Diving in Siladen Island
The archipelagic city of Indonesia is unquestionably rich in natural resources. Aside from the lush jungles and forests, scenic mountain range, and unique cultures, the tourism commodity of Indonesia also includes the beautiful undersea vista, which can be seen in its many dive sites. One in particular is the dive site of Siladen Island. Located in North Sulawesi Province, Siladen Island is part of Bunaken – Manado National Park. As many might have already known, Bunaken lies in the epicenter of the world’s marine biodiversity, and thus supports an amazing variety of marine animals that made diving in Bunaken a rewarding activity. This, eventually affect nearby areas near Bunaken as well, made them into a wonderful site for diving into its surrounding waters. Siladen Island, while being the smallest island of the other four, still enjoys the abundant marine life and corals variety that many divers love to partake.
Siladen Island, which is located at the east of Bunaken Island or within 3 miles and 8 miles from the city of Manado, can easily be reached by boat in approximately 30-45 minutes. The name of Siladen came from the local language, meaning ran aground or stranded. This name comes from a story about a ship that was used by Sangier people, which drowned in middle of the sea while sailing. The location where the ship sank later named Siladen.
This island, whose area reaches approximately 31.25 hectares, is surrounded by white sand with a variety of trees along the lip of the beach. This island also offers serenity nuance in every detail; a scenic and beautiful natural vista complemented with the sonorous sound of local birds, the fresh sea breeze and glistening sun reflections in its pristine clear water. This island’s stunning panorama is not limited only on the land, but also its underwater world.
The underwater life of Siladen Island is amazingly abundant, with colorful coral reefs and marine life, which made diving in Siladen an unforgettable experience. This island has two dive sites where the marine biodiversity is the most potent, which are Siladen and North Siladen.
The Siladen dive site is a very nice spot for both snorkeling and diving alike where the water is quite warm, which is about 27°C -29°C. This site is located off Siladen Island, about a 45 minute trip by boat. This dive site is characterized by its vertical wall in large steps and is particularly rich in nudibranchs where they are often found alongside with Leaf Scorpionfish on the ledges. There is a variety of exquisite combination of hard and soft corals, feather stars, gorgonians, giant clams at the reef top, turtles, Napoleon Wrasses and other small creatures that are common seen here. Groupers, Butterflyfish, Sting Rays and Spotted Eagle Rays are also possible to be encountered here. The currents at Siladen are moderate to strong with average visibility of 25 meters.
The North Siladen dive site is located right behind Siladen Island. The current is moderate to strong, making it a site for experienced divers. This is a good place to see Turtles, Snappers, Emperor Angelfish and reef whitetip sharks. There are also a lot of micro lives at the bottom of the reef flat with stepped sandy and gravel. It has a depth of 15 to 25 meters with average visibility reaching 25 meters.