Author: Greg Sam

Interesting But Creepy Holiday Tradition in Europe

Interesting But Creepy Holiday Tradition in Europe

Every country may have different holiday tradition. Some of them seem fine while others are borderline creepy. Regardless, it is always interesting to learn new things related to culture and tradition. Travelling to different places can open our mind to see the beauty of diversity because you see so many things a long the way including holiday tradition.

European holiday traditions you might find creepy

The beauty of a culture is that it can be seen through different perspectives. It can be perceived as unique, strange, beautiful, or even creepy. Regardless, it is a must to respect the culture you get to know during your travel to different countries. You may have heard some strange holiday tradition in the US. However, you might find these holiday tradition in Europe a little bit creepy.

Interesting But Creepy Holiday Tradition in Europe

The Yule Cat is holiday tradition in Iceland. The people in Iceland believe that the cat will eat anyone who has not obtained new clothing by Christmas. It sounds cute somehow that you are going to be eaten by lovely cat due to your fashion crime. However, the Yule cat is not a kitten. It is a giant beast with large body/ imagine how long its teeth are. So if you are planning to celebrate Christmas in Iceland this year with your family, don’t roll up in last year’s clothing. 

Krampus is holiday tradition in Central Europe. It is said to be the sinister friend of the mythological man, St. Nicholas. It is like the opposite of St. Nicholas. Krampus has a job to punish naughty kids instead of giving out candy like St. Nicholas do to good kids. Krampus has demonic looking character who beats children with birch branches. It also says that Krampus kidnaps bad kids in shacks. The kids who are taken by him will disappear without trace. During Krampus festival in Austria and other central European countries, you will see people in Krampus mask strolling around the streets. 

Gryla is another holiday tradition in Iceland that is considered creepy. Gryla is said to be the Christmas witch who live up in the mountains. Her hobby is showing up in the dark of winter days to steal naughty children. The legend also says that she ate her husband when she got bored. The legend has been around since the 1300s. the rumors say that she is still living up in the mountain.

Mari Lwyd is a holiday tradition in Wales during Christmas season. It can be creepy and fun at the same time because a group of people accompanying one person dress up as as a horse body with a fake skull on top. They knock at your door asking to come in via cool rhyme. The people inside the house whose door is knocked at should come up with cool rhyme to response. Once the battle finished, they will be welcomed inside the house and given drinks and foods before head off to the next door and challenge for another rap battle. 

Yoga Retreat on a Royal Fortuna Liveaboard

Yoga Retreat on a Royal Fortuna Liveaboard

Wellness holiday has lately become so famous that some might even feel as if it was another of those fleeting trends. A yoga retreat is a great healing trip as it appeals to people of a wide age range and physical condition that can easily be adapted to. Most yoga retreats are held in a great place surrounded by nature. For instance, close to the ocean. But, can you imagine a yoga retreat on a liveaboard yoga retreat on a liveaboard is an excellent way to exercise and relax from daily stress. Imagine waking up in a different place and heading to the front of the sailing boat to partake in your morning yoga session, relaxing and peaceful surrounded by nature.  Experience an amazing feeling of yoga retreat by joining a sailing holiday with Royal Fortuna Liveaboard.

Why choose a Royal Fortuna Liveaboard for yoga retreat?

Life can be hectic and leave you feeling like there’s no time — especially for truly relaxing. However, life on a liveaboard is very different. This sailing holiday allows us to escape from the stresses and strains of a busy life. The boat is a traditional phinisi, with a capacity of a maximum of 11 passengers. Royal Fortune has a spacious deck with beanbags and sunbeds that could fit all the travelers for enjoying the sunset. The boat also offers a spacious open space deck for a yoga retreat. This lovely boat has a total of five cabins. All cabins are equipped with fans for a good night’s sleep. Royal Fortuna liveaboard is a perfect liveaboard for yoga retreat!

What can you expect from a yoga retreat on a boat?

Practice yoga at blue ocean offers you a chance to discover new experiences whilst being surrounded by the beauty of the natural pristine. A yoga retreat on Royal Fortuna liveaboard allows you to experience how life is on a boat. This kind of holiday has the invincible power to heal you.  There are many benefits of yoga retreat on a boat, from wellness, helping your physical and mental being. Moreover, this sailing holiday will make you disconnect in the most amazing way from any land worries. It will connect you with breathtaking nature with the stunning sea.

