A manta ray emerges in blue fog. Manta Point, Nusa Penida. Bali.

The ballet of mantas

  Indonesia: Bali - July 2008

Dear English-speaking readers, this page is an automatic translation made from a post originally written in French. My apologies for any strange sentences and funny mistakes that may have been generated during the process. If you are reading French, click on the French flag below to access the original and correct text: 

Oh, dear! Not yet had the time to tell all my dives in Amed, that already, I attack those of Nusa Lembongan. And no half measures: I take you directly to Manta Point!


First splash this morning, early in the morning, in cold water... !!!! Here, terrible thermoclines turn divers into little ice cubes.

Well, I'm exaggerating a bit, I must be the only one to get out of the water with purple lips. I left my too thin suit in my bag and borrowed a suit from the center World DivingIt's thicker than mine. But it's a bit wide (it's a XS) and lets cold water flow through. I think I'll put another shorti underneath. Brrr. Here, the water goes down to 20°C...

Manta Point

But... it's worth getting up at dawn to immerse yourself in cold water in a neoprene suit, not even your size. At Manta Point, an aptly named site, south of Nusa Penida, the neighboring island of Lembongan, the manta rays were there.

A manta ray emerges in blue fog. Manta Point, Nusa Penida. Bali.

In spite of a bad view (thermoclines + plankton), we saw them. The mantas so graceful, which seem to fly more than swim, with their slow but powerful flapping of wings, er... fins.

However, I am not very optimistic at the beginning of the dive. We spend the first quarter of hour in a freezing water, to turn around rocks without too much life, and still nothing... At the end of about twenty minutes, we zap on another rock, and the first "ding-ding" of the dive-masters knocking on their tank make us turn the head.

Yes! There they are, the beautiful, majestic mantas, circling around the rock in a never-ending ballet.

But it is a real suspense, because of the lack of visibility. We scan the bluish fog as long as we can, watching for the black triangle of a fin, an elongated profile... And I must say that we completely forget the cold when a new manta appears. The heart beats suddenly faster, we find the energy to swim, to get closer, a little bit closer!

It is always at the last moment that we see them appearing, at low depth, most of the time in less than 10 meters. Superb spectacle, which leaves me enchanted.

Crystal Bay

Relaxation on the sun deck of the World Diving boat, between two dives. Nusa Lembogan, Bali.
Relaxation on the sun deck of the World Diving boat, between two dives.

We are less fortunate Crystal Bay, a pretty white sand cove with coconut palms, still in Penida, supposed to house molas-molas, the famous moonfish.

Crystal Bay

They are surely in the corner, but despite better visibility and a warmer water, you can not find them. My guide Wayan scans the blue, in vain.

We crossed a sandy area until another portion of the reef, but still nothing... Too bad, I comforted myself by photographing a moray eel, on the way back, on the reef, in 12 meters. A nice fishy aquarium. Nice atmosphere, nice trip, but everybody was a bit disappointed.


Never mind, I'll be back!

  Indonesia: Bali - July 2008

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  1. Ces murènes……beurk…..Vraiment,je ne les aime pas,elles sont effrayantes et moches!!!!!Bisous!!!!Ici,juste quelques mini oursins…..mais faut dire que je ne m’aventure pas très loin……Suis un peu trouillarde…….Rebisous!!!!

  2. Bon,je quitte Koufounissi…..Je ne sais pas quand je trouverai une prochaine connexion internet….Alors,d’ici là……J’espère que tu écriras plein de nouvelles aventures que j’ai plein de lecture si je trouve un “HOTSPOT” ……
    I kiss you hard ... .. 8)

  3. Mais non, elles sont sympas les murenes… Elles ont un physique ingrat, mais ce n’est pas leur faute. Moi je les aime bien !!!

    Enjoy your holidays in Greece (with or without Hotspot)!


  4. coucou, je viens de faire un tour sur ton site ce soir et je vois que tu es de nouveau au soleil!! veinarde! Tes photos sont toujours aussi belles, il faut que je retourne sur ton site demain pour regarder tout cela de plus prêt , pour s’évader du boulot et te voler un peu de soleil qui nous manque en ce mois de juillet!
    @ more
    laurence 8)

  5. Hello Laurence!

    Ravie que Petites Bulles d’Ailleurs t’apporte un peu d’evasion… C’est le but!

    Oui, je suis une sacree veinarde d’etre a nouveau en Asie… Je suis en ce moment a Nusa Lembogan, petite ile au sud de Bali. Plongees sportives (courants et thermoclimes), mais ca vaut la peine, surtout quand on croise de grosses bebetes sympathiques comme les mantas…

    Helas, j’ai encore rate les molas-molas aujourd’hui!!! Grrr. Enfin bon, je ne vais pas commencer a me plaindre…

    See you soon!