Located just away from the mainland of East Kalimantan in the district of Berau, the Derawan archipelago consists of 31 islands. the most well-known islands being Derawan, Maratua, Sangalaki and Kakaban. Here is Indonesia’s largest nesting site of the rare and endangered giant green turtles and hawksbill turtles. It is the perfect tropical paradise with warm, isolated islands, soft white sand beaches fringed with waving palm trees, pristine seas that change color from green to deep blue, and an amazing underwater life.
The diving offers abundant marine life with a huge variety of coral reef dives, caves, walls, and lagoons, including a jellyfish lake visit. watch this awesome video to give you a grest feel for what it would be like to dive in Derawan Archipelago!.
MARINE LIFE & ENVIRONMENT
The amazing underwater life includes giant turtles, dolphins, manta rays, barracudas, stingless jellyfish and sometimes, whales. You can also find 460 different species of corals, which makes this area ranks second only to the Raja Ampat Islands in West Papua. The Nature Conservancy and a team of international experts found more than 870 species of fish here, ranging from tiny pygmy seahorses to Whale Shark dan giant manta rays.
Water Temperature : About 28°C (82°F) year round
Visibility : Avenrages about 20m
Weather : 23-32ºC (73-90°F)
Here are some of the diving highlights around the Derawan Islands!
Kakaban Island - Kakaban is known for the non-stinging jellyfish lake, located in the middle of the island and a brisk 15-minute walk. The non-stinging jellyfish have vacated the lake for centuries as there are known predators. The outer ring of Kakaban island offers divers a wide variety of dive sites that includes corals, large pelagic and thrilling caves. The most famous area is Barracuda Point which has schooling barracuda which are visited by large tuna and sharks.
Sangalaki Island - This area is famous for the large population of turtles and manta rays year round and guests will frequently see them feeding. The island has a turtle nursery run by the local government which can be visited. Whale sharks are frequently seen off the coast of the island.
Maratua Island - Some of the favorite dives are "The Channel" and "Big Fish Country" which has tornados of barracuda, grey reef sharks, thresher sharks, loads of turtles and schooling eagle rays schooling.
Derawan Island & Panjang Island - This is an area known for amazing macro life such as Satomi pygmies, sea dragons, ghost pipefish, frogfish, blue ring octopus, harlequin shrimp and tiger shrimp. This is a macro haven with the weird and wonderful.
HOW TO GET THERE
To reach Derawan, You can take a flight from Jakarta, Surabaya or Denpasar to Balikpapan Then take a connecting flight to Tanjung Redeb in Berau. From here, the first needed 2 hours by car to arrive at Tanjung Batu harbor and then cross over using a speed boat for 30 minutes to get to Derawan Island