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...Highlights: great macro life/ marine diversity...
...Ambon's diving environment: advanced and beginner divers, off the beaten track...

Dutch Ichthyologist Peter Bleaker was probably the first to demonstrate that the diving in Ambon would be something very special when in 1863 he discovered 783 species of fish, just in Ambon Bay alone.

You can put this achievement into some kind of perspective when one compares that number with, for example, the less than 700 in the whole of Thailand. His technique of cataloguing fish species at that time was to catch them with a small net; if only he'd had scuba equipment or a liveaboard dive boat! Show more

Dive Site Descriptions for Ambon

Laha - About 3 kilometres inside the bay, on the northern coast, is the best macro dive site in Ambon called Laha. The reef here consists of a slope from 2 metres deep, overgrown with a few simple corals and rubble substrate, featherstars, fire urchins and sea squirts, on a sandy bed. The slope levels off a little at 12 metres before continuing down again into Ambon Bay's murky depths.

As you make your way into deeper water from the shallows, you'll see inquisitive black-saddled tobies considering your movements, and ringtail cardinalfish lurking motionless amongst the rubble. Small orange painted frogfish can be found perched on the coral branches, and shrimpfish and white cockatoo waspfish gently sway back and forth in the light water movement. Show more

How to Dive Ambon

Although there are some dive resorts on Ambon, we recommend you join a Banda Sea liveaboard trip. That way you can enjoy diving the Ambon region together with the amazing Banda Islands.

Set in splendid isolation in the heart of the Banda Sea, the Bandas are blessed with reefs bursting with life. Pelagics, huge schools of fish, and macro diversity are the main drawcards, including dogtooth tuna and mobula rays. At many sites you'll see enormous schools of fusiliers and thousands of redtooth tirggerfish. At the other end of the scale, there are native mandarinfish and Ambon scorpionfish.

For more information on the tour routes and durations, and all the other travel information you might need to visit Indonesia, check out our Ambon liveaboard section.

Ambon Diving Season

Dive conditions in Ambon are good all year round but our Banda liveaboards season runs only in the months of February to April and during the September to November period. The island is more sheltered than other areas of the Banda Sea and can therefore be dived all year round.

Visibility is variable around Ambon and seldom exceeds 20m. At some of the muck dive sites it can be very low but, when the subjects you are viewing are only a few centimetres in front of your mask, that shouldn't be a problem.

During the dry season of October to April there is less rain and the likelihood of better visibility. During the wet season of May to September the area can experience heavy rainfall and even typhoons, although it is unlikely you will experience them if you visit during the times the Indonesian liveaboards visit there. Visit the Weather & Climate websiteOpens in a new window for more details on the climate of Ambon City.

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Where is Ambon and How Do I Get There?

Review our maps below of Ambon and its host country Indonesia. Here, you will find information on how to get to Ambon.

Map of Ambon and the Banda Islands (click to enlarge in a new window) Map of Indonesia (click to enlarge in a new window)

Reef Summary

Depth: 5 - 35m
Visibility: 5 - 15m
Currents: Gentle but can be occasionally strong
Surface conditions: Calm
Water temperature: 26 - 29°C
Experience level: Beginner - advanced
Number of dive sites: ~20
Distance: ~200 km east north west of the Banda Islands (14 hours), 280 south west of Sorong (West Papua, 15 hours)
Recommended length of stay: 5 - 6 days

Useful References

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