View from Menjangan island 

Menjangan island

Javan rusa deer-Rusa timorensis

Menjangan Island, roughly 2km in length by just over half a kilometre in width, is one of the best known dive locations in Bali.
The name Menjangan comes from the Javanese language and means deer.
This island, part of the Taman Nasional Bali Barat, see Trekking in the National park, is also inhabit by deer like the barking - Muntiacus muntjak - and the Javan rusa deer - Rusa timorensis.
Fortunately no hotels or other accommodation are found in the island; the only buildings you will find here are four temples visited during special holy days by many Balinese people.
One of them is believed to be the oldest temple of Bali, build during the Majapahit period: the Segara giri kencana.

Pura Segara giri kencana

The other three temples are: Klenting Sari Temple, Segara Giri Temple and Gajah Mada temple. Hundreds of devotees visit these temples since the deities of these temples are well known for their generosity especially for the couple who want to have a child.

Going there is usually part of a day excursion leaving with a boat from Labuhan Lalang, 20 minutes, or taking a dive/snorkel trip from one of the resorts in the area.

There are higher end resorts near the island and one of them also has a dive facility on the premises from where it will only take 15 minutes to reach Menjangan island.
For people who love nature and particulary bird watching one of these resorts will be heaven.
There is also the possibility to stay in Pemuteran and make the trip to Menjangan island from there (30 min.).

Dive conditions Menjangan island

The dive sites around Menjangan island are known for their good visibility, especially in October and November, although as for the rest of Bali can be done year round.
Dive sites range from drop-offs to 60+ metres, small caves, sandy slopes and a beautiful blue green lagoon.

Orbicular batfish-Platax orbicularis

Currents and waves are mostly mild because of its sheltered location, but can get strong between the channel between Bali and the west tip of the island or going round the East tip.
Visibility is normally excellent, ranging from between 15 and 50 metres and water temperature is between 26° and 29°Celsius.

There are enough dive sites for the beginning diver and it is also a great place for snorkelers.
Located so close to the straits between Bali & Java, deep water marine life are a regular occurrence.
During the rainy season is the best time to have a chance to see Manta Rays and hopefully the majestic Whale Shark, but also pilot whales might cruise through the channel.

We spotted 2 pilot whales in Febr. 2011 between the "mainland" and Menjangan island, unfortunately while having lunch at Pos I.
Turtles, Napoleon Wrasses, Groupers, big Barracudas and Sharks are all regular sightings especialy during rainy season.
The common encounters are many, just to name some: Snappers, Batfish, Sweetlips, Angelfish, Frogfish, Pipefish, many interesting Nudibranch, Scorpionfish, Lionfish, Leaf Scorpionfishes and Cuttlefish.

Shark numbers are decreasing at a shocking rate.... What all people, especially divers, should know about the shark population.

Dive sites Menjangan island

Use the map to jump to the dive site :
Menjangan dive sites

Coral Garden / Temple point / Pos III (right side) - [1]

White sands with many Coral formations and loads of small fish life. Post III also offers a long jetty and a path leading in land to the renovated temples at the back of Menjangan.
A good place for a break but doesn't offer any beach to speak of. If going to the temple always observe the cover up rules, wrapping a towel around you is enough.
Always check if it's ok to enter; if you are not sure take a look from outside the temple walls. Snorkeling here is also excellent and it makes a good alternative to post II when the wind picks up in the summer, as the island offers a lot of shelter.

Pos III (left side) / Peti Reef- [2]

Easy relaxed dive site, depending on the weather conditions, with steep drop offs and walls.
Lots of nudibranch, small crustaceans, glass fish and Moray eels.

Bat Caves - [3]

Soft Coral and colourful fish-Anthias

Shear drop-off going all the way round to Post II. The wall is a little way out from the island like most of the diving around Menjangan. The reef tops off at 5 metres and slopes gently towards the island.
The shallow parts around the island towards to the Bat Caves are also home to Triggerfish in the breeding season, which usually starts at the beginning of the rainy season.
Going around the island the current picks up.
The Bat Caves get their name from the hundreds of bats living in the caves along the East side of the island. These caves are shallow and only accessible via snorkeling since boats are too big to go in.

Pos II - [4]

Chevron barracuda-Shyraenna qenie

The wall runs deep on this side of the island, Manta Rays and Whale Sharks have been seen here during the rainy season.
Big Barracudas hang out here together with Surgeonfishes, Snappers and Grouper all hiding in the many crevasses and over hangs.

It also offers some good snorkeling, as you can follow the edge of the drop off catching bubbles, enjoying the abundant marine life and vibrant Corals.
Further along you reach a mooring buoy, halfway along the drop off.

Depending on the way the current flows you either start here or end here. The wall continues a good distance beyond this buoy with loads of special marine life.

The Caves - [5]

Scenic wall with small caves. Barracuda, Surgeon fishes and Groupers are here hiding in the many crevasses.
Also a good site for snorkeling.

Pos I - [6]

Here is the main ranger station with jetty, one of only three points where you can actually get ashore.
Not the best location on the island for diving having only a sandy bottom sloping from 16-18m down into the deep.
The Coral running east towards the mangrove makes the location good for breaks and snorkeling. Loads of small fish can be found around here.

Eel Garden / Blue Lagoon - [7]

Titan Triggerfish-Balistoides viridescens

Steep Wall, one of the better dive sites around Menjangan. Beside many small marine life also Pygmy Seahorse's. As you head along the wall towards the channel, the top of the reef gently slopes down to meet you while you drift along and into the channel.

Big fish like Sharks, Trevally, Napoleons and Groupers like to hang out here. As the reef comes down to meet you at 20+m you have two choices: you can either turn in and left, which will bring you into Blue Lagoon or continue on into the Eel Garden itself.

Towards the Blue Lagoon you'll find the Pygmy Seahorse's and continuing via a sandy slope you'll meet the trigger-happy Titan and Yellow margin Triggerfish. Further along the wall brings you to a small Coral mound that swings round to a sand ridge.
This ridge is the garden itself and the entrance to the channel between Menjangan and Bali; this is where you'll find the bigger fish when the current is running.
On good days you can go further into the "Aquarium"; lots of everything all not deeper than 12 metres.

Anchor Wreck - [8]

Gorgonian fan-Echinogorgia sp.

The back of Menjangan from here till Post III is all very similar.
Looking out towards Java and the tip of Bali it offers a beautiful variety of steep slope and wall; dropping into the blue and backed by open Bali Sea.

In the summer the back of the island is also the best place to get out of the winds that come up from the South and make for choppy/rough conditions in the afternoons.
This is common July through August till mid September.

The site itself is named after the anchor sitting in 5m of water at the top of the reef. The wreck seems to be an unknown 19th century trading vessel of about 25m.
Following the anchor chain down to the first pieces of the wreck at 27m, then the slope flattens out at about 37m.
The majority of the ship is scattered diagonally in 40m or deeper. Best time to plan this dive is during slack tide since there is no protection against the currents.

Mangrove - [9]

Drop-off starting at a depth of 5m and going down to 28m. Beautiful sea fans, hard and soft Corals are to be found here.
Flat worms, Moray eels, leaf and frog fishes are hanging around.

Sandy Slope - [10]

Sand, sand and more sand with lots of interesting small stuff. Also a good location to check out the big blue to look for the bigger pelagic: Sharks, Baracuda's, Rays and more.