Established in 1980, Komodo National Park was designated a Biosphere Reserve under the UNESCO Man & Biosphere Program and became a World Heritage Site in 1991 offers stunning Komodo diving opportunities...
The Komodo National Park is composed by the two larger islands, Komodo and Rinca and about 80 smaller islets... The park hosts one of the richest marine environments including coral reefs, mangroves, seagrass beds, seamounds and semi enclosed bays where there has been registered more than 1,000 species of fish, 260 species of reef building coral and 70 species of sponge... Sea turtles and marine mammals live in the waters of Komodo, and passing whales are also spotted... If Komodo's underwater delights were not enough, there is also the 3 meters long lizard walking around Rinca, Kode and Komodo, looking like something coming straight from the age of the dinosaurs... For many divers Komodo offers the best diving in Indonesia and right up there with the leading dive destinations in the world...
Komodo boast stunning scenery both above and below water due to its unique volcanic geology... The Komodo archipelago is a dramatic hilly landscape of wild Savannah and some patches of forest, blue lagoons, and white, pink and red sandy beaches that host some of the most spectacular underwater scenery in the world...
DIVING THE ACHIPELAGO
Komodo has a reputation, many dive sites sometimes strong and unpredictable currents… Water temperatures change often and are sometimes far below the usual 28°C you will find in other parts of the Indonesian archipelago… In the southern area of Komodo National Park water temperatures may be as low as 19°C
The Southern waters generally provide better visibility from December through April… Lower visibility occurs in the South during the dry season when oceanic up welling and plankton blooms, attracts a wealth of marine life to Komodo, especially invertebrates… Highest temperatures in the south are during the rainy season.
DIVE TRIP HIGHLIGHTS
Swept by fierce currents rich in nutrients, the waters of Komodo are a unique sanctuary of marine life offering fantastic underwater experiences for divers... There is nearly a guarantee to see big pelagic species (manta rays, sharks and more)... Komodo offers world class diving with an amazing variety of sites that include pinnacles, caves, wall diving, coral gardens, and quiet bays ideals for macro photographers looking for rare marine life...
The islands host a large amount of wild animals including buffalo, deer, wild pigs, flying lizards, tropical birds, sea eagles and of course the world famous Komodo dragon (Varanus Komodoensis), the biggest existing lizard on the planet, reaching a staggering 3 meters in length and 200 kilos in weight and looking just like it has just walked straight from the age of the dinosaurs... It is a true sign of the remoteness of Komodo National Park that the Komodo dragon only became known to the western world in 1912... All cruises include a short trek inland to spot the dragons...
Another must is flying fox spectacle that occurs at the sunset. You will see thousands of Kalong, the giant bat of the fruit, emerging from the mangrove island of Kalong in Flores before flying towards the island of Rinca in the Komodo Archipelago.
The sample Komodo liveaboard diving itinerary below highlights what you can expect on one of our cruises within Komodo National Park. Please note that each cruise is unique and subject to change; navigation and dive sites may vary due to weather conditions, currents, waves and visibility. Exact routes for each cruise will be organised in accordance with the weather forecast for that region. Strong currents or wind and limited visibility for example, may mean that the exact location and/or timing of planned dives may be altered on safety grounds and to suit local conditions. It is always possible to discuss and agree on alternative itineraries following consultation with the Captain and other guests.
DAY 1 | Embarkation in Labuan Bajo (2 Dives)
We will pick you up either at your hotel or Labuan Bajo Airport and take you to the harbour where our crew will welcome you onboard Calico Jack. Following refreshments and a short tour of the ship, you will be briefed on safety, the diving operations, and life onboard. We will set sail at approximately midday (or when the last guest has boarded) and navigate in the direction of Sebayur where you will have a check dive near Sebayur Kecil. You will also have your first night dive of the trip close to the island.
DAY 2 | North Komodo Strait (4 Dives)
Following a light breakfast, you will dive at Batu Bolong (Hollow Rock); a world-class dive site in the North of the Komodo Strait. The dramatic underwater landscape with its great walls is home to an incredible variety of sea life and corals. Sharks, giant trevallies, turtles, barracudas and napoleon wrasse are spotted here frequently. Later in the day, you will enjoy a colourful drift dive at Tatawa Besar, a site renowned for its profusion of soft orange corals. You will then dive at Tatawa Kecil, a beautiful coral garden with brisk currents, an unspoiled reef and unsurpassed topography consisting of boulders, walls, overhangs and caves. This site is home to vast numbers of groupers, snappers and trevallies. You will conclude the day with a night dive in this area if conditions are favourable.
