Snorkeling Nusa Penida

Nusa Penida is a small island located near Bali and it is by far the highlight of snorkeling packed with the best of the underwater life and coral reefs for Snorkeling Nusa Penida.

Snorkeling Nusa Penida
Snorkeling in Nusa Penida with the Manta Rays

Things to know when snorkeling in Nusa Penida

Nusa Penida is located approximately 45 minutes away from Bali using a speedboat. The island is only reachable by speedboat due to the distance but also because of the occasional waves which make the traditional boats unable to be used.

Nusa Penida is home to quite an extensive list of dive sites, each different from the other, and each with their own advantages for what snorkelers can see.

Ideally, for Nusa Penida snorkelers should opt for the 3 spots trip to maximise their visit for snorkeling Nusa Penida. Particularly the 3rd spot is almost always in the north part of the island where the best coral reefs are.

The Best 5 Nusa Penida Snorkeling Spots

The best 5 Nusa Penida snorkeling spots

Manta Point

Manta Point is definitely the most popular of the Nusa Penida snorkeling spots and of course because that is where people can swim with the majestic Manta Rays.

The Manta Rays seen in Manta Point are the mature ones compared to the other snorkeling site Manta Bay where smaller Mantas can be seen. Wing span of the mature reef Manta Rays can be up to 4 meters.

Manta Point is a small rocky bay with no beach located on the south-west corner of the Nusa Penida island. Coral reef is not great here so the highlight for snorkeling is of course spotting the Manta Rays. Often though snorkelers can also see baby Eagle Ray as well as Bamboo or Nurse sharks.

Manta Point is generally an easy spot for snorkeling with the bottom found at 15 meters deep. Visibility is fair at approximately 10-15 meters and slightly might seem cloudy which is because of the plankton. As a general rule, when the visibility is really good it is hard to spot any Manta Rays because the Mantas they feed on the plankton and that’s when snorkelers see them swimming with their mouths wide open.

Crystal Bay

Crystal Bay

Crystal Bay is the second most popular Nusa Penida snorkeling spot. It’s the place where snorkelers compensate for what they don’t see in Manta Point: beautiful coral reefs, diverse tropical marine life and a stunning beach view on the surface.

Crystal Bay earned it’s name from the generally crystal clear waters here with visibility most often as far as 30 meters.

In Crystal Bay snorkelers can swim with turtles, spot octopus and all the other tropical marine life people can imagine. When the sun is shining strong, the colours of the coral stand out, the small schools of fish provide the entertainment and the snorkeling experience is complete.

Crystal Bay is an easy snorkeling Nusa Penida, swimming on the side of the bay just on top of the coral reef with a depth of approximately 5-8 meters.

SD Point

SD Point

This spot is perhaps the highlight of snorkeling Nusa Penida, and mainly because the coral reef is simply stunning. The people visiting SD Point often say it is better than The Great Barrier Reef at this time and this is not overselling it.

SD Point provides a continuous never-ending coral reef that is packed with schools of fish, pelagic life everywhere and turtles at every stop. Vibrant, rich, these are two of the keywords to describe SD Point.

SD Point is located on the north coast of Nusa Penida and it’s signature feature is that it’s a drift dive meaning that generally there is a unidirectional current which most often gentle helps you swim above the coral reef. We call it a lazy dive.



This snorkeling spot in Nusa Penida is neighbour to SD Point on the north coast of the island. Being located just near SD Point it also means that everything snorkelers love about one, will find in the other. The same amazing coral reef, the same amazing underwater life, the same type of drift.

Both SD Point and PED are visited typically on the 3 spots trip of snorkeling Nusa Penida.



Arguably that Mangrove is not located at Nusa Penida, instead at Nusa Lembongan, this snorkeling spot is in the top 3 together with SD Point and Mangrove, and for the right reasons. The coral reef at Mangrove is out of this world and most likely you have never seen a coral reef like this. It is hard to explain in words but once you see it, you will want to come back guaranteed.

Compared to the other snorkeling spots, Mangrove sometimes displays strong currents which makes it unsafe but when the water conditions are normal, it is the chosen site for all snorkelers visiting Nusa Penida island.

Nusa Penida marine life

The marine life in Nusa Penida is the most diverse that you will find anywhere in and around Bali. The coral reefs are second to none, spotting the Manta Rays is a unique and memorable experience. Dolphins are almost always passing by which allows both snorkelers and divers to be lucky spotting them on many days.

Turtles are in abundance and different types of camouflage fish specifies are seen here such as the Stone Fish, Devil Scorpion Fish, or Frog Fish.

Although mostly reserved for divers, during the months of June to October, snorkelers sometimes can see the elusive Sun Fish also known as Mola Mola, especially in Crystal Bay and sometimes in Manta Point.

sea turtle
Sea Turtle
stone fish
Stone Fish

Nusa Penida Travel Tips

Nusa Penida travel tips

Nusa Penida is an island located just off the south coast of Bali, reachable by speedboat in approximately 30-45 minutes. There are daily ferries moving between Bali and Nusa Penida, the earliest starting at 7AM while the last ferry back to Bali is generally sailing off at approximately 4PM.

