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Dive Review of Karang Divers/Alam Mimpi in
Indonesia/Hidden Treasure

Karang Divers/Alam Mimpi: "Bali North", May, 2018,

by Michael Joest, Kehl, DE (Top Contributor Top Contributor 48 reports with 29 Helpful votes). Report 10260.

Photos Submitted with this Report

Click on an image to see an enlarged version and captions

Ratings and Overall Comments 1 (worst) - 5 (best):

Accommodations 5 stars Food 5 stars
Service and Attitude 5 stars Environmental Sensitivity 3 stars
Dive Operation 4 stars Shore Diving 4 stars
Snorkeling 4 stars
Value for $$ 5 stars
Beginners 4 stars
Advanced 4 stars
Comments Alam Mimpi Karang Divers, Bali
We were cruising at an altitude of 34 000 feet on our way to Bali. Lunch was served, I enjoyed a sea food pasta and a movie. Suddenly the captain pulled the aircraft into a steep climb. Meals and drinks scattered everywhere some people screamed, chaos all around. Few minutes later the captain apologized profusely. He had totally forgotten the equator where we nearly had crashed into.
Alam Mimpi is a 3 h drive away from the airport up north. So you get your first impression and sightseeing of the variety and beauty of the landscape. You even pass by the infamous volcano Agung. The resort is a cute hidden little paradise. The whole place is a green dream inviting you to switch off and relax. The bungalows are charming and lie in a lovely setting close to the black pebble beach in a fantastic garden with pool and leisure spots. You won´t need a 5 star resort ever again when you saw this. Dive center Karang Divers in right next door.
House reef snorkeling at Angies Canyon right off the beach. First impression, urg, Jesus, what made me come here. Tons of plastic garbage floating on the surface, vis less than 5 m. Deeper than 3 m you passed the silt area, it got clearer. Our first dive we did here. We walked in from the beach, with high tide and waves running and across pebbles not an easy task with full gear. Temp. 30 C vis without windscreen (mask) wipers horrible. We had to pass 8 m to reach better conditions. The bottom with black sand added to the impression of a doom dive. Around 10 15 m a sandy slope, in between some nice patches and boulders with a good mixture of coral and fish. Here these guys were not shy at all, used to divers it seems. Had good opportunity for some great shots even with my little Go Pro. Grouper, sweetlips, puffer, different angel fish, surgeons, more hard coral than soft ones, lovely sponges. The guide pointed out nudis and small critters, nothing for my short sighted eyes. Vis now around 10 15 m, not too bad but way to go to reach 5 stars.
Boat dive, again we had to walk into the water from the beach, this time at low tide, so you had to walk not only across black pebbles but slippery stones as well. Bang, lost my footing and fell. You swim to the Zodiac, reach up your fins, then climb on board. At the lowest step of the ladder the wooden stair was missing, two metallic parts were protruding, easy to seriously hurt yourself there or rip open your wetsuit. It´s fixed now on Bali time. Long stretch of black sand with smaller and bigger boulders were waiting for us. Fish and coral here amazing, moray eels, surgeons, puffer, juvenile angel, garden eels looking out of the sand more than 0,5 m allowed you to get real close before retreat. There were some stone pillars sat up in a circle, maybe some sort of shrine for the locals or a dive center copying other places (Grenada) artists work. An old Toyota sits in about 12 m, a full box of beer bottles still in it´s back empty of course. Again plenty of critters and nudis around, nothing to get excited about for me. Nitrox was free of charge, I booked a 10 dive package house reef in advance for 240 , with all extras like boat, Liberty (2x), Boga and transport it was another 254 . Like everywhere else special requests and offers cost you big bucks. It´s easy diving, no current and kicking along on a long leash. Fish seem to be tame or used to divers, a turtle nearly collided with me head on, the question arose, who is giving way, in the end I did. On one site we swam for 20 min across black sand, why, what´s the guide planning to show us. It seems even he himself did not know, what that detour was, maybe a little bit of exercise for us lazy western divers. On our way back we hit a lovely coral reef in the shallows, with some fish around where I found around 20 crown of thorns in a rather small area. I enjoy and love this animal but we all know what it means to the reef. You will find a lot of interesting creatures when you slowly roam across the reef and look carefully, which most times I don´t. I just love to kick my way along the reef and hope to stumble on something special.