Imagine waking up in beautiful places, heading to the upper deck, and practicing your morning yoga. After you finish your morning yoga, take your time to enjoy breakfast in the open dining area of the liveaboard, followed by sailing to a remote destination to explore the underwater. Then, heading to the local village for sightseeing. An early afternoon dive followed by an evening sunset yoga at golden hour. Thereafter, having dinner at the outdoor dining area surrounded by the stars. So what are you waiting for?

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What Happen to Your Skin When You Are On A Flight?

What Happen to Your Skin When You Are On A Flight?

It is not a secret that flying can wreck havoc on your skin. With low humidity and dry cabin, it is easy for your skin to act up. Not to mention that the air in the cabin is recycled which only dehydrate your dermis. The situation within the cabin can cause your skin to produce oil more which cause acne in all skin types. A flight is surely can be damaging to skin especially if you have sensitive skin. However, you can always make smart moves to prevent various skin problems during travelling.

Preventing skin problems and damage cause by a flight

The damaging of flight to your skin can happen during, after, or even both. It must be frustrating to have dull skin, along with scattered acne and eye bags while travelling, it is more or less dampening your mood for fun travel. So here are things you can do to prevent skin problems caused by a flying:

Dryness often happen to your skin when you are flying. As mentioned before that the low humidity and temperature can cause dry skin. It is even worse if you have naturally dry skin from the beginning. You may feel rough patches on your skin. It is recommended to apply moisturizer before boarding. It will provide the moisture your skin need to survive different condition inside the cabin. Also, it will act as a barrier for your skin from potential irritants.

Oiliness is also possible to happen during a flight. When your skin become dry, it forces itself to produce more sebum to counteract the dryness. Skin dehydration doesn’t only lead to dry skin but also excessive oil production. Then, it is likely for acne to come out. It is recommended to pack oil-free moisturizer especially if your skin is more prone to break out. Whenever you feel your skin tight, re-apply the moisturizer.

What Happen to Your Skin When You Are On A Flight?

Sunburn is also possible happen to your skin while you are on a flight. You are even closer to the sun and the airplane windows don’t have UV protection. They are not YV proof so when you are exposed to them, it is possible for your skin to get sunburn. Even if the sunburn is not severe, remember that UV rays is so damaging to skin. Therefore, it is highly recommended that you also apply some sunscreen before boarding along with your moisturizer to keep your skin protected and hydrated.

Breakouts are one of the most common problems travelers have during their trip. Some trigger include weather, foods, or even travel stress. Keeping calm can help controlling the level of cortisol so the chance of acne to come out is lower. Hence, it is recommended to stay calm if you tend to get stressed out. Take some aromatherapy oil with you to rub behind your ears to breathe in. Also, avoid leaning your face on any surfaces because friction and occlusion can exacerbate acne even more. Also, pack some acne spot treatment with you.

What Not to Do on Your First Si Datu Bua Liveaboard

Si Datu Bua Liveaboard

Congratulations! So you’ve booked your first Si Datu Bua Liveaboard to Raja Ampat. The liveaboard trip is an experience unlike any other. Step aboard a ship and head to remote areas across the stunning island for relaxation, unbelievable diving, and unforgettable memories. This trip gives you the opportunity to catch a magical sunrise and go to sleep on the water, with a nice balcony at your doorstep. There is no better way to experience the Raja Ampat than on a liveaboard trip!   

What to expect on Si Datu Bua Liveaboard ?

Are you running out of time and searching for a liveaboard that offers personalized service with diving and snorkeling at Raja Ampat? Your search ends here, Si Datu Bua Liveaboard offers ultimate services to enthusiastic travelers. This liveaboard offers a spacious outdoor deck with comfortable lounge areas that provide the perfect space to chill and relax on sunbeds. Si Datu Bua consists of three private cabins with two feature king-size and sofa beds, the other one king-size bed separate seating area with stairs leading to the top deck. All rooms feature ensuite bathrooms and feature air-conditioning. But, how are you supposed to deal with living on a liveaboard with a bunch of strangers for a week? No need to worry! Everything will be just alright and fun if you don’t do these main things!

What not to do on your first liveaboard trip?

