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Snorkeling on Lembongan Island
|Posted by Administrator on Mar 26 2016|
One of Bali's more attractive features is its warm and gin-clear tropical water, a quality that extends to its small neighbor Nusa Lembongan. Although this tiny island sometimes is overlooked by visitors to the region, it boasts some of the best marine life in the area. The local marine life makes Nusa Lembongan a major snorkeling area, both for visitors staying on the island and those on tours and cruises from Bali.
One way to explore the underwater world of Nusa Lembongan is to take a ferry there from Sanur or Benoa in Bali, then snorkel from shore. Many of the island's beaches are marked by rough waves and better suited to surfing, but some areas are calm enough for snorkeling. One is Mushroom Bay on the island's northwest coast, the destination port for some of the ferry services, like the Tanis Express (tanisvillas.com). The other snorkeling area is off the shores of the mangrove forests dominating the northeastern end of Nusa Lembongan.
Another way to snorkel around Nusa Lembongan is on a snorkel boat tour or cruise from Bali, such as those offered by Bounty Cruises (balibountycruises.com). Tours of this type are available through virtually any hotel or travel agent in southeastern Bali and usually are day tours including at least lunch and free drinks. These tours might be focused squarely on snorkeling, or mix snorkeling with beach activities and/or tours of Nusa Lembongan's villages. Snorkelers staying on Nusa Lembongan have snorkel tour options as well. Those already on the island can hire a local fishing boat to visit offshore snorkeling areas and sites off the neighboring island of Nusa Penida, either through their hotel or a travel agent or by negotiating with a boat owner on the beach.
Surface water temperatures around Nusa Lembongan and the Bali Strait usually are in the mid-80s F, although surges of cold water from the depths might reduce that in some areas into the upper 70s. Either way, a snorkeler in Lembongan's waters needs only a wetsuit to protect her skin from jellyfish. Water visibility ranges between 50 feet for the sandier, inshore areas to more than 100 feet for snorkeling sites in more open water.
The marine life off Nusa Lembongan begins with its coral reefs and gardens, composed of a rainbow of hard corals like tables, brains and staghorns, as well as sea fans, fingers and other growths such as sponges. Moray eels, crabs and small octopi, as well as small fish species such as fish-cleaning wrasse and clownfish, live in and among the corals, and species like coral-eating parrotfish also are residents of the reefs. Larger species, such as barracuda and reef sharks, patrol the corals looking for meals, but the major attraction of Nusa Lembongan is the mola mola, the world's largest bony fish. These bizarre oval-shaped creatures sometimes breach the surface in search of a cleaning, which is the best chance a snorkeler has to see one.
Last changed: May 07 2016 at 3:44 PMBack to Overview
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