Michael McFadyen's Scuba Diving - Gerombong, Indonesia
Despite two trips to Tulamben in Indonesia for almost three and a half weeks of diving, this spot was not one I had dived till 2023. I used Liberty Divers, click here to read about the town and dive operation. Potentially there are literally hundreds of dive sites located within a few kilometres of Tulamben.
Gerombong is located to the north-west of Tulamben past another little town/village called Kubu. It is about 6.4 kilometres from Tulumben to Gerombong. The dive site is located down a lane that leads to a Buddhist temple, the dive site is adjacent to it. A GPS mark for the dive spot is 8° 13.9950"S 115° 33.5760"E (using WGS84 as the datum).
|A satellite photo from Google Earth that shows the location of the dive site. Entry is half way from the headland to the concrete steps down from the pathway. |
For this site you load all your gear into the shop's ute and then climb in the back yourself. You are driven to the site right. There are some tables here, with plenty of shade from the large trees. There is also a nice, new toilet block, shower and some tubs to rinse your camera in after the dive.
The porters take your tank and BCD to the entry point which is a short walk to the right. You then walk with your fins and camera along the concrete retaining wall to the spot and don your tank. Like the other sites, care needs to be taken when entering and exiting the water due to the size of the rocks.
|The tables, shade, toilets and shower||Looking towards the entry/exit spot|
Once you have descended, you will see that the rocky bottom changes to black volcanic sand and you drop to 5 metres and then you will see a downwards slope. This goes to an unknown depth. There are a number of ridges running at right-angles to the beach with some valleys in between. If you go far enough to the right you will also find that there is a rocky reef extending down to over 30 metres and on the left there is also a reef that goes to a shallower depth. These define the edges of the dive site.
|A pom-pom crab||A crab in a small anemone|
Basically, you can dive anywhere within this area and see heaps of marine creatures. The ridges are the best I think as they have quite a few rocks (the size of potatoes to football size) and these are home to all sorts of animals. When I have dived here, we generally went slowly to about 25 metres and then gradually ascended, zig-zagging as we went. We jumped from one ridge to another and then back again.
|A dancing/sexy shrimp||A tiger shrimp|
On one dive I explored the rocky reef to the right (south-east). This has a large high overhang which contains large barrel sponges, sea whips and small gorgonias. There is also a very large cave which extends about 10 metres into the reef. It is also about 15 metres long and three or so metres high. Worth visiting.
There are also lots of Moorish idols, razorfish, some butterflyfish and pufferfish in the shallows, although some also are seen deeper. There are also plenty of lionfish and mantis shrimps can be seen everywhere.
|A shrimp on a starfish||A very small and strange shrimp on sponge|
Of course, the main things to be seen here like all the Tulamben dive sites are macro subjects. There are nudibranchs galore, from tiny ones to large ones. In 2023 I saw at least 60 different species. There are also tiny anglerfish, we saw black ones, black with coloured spots and orange/pink ones. Amazing little buggers!
|A barrel sponge on the side of the wall near the cave||Looking out from inside the cave|
There are also crabs, porcelain, pom-pom, decorator, orangutang and more. Shrimp are also seen, sea whip ones, starfish ones (many species of starfish), featherstars and more. There are also squat lobsters.
A great dive site. I ended up diving here two days for a total of four dives on my trip.
|One of three juvenile painted anglerfish I saw here||Another photograph of the same anglerfish|
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