Sangalaki Manta Paradise in Derawan Islands, East Kalimantan Province
Both local and foreign tourists have recognized the beauty of Derawan Archipelago. One of the best islands is called Sangalaki and it is considered famous for its Manta Ray. That means tourists are able to get in the sea and swim with such majestic creature. Apart from enjoying snorkeling, Sangalaki is also suitable for a family recreation and photography. With all those attractions, it is likely tourists won’t miss the chance to explore both the land and sea, residing in such region. They even have the chance conduct island hopping to nearby islands!
For those who want to enjoy snorkeling with Manta Ray, their destination should be the Manta Point. The location is near to the resort, so tourists can reach it without hassles. The color of the sea is dark blue, indicating a deep ocean. Once tourists get in the water, they are able to see some beautiful mantas swimming underwater. Apart from such creatures, there are also colorful small fishes swimming near to the corals. All of them are seen clearly, as the visibility of the water is quite excellent. Not to mention the water is warm and comfortable.
Exploring Manta Point
Here is the fact. Mantas that live in Sangalaki Manta Point have a smaller body than those of other islands. Despite the small size, tourists should not be careless when getting near those creatures. In fact, the boat that they ride should not cause havoc or big waves in the location. That means the boat should come slowly, so it doesn’t disturb any manta rays. According to the locals, the most recommended speed when entering Sangalaki Manta Point is 5 knots! This explains why tourists must come with a professional boat service.
Now, it is time to get in the water. Instead of coming alone, it is better to hire an instructor. That person will be the guide when exploring Manta Point, after all. He also gives some safety tips to clients regarding how to approach the creatures. For example, he may tell the best distance between divers and mantas, which is about 3 meters. The next tip is related to the characteristic of manta rays. The fact is that the creature is quite sensitive to strangers. It is not recommended to approach them from behind. Instead, it is safer to come slowly from its sides.
Any wild animals can smell fear and panic, actually. That means divers should not make any sudden moves, as these may cause discomfort to them. Being playful is not recommended either. What tourists should do is to remain calm when getting near mantas. As an alternative, they are allowed to take some pictures of the creatures. They must not use the flash feature, though. Also, it is better to use a good camera, as it has a significant impact on the result.
- Barracuda Point
- Coral Garden Diving Spot
- Sangalaki Beach
How to Get There
From Balikpapan City, travelers can take a minibus to Berau District. To be exact, their destination is Tanjung Batu Port, which takes about 3 hours. Once they reach the port, it is time to rent a speedboat to Sangalaki Island, which takes roughly 1 hour. Sangalaki Manta Paradise is situated near to the nearby beach or pier, actually.
Where to Stay
- Sangalaki Dive Lodge Resort