When to Visit Lembongan this New Year!
Planing on making a trip to visit Lembongan for diving in 2019?
With talks of low / high season and rainy / dry season, it is hard to know when the best time is to come and visit Lembongan.
Here, we are going to break things down, month by month for the first 6 months of 2019 to help give you an idea of how things are. Looking at the conditions, weather, wind, waves, fish life, tourism and island life, we hope to help you pick the correct month for your needs to visit Lembongan
After the peak of activities on the island with Christmas and New Year, the island starts to get a lot quieter come the first week of January.
For some people this is just what they are looking for, a nice relaxed island style with little tourists around. Lines at the airport are small, accommodation and transfer are easy to come by and generally things are a bit cheaper. For some, this makes it a great time to visit Lembongan.
If you are looking for some good deals on accommodation, this is a good time to visit Lembongan. A lot of places put on special deals during this time for packages and the local homestays, lower their nightly prices. Due to the lower amount of tourists on the island, booking in advance is not overly essential.
Here at Twin Island Dive and Villas, we do offer special deals during this time.
January is normally a fairly dry month when it comes to the rains. The heavy rains are not here yet, but it does sometimes rain every few days. The weather can be overcast and when it rains, it is mostly at night time, lightly for an hour or so.
Out on the water, the wind during the first few months of the year is stronger than that of the middle of the year. Even though the waves, on the reports, are low, the wind can sometimes cause problems getting to the manta sites. If the conditions are right, and we are able to get to the manta sites, there is still a high chance to see the mantas.
This time of the year, the water is warmer, with an average temperature of 28 degrees celsius at all the sits around the islands. The rest of the diving conditions are much the same as during the high season. With little rain, visibility is around 15 – 20 meters and our normal tropical fish life is here waiting for you.
If you are looking for a relaxed island, good deals, a little bit of rain and some good diving, January is a good time to visit Lembongan.
February and March
The months of February and March are much the same, thus being grouped together.
February, statistically is the month of rain. If the rains are later in February, then they will tend to flow over into March. The ‘rainy season’ here is not like other South East Asian countries, as we do not get a monsoon.
If you don’t mind a bit of rain, the months of February and March can be impressive. When the rain does come, it is normally heavy for a few hours, during the night, early morning and until mid morning. The afternoons are mostly fine with some cloud cover. If the rain has been heavy, some of the roads can be slightly flooded, but this just adds to the adventure of scooting around the island.
As like January, tourism drops a lot during these two months. School holidays in the Southern Hemisphere are finished and most people are back to work after the Christmas / New Year break. This again makes getting to the island and staying a lot easier.
Almost all accommodation on Lembongan will offer deals during these months and a lot of the boat companies are flexible with their prices.
As for the diving, we are still able to dive every day. Due to our location of where we launch the boat, we are protected and able to comfortably get out for diving, even if there are big waves on the main beaches. The rain does not affect the diving so much, as there are not many rivers that feed rain runoff into the ocean around the dive sites.
If conditions are right, we are still able to dive at the manta sites with around a 70% chance to see them. The nice thing about this time of the year, with less tourists on the island, the manta sites are not so crowed with snorkeling boats. A lot of the time we have the site to ourselves, resulting in a very personal manta experience.
Water temperature and visibility are similar to January.
If you like dancing in the rain, watching fish feed off rain drops falling into the ocean and are looking for so amazing low season deals, February and March are a good time to visit Lembongan.
April is the mini peak of tourism during the ‘low season’. The start of April sees the rains of March slowly blowing away and as the days get closer to Easter on the 19th, the island starts to get busier.
School holidays for the Southern Hemisphere start around Easter time, so there is an influx of tourists from New Zealand and Australia during this time. The holiday specials from the first 3 months of the year normally end at the start of April, with diving, accommodation and transfer prices returning to the normal published price.
The closer to Easter you are looking to book, the more essential booking accommodation before hand becomes. Some of the cheaper homestays and hostels will fill up during the Easter holiday period.
