Diving at Komodo Island

Komodo Island Scuba Diving

For scuba divers, one of the ultimate experiences is diving at Komodo Island, which is highly rated as one of the must-dive sites in the world.

Many have heard about this mystical place, which is home to the largest living lizard in the world - The Komodo Dragon, which is found on several islands in the Komodo National Park, namely on Komodo Island, Rinca Island and Padar Island.

Diving at Komodo Island

Before you go on, I would like to credit my appreciation to GotMuck.com for the amazing header image of one of the dive sites at Pulau Komodo.  

When you get to Labuan Bajo, the main entry point to the Komodo Islands, you will either book a live on board (LOB) dive package or a day trip package from the many tour operators here.

Usually, divers headed here will pre-book their packages where everything is arranged, and all you need to do is fly in, dive, see the dragons, suntan at the pink beach, and you are done. It is pretty simple when you do a pre-booking for your Komodo diving package. 

For those who want to shop around for the best deals, your options are many as there are about ten dive operators in Labuan Bajo, where all of them are partly owned by foreigners, namely Australians or Europeans who are also interested in Bali and the Gili Islands.

The main street in town is the only place where you can walk shop to shop and inquire about prices, packages, and even the different types of Live On Boards offered. Most shops have signs indicating tomorrow's dive departure; you can jump on them if you are a single or couple diver.

                                                   Check out this fantastic Komodo Island Diving Video by Kiersten, who dived with me on the trip.

For four and above dive groups, you can pre-book or self-book the dive package on the spot when you are in town.

All the dive shops in Labuan Bajo speak good English, and the dive masters or instructors are mainly locals or foreigners with experience. Simply walk in, and they will be pleased to serve you.

One of the recommended dive operators that took me diving in Komodo was Ora Dive (http://oradive.com/), who had a fantastic local Indonesian team.

The knowledgeable dive master had over 20 years of experience diving at Komodo Island, and the management team was very professional and friendly.

Komodo Island Diving. Photo by Lida Pet Soede.

Dive Sites at Komodo Island

More than 30 dive sites at Komodo Island are all equally unique and exciting, depending on your dive certification level.

Most of them are located around the main national park islands, and it takes about an hour to get there via speedboat from Labuan Bajo. 

Not all dive sites are accessible anytime due to the strong currents, and when I say strong, they are very strong, as I have seen from the surface.

Diving safety is paramount here, and I suggest that you have minimal diving experience before coming here to dive.

Komodo island dive map
Komodo Island Dive Sites Map. Click on the image to see the full size.

Some of the dive sites at Komodo Island

With over 40 dive sites, I would estimate that you may need at least 10 trips to see probably half of them, but then again, some of the dive sites are currently pending; this means that it does not mean that you want to visit one of those sites and you will get a chance.

Some sites' currents are pretty strong, and caution is advised for all divers. For me, I did only three dives and they are in bold;
  1. Sabolon
  2. Even snorkelers have a chance to see Mantas
    at Komodo Island. Photo by Azuriette.blogspot.com
  3. Sebayor Kecil
  4. Mini Wall
  5. Tatawa Besar East and West
  6. Tatawa Kecil
  7. Batu Bolong
  8. End of the World
  9. Batu Sabun
  10. Siaba Kecil
  11. Pengah
  12. One Tree
  13. Gili Lawa
  14. Manta Point or Karang Makassar
  15. Batu Tiga  
  16. LightHouse
  17. Castle Rock
  18. Crystal Bommie
  19. Cannibal Rock 
  20. Darat Passage South
  21. Darat Passage  North "The Cauldron"
  22. Pink Beach 
  23. Red Beach or Pantai Merah
  24. Loh Namu
  25. Indihiang
  26. Pilaarsteen
  27. Three Sisters
  28. Yellow Wall of Texas 
  29. Payung
  30. Nusa Kode
  31. Cannibal Rock
  32. Invertebrate Wall
  33. Crynoid Corner
  34. Boulders
  35. Loh Sera
  36. Tala
  37. German Flag
  38. Manta Alley
  39. Langkoi Rock
  40. White Angels
  41. NE Gili Banta (outside of the Komodo National Park)
  42. GPS Point (outside of the Komodo national park)
  43. NW Gili Banta (outside of the Komodo national park)
Batu Bolong is one of the interesting dive sites at Komodo National Park. Photo by www.komododivecenter.com.
Komodo Island Diving Information

Below is some basic information about the dive sites, waters, visibility, temperature, etc. 
  • Depth: 5m - >40m
  • Visibility: 5m - 30m
  • Currents: Can be very strong
  • Surface conditions: Can be rough
  • Water temperature: 20°C - 28°C
  • Experience level: Intermediate - Advanced
  • Number of dive sites: 40+
Manta Rays seen on a dive at Komodo Island. Image from www.mermaidliveabroads.com.

