We thought that after leaving Raja Ampat, the diving would not be up to our past experiences. Fortunately, reality proved very different.
In Banda Neira we dove the lava flow of the Gunung Api eruption from 1988. Despite the fact that the lava had destroyed most of the healthy existing coral, almost 30 years later it had completely recovered. Interestingly some species seem to grow better than others in the new environment. Giant sponges, the biggest we have seen so far, were all over the place.
We also went diving with a comercial operator to the island of Hatta. There is some great coral walls there, but no proper anchorage so for a change we dove with someone preparing all the gear for us and we even got a set of clean towels to dry ourselves after the dive!
Mandarin Fish by Noa
In Banda Neira there are some really beautiful fishes.
We went to snorkel under the jetty at the harbor. When we arrived, there were many kids swimming and we went to look for the mandarin fish.
After 35 minutes without seeing any, we decided to leave, but as usual Dad and Ainara stayed. In the water they were looking at some urchins spawning when Ainara saw a mandarin fish hiding behind the urchins. Everybody went back in the water