Tulamben Liberty Wreck as an early morning start. Medium vis, barracuda, Napoleon, big grouper, some nice coral growth on the wreck. I would not count the Liberty among the top ten but she certainly is a Bali must do. The place even early was worse than the Thistlegorm. More than 100 divers along the beach and in the water, I swam like in a whirlpool. We did it again on a Sunday morning, much less going on then and we met the school of humpheads which seem to be there every morning. Normally I dive with trainings fins without booties. The dive instructor recommended bigger fins and booties for this. With the sliding pebbles and stones on the beach this was a good suggestion. I had problems getting out of the water and would have loved to find some ropes to pull me out on. Thanks to a lady with a big big camera we did a 75 min dive once, when the guide shortly before safety stop pointed out some tiny thing to her. She lay down, took 6 pictures in double that time which she checked twice. We were hovering above watching the show and just shook our heads. Only once a current picked up and pushed us off the reef. We had to fight our way back, as following the current would have presented only black sand. So gauges showed low real fast with some of us. I told Karang Divers to put me on as many special excursions as possible during my 10 days there and even try to get me on the Boga once. Their and my problem was, normally they ask for at least 4 divers for this. Well it was still low season, me being the only guest in my resort, next door only 2 divers, one with ear problems. I asked them to put me onto some other dive center if it´s not possible here. Karang starts it´s dives at 10, for me a time where mostly I already finished my first. Once the captain had his day off, so only house reef left or right was possible!
Boga was heavy surf during the night, a beach of gravel pebbles stones, which made entry difficult. We counted the waves and rushed in on dive guides command. One wave threw me to the side, dive guide pulled me out a bit, hurriedly I pulled on my fins. The plan was, going down to 10, so not as to loose bottom time, then on the wreck going deeper. Dive guide took a compass course. We hit 15 m no wreck, 25 m no wreck, guide turned right for 5 min no wreck, turned left against tricky current. After 15 min we found the Boga. He did not calculate the drift I guess. Vis 10 15 m, went through the cargo hold where an open jeep sits, couldn´t find the type. No coral on the ship so far. We swam down to the stern at around 32 m, I kicked down to the propeller in 36.5 m. Return trip on a different level through the upper structure. Fighting this damn changing current, depth and going the wrong way had used much air. One diver signaled 40 bar we slowly started our ascend. Surf hit us, had problems getting off my fins. One big wave after the other hit us, guide screamed for me to swim back into deeper water, but I was in front, saw the waves and thought no way will I go this way. Stumbled and fell in shallow water, fins were ripped out of my hand. Lucky me, local boys were in the water, supported us and found my fins. Thank you guys!!! I certainly don´t need this again it was dangerous. The wreck I feel is overrated and definitely nothing for beginners or only in calm seas and less current or even better starting out of a dive boat. A bunch of local men and women make a living by carrying the tanks 50 m back to the van on their shoulders or even heads, puuh job. My instructor at home told me, it would have been better for us to remove our gear, take a tank on our left and right, stabilize yourself through this and then try to get out. Well next time I might try this.
Alam Mimpi offers a la carte menu. I opted for and told the staff they could offer me every day a different special local meal without asking me again and again. So I got a lovely mixture of Balinese and Indonesian food and they prepared meals for which they had all ingredients in the kitchen. I had lovely spring rolls freshly made, satay sticks with peanut butter sauce, fish soup, noodles and all kind of juices, mango water melon papaya, fresh coconut yummy.
Websites Karang Divers   

Reporter and Travel

Dive Experience Over 1000 dives
Where else diving worldwide more than 100 destinations
Closest Airport Denpassar Getting There

Dive Conditions

Weather sunny Seas calm
Water Temp 30-°C / 86-°F Wetsuit Thickness 5
Water Visibility 5-20 M / 16-66 Ft

Dive Policy

Dive own profile ?
Enforced diving restrictions 1 h 50 bar
Liveaboard? no Nitrox Available? yes

What I Saw

Sharks None Mantas None
Dolphins None Whale Sharks None
Turtles 1 or 2 Whales None
Corals 4 stars Tropical Fish 4 stars
Small Critters 4 stars Large Fish 3 stars
Large Pelagics 3 stars

Underwater Photography 1 (worst) - 5 (best):

Subject Matter N/A Boat Facilities N/A
Overall rating for UWP's N/A Shore Facilities N/A
UW Photo Comments [None]
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Note: The information here was reported by the author above, but has NOT been reviewed nor edited by Undercurrent prior to posting on our website. Please report any major problems by writing to us and referencing the report number above.

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