Bunaken National Park

Bunaken National Marine Park Guide 2024

Ever thought about exploring an underwater world? Bunaken National Marine Park in Indonesia is the perfect place to be. If you are a passionate diver, trust me it is a paradise, full of colorful corals, friendly dolphins, and adorable baby turtles just making their way to the sea.

During my recent visit to Indonesia, I ended up in Bunaken National Marine Park, North Sulawesi, right in the middle of the Coral Triangle. The water was so transparent, it was easy to forget I was beneath the surface.

In Bunaken, I spent my time diving. I came up close with dolphins. Their fun-loving behavior showed me the sea’s marvels. I also went snorkeling and saw baby turtles rushing to the ocean just after hatched.

So, ready to dive in? I’ve been there, seen its wonders, and learned a lot about how we can help keep it amazing. Let me guide you through what makes Bunaken special, how you can get there, and why every visit matters.

Where is Bunaken National Marine Park Located?

Bunaken National Marine Park is in North Sulawesi, Indonesia. It is a part of a region with the world’s most diverse marine life.

The Bunaken National Marine Park is famous for diving and snorkeling because of its clear waters and rich underwater world, full of corals and fish.

Where is Bunaken National Marine Park

The park includes several islands, like Bunaken and Manado Tua, and it’s known for protecting ocean life. When you visit, your entrance fee helps keep the park beautiful and safe for its creatures.

You can see amazing sea life here—turtles, colorful fish, and even sharks. Plus, the park works hard to take care of this unique place, and by visiting, you’re helping too.

How to Get to Bunaken National Marine Park?

To get to Bunaken National Marine Park, your first step is to book a flight to Sam Ratulangi International Airport, located in Manado, the capital of North Sulawesi. You can get flights to the Bunaken from major cities in Indonesia and some international destinations.

Once you’ve landed in Manado, the next part of your journey is by sea. You can catch a boat to Bunaken from the city’s port. The ride is short and scenic.

There are different ways to get from the airport to the port, including taxis, shared minibuses, or, if you’re staying at a resort, some offer their own pick-up services which might include the boat ride to Bunaken.

The boat trip ends with your arrival at Bunaken Island, where you’re ready to start your underwater adventure. It does not matter if you’re there for the diving, the snorkeling, or just to soak in the breathtaking natural beauty. Bunaken is a place that will capture your heart.

Some Additional Tips

  • Always check schedules for the boat ride.
  • Also, weather can affect crossings, so keep an eye on the forecast.
  • For the boat ride, it’s easier to travel light. Just bring what you need for your stay.

How is the Water of Bunaken National Marine Park?

The water at Bunaken National Marine Park is really clear and warm, perfect for seeing all the colorful fish and corals.

On clear days, you can see up to 30 meters (100 feet) deep, which is amazing for diving or just snorkeling. The water temperature feels just right, staying between 27°C and 30°C (80°F to 86°F), so you won’t get too cold while swimming.

How is The Water of Bunaken National Marine Park

People love coming to Bunaken for its beautiful underwater views. It’s in a special part of the ocean called the Coral Triangle, known for having lots of different sea life. You can spot everything from small, bright fish to bigger sea creatures like turtles and sharks.

Bunaken’s warm, clear water makes it a great place for everyone, whether you love diving deep or just want to snorkel near the surface. It’s like entering a whole new world under the sea.

Best Time to Visit Bunaken National Marine Park

The best time to visit Bunaken National Marine Park is during the dry season, which is from May to September.

From May to September, you can experience lots of sunshine and the clearest water for diving and snorkeling so you have the best views of the underwater world.

However, since this is also the peak season, expect it to be busier and the weather to be quite warm.

Even though the dry season is ideal, Bunaken can be visited all year round. The wet season runs from November to March, and while visibility might slightly reduce, the marine park remains open for diving and other activities.

So, if you prefer avoiding crowds and don’t mind a bit of rain, the wet season could also be a good time to visit.

Famous Diving Points At Bunaken National Marine Park

Bunaken National Marine Park in Indonesia covers over 890 square kilometers, mostly underwater, around five islands. It offers diverse diving experiences, from coral-encrusted walls to rare marine creatures, making it a hotspot for biodiversity.

