Sulawesi

Tropical scene

The island (formerly know as Celebes) has a distinctive shape, dominated four large peninsulas. The central part of the island is ruggedly mountainous, such that the island's peninsulas have traditionally been remote from each other, with better connections by sea than by road.

As the largest city in the northeren region, Manado is a key tourist transit point for visitors. Ecotourism is the biggest attraction in Manado. Scuba diving and snorkelling on the nearby island of Bunaken are popular attractions. Bunaken is part of the Manado Tua Marine National Park, which has some of the highest levels of marine biodiversity in the world. Other places of interest are nearby Lake Tondano, Lokon Volcano, Klabat Volcano and Mahawu Volcano.

The Celebes Sea is home to a wide variety of fish and aquatic creatures. The tropical setting and warm clear waters permit it to harbor about 580 of the world's 793 species of reef-building corals, which grow as some of the most bio-diverse coral reefs in the world, and an impressive array of marine life, including whales and dolphins, sea turtles, manta rays, eagle rays, barracuda, marlin and other reef and pelagic species.

Images courtesy of Indonesian Culture and Tourism

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Traditional house
Reef scene
Boat construction

Climate

The climate in North Sulawesi is generally humid of equatorial tropic region. There being two seasons within this region namely the west-monsoon (from October to March) and the east-monsoon (from May to August). The west-monsoon is wetter than the east-monsoon. The average temperature is 27 degrees C. The frequency of strong wind is relatively low.

Underwater Recommendations

The Bunaken Sea Garden (North Sulawesi): About half an hour by a motorized outrigger canoe from Manado, Bunaken island is a veritable paradise for snorkelers and scuba enthusiasts. The coral reef off Bunaken island is particularly good for that and shouldn't be missed while you're in this region. The drop-off wall at Liang Cove is rare in the world, as it's described by international divers as being spectacular with caves, gullies, and caverns harboring an immense wealth of marine life. The water averages a balmy 28 degrees C and visibility is sensational (over) 30 m. The Bunaken sea garden is rich with colorful tropical marine life.

Sea Garden of Hari Island (South East Sulawesi): In the Indonesia language (Bahasa Indonesia), hari means daylight. Because of the way the sun's rays reflection the water of the sea surrounding this island, the local people call it the Island of Daylight, Pulau Hari. Swimming, boating and other marine sports find a natural home along these shores. Diving to view colorful fish in a sea garden setting of coral is a popular activity.

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Wakatobi Dive ResortWakatobi Dive Resort
Wakatobi Dive Resort has some of the most pristine reefs in Indonesia at its doorstep. Protected by their Collaborative Reef Conservation Program, Wakatobi is the #1 choice for sophisticated divers.

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More than Two Fish at Bunaken and ManadoMore than Two Fish at Bunaken and Manado
When I first decided to visit the tropical paradise of Bunaken Marine Park and Lembeh Strait, it seemed as if nobody had heard of it. However, once I began to plan the trip I slowly heard more and more about the place. Deep dramatic walls, 30 degree water with 30 m visibility, and bizarre creatures were just some of the descriptions. My excitement grew.
Diving with a Family - Wakatobi Dive ResortDiving with a Family - Wakatobi Dive Resort
Once you have had an amazing time somewhere it always worries me to want to go back. Will it be as good as the first time? Will things have changed? Have things stayed the same, but you have changed?
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