Snorkeling in Bunaken Marine Park & Bangka Island
The walls and reefs in the Bunaken National Marine Park are amongst the world’s most highly-rated snorkel destinations. Around Bangka Island in particular, you’ll find amazing soft coral gardens. Fortunately, you don’t have to be a diver to experience them; snorkelers can admire the beauty of these amazing marine eco-systems as well. The combination of shallow reef tops with staggering bio-diversity, over 1000 species of fish and more than 600 types of coral, means you will never run out of new and wonderful things to see. While snorkeling in the park, float over coral gardens while looking into the deep abyss for marine mammals swimming below. Frequent turtle sightings and schools of reef fish are common. Bangka Island reefs teem with fish life, watch masses of schooling fish speed by busily heading off somewhere only they know. Small damselfish and reef fish swim in the currents bringing to mind colorful confetti shimmering in the water. Maybe you’ll be very lucky and catch a glimpse of the elusive Dugongs that live in the waters of North Sulawesi. It’s not unusual for marine mammals to be seen on the boat rides to and from the resorts. It all adds up to a snorkeling trip you will remember for a lifetime. New to snorkeling? No problem, we offer free snorkel lessons! Scroll down to the bottom of this page for details.
Snorkeling Manado & Day Trips to Bunaken’s Coral Reefs
Our Manado House Reef has easy accessibility and generally flat seas with a patched reef slope. Snorkelers have the possibility of seeing Octopi, blue & black Ribbon Eels, various reef fish and coral bommies.
Boat trips to Bunaken National Marine Park (based on share with dive boat)
Guests are also welcome to join the dive boat to snorkel if the planned dive sites are suitable for snorkelers. A usual day of snorkeling on our shared dive boat to Bunaken National Park and Manado Bay starts at 8:30am, when you board our comfortable dive boats and journey to your first site. During transit to the second site, you will be offered a snack (e.g. fruit and biscuit) and a choice of coffee, tea, or water. Your snorkel usually starts around 11:15am and snorkel times usually last around 60 minutes. Lunch is served onboard after your second snorkel. Afterwards, you can relax on the bow, take in the sun on the roof or go for a swim. For our third dive we usually head back towards Manado Bay for a critter dive, at this time you can request to return to the resort or snorkel looking for critters.
Top 3 Sites for Snorkeling Around Bunaken National Park:
Snorkeling the Bangka House Reef
The House Reef is wonderful for snorkeling because of its easy accessibility, generally flat seas and shallow, healthy coral reefs abundant with fish life. Snorkelers have the possibility of seeing colorful soft corals and a large assortment of reef fish and marine animals.
Boat Trips to Outlying Sites near Bangka (based on share with dive boat)
Guests are also welcome to join the dive boat to snorkel if the planned dive sites are suitable for snorkelers. A usual day of snorkeling on our shared dive boat to sites around Bangka starts at 8am, and the first two snorkels of the day follow the same schedule as for Bunaken. However, after everyone is up from the second dive we’ll head back to Murex Bangka for lunch. The next boat snorkel opportunity departs a 2:30pm. You may join the morning trip, the afternoon trip, or all three.
Special Trips to Pulisan
One of the world’s best snorkeling opportunities exists across the strait that separates Bangka from the tip of Sulawesi at a site called Batu Mandi. Once, a weekend getaway for Dr. Sander Batuna and affectionately known as Pulisan beach, our guests have exclusive access to both beaches and use of the simple dwellings. Join the dive boat and jump in with your mask and snorkel or get a group together and go for a day trip with lunch on the beach.
Top 3 Sites for Snorkeling around Bangka:
How to Book
Snorkeling gear is available for rent for our House Reefs! To arrange shared boat snorkeling excursions with snorkel gear, guide included, please speak with reservations or the Resort Supervisor for pricing. Private snorkel trips should be arranged with reservations in advance to ensure availability; pricing will be quoted at time of booking. Last-minute requests should be made through the Resort Supervisor and is subject to availability.
Free Snorkel Lesson
We understand that not all of our guests feel confident enough to go off and snorkel by themselves. To help you with this we offer a free snorkeling lesson included in every accommodation package booked for Murex Manado and / or Murex Bangka. You will be taught essential techniques such as how to keep your mask from fogging and how to fix it if it does; how to breathe from and clear your snorkel; and how to properly use your fins. After the lesson you will get a thorough briefing about our house reef, and off you’ll go! Quickly you will master the simple skills you learned and then you will be ready to go on the boat where you can snorkel carefree over shallow reef flats that teem with life and walls that drop into the abyss. Go to our reservations page or click on the banner below if you would like to book your Bangka Holiday and free snorkel lesson!