Don’t pick the wrong cabin. Some travelers think that every cabin on a liveaboard is the same. You can choose from various options that include inside cabins with no windows to the ocean view or a room with a balcony. Variety cabins on liveaboards also come with different amenities.  Pay careful attention to which type of cabin you decide and where it’s located on the board!  Since you will be spending a lot of time on the boat, pick the best cabin!

Don’t forget about your friendly boat team. The onboard team works hard to make sure your liveaboard experience is everything you hoped it would be. Make sure to interact with the crew during your trip. They can also share fun stories and some information related to your trip. Take a little time to talk with the team whenever you can.

Don’t overpack. Whatever you pack, make sure to don’t overpack as even the most expensive cabins tend to be rather small. But, remember you are going to be on the boat with no access to any shop. Make sure that you are well prepared and have essential things you might need for the trip.Don’t play loud music in your cabin. If listening to the favorite playlist is a key part of enjoying a liveaboard experience, pack some earphones and your neighbors will thank you. Make sure to be respectful of your neighbors!

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Best Coffee Around The World Worth Travelling For

International Coffee Day falls in October. In honor of it, we are going to explore the best coffee around the world. Coffee itself is one of the most popular drink in the world, if not the most. Many people rely on coffee to stay function on daily basis. Coffee can give you a boost of energy to get through the day. It has peculiar taste and aroma that can make people feel energized and awake. Enjoying coffee in the morning is a habit of many people. 

Best destinations to find the best coffee

Aside from being a popular drink, coffee is also part of culture. Different country may have different variety of coffee. They may also serve coffee differently according to their tradition. Hence, coffee holds more than just a best energy booster. Here are some of the best destinations to find the best coffee you may include in your bucket list.

Melbourne, Australia

Melbourne, Australia

Australia has great coffee and you can find it in Melbourne. Coffee has been an integral part of the Melbourne lifestyle. Hence, it is not that hard to find coffee with great taste. In fact, the city hold annual coffee expo to indulge coffee lovers. You can order lattes, cappuccino, or flat whites as they are the most popular options amongs locals. However, you also must try piccolo latte. It is made with less milk. Hence, it has stronger taste of espresso when you take a sip. 

Scandinavian Coffee, Iceland

Scandinavian Coffee, Iceland

Iceland is not only a place where you can hunt aurora. It is also a place where you can enjoy one of the best coffee in the world. In fact, Scandinavians have some of the highest coffee consumption per capita in the world. It is not hard to find coffee shop serving coffee with great aroma and taste. Most popular options often order by the locals are cappuccino and lattes. Iceland is great place to enjoy coffee with how cold the weather is.

Singapore’s  Kopitiam

Singapore’s Kopitiam

Singapore also has best coffee to enjoy. If you happen to visit this modern country, you must spare your time for coffee-hunting. Coffee has been an integral part of the tradition in Singapore. Until now, you can also enjoy your time in some kopitiam, coffee shop culture. Or, you can also go to modern coffee shops where they are using advanced technology to serve coffee. Latte art is very popular amongst locals. It is part of cafe service in almost every coffee shop in Singapore. 

Vietnam Drip, Vietnam

Vietnam Drip, Vietnam

Vietnam is also Asian country with strong coffee culture. It is in fact one of the biggest producers of the beans in the world. This is where you can enjoy traditional coffee. Don’t expect latte or Americano. It is best to enjoy traditional coffee that is brewed using traditional filter. You can enjoy black coffee or add some condensed milk to sweeten the strong taste. Or, you can also try cha phe trung or the egg coffee while in Vietnam. It is black coffee with creamy, meringue-like egg white foam on top.

A Day in the Life of Dive Internship in Bali

A Day in the Life of Dive Internship in Bali

Pursuing a dive master in Bali. What a life. This island is overflowed with exotic tropical fruits, cultural heritages, impressive landmarks, dozens of beautiful beaches, and acres of green paddies rolled in the hillside. The relaxing island living in Bali is just a perfect match for your dive master studies. So, in between drinking a fresh coconut post diving, how’s the typical day of dive internship in Bali?

