A couple of years ago I was lucky enough to spend three weeks in Indonesia learning to Scuba dive and it is safe to say it was a completely unforgettable experience.
Plunging below the water was like entering an alien world, the reef was teeming with brightly coloured fish darting in every direction, like miniature bullets, infact Indonesia is said to have some of the most biologically diverse reefs on the planet, making this a must-see destination for scuba diving. Your ears are soon filled with the sounds of fish munching coral.
I was in the Wakatobi region which is home to many large species of coral. The current is usually pretty gentle here and the visibility is extremely high, making this a great place to get to grips with diving.
Once you have become a certified diver and have learnt to control your buoyancy you will have the freedom to fully explore the diverse range of life swimming all around you. Whilst the fish are numerous the larger animals, such as sharks, are much less frequent visitors in this part of the ocean.
Diving is available all year round in Indonesia, however some of the best times to go are in the months of April to October, as this avoids most of the wet season. The water temperatures are also warm ranging from between 25°c to 30°c.
In addition to the numerous coral reefs, there were various different habitats, all with their own diverse range of species. Barrel sponges seemed to be a popular congregating location for a range of fish, many were even swimming inside the mouth of these huge underwater structures. And yes, there was plenty of opportunity to catch a glimpse of the famous clownfish as they peered out from their anemones.
There were also a few bottom-dwelling creatures like this blue-spotted ray and starfish were also present in large numbers.
The huge question I had on my trip was will I be lucky enough to see a turtle? After several trips I was beginning to think I had run out of luck, but on my second to last dive my buddy gave me the signal I had been desperate to see, and there it was, lurking in the deep shadows below us, my first glimpse of a green turtle! So if you’re debating whether or not to try and learn for yourself, my advice would be one hundred percent dive right in and give yourself the opportunity to explore even more of the planet!