#1. Sachiko’s Point

Sachiko’s Point in Bunaken National Marine Park is a top dive spot known for its steep wall and diverse marine life. It’s great for all levels of divers and offers clear visibility, often over 30 meters.

It is location at North-east side of Bunaken Island and it has a Dive Depth of 10-25 meters, suitable for beginners to advanced divers. You can expect to see tunas, angelfishes, turtles, and even sharks.

Sachiko’s Point is especially noted for its vibrant corals, large gorgonians in deeper areas, and the chance to swim with large pelagic fish and turtles.

#2. Celah-Celah Point

Celah Celah is another dive point near Bunaken Island. It is ideal for both day and night dives. It’s known for its large caves and exceptional hard and soft corals.

Celah Celah point is highly recommended for macro observation and photography, particularly during night dives. You can enjoy light currents and visibility over 30m.

Celah Celah is accessible from the shore and is celebrated for its amazing fish life and spectacular topography.

#3. Barracuda Point

Barracuda Point is a renowned dive site within the Bunaken National Marine Park, celebrated for its vibrant marine life and stunning underwater landscapes. This dive spot is famous for:

Barracuda Point offers a quintessential dive experience with its dynamic underwater environment which makes it a must-visit for those diving in Bunaken National Marine Park.

Always check with local dive operators for the latest conditions and dive arrangements.

#4. Alung Banua Point

Alung Banua Point in Bunaken National Marine Park is known for its vertical wall filled with cracks, crevices, and small caves. It’s a sheltered reef top with a variety of hard corals, making it an excellent spot for macro photography and night dives.

Alung Banua point is perfect for advanced divers, offering amazing fish life and light currents, with visibility that can astonish divers. For more details, visit Divezone’s page on Alung Banua.

#5. Mandolin Point

Mandolin Point is a renowned dive site in Bunaken National Marine Park, famous for its wall that descends into the deep with large steps and numerous small caves. It’s recognized for its diverse sea life and is ideal for advanced divers seeking thrilling underwater landscapes.

#6. Raymond’s Point

Raymond’s Point in Bunaken National Marine Park is another famous point for its vertical wall and strong currents, ideal for drift dives. Raymond’s Point features a large cave and vibrant coral life, making it a fantastic spot for photography.

It’s suited for advanced divers due to the conditions. Divers can expect to see a variety of sea life, including angel fish and lion fish. Visibility can exceed 30 meters, offering an exceptional underwater experience.

#7. Mike’s Point

Lastly, Mike’s Point in Bunaken National Marine Park is a striking amphitheatre-shaped wall covered in massive black corals and giant gorgonians.

It is known for its strong currents, this site offers advanced divers a chance to see reef sharks, eagle rays, and occasionally, large Silvertip Sharks.

Visibility often exceeds 30 meters, providing an exceptional diving experience all year round.

Final Thoughts On Bunaken National Marine Park

I hope this guide helps you plan an amazing trip. My visit was unforgettable, filled with clear waters, friendly dolphins, and baby turtles. Plus, the diving spots like Sachiko’s Point and Barracuda Point were incredible.

Remember to plan ahead to make the most of your trip. Here’s a quick reminder of what I covered: diving, snorkeling, the beautiful marine life, and how visiting helps protect this special place.

My adventure was just one way to experience Bunaken. You’ve got the freedom to discover it your way. Whether you’re diving into the deep or enjoying the view, Bunaken is waiting for you.

FAQs Related to Bunaken National Marine Park

Can non-divers enjoy Bunaken National Marine Park?

Yes, non-divers can enjoy the marine beauty of Bunaken through snorkeling. The park offers clear waters filled with colorful marine life, and visitors often have the chance to see whales and dolphins.

How can tourists contribute to the conservation of Bunaken?

Visitors can support conservation efforts by practicing responsible marine tourism, such as not touching or removing any marine life, using reef-safe sunscreen, disposing of trash properly, and supporting local businesses committed to sustainable practices​​.

What kind of marine life can you expect to see in Bunaken?

Bunaken is home to over 70% of all fish species in the Indo-Western Pacific Ocean, including colorful coral gardens, reef sharks, sea turtles, and a variety of tropical fish​​.

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