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South Sulawesi - Wakatobi

Indonesia

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Overview

Wakatobi is located in a remote corner of Indonesia, in South East Sulawesi. Interestingly the name “Wakatobi” is an acronym of the four main Tukangbesi Islands: Wangi-wangi, Kaledupa, Tomia, and Binongko. There are a total of 143 islands in this region, however, only 7 of these islands are inhabited. The majority of the population in this gorgeously remote part of the world are part of the Bajau community, renowned for their nomadic sea-faring way of life. 

The islands are home to flourishing ecosystems and natural marvels. Sandy beaches framed by towering palm trees, mysterious cave systems, bustling mangroves, luscious forests and stunning colourful coral reefs. 

If you’re looking for a remote tropical paradise then look no further. 

 

Wakatobi is significantly drier than the rest of Indonesia. It still follows similar wet and dry seasons, however there is significantly less rain year round. There are also microclimates within this island chain. 

Wet Season: November to April

Dry Season: May to October

Year round temperature: 26 – 30°C

 

Diving

Overview

Wakatobi lies at the heart of the coral triangle stretching across 1.4 million hectares of ocean, it is perfectly positioned to be a confluence for marine life. You will find a tremendous amount of marine species here, with over 900 species of fish and 750 species of corals! The area is also home to Indonesia’s largest barrier reef and the third largest national marine park. The area is so large and with such a variety of underwater topography the balance of corals and species vary greatly from one area to the next. 

Reefs are decorated with different, colourful species of tropical corals. Wakatobi has some of the highest numbers of coral reef and fish species. The islands are famous as the largest barrier reef in Indonesia, second only to the Great Barrier Reef in Australia.

Wakatobi is located in an area that encompasses the highest coral reef biodiversity in the world giving you the greatest opportunity to see the biggest variety and diversity of marine life on your dives. While diving at Wakatobi, you’ll not only see beautiful vistas or pristine coral reefs, but also abundant colourful reef fish and rare and unusual cryptic “critters”. New undocumented species are constantly being discovered at Wakatobi. The entire Wakatobi region has been turned into a protected and sustainable marine park.

Visibility is normally between 20-50 metres and averages 35 metres. There are no rivers or lakes bringing sediments, therefore visibility is not affected by rain.

 

Water Temperature
temperature-icon

26ºC-30ºC; 3mm wetsuit

Dive Season

Year round

Diving around Wakatobi is conducted year round and the location is quite protected by the surrounding reefs and islands.

 

Dive Highlights

Magnifica

This is a dive you could do every day. A stunning beauty from the reef top to the extreme 80m depths and suitable for trimix rebreather divers. The steep slope explodes with life and makes for a great drift dive - even snorkelling is exhilarating on the very top. Schools of snappers, skipjacks and many other fish, huge barracudas watching the divers and lots of long toms hunting below the surface. Plus a plethora of macro stuff - if you manage to change your focus among the opulent surroundings. Mating cuttlefish and table corals with oriental sweetlips below and swirling anthias on top will keep you fascinated to the end of the dive.

 

Roma

This famous Coral Garden is as fine as any dive site in the world. Large schools of fusiliers, pyramid butterfly fish, sergeant majors, snappers and redtooth triggerfish swirl around you in an endless dance. Roma is a large, wide pinnacle, fringed with beautiful potato coral and adorned with anemones and clownfish rising into the current. Banded sea snakes can be found and like all the sites in Wakatobi, you can discover fruitful macro life if you focus on the task— ribbon eels, scorpion leaf fish, winged pipefish, spindle cowries, carpet anemone shrimps and rockmover wrasses.

 

The House Reef

Actually six different sites, one accessible directly off the beach in front of the resort, including a seagrass bed and healthy reef top right of the beach. It's only 80 yards from the shoreline to the drop-off which can extend down to 40 metres. With well protected schooling fishes and the jetty full of resident fish, the snorkelers find here plenty of attractions without the need for taking a boat. Highlights include a great variety of fishes, invertebrates, macro subjects, beautiful soft corals, gorgonians, tunicates, whips, sponges, overhangs-all totalling a spectacular rainbow of colour. Frequently there are strong and changing currents. This is definitely a reef that you can dive all day (and night) long. By varying your depth and drop off points, each dive is unique.

 

Activities

Snorkelling

As the area is so rich in coral life and the waters so calm, it’s perfect for snorkelling. It’s hard to resist putting on your mask and fins to explore, even after a full day of diving!

 

Kayaking and Paddleboarding

Join a kayak or SUP tour and explore nearby mangrove forests. Mangroves are often used as spawning grounds and nurseries for many species of fish, including sharks! Watch below as you float atop calm waters for juveniles to dark between the mangrove roots. 

 

Kitesurfing

If you enjoy kitesurfing, Wakatobi is perfect for you. With large expanses of water to enjoy within close proximity to the resort, simply hire the equipment needed and hit the water. Guiding and tutoring is available. 

 

Culture

Visit neighboring islands, where you can engage in walking tours of villages and open-air markets and immerse yourself in the local culture.

 

Indonesia – South Sulawesi
Snorkelling
Indonesia – South Sulawesi
Paddleboarding
Indonesia – South Sulawesi
Nature
Indonesia – South Sulawesi
Kayaking
Indonesia – South Sulawesi
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Wakatobi Dive Resort

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