It’s been a very lucky week for sighting big stuff in Bunaken with Mola-Molas and Dugongs being seen by our guests. In fact, one lucky open water diver student saw not one, but two Molas right at the end of her very first open water dive! How do you top that?
It all started with a rumour that Mola-Molas (aka Ocean Sunfish) had been seen on a couple of our favourite dive sites – Ron’s, right on the edge of Bunaken and Fukui, a nearby site that we use for teaching and check dives as well as fun dives. Fukui is possibly the one site around Bunaken that is not a typical wall or slope, but rather a bowl-shaped, sloping coral garden reaching 30 metres, before dropping off to deeper waters. And that’s where the magic happened – all but one group had finished their dive and climbed back on the boat, when our captain, Hendika, shouted: “Mola-Mola!” “Whatever”, came the replies. “No, Mola-Mola, there”, just as it breached the surface again.
Never quicker, we grabbed masks, jumped and started swimming in the general direction of the breaching to see not one, but two ocean sunfish in less than ten metres of water cruising along the reef. They stayed with us for a while, and once we got back on the boat to pick up our last group, we managed to meet them again – a truly magical encounter.
Just a couple of days later, two of our guests were treated to a Dugong sighting on their safety stop in the same part of Bunaken, at Mandolin. What a week! Our lucky guests even considered sitting out the second dive as they believed this experience couldn’t be topped that morning. They didn’t and saw at least seven blacktip reef sharks on their second dive!
Whilst sharks are seen regularly, both Dugongs and Mola-Molas are not unheard of around these islands, but they are special enough to put a smile on everyone’s face and get that little bit of jealousy from fellow divers and dive guides and boat crew.
If you would like to share some of the magic, get in touch and visit us in Bunaken!