The main harbour for traveling to Nusa Penida is from Sanur but there is also the possibility to travel to Nusa Penida from Padang Bai.

For snorkeling Nusa Penida people can start from Bali as a day tour, visiting 2 or 3 of the popular snorkeling spots. Most of the dive centers and operators start the day at approximately 8AM and finish back in Bali at approximately 2 to 4PM depending on the number of stops.

How many days to spend in Nusa Penida

How many days to spend in Nusa Penida?

Ideally if travellers would like to stay on the island of Nusa Penida, 2 to maximum 3 days is sufficient as the island is still largely undeveloped.

Accommodation options are sufficient and for all types of travellers but the island does not provide a lot of entertainment options.

The most popular things to do in Nusa Penida are:

  • Diving
  • Snorkeling
  • Sightseeing

Snorkeling Nusa Penida Tour

Snorkeling Nusa Penida Tour

With Neptune Scuba Diving, as always we start the day in the morning at approximately 7AM with the hotel transfer. We will be meeting at the dive center for preparations, snorkeling gear check and the daily briefing to set the tone for the day. Return time is scheduled for approximately 2PM after 2 spots snorkeling and 4PM after 3 spots snorkeling.

The first stop on our snorkeling Nusa Penida tour is almost always Manta Point. This spot is named after the reef Manta Rays that can be spotted here. The Manta rays seen here are the mature ones with a wing span of approximately 3-4 meters. The Mantas in Manta Point are coming close to people so snorkeling here brings you up close and personal to these gentle giants.

The second stop on our tour is Crystal Bay which is known for crystal clear waters and stunning coral reefs. The coral reefs are beautiful, some of the best and filled with diverse marine life, including sea turtles, octopus, stone fish, frog fish, etc. When snorkeling at Crystal Bay, often we can spot dolphins passing by closely to us.

For the 3rd and last stop of the day we visit one of the drift spots on the north coast of the Nusa Penida island where the best coral reefs are. By far the highlight of the trip, packed with beautiful colourful fish and reefs that compete even with the Great Barrier Reef.

What is included

  • All taxes, fees and handling charges
  • Boat rental
  • Snorkeling guide ( 4 on 1 group )
  • Hotel pickup and drop-off (selected areas)
  • Full set snorkeling equipment
  • Towels
  • Lunch
  • Snacks
  • Bottled water

What is excluding

Additional equipment such as but not limited to: GoPro rental, private snorkeling guide, private car, private boat, etc.

Frequently Asked Questions about Snorkeling Nusa Penida

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Nusa Penida is located an easy 45 minutes speedboat ride from Bali starting off from Sanur or Padang Bai harbours.

Spotting the Manta Rays can never be guaranteed but there is a 90% chance to see it. Rarely it happens that you don’t see at least 1 or 2 Mantas Rays.

It depends on the dive site. Manta Point for example does not have any currents. But yes, Nusa Penida does have unpredictable and sometimes strong currents but they do not affect snorkeling.

Snorkeling in Nusa Penida refers to the activity of exploring the underwater world around the island of Nusa Penida, located off the southeastern coast of Bali, Indonesia. The island is known for its crystal-clear waters, diverse marine life, and beautiful coral reefs, making it an ideal destination for snorkelers of all ages and skill levels.

Nusa Penida's vibrant marine ecosystem hosts a wide variety of marine species, including colorful reef fish, sea turtles, manta rays, moray eels, and various types of coral. The island is also famous for sightings of the elusive mola mola or ocean sunfish during specific seasons.

Snorkeling in Nusa Penida can be enjoyed year-round, but the best time is typically between April and November when the weather is dry and the underwater visibility is at its best. Mola mola sightings are more common between July and October, while manta rays can be seen throughout the year.

Some popular snorkeling spots in Nusa Penida include Crystal Bay, Manta Point, Gamat Bay, Toyapakeh, and Mangrove Point. Each site offers a unique underwater experience, with varying marine life and coral formations.

Snorkeling in Nusa Penida can be enjoyed year-round, but the best time is typically between April and November when the weather is dry and the underwater visibility is at its best. Mola mola sightings are more common between July and October, while manta rays can be seen throughout the year.

Some popular snorkeling spots in Nusa Penida include Crystal Bay, Manta Point, Gamat Bay, Toyapakeh, and Mangrove Point. Each site offers a unique underwater experience, with varying marine life and coral formations.

Snorkeling in Nusa Penida does not require any certifications, and it is suitable for swimmers of all skill levels. However, some basic swimming ability and familiarity with snorkeling gear are recommended to ensure a comfortable and enjoyable experience.