We are both huge animal lovers so snorkeling with manta rays was high on our list of things to do in Nusa Penida! Mantas, while gigantic (they can get up to 23 feet wide), are totally harmless to humans and are even said to be curious around divers and snorkelers!
Pricing and Details
We made friends with another travel couple (check out their blog: World of Weekends) who invited us on their snorkeling trip. Since they booked through their hotel, Tentacle Bali, we paid 250k IDR per person compared to 350k we saw other people paying on the beach! The tour includes 4 snorkeling stops and runs from about 8am until 11am. There are dozens of boats waiting on the docks every morning, loaded with hopeful tourists, so it shouldn’t be hard to book a tour.
After a choppy boat ride to Manta Bay, our first snorkeling stop, we put on our snorkeling gear and jumped into the brisk water. The boat captains began to yell and point down at the water as they spotted the first manta. Initially, swimming alongside the mantas felt intimidating since the enormous creatures tend to swim straight for you, mouth wide open, before darting away at the last second. We were graced with three manta sightings. Each time a manta appeared, it would gracefully glide through our group of snorkelers for a few moments, before swimming off into the depths of the ocean. We had three more stops where we unfortunately didn’t see any mantas but did get to see tons of colorful fish and massive 3 foot tuna.
It was a magical experience but keep in mind that its impossible to predict nature or the number of mantas you’ll see. Check out our short YouTube video to relive this experience!