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Busy days over here in Bali!

Hello again ladies and gentleman,

Sorry it’s been so long since my last post. I’ve spent the last 2 days getting over a brutal fever, nothing that 20 hours of sleep and bed rest can’t mend. As usual things have been busy over here in Bali, although nobody’s really complaining when a busy day consists of a full day of diving in crystal clear waters spotting such vast variations of life forms enough to keep you approaching each day with excitement of what new creatures and critters you may discover while roaming through the deep blue seas of Bali.

Over the past week as many of you probably have heard, Blue Season Bali has launched the second wave of their Best Dive Job in the World Contest. It’s great to see the enthusiasm of this year’s contestant’s so far and I’m sure as the contest goes on, things will only get better. I must say, it is quite a relief to be on the other side of things, as last year I was right in the thick of things trying to show the world and BSB I was the right person for the job. Although the anticipation and suspense almost killed me, I can truly say it was all so totally worth it. So… to all the new contestants if you truly want to live the dream and experience the time of your life, put yourself out there, show some initiative and do your part to preserve the ever depleting ocean world and finally, show the world through creativity, passion & determination why you should be crowned the next Best Dive Job winner!

Anyways, like I mentioned before it has been a little while since my last blog. Part of that reason is because a couple friends and I took a little trip to the Gili islands. We set up camp at Gili Trawangan one of the 3 Gili islands and I’ll follow this blog up with the tale of how the Gilis went as that requires a totally separate blog. So stay tuned!

For now I’ll talk about diving in Tulamben as it is something us over here in Bali do quite frequently and I think many people start taking it for granted. For me I don’t think this could ever happen because it’s an incredible dive site that people all over the world put near the top of their diving destinations. Here is why…

From Sanur it’s about a 2 hour drive. On this drive you start by observing the chaotic streets of Bali but gain some appreciation that although the streets don’t seem to really have any rules, everything runs smoothly and accidents are a very rare occurrance. The second wave of the drive takes you around some mountains where you can observe some beautiful rice patties and on a cloudless day you get a great view of Mt Agung the volcano that when erupting in 1963 sent the famous and at the time beached USAT Liberty ship off shore to later become a world famous wreck dive. There are several great dive sites in Tulamben some of the favourites being Coral Garden, Seraya’s Secret a great muck diving site, Drop Off a spectacular wall dive, Amed and of course the USAT liberty wreck. Usually on day tours we start off with the wreck and after some lunch and our surface interval we move over to Coral Garden. These 2 sites offer great variety and are literally right next to each other. From the entry point the wreck is to the left and coral garden is on the right which makes for easy access to both and satisfaction for all. Since being out here I’ve only heard stories of the elusive giant green turtle which roams the wreck as well as the pigmy seahorses which call a nearby sea fan their home. Finally, after 2 months of searching, 2 days ago on the same dive I found both. What a triumphant feeling that was. The wreck also is home to a huge family of schooling jacks as well as a massive moray eel, a patch of garden eels, leafy scorpion fish and hundreds of other species of invertebrates and vertebrates. It never gets old.

Coral Garden has come to be one of my favourite dive sites in Bali, first off because it’s the only dive site that I’ve seen a shark (blacktip) on since coming to Bali. But also it is a fairly shallow dive; the majority stretches between 9 and 5 meters depth and goes on for ages. There are 2 artificial reefs along the way one in the shape of an airplane which are home to several lion fish. The shallow depth increases dive time which gives you ample time to find things like octopus, nudibranch, ribbon eels, spotted eels, cleaning shrimp and several others. I experienced another first the other day when local guide Putu showed us the home of an Onix Ghost Pipe Fish. Truly fascinating when you see something so small yet so intricate and adaptive to such a small patch of coral it calls home. So if you’re planning a trip to Bali and find yourself torn between the choice to dive in Tulamben, Nusa Penida, Padang Bai or the several other choice dive sites Bali has to offer, really you can’t go wrong with any of them. Personally, I recommend you reserve enough time to do them all. You won’t be dissapointed!

Until next time take care everybody and keep checking the Best Dive Job facebook page for contest updates and prize giveaways!

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