DAY 3 | South Komodo Strait (4 Dives)
Early in the morning, you will dive the south side of Batu Bolong. As with the north, this site is one of the most unforgettable within the Komodo archipelago. You will then dive Siaba Kecil; a drift dive running through the incredible canyons which lie 15 - 30 metres deep. The canyons themselves are home to big pelagic species which include sharks, barracudas and schools of trevallies and sweetlips. This area is also home to many turtles. Your third dive will be at Siaba Besar; a unique coral garden reminiscent of an underwater playground. Beautiful satellite reefs grow in this protected bay and a short swim across the sand will allow you to view many di erent species of hard coral. As this site is a sheltered bay with a shallow reef, juvenile shes and a diverse range of rare species can be seen. These include dugongs, silver tip sharks, ornate ghost pipe sh, frog sh and octopus. You will have the chance to experience a night dive in this area if conditions are favourable.
DAY 4 | Gili Lawa (4 Dives)
Early in the morning, we sail north to Gili Lawa, where you will dive the incredible sites of Cauldron & Golden Passage. Both are action-packed drift dives in channels located between 2 islands. These sites are particularly impressive for experiencing Komodo’s famous currents. Here you will find a vast array of marine life as well as spectacular underwater topography. The brisk currents bring in schools of giant trevallies, groupers, turtles, white tip reef sharks and occasionally, manta rays. In the afternoon, you will dive at Coral Garden; a site brimming with beautiful corals, turtles and frog fish. In the evening, we will trek to the famous Gili Lawa viewpoint where you will be treated to a spectacular sunset looking out over the rugged mountains and landscape of the Komodo’s. You will also experience a night dive in this area if conditions are favourable.
DAY 5 | Rinca Island (2 Dives)
You will begin the day diving at the world-class sites of Crystal & Castle Rock. These sites boast a profusion of marine life with over 1,000 species of fish and 300 different types of coral. Various types of sharks hunt giant trevallies and clouds of fusiliers, tuna, giant groupers, and occasionally dolphins, are found at these sites. Whilst enjoying lunch, we will navigate south to Rinca Island where you will experience a ‘Dragon Walk’ to see the last representatives of the Jurassic Period on earth; the infamous Komodo Dragon. At sunset, we set sail for Flying Fox Island where every evening at dusk, thousands of fruit bats can be seen returning to the island of Rinca. For dinner, you will be indulged by one of Calico’s famous beach BBQ’s. The crew will entertain and socialise with you, have a playful a game of soccer or jam with their guitars and bongos. Our chef will serve up a delicious BBQ as you enjoy a cool drink reclined on a plush beanbag adorned across the beach.
DAY 6 | Disembarkation in Labuan Bajo
After breakfast and the last exchange of photos and memories, the crew and Calico Jack will say our fondest farewell’s and transport you either to your hotel or airport.
We are look forward to having you on board!
The Calico Jack Team
You will experience first-rate diving on our cruises. Our professional and experienced instructors and guides provide you with thorough briefing of the dive site before each dive as well as supervision on every dive. Our diving platform allows for easy embarkation and our two outboards (including 1 Yamaha speedboat affectionately named Ferrari, the other Lamborghini) take you directly to the open sea dive sites. With 2 compressors on board, you can expect to complete 3 to 4 dives per day, with alternating night dives. We also have full sets of high quality diving equipment available for rental. There is a hot shower on deck to rinse off easily before and/or after each excursion. Snorkelers are encouraged to join our trips as we make sure to offer a variety of explorative options for all of our guests. The abundance and diversity of coral species and the healthy of reef life ensure some of the most unparalleled diving and snorkelling in the world.
Species you will meet
Barracudas, Surgeonfishes, Bumphead parrot fishes, Trevallies and giant trevallies, spafefishes. Napoleon wrasse, Wobbegon, Tunas, Bonitos, Waow, Manta rays, Mobulas, Seahorse, frogfish, leaf fish, Scorpion fish. Black corals forests, Gorgonian fields, Soft corals.
Currents are consistent on a number of dives while some others are really quiet. Some dives on reefs or pinnacles have to be done on the current exposed side in order to enjoy the best fish life and can therefore be slightly “sporty”. Our dive guides always check the current conditions before the dive and will inform you of the conditions. A reef hook is recommended.
Number of dives
In the course of our diving cruises you will enjoy 3 dives/day with alternating night dives.
The average visibility is 15-20 meters but may be lower in some specific areas or for short periods.
Diving experience required
Advanced level PADI/CMAS Level 2 or higher, with a minimum of 50 logged dives in the sea.
Water temperature is 28-29 °C in the all area.