometimes you can see turtles here and sleeping reef sharks at this beautiful dive place.