Scuba Diving: The Real Reason we Came to Bali

32 - Menjangan National Park where we scuba dived and ate lunch (taken by Carrie)
Menjangan National Park where we scuba dived and ate lunch (taken by Carrie)

Our time in Ubud was actually broken into two segments. After a couple of days, we headed north to the black sand beach town of Lovina to do what we came here to do: scuba dive! Our first two dives were off the northwest coast next to the Menjangan islands in the Bali Baratnational park. While the big fish were few and far between, we saw some breathtaking coral that we have never seen before on any dive. We were a bit worried that it had been effected by the tsunami, but no problemo.

The only problem we had was our first dive was going against the current, so imagine spending an hour kicking with all your strength just to keep up with the group. Personally, I do not like swimming or the ocean. I love scuba diving because it usually isn’t much work and I find it extremely peaceful and tranquil. This was not. Oh well, at least the sights were amazing and our second dive there was perfect. We even saw a beautiful gigantic sea turtle just hanging out right by our head.

53 - The dolphin statue in Lovina
The dolphin statue in Lovina

As for Lovina, I can only hope it does well during the high season because it was pretty much abandoned when we got there. Walking down the black sand beach was hilarious, as the local women selling shells, posters, nick nacks and other junk would follow us every time we went down there. They even knew Carrie by name, as she was too nice to tell them to buzz off, and would flock to her saying “now are you ready to buy?” One time a vendor was waiting for us by our clothes after he saw us leaving the ocean to grab our stuff. Like, ok guy, this is a little creepy.

Our second set of scuba dives took us to the wreck of the USS Liberty in Tulumben, which sunk off the coast during World War II. Today the ship is covered in coral and surrounded by fish…and other divers. For the first time in our diving history, we did not take a boat out. Rather, the ship is very close to shore so we literally geared up and walked into the water for a few dozen feet before the bottom dropped out and we went down.

30 - Menjangan National Park where we scuba dived and ate lunch
Menjangan National Park where we scuba dived and ate lunch

For two dives we swam around and through the massive wreck of the ship, playing with corals and clams, taking our time and really observing everything around us. Highlights included a giant barracuda that was just hovering a few feet above us and a few massive schools of fish that, for some unknown reason, were forming a giant cyclone shape by circling around in the water. Amazing.

Verdicts:
Diving: Bali Hai
Lovina: Bali Hai
Tulumben: Bali Low

Typical Balinese dance at a restaurant in Lovina