A Dive Internship Morning for Diving Trip 

The dive centre usually open at 7 am with clients arriving 30 minutes later. It give you time to finish the paperworks, looking at equipments, prepping the tanks, and do other tasks while sipping your fresh brewed Balinese coffee. When the first guests arrive, you can greet them and chat about the dive of the day, a little of what they are doing, etc. Then, depending on the destination, you either proceed going to the harbour or loading the gears into a minibus. Your dive internship Bali might be based on Sanur and the client’s destination could be Tulamben, thus the minibus trip. The destination might be Nusa Penida or Lembongan, and you should escort the guests to the harbour and hop on 45 minutes speed boat journey. Boats departing at the morning usually returns at noon, and boats departing at noon returns near the sunset. 

A Morning for Dive Training

A Dive Internship Morning for Diving Trip

Not everyday you have to go on dive trip. During your dive internship in Bali, there are days where you need to help dive trainings. This means assisting in pool sessions, discoer scuba, open water session, and other classes. You will help beginners fiddle with their tools while organise and supervise the scuba diving activities. Under indirect supervision of a PADI Instructor, you might also teach an academic presentations during a pool session. Sometimes you will have pool sessions in the morning, and later go to a dive trip in the afternoon.

Do the Briefing

Before the divers start the trip, you will be taking the place of the dive instructor to conduct dive briefings. This also applies to dive students—you may need to give some briefings before the lessons start. 

More Diving and Travel Stories: 

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Afternoon for Dive Internship Bali 

Many afternoons are usually repetition of the morning. There will be divers coming for afternoon trip at 1 pm or dive students coming for the afternoon lessons. Interns during their dive internship in Bali will be assisting the course or the dive trip. When you are on dive trip, you might be in charge of helping customers with their equipments and refilling the tanks. 

In Betweens

Apart from leading customers on the dive sites and assisting courses, you will need to study for your own exam in between. You will be given dive theory materials to study for the exams, practice your own techniques, refreshing your search and recover skills, and mastering site map drawings. In your free days, you get to relax and unwind! Rejuvenate your tired body with some spa, try surfing, play in the beaches, and probably hit one of the hottest nightclub in town. Life in dive internship is never boring in Bali!

Why Taking A Vacation Is Good After Pandemic

Why Taking A Vacation Is Good After Pandemic

We all know that it is such a challenging time with how we are fighting against covid-19. it is already half the year and the pandemic is still going on. We don’t know when it will end so we can start a normal life. However, we have to maintain positivity because we will overcome it for sure. The world had gone through various outbreaks in the past yet we still survive. This covid-19 will also end eventually. 

The idea to take a vacation after pandemic

There might be many things you have to take care of after pandemic ends. However, a well-deserve vacation should not be ignored either. It is still important to keep you sane and happy after going through a lot. You may not have settled on a plan yet. However, you don’t need to be in a rush. With how much time you have now, you can just start planning a vague itinerary for a vacation after pandemic.  

Appreciate life better

Treasuring the value of life and people you love is important thing you do. The pandemic has taught us a lot including how to treasure every little things in life. A holiday is one of the best ways to reward yourself and your loved one for overcoming such a hard time. You can treat it as a small celebration as well. Not to mention that it is a good moment to spend quality time with your families and friends and show your love and appreciation. 

Overcome the negativity from the pandemic

Overcome the negativity from the pandemic

Travel also helps you to create new memories by learning new cultures, spending quality time together and overcome any negativity from the pandemic. By travelling after the pandemic, it is like a refresh button you have. The stress that has been pile up through our hard times during pandemic might not be seen physically. However, it can be a huge burden to your mental health. A holiday can help reduce at least just a little bit of your stress so you can start focusing on positivity within yourself. 

Maintain your physical health back

An adventure is also great to maintain your physical health back. some of people in isolation tend to forget to exercise. A great adventure after the pandemic can be a good way to stretch your muscles. An adventure is a great learning experience as well for you to get. 

Get in touch back with the nature

Get in touch back with the nature

A holiday is also a great way for you to check up on the nature. You may have seen news from medias that following the drop of number of travelers travelling around the world, the air and water have become cleaner. You can enjoy the better nature after the pandemic. Not to mention that nature has positive effect that can leave us feeling soothed and healed. 

Experience a better service

Also, a trip after pandemic is highly anticipated because the pandemic has brought change to the tourism industry as well. We may experience better service and enhanced products provided by travel agencies. However, it is still more important for you to focus on value rather than a great deal if you decide to have a holiday after pandemic.

How to Get to Komodo Island with Kids!

How to Get to Komodo Island with Kids!

