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Dive Review of Lembeh in

Lembeh, Aug, 2011,

by R Villemarette, VA, US (Reviewer Reviewer 5 reports with 4 Helpful votes). Report 6415.

No photos available at this time

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

Accommodations 4 stars Food 5 stars
Service and Attitude 5 stars Environmental Sensitivity 5 stars
Dive Operation 5 stars Shore Diving 3 stars
Snorkeling N/A
Value for $$ 4 stars
Beginners 4 stars
Advanced 5 stars
Comments [None]Lembeh Resort - Muck Diving 101


1.456724 N
125.243452 E


August 2011

I recently had the opportunity to visit Lembeh Resort in Indonesia and have an introduction to muck diving. For background this was pretty much my first experience with "muck" diving although I certainly had been diving in muck before but did not learn to appreciate the concept. First of all muck implies a location where there are lots of nutrients in the water and this can equate to a location with less visibility. Normally this is not what I am looking for but in this case I initially was looking for a dive area that would let me make up to four dives a day. Lembeh is ideally suited in this way as most of the dive spots are very short distances from the resort. There is also good diving immediately off the resort area and water entry can be be made directly from the boat launch area. It had been some months since my last dives and I really wanted a place where I could maximize the number of dives in a short period of time and also a place which was convenient from Jakarta.
The first couple of days I will admit that I thought perhaps I had made a mistake in coming to this particular resort. I had been paired up with a German diver who spent an inordinate amount of time taking pictures. I tend to be an "explore it" kind of diver and am allways anxious to cover as much ground as I can with my tank of air. Many of the dive spots are mostly sandy bottoms with small outcroppings where the sea life congregates. This meant i was kind of just hanging around while my dive buddy Andreas was focused on taking a picture. it really was not until I saw a couple of his pictures that I began to appreciate what this kind of diving was all about. Note many of the divers were Europeans who were spending their hard earned Euros to come to a place half way around the world. Many of these divers had been back to the same place for fifteen years or more and had invested quite a bit of money in camera equipment to get the perfect picture.
I will say that some of Andreas' pictures were truly amazing and that got me to slow down and 'smell the roses'.When you settled down and started to get close up with the uber small sea life it opened up a whole new world. This part of Indonesia is famous for the large number of 'critters' that proliferate the hundreds and thousands of little outcroppings and coral of this area. The tidal surges bring great amounts of nutrients into the area which helps to feed the sea life. I was truly amazed that when you started looking closely there was a whole another world which you tend to pass by in normal diving. The sandy bottoms made it easy to settle in one place and the lack of current made for effortless extended viewing of the action.
I need to put it in context however that most of the stuff you are looking for/at is about the size of your finger nail. It is all these small creatures that inhabit the coral or underwater plant life that makes it so interesting. Unlike a shark or a manta ray these guys are at the other end of the viewing spectrum and there is no way you can really appreciate them without getting close and spending some time with them. I can say it is great bouancy practice and you really need a full wetsuit as you will probably have some contact with the bottom and it also turned out to be colder than i expected. In spite of being the middle of summer, the deep ocean currents that feed this area means you really cannot get away with a shortie if you want to stay warm.
If you are a photographer and want to take some pictures of small amazing sea life then this is an excellent place for you. The resort has a nice camera work are which is set up with compressed air, power charging stations, towels, and a wash tank. The boats do not have camera tanks but most of the trips to/from the dive sites are at most in the ten to fifteen minute range. The dive shop which is actually a separate operation but works closely with the resort is set up to provide photographic courses and help. I will admit that I had the smallest and least expensive camera on the boat and the majority of the visitors had very nice setups as they were there to try and get that perfect picture. I will say it did inspire me to upgrade my photo skills and equipment for a future visit!
The resort itself is small and compact and resides on a little inlet. The rooms are well maintained and most have a view of the straight. The food is excellent and clearly caters to the European visitors who expect good meals.
Also August was a great time to come as the on shore winds kept it cool and comfortable. I understand at other times of the year it can be pretty hot with no a lot of sea breeze.
Overall I found this to be a very well run operation with good service, excellent dive guides, and very good accommodations. It is more expensive than most of the other places, but you get you money's worth. I was looking for somewhere where I could do more than two dives a day and they were able to accommodate four dives without a problem.
Websites Lembeh   

Reporter and Travel

Dive Experience 101-250 dives
Where else diving Thailand, Phillipines, Maldives! Australia
Closest Airport Getting There

Dive Conditions

Weather sunny Seas calm
Water Temp 90-95°F / 32-35°C Wetsuit Thickness 3
Water Visibility 15-30 Ft/ 5-9 M

Dive Policy

Dive own profile ?
Enforced diving restrictions None just normal safety profiles
Liveaboard? no Nitrox Available? yes

What I Saw

Sharks None Mantas None
Dolphins None Whale Sharks None
Turtles None Whales None
Corals N/A Tropical Fish 3 stars
Small Critters 5 stars Large Fish N/A
Large Pelagics N/A

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

Subject Matter 5 stars Boat Facilities 4 stars
Overall rating for UWP's 5 stars Shore Facilities 5 stars
UW Photo Comments This is a place where you take that major investment in photo gear and put it to the test. It is a place where you can come back with truly amazing pictures of critters which they have in abundance.
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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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