Meet Mola Mola in Bali

There are hundreds of dive sites around the mainland of Bali, and even more dives site at Nusa Penida which is an island located on the south east corner of Bali. Our destination is was this small island. During August to October, you have the chance to meet the biggest bony fish in the world - Mola Mola (Sunfish).

But on the first day, we didn't go to Nusa Penida, we went to the most popular dive site in Bali - Tulamben. It's famous due to a wreck, it was an American cargo ship which got hit by a Japanese torpedo during World War II - The U.S. Liberty. Both soft corals and hard corals grow flourishingly at this dive site, with huge growth since our previous visit here. Fish are more than before, a school of crazy travelly still hunt on the wreck, with a giant Napoleon wrase (Mori Wrase) during the last dive. Next to the wreck, there is another dive site named 'Drop off', you'll see many corals on the wall and perhaps see a mola mola by chance.

Second day, we headed to Nusa Penida to find our super star, mola mola. But we still didn't get the chance to see it because the strong current in Crystal Bay in the morning. No problem, we changed the schedule and went to see another big shot, Manta Ray. Manta Point is located on the southeast of Nusa Penida, the maximum depth is 12m, but diver's floating at 6m to see manta rays all most every time. These manta rays never disappointed divers, you'll see them everytime when you jump into the water. This is a really good dive site for all level divers, no matter you are a beginner or experienced diver.

Finally, we jumped into Crystal Bay, abundant species of coral and fish could be found at this site, but the attraction is more than that, for many divers, they come from far to see mola mola. But seems it wasn't our lucky day, we found nothing! Stay or leave? We decided leaving because there are much more fun dives in Bali not just mola mola! Sekenna is a good place for drift diving, the strong current blows to the same direction along the beach whole year long. If you are beginner and never tried drift diving before, don't worry, you can decide the depth by yourself because the sloppy bottom. The coral is endless at this site and you have chance to be an underwater superman! The fun of diving is you never know what surprise is waiting for you before you jump into the water. Thereby we jumped into Crystal Bay again after a another drift diving at S.D. Point on the third day. Only after 5 minutes, we saw a big shadow at 3/4 meters from the surface, yes! The mola! But it was a little far away, and we were too deep from it, so we can just watch from a big distance. Although we didn't have the chance to get closer, we were all still excited because we saw it. During the dive the shadow is still close in our mind, there is another Mola Mola swim right into us. It's really close this time, only 5/6 meters away from us. It really shocked us by its big body and huge fins, it's at least 2 meters high from tip to tip of the top fin to the bottom fin. But if you look at it from the head, you can see mola mola has a lovely mouth and eyes, it's more like a giant pufferfish that has been run over by a car.

Seems we had good karma, our luck was still there. If you call it 'a close distance' watching for the last time, this time, it's really a 'Zero' distance. Just after few minutes after we jumped into the water on the third day, we found a mola mola hanging on a coral reef, everyone rushed to it but it didn't care, it still STAYED there. With both pictures and video, everyone was so busy, no one had the chance to get so close to a mola mola. Till 5 minutes later, our super star swang its fins and said 'goodbye' to us as it departed in a pattern similar to navy boats avoiding torpedoes.

During the next 2 days, we went to Crystal Bay for another few dives but never saw it again. Maybe we shouldn't see too much in one trip and leave ourselves an excuse to get there again.

Actually, there are several good dive sites in Sanur as well, you can see the whitetip reef sharks at Shark Point, and pray to the underwater Buddha on a dive site called 'God Bless Me' in Sanur. These dive sites are good for any level divers.

Except Scuba diving, jet ski, surfing, snorkeling, banana boat, fishing are available for non-divers in Bali, if you are on a holiday with your family, you can take them for rafting in Bali's tropical rain forest or try the Spa and gain a smooth new skin.

Bali, a great place for a holiday and worth the travel to get there. We Hope we'll see you in our next adventure!

[ 2008-09-29 ]