When Is The Best Time to Dive in Komodo Island?

The beauty about diving at Komodo Island is that all through the year, you can dive there, especially when the live-on boards operate all year.

There are many different companies, some of which operate during the peak diving season at Komodo Island between April and August.

There are also visiting Live on Board dive boats from April till around November. 

However, plan what you want to see based on your first diving experience in Komodo. Below are some of the months that you can choose.

The best time to dive at Komodo Island is;
  • April to November - Dry season
  • November to March - Rainy season
  • Best Month to Dive - April
  • Best Visibility in Komodo - November to January with 30m
  • Rough Waters - January to March 
  • Rough Seas - July and August
  • Best Time to See Manta Rays - December to February 
  • Best Time to See Mola Mola (Sunfish) - August
For those interested in seeing the different things while diving at Komodo Island, you should note the best times above, as you would only want to go some of the way there in September to see Manta only to find they are away.

Like me, I dived at Manta Point in September just to try my luck, but after an hour of diving, there was nothing; on the other hand, I saw many other exciting things. I will post my next article on my Komodo Island Diving Trip Report.

My dive team members and dive master Jac Seah from Singapore (middle) and Henry from Australia (right),

Types of Komodo Island Dive Packages

There are mainly two types of Komodo Island diving packages: day dive trips and, of course, the most popular, the liveaboard or live-on-board dive boats.

One of the general Komodo Island Liveaboard Boats.

Prices also vary for each of the types, and they are;

Komodo Island Day Trip Diving - Prices are anywhere from USD 125 per person for three dives on a day trip, while many offer two dives and see the Komodo Dragons at the same price.

Komodo Island Live On Board - These are the highly sought-after groups as the packages vary from budget to luxury.

A standard four-day liveabroad trip can cost anywhere from US$700 per person, and a 7D/6N liveabroad trip is around US$1295, including everything except flights.

Komodo Island Budget Liveabroad - Many divers are looking for budget liveabroad boats at Komodo Island, and quite a few companies offer these budget-friendly dive packages.

You should know that these liveabroad boats are not your luxury type but serve the purpose if you are okay with simplicity. Prices start from US$100.00 per person per night for 3-4 nights, and you can find them online or even in Labuan Bajo town.

Diving Course/Licence - For those interested in taking up a scuba diving open water course, many dive instructors in Labuan Bajo offer open water diving courses from IDR 5,000,000  (US$380) per student. This course takes 2-3 days.

*Komodo National Park Fees - The park fees are usually included in your Komodo Island dive package, but you need to double check with your dive operator on this as I have heard that the really budget dives do not include the fees; hence they are cheap.

How to go to Komodo Island

The first thing is how to get to Komodo Island, and there are two ways to get here: via boat or flight. And trust me, the best way to get here is via flight.

If you take a boat, it will take around two to three days from Bali or Lombok, but for me, I flew in via Bali, which takes about an hour and checking Skyscanner, there are a few options for flights to Komodo, depending on where you are flying in from.

More importantly, Komodo Island dive packages are usually for the equipment, diving, food and accommodations, which generally do not include the flights.


Therefore, if you want to save money, I recommend using AirAsia SuperApp or AirAsia MOVE to find the cheapest flights and hotels to Labuan Bajo.

Ultimately, you just want to get here safely and in a timely manner for your diving at Komodo Island, which I highly recommend.

Malaysia Asia

Blogging since 2007, but writing online since 1997. I belong to the 1st generation of worldwide bloggers, which is of course old-school. Since 2008, I created Malaysia Asia and this travel, flood, gadget and lifestyle blog has won numerous physical awards from tourism boards around Malaysia. (Not those online awards). After 12 years of blogging, I have semi-retired and now blog about things I like, do product reviews and enjoy life. My work has been featured in Lonely Planet, CNN Travel, Yahoo Travel, Wall Street Journal, and many other international publications. Find out more about me and thank you.


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