After the USAT Liberty Wreck was hit by a Japanese torpedo during World War II, she was stranded on the rocky shores of Tulamben.
It was then in 1964, that the volcano Mnt. Agung erupted and the lava pushed the wreck into the sea. The 120m long wreck now lies a short swim from the shore, at a depth of between 3 – 29m.
When I arrived at this dive site in January 2015, I had no idea what to expect. We were first greeted by a small group of small female Balinese woman who effortlessly lifted our cylinders and heavy diving gear up onto their heads and walked off into the direction of the dive site. I was soon to find out this is custom in Bali and the woman are reliant on the income they earn from porterage fees.
As I looked out over the dive site I could see a curtain of bubbles rising from the ocean floor only a mere 50m away – hard to believe that such a large wreck was so close to the shore line. We kitted up and had to take great care as we walked over the rocks in full scuba gear to get into the water – booties are a must!
We slowly descended. Nothing had prepared me for the abundance of marine life that lives here. Barracuda, bump-head parrotfish and Napolean wrasse were there to greet us, and batfish, butterflyfish and sweetlips were swimming all over the wreck. As we moved slowly along we came across numerous nudibranchs, frogfish and stonefish tucked in under the caves and ledges. Even the shallow sandy areas on route to our exit point were alive with sand eels and rays. Invertebrates galore and a photographer’s paradise!
We finally clambered over the slippery rocks back onto shore where our diving group was chatting with excitement after the great dive.
There is just far too much too see and I would recommend doing at least two dives at this site. Definitely one of Bali’s best dive sites and not to missed!