Bangka Island Diving
Off the northern tip of Sulawesi lie a group of islands with over two dozen dive sites to choose from. The islands are Bangka, Gangga, Talise, Kinabohutan, Tindila and Tamperong. The surrounding reefs and pinnacles are carpeted in colourful corals and prolific marine life. Currents can be strong in this area and that attracts regular pelagic visitors. Some islands have their own resorts.
Bangka Island is included on many liveaboard itineraries. The area can be dived year round but the ideal months are March-June when the sea should be calmest and the visibility best.
Bangka Island dive sites
Batu Gasoh is a series of deep pinnacles exposed to strong currents. This is a drift dive. Schools of red tooth triggerfish, snapper, bannerfish and surgeonfish fill the water. You’ll also see sweetlips and batfish. Scorpionfish, lionfish and moray eels can also be found on the rocks. White tip reef sharks are occasionally seen in deeper water.
There is a plane wreck of a B-21 Bomber which sits partially buried in the sand at 28 metres deep off the west coast of Bangka Island.
Sahuang, off the south east Bangka coast, also has large pinnacles and boulders covered with colourful soft corals and home to large schools of fish including snapper, trevally, fusilier and wrasse. Critters can also be found including frogfish and even pygmy seahorse in the red gorgonian sea fans.
Batu Mandi and Batu Pendeta dive sites are located close together just off the Sulawesi mainland and make pleasant drift dives where macro life is more common on the coral and seafan covered walls.