The island of Bali has been known for its natural beauty. Known as the land of the gods or Dewata Island, Bali Island indeed has many visitors attracted to what this tropical island in the archipelagic country of Indonesia could offer. Although it may seem unlikely, diving in Bali has became one of the most sought after activities by visitors. Boasting many interesting dive sites for all kinds of divers, Bali is indeed in its way into becoming world’s top diving destinations. This, of course, is aided by its unique dive site such as one in Gili Selang.
The small island of Gili Selang lies on Bali’s furthest eastern tip and its relatively isolated location made it as a popular choice on live aboard cruises for diving in Bali. To get there, you only need 45 minutes riding from Padangbai on the east coast. In the small islet of Gili Selang there is a home for some excellent dive sites. The reefs closest to Amed have the gentlest currents in the area and are ideal for less experienced divers where they usually enter from in front of the nearby village in the protected eddy near the rock. As you drift near the island’s outer face you will find a wall covered with the beautiful soft corals. Here divers can experience some of the best Bali has to offer when it comes to macro life, and you can dive along coral covered walls, where reef sharks patrol and colorful fish approaching.
A little further down the coast from Amed, reachable with snorkeling equipment, lays a small wreck where napoleon fish, turtles, striped catfish and sting rays can be seen. And as you come near Gili Selang, the current picks up and can be very strong around the small island. The diving site around the island are located where the full force of the Indonesian Throughflow makes its presence known, where you could potentially find yourself in some of the strongest currents you could possibly imagine and exposed to the very dangerous “downdrafts”. This happens when the brute force of the Indonesian Throughflow hits the north-east flank of the island and creates a veritable maelstrom, and causes a mighty downdraft. It is recommended to have a suitable boat and staff who are used to handling divers in Gili Selang areas.
Diving in Giling Selang Island might be hard for less experienced divers. The diving site is known as “The Express” where it enjoys a similar legendary status to “the Magnet” and “the Cathedral” at Belongas Bay in South Lombok, where only “hard-core” divers seek it out as a place that will both offer challenges and thrills in equal measures.
As the current from the Indonesian Throughflow may made it dangerous, it also means that you can see beautiful soft corals, gorgonian fans, barrel sponges and bommies nourished by those nutrient rich waters here in Gili Selang. With the depth reached about 10 – 40 m, expect visibility of 20-25 m and the water temperature is between 20°C and 30°C. All the typical reef fish, bat fish, octopus, a variety of small crabs, many different nudibranches, turtles, whitetip reef sharks, tunas and mackerels can be seen. Yellow-Margin Morays, schooling Big Eye Trevally, cuttlefish, and Pygmy Seahorses can be seen on the Gorgonian sea fans. It is also rumored that the swift currents of Gili Selang attract unusual giant fishes such as trevally, grey reef sharks and the rumored hammerhead sharks.