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Halmahera, North Maluku

DIVING IN HALMAHERA AND THE NORTHERN MOLUCCAS

Halmahera is a large, uniquely shaped island in the north of the Moluccas. Halmahera is located in the heart of the so-called coral triangle, the area with the greatest marine biodiversity in the world. Its proximity to Raja Ampat to the east and Lembeh and Bunaken to the west indicates that it will soon become a popular destination, forming one huge area of ​​great diving interest. At the moment the possibilities to visit Halmahera and the nearby islands are still limited to a few cruises or to stay in one of the few resorts present. Here are some of the most interesting areas for diving in the North Moluccas.

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Last update: April 8th, 2021

1. DIVE SITES OF HALMAHERA, TIFORE, GORAICI, BACAN AND MOROTAI

The North Maluku province is a little visited region of Indonesia, in this remote territory there are 781 islands, the main ones: Halmahera, Tifore, Ternate, Bacan, Morotai and the Goraici archipelago.

Halmahera diving map

Halmahera Diving Map

RESERVATIONS

Diving in Tifore Island

Located halfway between Sulawesi and Halmahera in open ocean waters, this island offers excellent diving on the pelagic, with the possibility of spotting gray sharks and other reef sharks and especially large schools of barracudas. There are also schools of fusiliers. Spectacular sceneries around the giant rocks that form these sea beds.

Coral reef of Halmahera   Large school of Barracuda in Halmahera

Divers diving Halmahera   Diving Halmahera coral reefs

The remote coral reefs of Halmahera offers spectacular sceneries and large school of barracuda

RESERVATIONS

Diving in Goraici Islands

This small archipelago offers beautiful coral reefs full of life, which entirely surround the islands. One of the best spots is on a coral covered wall where large pelagics can be seen crossing outside, and beautiful coral gardens on a pendant, with black tip sharks all around. Goraici also offers good macro and beautiful night spots. The fantastic white beaches are among the most beautiful in the region.

Black tip shark in Halmahera   Giant barrel sponge Halmahera

Giant gorgonia Halmahera   Species of coral in Halmahera

The dive sites of Halmahera offers coral covered wall and large pelagics, black tip shark, and other reef sharks

RESERVATIONS

Diving in Patinti Strait

It is located between the islands of Halmahera and Bacan, partly closed by the islands of Sali and Kusu, which accentuate the currents, it is ideal for pelagic, with reef sharks, tuna, mackerels. Halmahera's sites sheltered from the currents are rich in macro: shrimps, crabs, pipefish, seahorses, nudibranchs and critters and its symbiosis. The beautiful coral reefs are full of life and color.

Denise's pygmy seahorse in gorgonia in Halmahera   Hairy squat lobster in Halmahera

Shrimp living in tunicate in Halmahera   Shrimp living in anemone in Halmahera

Nudibranchs mating in Halmahera   Halmahera sea slug

Halmahera's sites sheltered from the currents are rich in macro: shrimps, crabs, pipefish, seahorses, nudibranchs and critters and its symbiosis

RESERVATIONS

Diving in Bacan

Great macro in the bays around the island, black sand and all the ingredients for great photos. Much remains to be discovered and explored.

Ribbon eel in Halmahera   Halmahera critter

Crocodile fish in Halmahera   Halmahera fire urchin

Halmahera's dive sites have all the ingredients for great photos

RESERVATIONS

Diving in Morotai

Morotai is an island north of Halmahera, famous for hosting a Japanese air base during World War II. There are still wrecks of aircraft and ships of the time. It is the emerging destination, an important tourism development is expected in the near future, linked to the beautiful coral sand beaches and diving. World war wreck diving is one of the points of interest, but there is so much more; reef sharks, mackerels, manta rays, and lots of macro. To date, about 40 sites are known in the perimeter around the island, many more will be added in the future.

Diving Weda Bay

A deep bay, facing east, until a few years ago was difficult to access due to the lack of roads. The seabed offers excellent macro and beautiful reefs. Weda is a great destination for bird watchers. The small Weda Bay resort is the only tourist facility in the area, offering diving stays and even hiking opportunities to spot hornbills, parrots and many other tropical birds.

