Once known as The Spice Islands, Banda Islands sit in the centre of the Banda Sea, and are an extremely remote part of Indonesia. Therefore, the lack of development and pollution ensure excellent diving opportunities. In addition, the seabed is in places several kilometres below the surface in this seismically-active region. The marine life around the Banda Islands is truly remarkable, and benefits from nutrient-rich undersea currents and lots and lots of space to flourish. Pelagic fish and mammals visit on their migratory routes and thousands of fish and invertebrate species call the area home. Sloping reefs, gentle and steep walls and shallow bays are accessible for diving and snorkelling, making the area absolutely world class. Nearby the Lucipara Atolls are where local turtles nest year after year. Although there’s never a guarantee of something big or special, large sharks and whales are commonly reported by divers, fishermen, and those who spend their days on the decks of boats.
The most common diving around Banda Islands is by liveaboard cruise, but there are some day trip options available as the islands’ infrastructure and popularity grow. The best times of year to dive at The Banda Islands is March & April, and September to November. Diving at other times is possible, but the waves and currents can make it less enjoyable.
Getting there – Even though it’s out in the middle of nowhere, Banda’s main island (Bandaneira) has an airport which receives several domestic flights per day. Travellers can also arrive on slow public ferry or by private speedboat from Maluku, Ambon or even Sorong.