Kids are naturally young explorer and most of them get really excited on the chance of seeing the dinosaur-looking Komodo Dragons. It’s like walking into their awe-inspiring Dinosaur encyclopaedia, with the prehistoric giant lizard, Komodo’s spectacular savannah topography and all. However, the trip to the Komodo Island itself could be quite challenging. You see, the Komodo Island is located in the far east of Indonesia, a tropical country in South East Asia. If you are coming from other continent, it’s going to be a long haul flight. Here’s why and how you can get to Komodo Island safely with your little travelers tagging along. 

How to Get to Komodo Island from Your Country

The Komodo International Airport in Labuan Bajo, Flores, has not yet operating as a real international airport. It currently serves domestic routes only to big cities of Indonesia. So if you are not from Indonesia, how you can get to Komodo Island then

Well, there are two common way for international travelers to reach the Komodo airport; from Bali or the capital city Jakarta. If you already need to take a connecting flight to either Bali or Jakarta, this is going to be a really long flight.

Getting to Komodo Island from Bali 

Getting to Komodo Island from Bali

A lot of international travelers find that getting to Komodo from Bali is their favourite. Half of the tourists know Komodo during their vacation in Bali, while other choose to spend a week or two in this island before continuing the journey to Komodo. After all, you and the kids will need a rest after the long journey. It’s also good for the kids to have enough break from flying before continuing the journey to Komodo. 

Once you land on Komodo Airport in Flores, you will need to embark on a Komodo liveaboard for 4 hours before reaching the Komodo Island. There are four airlines to choose for Bali – Labuan Bajo flight; two budget airlines Batik Air, Nam Air and Air Asia, and the premium one Garuda Indonesia. While Batik and Air Asia are usually the cheapest, they are known for the infamous delay. Garuda is more expensive but it rarely delay unless for major issues and it gives in-meal snacks which is not included in three other airlines. 

Budgeting: Transportation Could be Quite Expensive

Now we are talking about the budget; how to get to Komodo Island with kids without breaking your bank. Komodo Island needs serious planning as it can get quite complicated with the transportation. First, you need to arrange your flight to Indonesia. Then, you need to arrange a flight from either Jakarta or Bali to the Komodo International Airport. Lastly, you have to book a liveaboard to explore the Komodo National Park itself. It seems to be expensive, especially as the kids need their own seat as well. However, once you book the liveaboard in Komodo you are done. You no longer need to book a hotel or thinking about eating out. The liveaboard will be your hotel and restaurant all at once. With so many things to see and raw adventures to do, all the journey is totally worth it! To minimise the spending, you could consider booking economy-class flight (and deal with the delays) and not spending time too much in Bali. You might also want to fly to Labuan Bajo first in the morning, so you can sail right afterwards. No need to spend more money on additional accommodation in Labuan Bajo.

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Preparing the Kids for Long Journey

Preparing the Kids for Long Journey

Like we said before, reaching Komodo National Park is going to be a long journey. It can be quite challenging for young travelers to overcome. You can do your best to make the long trip more comfortable by preparing creature comforts for them. Kids-sized travel bag which allow kids to sit there during queue is brilliant. Inside, you can pack lots of healthy kids snacks to distract their attentions, some board games to play in the plane, some delicious bribes and toys (silent one, please) to keep them well-behaved, and comfy a pillow to sleep. Think everything through to make your kids comfortable during the journey to Komodo.  

Protecting Yourself and Others During Your Trip

Protecting Yourself and Others During Your Trip

Many places have lifted their stay-at home orders so people can travel again when necessary. Even though there are still many people who feel scared to travel again, many are ready to plan their trip either for business or leisure. One important thing that travelers should remember is to protect themselves and others. It is not about keeping yourself safe from contacting the virus but also about keeping others safe from the risk of infection.

Safe trip to protect yourself and others

Before a trip, it is necessary to do your own research so you know what routes and precautions you need to take. You also have to look for information regarding to your destination. Of course, staying home is the best way to protect yourself and others from the coronavirus. However, if you really have to take a trip, consider these things:

Get enough information about the virus

Protecting Yourself and Others During Your Trip

You have to be informed whether the virus is spreading in your destination or not. You also need to be aware whether is is spreading in your community. If it is, you may not realize being infected and spreading the virus to your destination. You also need to be aware of procedures for safe trip such as maintaining 6 feet with those you are travelling with. You also need to know if your destination require visitor to undergo self-quarantine for 14 days after travelling.

