Wednesday, October 1, 2014

I cried.

Nusa Lembongan is approximately 8 square kilometers in size with a permanent population estimated at 5,000. Twelve kilometers of the Badung Strait separates Nusa Lembongan from Bali.

The quaint, quiet hotel sat on a sleepy little bay where hundreds of boats moored every evening.   Beyond the slew of boats and a silly tourist attraction built upon a barge , Mount Agung dominated the view.  Mount Agung is an active volcano, reaching over 10,000 feet into the sky.  It truly is a sight to see.

The diving in Nusa Lembongan was some of the more advanced diving I have done, and I loved it.  The Thermoclines were intense, in other words, the water temperature was often unpredictable.  At one point the temperature started at 82 degrees, and as we sailed through a healthy current, I watched my dive computer (and felt my insides) fall fall fall all the way down to 73 degrees.  About the time I decided to ascend a few feet to try and move out of it, the intense coolness was gone and the temps were back in the 80's.  We hit a few ripping currents, which can be a lot of fun, and is some of my favorite diving.  Just picture the turtles in Finding Nemo, flying down the 'EAC' at an intense speed; that is what it feels like.  You don't have to move a muscle, as the current takes you sailing by the scenery, just kick back and enjoy the ride!

Crystal Bay was the name of the dive site that literally brought me to tears.  The most vibrant and colorful array of coral I have ever seen.  Everywhere you look, it's bounding in vibrant greens, pinks, purples, yellows and every other color in the rainbow.  The shape of the most dominant coral in Crystal Bay reminded me of the famed Chihuly glass, spilling over each other and into the deep blue sea.  Little Nemos fluttered about, protecting their anemone and the coveted Nudibranchs we are often searching for high and low on Roatan, are everywhere you look!

Can you believe the color and similarity to an actual feather??

'Chihuly Coral'

I found Nemo!

Nudibranchs are incredibly unique in their color, size and appearance

Heading back in after 3 dives, with Mt. Agung in the background

The time spent on Nusa Lembongan was wonderfully relaxing and breathtaking.  I enjoyed meals in the famed 'Mushroom Bay', lined with just a handful of restaurants and coffee shops.  A sleepy little island, Nusa Lembongan did NOT disappoint.

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