2. DIVING SEASON IN HALMAHERA

Diving season: The region is affected by both monsoons, best period October/November and March/May. Windy weather from June to September, and the sea can be rough. Rainy season: December/February with some extra rain. Water temperature: 27-30ºC. 3 mm wetsuit, even short. Visibility: 10m-40m. Depth: 10- >45m. Currents: Strong in the straits, weak in the areas protected by the islands. Surface condition: Calm, but can be rough. Diver level experience: Diving for all levels. The drift dives are for experienced divers only. Dive sites: > 40. Recommended diving stay: 7-10 days on a cruise or in a resort.

3. HALMAHERA TRAVEL INFORMATION

Airport: Manado, Ternate, Bacan and Morotai reachable by connection from Jakarta or Manado. Climate: 27-32ºC. Tropical climate, with rain mainly from December to February. Time zone: Maluku GMT +9.

Land Excursions in Halmahera, North Maluku

View of Tidore from Ternate   Tolukko fort

Diving Halmahera: Land excursions are offered as part of your dive cruise

RESERVATIONS

4. DIVE CRUISES IN HALAMAHERA

Ondina Liveaboard

Ondina Liveaboard runs the epic trip Raja Ampat, Halmahera and Lembeh Strait. The better of Raja Ampat, Moluccas and Sulawesi in one lifetime diving trip. Book in advance this very special dive cruise that takes place only once a year: Raja Ampat and Halmahera plus Lembeh Strait

Cruises for divers in Halmahera

Enjoy your diving experience in the remote coral reef of Halmahera in North Maluku, Indonesia. Contact now a Liveaboard Specialist

RESERVATIONS

Maluku Explorer

The Maluku Explorer is the only permanent dive boat in these waters. The program includes longer cruises that visit Lembeh -Paradiso dei Critters-, then reach Tifore and then descend to Bacan. Other routes include Bacan, Goraici and the Patinti Strait.

Cruises for divers in Halmahera

A great diving experience in the remote Halmahera with Maluku Explorer. Contact now a Liveaboard Specialist

RESERVATIONS

Other Liveaboards

Occasionally other liveaboards pass Halmahera on the Raja Ampat to Sulawesi route, this is a diving cruise that offers the best of these three regions. The 700 nautical mile journey takes us through a range of different land and seascapes.

5. THE BEST RESORTS IN HALMAHERA

Sali Bay Resort

The Sali Bay Resort is located on the island of the same name, in the Patinti Strait, east of Bacan. Remote and difficult to reach, it offers exclusive living and diving, away from everything and everyone. The resort is located on a strip of sand, with a fantastic coral reef in front. Beautiful beachfront villas and also cheaper accommodation for those on a budget.

Sali Bay Resort for divers in Halmahera

Sali Bay is a surprising lodge with intact lively reef house and an ever-increasing number of dive sites, in the remote Moluccas.

RESERVATIONS

Kusu Island Resort

Kusu Island Resort is a newly opened small resort, located in the Patinti Strait, east of Bacan.

Weda Bay Resort

Weda Bay is small eco-resort in remote Weda Bay, beautiful reef and macro diving. The resort is also famous among ornithologists for the abundance of birdlife in the surrounding forest, where tours and stalking are organized.

Metita Resort Morotai

Metita Resort Morotai is a new resort for divers, the only facility in Morotai. The promises are excellent, species-rich seabeds and WWII wrecks.

Halmahera Underwater Photography

Shoal of Barracuda at Halmahera   Marine turtle at Halmahera

Wonderpus at Halmahera   Mantis shrimp at Halmahera

Longnose Hawfish at Halmahera   Halmahera's worm

Saravasti anemone fish at Halmahera   Halmahera's ghost pipefish

Halmahera's coral fish   Halmahera's coral fish

Halmahera's cleaner shrimp   Halmahera's anemone shrimp

Shrimp mimics tunicate at Halmahera   Halmahera's polyp anemone

Reserve a liveaboard or a resort to dive the remote coral reefs of Halmahera. Contact a Dive Specialist now!

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