Make sure you are healthy

Before you go, make sure that you are in a good condition. If you are currently sick (even not related to coronavirus), it is best to stay at home instead of travelling. The chance of getting infected by the virus is higher when your immune system is weaker. It is also wise to not travel if you have been around with people or someone with COVID-19 in the past 14 days.

Take all the necessary precautions

Protecting Yourself and Others During Your Trip

During your trip, taking precautions is still necessary. Practicing good hygiene is essential because good sanitation can prevent and minimize the risk of contacting and spreading the virus. During your trip, always remember to wash your hand especially after you have been in public space. Wash your hands with soap for 20 seconds and rinse them with clean running water. Or, use hand sanitizer thoroughly with at least 60% alcohol.

More Travelling Tips:

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Not Very Common Travel Hacks You Might Need

Stay contactless whenever possible

Minimize any physical contacts with other travelers. It is also advised to avoid touching your nose, mouth and face area with your hands. Thus, it is a must to wear a mask. Aside from protecting you and others, a mask is also like a reminder for you to not touch your face. In public places such as station,keep 6 feet distance from others to minimize the close contact.

Always be cautious

Be more cautious when you sneeze or cough. Don’t cover it with your palm but your arm. Your palm is prone to touch. If you cover your sneeze or cough with your palm of your hands, it increase the risk of spreading virus because you may have contacted it prior. There is not truly a safer type of travel than others because every alternative has its own risks. However, take necessary precautions to stay safe.

5 Interesting Facts About Tulamben Diving!

5 Interesting Facts About Tulamben Diving!

Located far from Bali’s main tourist hub in the south (think about Kuta, Canggu, and Nusa Dua), Tulamben attract a specific niche of traveller. It’s black sand beaches is devoid from fancy cafes or glamorous beach clubs like what you would see in the south. Instead, Tulamben is brimming with dive clubs, dive centers, and oceanfront resorts catering for divers. Yep, this small village in the north-east coast of Bali might sounds distant for common traveller, but it’s incredibly popular among divers, snorkelers, and the like. If you are an avid ocean explorer and coming to Bali for some ocean explorations, you gonna like Tulamben. Here’s five facts about Tulamben diving you’d like.

A sunken wreck become the most iconic thing on tulamben diving

5 Interesting Facts About Tulamben Diving!

If there’s one thing that boost Tulamben diving into fame, it’s the USAT Liberty wreck that sleeps under the water. It was an American cargo ship serving back during the WWII, before getting torpedoed by the Japanese. What makes this wreck so special is it’s location—it’s the shallowest wreck on earth! It lies in a sloping seabed where half of its top part is accessible from just 3 meters from the surface. The site is also accessible just from the shore by walking. Yep, that easy.

The village name derives from “batu lembih”

Not many people know this, even for avid visitors on Tulamben. The village name is derived from the Balinese “batu lembih”, which literally means “many stones”. Tulamben is very close to Mount Agung and the eruption from this volcano threw up large, smooth stones that made up the beaches on this village. The name got modernised to “Batulamben” before eventually morphed into the “Tulamben” that we know.

Tulamben is often made for beginner’s first dive

5 Interesting Facts About Tulamben Diving!

Tulamben is basically a bay and that’s contribute to trapping the nutrient-rich planktons in a sheltered water. The result is a blooming underwater life in a relatively slow to almost non-existent currents. This made Tulamben diving perfect for beginners! Tulamben is often referred as the first place for beginners to do their very first open water diving. It’s a very easy site with fulfilling experience!

More Diving and Travelling Stories:

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Diving in tulamben was first done in 1979

No one knows that the humble fishing village hides an astonishing beauty beneath its calm water. Until around 1979, when the curiosity of some local diving pioneer bring them into this village to investigate the allegedly wreck site. The investigation resulted in the founding of Liberty—and the rest is history.

There are about 11 diving sites in the village

The Liberty wreck is not the only dive site here. Tulamben is home for about 11 diving sites spread around the village. Muck dive, reef, and wreck dominates the sites diversity. It’s also varied in depth and marine life, while currents are still in range between low to moderate.

Do you want to dive in Tulamben?