After leaving Nusa Lembongan my next dive destination was Tulamben located in the north eastern region of Bali. Tulamben is north of the Nusa Islands. However, before I headed to Tulamben, I decided to spend a few days in Seminyak at the Dash Hotel. Note, there might be a more efficient way to travel from Nusa Lembongan to Tulamben. Nonetheless, it was relativity cheap to travel so “fuck it” – I’m on vacation / holiday.
The Dash Hotel Seminyak Bali is probably the most eclectic hotel I’ve lodged. The hotel is super stylish with a bit of fun kinkiness. Each room has custom iron furnishings, graffiti artwork and retro industrial chic light fixtures. I booked a deluxe room which faces the main street and had a balcony with a mannequin attached to it.
My iphone photos really don’t do justice. But this is a fun and unique hotel. My room was pretty quiet and clean. The hotel staff is professional like any other chain hotel.
After a few nights, my next and final dive destination in Bali was Tulamben. I lodged and dive with the team at the Bali Dive Resort and Spa. The Resort is about a 2 ½ hour drive from Seminyak. I travel by private car and it was quite scenic along the route. We drove along the coast and later drove around rice fields and villages until we got to the resort. Bali Dive Resort and Spa can organize your pick-up if do not wish to organize on your own.
The Bali Dive Resort and Spa is actually located in Karangasem, Bali Indonesia. Check-in was seamless and quick. I booked a Superior Deluxe room which included a private pool just in front of the door. This was perfect for a quick dip in between or after daily dives. My room was quite spacious with a comfortable bed, couch, TV, refrigerator and a comfortable desk area for editing images. The furniture was slightly beat up, but I’m here for diving so I wasn’t looking for 5-star accommodations.
The on-premise dive operation was quite accommodatable. The dive shop offers a very flexible schedule since most of the dives are from shore. The system is quite simple, we discussed how many dives we would like to execute on a specific day; which marine creatures we would like to see; and which sites we would like to visit. The scuba diving operation has several small pickup trucks which have seats in the rear which deliver divers to dive sites. The majority of the sites are 5-30 minutes away. During the surface interval – tea, coffee and snacks are offered. There is always one pickup truck waiting after your dive. It a super convenient and an efficient system.
The first dive we did was on the house reef. The house reef is filled Nudibranch’s Frogfish, Stingrays, Anomefish, etc. A great location for simple, long and exciting checkout dives. Each day I was assigned to a different dive guide. The dive groups were very mall. The largest group I was in had 3 divers plus the dive guide. There were a few days the guides took me out alone at no extra charge. This was fantastic for the aspiring underwater photographer and videographer.
All of the dive guides I was assigned were excellent. One of the guides suggested I wake up super earlier to find the Bumphead Parrotfish at the Liberty wreck. He predicted there would a high amount of Bumphead Parrotfish and less divers than later in the morning/day. He was right! I took the video below between 4-6am. When we got to the dive site in the early morning, it was still pitch black and the area has low light pollution.
Another highlight of my trip to Tulamben was observing a Ribbon Eel swimming by me.
I was pretty much tired from a few late nights in Semiyak so I didn’t explore the surrounding villages as I would have liked. However, the Bali Dive Resort & Spa provided a quite relaxing atmosphere. And the sports massages in the spa was perfect after a few days of multiple dives. I would definitely return for more diving, relaxing and exploration.