We chartered the Mermaid 1 Liveaboard for the trip Bali – Komodo – Bali. This 10 day itinerary offered the advantage of not having to take an extra flight to reach Komodo. Additionally we had the chance to dive some great sites in the West Sumbawa region that offer the possibility to spot great macro underwater. This was the first time we have brought a group on the Mermaid 1 Liveaboard, but we were reassured by Mike’s previous experience on board as videographer and by the reputation that the fleet has built over the years. As you will see in the details below, it turned out to be a great trip!
For this liveaboard trip in Komodo, we were happy to have a group from different parts of the USA joining us. Was very nice to see many familiars faces of people who have joined us on a previous trip to Raja Ampat
Preparing Our Trip to Komodo
This trip was created and organized together with a trip leader from the USA, who organizes several trips per year in some of the best dive locations in the world.
We were very happy to assist him and his group to find a great boat and tailor make the best possible itinerary based on his requests and our expertise.
September is a very good month to dive Komodo, even though we needed to be flexible with the itinerary and make changes according to the dive conditions.
The Highlights of our Komodo Trip
This trip delivered some of the best variety of subjects all year. We had lots of good macro encounters as well as big fish.
In West Sumbawa, we found a few Hippocampus denise, a very special Lembeh Sea dragon and at Moyo island we found several decorated dartfish.
In Gili Banta, we had the chance to dive the beautiful wall of Roller Coaster covered in zillions of Anthias. When we reached Manta Alley in the south we had the best conditions of the year with very good visibility, lots of Mantas and only a little swell. Up in the North of Komodo we had also great conditions and not too much current. We saw the usual reef sharks and a few grey reef sharks.
In Horseshoe Bay, we dived the famous Cannibal Rock, Torpedo Alley and watched the dragons at the beach, which is always cool. The night dives were some of the best dives of the trip.
We covered the sites of Satonda, Gili Banta, Horseshoe Bay, Komodo Bay and Sangeang, At night we found several octopus including coconut and mototi, flamboyant cuttlefish, several frogfish including the famous hairy frogfish and the mesmerising stargazer fish. On our way back to Bali we stopped at Sangeang and saw an incredible array of nudibranchs in great blue water muck dives.
One of the best highlights of the trip happended at the famous Batu Bolung dive site where a family of dolphins came to meet us on several occasions. Dolphins are common in Komodo but to see them underwater is very special.
Other Activities Experienced in Komodo
On this trip we did a few land activities including sightseeing at the dragonsbeach in Horseshoe Bay as well as the ranger station walk at the island of Komodo, where we found a dragon relaxing and drinking by a water hole in the “Savanna”.
How was the Liveaboard Vessel?
The Mermaid I turned out to be a great choice for our trip. The speed of the boat is perfect for such a long itinerary and the stability of the boat made it comfortable for us. The boat was very clean and it would be hard to find anything wrong with it. As our group are were all very experienced with Liveaboards, we agreed that the Mermaid company does a great job with maintenance. The crew were very helpful and friendly.
Once again a big thank you to all of our guests who joined us and trusted The Underwater Tribe once again. We would like to thank our guests for creating such a great vibe on board!
Our Bali – Komodo – Bali Itinerary
Benoa Harbour Bali to Moyo Island in West Sumbawa.
Dive 1 in Moyo at Angel Reef - Dive 2 and 3 in Satonda island ( afternoon and night dive ) .
Dive 1 in Gili Banta at K2 - Dive 2 in West Komodo at Monco Bay and Dive 3 in Gili Lawa Darat at the Passage and Night Dive in Loh Liang Bay.
Dive 1 in Padar at 3 Sisters, Dive 2-3 and 4 In Horseshoe Bay at Cannibal Rock and Topedo Alley.,
Dive 1 and 2 in South of Komodo at Manta Alley. In the afternoon we did the Dragon Walk at Ranger Station in Komodo and Dive 3 ( Night ) was in Loh Liang Bay
Dive 1 in Gili Lawa Laut at Shotgun, Dive 2 and 3 in the Lintah Strait at Batu Bolung and Tatawa Besar. Night dive was at Spanish Step in Gili Lawa Darat.
Dive 1 and 2 in Gili Lawa Laut at Crystal and Castle Rock. Dive 3 and 4 in Gili Banta at Roller Coaster and Small World
Dive 1 to 4 in Sangeang Volcano at Deep Purple - Bubble Reef - Black Magic and Bonto Village. We also had the chance to visit the local fisherman village of Bonto
2 Dives in West Sumbawa at Angel Reef Ridge and Little Angel. Cruise back to Bali via Lombok