Walls reaching depths of 600m and a location at the heart of the Coral Triangle are only two reasons why technical divers should visit Bunaken island. Yet, despite being perfect tech territory on paper, the island remains something of a well-kept secret. For those who haven’t been, we’ve put together a few reasons to book your trip now.
So why is tech diving in Bunaken so exciting?
1. Asia’s best walls
Bunaken is considered to have Asia’s best wall diving – and it’s up there among the leading wall diving worldwide. Reaching a depth of your choice is one of the easiest things about diving in Bunaken as the walls just minutes away from the dive centre drop to depths of 600m. Some of them offer sheer drops, others are a little more sloping and many have ledges in various depths. What could be more relaxing (as much as we can call technical diving relaxing) than hanging off a ledge in 45 meters and watching sharks, tunas and eagle rays cruise by. Most recently, our Bunaken-based techies saw a (rare!) thresher shark!
Decompression stops are anything but boring: on the longer, shallower stops, divers usually get to watch turtles living in small crevasses right on the wall. In fact, a day without turtles joining your deco stops is a truly strange day in Bunaken. If the tide is high enough, the last deco stop is often completed drifting over the top of the reef plate before being picked up by one of our boats.
2. Pristine seas and great visibility
Bunaken and its surrounding islands – Siladen, Manado Tua, Nain and Mantehage – are all part of the Bunaken Marine National Park. Not only are the islands incredibly close to the centre of the Coral Triangle, but they’re also home to hugely diverse marine life. Even if you are not spotting something ‘special’, you will be looking at large gorgonian fans at depth and be surrounded by schooling fish as you’re ascending.
Average visibility is around 25 meters or so. On a good day it feels like the walls don’t end and you’re drifting by a 365-degree mountain panorama. And on a ‘bad day’? 10 meters or so are considered low visibility, but with a choice of several dozen dive sites, it’s easy to pick an alternative.
3. Getting away from the crowds.. easily
Sulawesi as a region and Bunaken as an island are well off the beaten track of many divers. Saying that, it’s pretty easy to reach – and we have a team to help with arrangements. Manado airport has a direct connection to Singapore and numerous short domestic flights that connect the city to others throughout Indonesia. From the airport itself it’s simply a car transfer to the marina on the other side of town, followed by 30 minutes on the boat delivering divers directly to the resort. Once here, many who discover these islands keep coming back time and again.
Two Fish Tech is the only operator on the island currently offering technical diving, which means that you will have the dive sites to yourselves at greater depths.
4. Purpose-built boats and experienced crew
We have been offering technical diving in Indonesia since 2010. Bunaken has been our original base, both for recreational as well as technical diving, so it’s very much our own back yard. And although we may have moved part of our tech operations to Bali, our team in Sulawesi has long-standing experience with technical divers. Obviously, that doesn’t mean they’ll take your responsibility as a technical diver away! However, handling technical divers and technical diving equipment is nothing new to our crew, making divers’ lives easier.
5. Guided dives for all levels of technical divers
So, what is there to see for techies in Bunaken? Whether you have just completed entry level technical diving or are a seasoned techie – we can cater to your requirements. All technical dives with us have to be accompanied by a technical guide and you can complete up to two decompression dives per day, depending on your dive profile.
At the moment, we offer open circuit guided technical dives to 50m and CCR guided technical dives to 45m in our Bunaken resort. CCR divers can choose if they want to be accompanied with or without bubbles. For those wishing to dive deeper, we can make individual arrangements.
To find out more about guided technical dives, in both Bali and Bunaken, simply email us or use the form below to send us a message.