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Off the beaten track, Ambon island is home to a number of clear water dive sites, but it’s Ambon Bay which has emerged as a world-class muck diving location.

Located at the heart of the Coral Triangle in Eastern Indonesia, the spice island of Ambon is the capital of the Maluku region. The fertile, mountainous island is split into two territories, with Ambon Bay being the main draw for visiting divers and the Banda Sea lapping the southern coastline, home to colourful walls, swim-throughs and caves.

Ambon Bay is a premier muck diving location and one of the main reasons for photographers to visit. For the few that travel here, the rewards are immense. The dive sites range from black sand and rubble to jetties and wrecks, all home to a prolific marine life including but not limited to rhinopias, frogfish, octopus and seahorse.

In contrast to the muck of the Bay, the clear water sites on the south and east coast offer a spectacular topography with seamounts, caves and archways adorned with soft corals. It’s at these you can expect to see larger pelagic species such as Napolean wrasse, sharks, rays and grouper.

It's possible to experience the delights of Ambon by staying in a resort or by liveaboard as some itineraries include the area in season. Muck divers can enjoy Ambon Bay diving throughout the year but it's best to avoid July and August when some resorts are closed due to the wet season.

View suggested itinerary

Key info

  • Ideal for viewing: clown frogfish, pygmy seahorse, wonderpus octopus, napoleon wrasse, mobula ray

Dive trips

This dive location is featured in the following itinerary:

Critters & Kings

Diving in Indonesia is a rewarding experience, especially when combining two locations famed for their incredible biodiversity. Discover abundant critters in Ambon and gaze at majestic manta rays in Raja Ampat.

  • When to go: Sep-Jun
  • Duration inc. flights: 15 days
  • Price inc. flights: From £3,375 pp
  • Trip type: Tailor-made trip idea
Suggested accommodation options are shown below. Please contact us for further recommendations.

Cape Paperu Resort & Spa

Built up on the cliffs at the entrance to Saparua Bay, Cape Paperu Resort & Spa is ideal for divers, snorkellers and also nature lovers – the nearby dive sites offer coral gardens, sheer walls and colourful fish.

Maluku Resort & Spa

A hidden gem located in Baguala Bay on the spice island of Ambon, Maluku Resort & Spa is a boutique resort set amongst tropical gardens overlooking the Banda Sea, offering easy access to local reefs.

Suggested liveaboards are shown below. Please contact us for further recommendations.

Dewi Nusantara

This 57 metre long, three masted topsail schooner moves with grace and stability through the waters of eastern Indonesia, concentrating on exploring Raja Ampat, Ambon, East Flores and Komodo.


The luxurious Tambora has been engineered for a minimum of noise and vibration and aims to take you on an exhilarating journey through the Indonesian archipelago, unique in diversity and home to the world’s best dive sites.

Calico Jack

Built for adventure, this classic phinisi cruises some of the most ecologically abundant areas of the planet including Komodo and Raja Ampat. With five cabins and an attentive crew, divers can expect an exceptional experience.

MS Aurora

The MS Aurora is a luxurious double masted traditional phinisi, designed for a discerning clientele. Cruising Indonesia year round, there are a variety of itineraries to choose from, all showcasing marine biodiversity at its best.

MSV Amira

This 52 metre luxury phinisi first set sail in 2010 and was built with locally grown timber by indigenous craftsmen using ancient traditional methods. Enjoy up to four dives per day on itineraries throughout Indonesia.