The winds out of the water drop during this time, increasing the chance to get to the manta sites. As the manta rays are not a seasonal creature, there is still a great chance to see them during the month of April.
With less rain during this month, visibility does increase sightly, with the average being around the mid 20s. The water temperature is still nice and warm during this time.
April is a great time for diving, conditions return to calm and easy. The chance to visit the manta sites increase. The water is warm and clear. Although the island is a bit busier than previous months and the crazy discounts are gone, it is a great month, where the island isn’t ‘high season’ packed and the diving conditions are still great! Let us know if you would like to visit Lembongan, during this time!
May and June
The conditions on the island and underwater are much the same during the months of May and June. This time of the year is also a bit of a hidden gem!
After the small peak of tourism at the end of April with Easter, things do slow down a little bit during these two months. It is like the calm before the crazy busy of the ‘high season’ months.
Some of the accommodation on the island will offer ‘end of low season’ deals during this time, so with a bit of research, some good deals maybe found. Twin Island Villas do offer accommodation deals during these months.
What makes these months a bit of a hidden gem is with the lack of tourists but great diving conditions, you can experience some pretty great conditions. The winds and rains are all but gone, (although there can be the odd day), the sea is calm and there are not so many divers / snorkelers out on the water.
The small downside of these months is that it is just before the mola season. A lot of divers come to these islands in hopes to see the mola and these is why the mola months are the busiest time of the year. It is not impossible to see a mola during the month of June, there is a higher chance in the following months.
Even if there are no molas during these months, the mantas are still around. The calmer weather also makes it easier for us to look for them.
If you are looking for small diving groups, very few other people on the boat with you, only a handful of divers underwater and a close and personal experience with our beautiful underwater creatures, these are the months for you to visit Lembongan.
The start of the mola season and the start of the high season. The first week of July can start a little slow, but like the flick of a switch the rest the month picks up.
The mola season runs from July until the end of October. The mola is a seasonal creature that spends most of its time deep water. As the currents change and the cooler water is pushed up from the deep, these amazing creatures are able to work there way up shallower, to divers that divers are able to see them.
With the islands of Nusa Lembongan, Penida and Cenigan being one of the only places in the world to catch a glimpse of the mola, this time of the year sees a lot of divers coming to try their luck. Depending on how cold the water is, will depend on how good the mola season is and the chance to see them. Not as common as the mantas, you do need to be a little lucky. There are many sites with cleaning stations where we bring our divers, with fingers and toes crossed, in hopes to spot one.
July is also the Northern Hemispheres big summer holidays, which brings a lot of European tourists to the islands for diving, snorkeling, surfing and exploring. As this is the high season, the sooner you book during this month the better, accommodation and spots on the diving boats can fill up very quickly.
As it is the dry season, rain is very unlikely during this month, with calm seas. This opens the doors to visit most dive sites, any day of the week. Please note though, this is normally how the month of July is. Shockingly, during July of 2018, the islands were hit by the biggest waves in 50 years. This was just a freak occurrence.
With the cooler water rising from the deep, the visibility in the thermoclines can be 30+ meters. The downside, the water temperature drops during this month. It is the price to pay to see the mola. The surface temperature in the north can be high 20s, but as you get deeper and enter the thermocline, the temperature can drop to the low 20s. The channel and the south sides of the islands are the colder side during the mola months. The water temperature can start around the mid 20s but the thermocline can bring the temperature down to the mid teens.
If you are looking to visit during the month of July, be sure to book early. We are able to help with transfer to Lembongan, accommodation and diving packages. The start of July is less busy but less of a chance to see the mola. Even though the sun is shinning bright, be prepared for the cooler waters. We do provide full length wetsuits for all our divers when they are visit Lembongan for diving.
Twin Island Dive does provide the Twin Island difference. Even at our busiest, we do not change our standards. We still offer small groups and we do not mix certification levels, even in the mola season months.