Menjangan is a small pristine island off the north-western coast of Bali. It’s a part of Wes Bali National Park teeming with natural beauty. The on-shore is a playground for Javan deer or locally named as Menjangan from which the island got its name. The water just the off shore, meanwhile, features stunning coral garden and tropical fishes.
Snorkeling and diving lovers find this island the real paradise in Bali. In fact, those two water sport are leisure activities that make Menjangan popular worldwide. Water current is something not to worry about here in Menjangan that beginners are even be able to explore the island’s best sites just like the pro ones.
The best part of the island is maybe on its western side. A deep lagoon lies just 5 meters below the water surface, dropping down to the depth of 30 meters. It houses stunning reef wall with cracks revealing garden eels, Titan triggerfish, Trevally, scorpion fish and many more. Deeper in the water, chance to see gorgonian fans, tipped sharks, barracuda and turtles are limitless.
Several meters from the west spot to the north, there is wooden ship wreck on the depth of 35 meters. The huge anchor is still there next to the remaining cargo that includes sheets of copper and ceramic bottles. After years now, it turns to be a shelter for large schools of fish.
The southern part is just equally beautiful. Two sites there are Pos I and Pos II that features excellent muck diving and wall diving respectively. Pos I is best to see coral garden while Pos II is perfect to see sharks and manta rays.
The mainland of Menjangan is also worth a trip. The entire area of the island is left undeveloped, allowing jungle and its inhabitant to grow naturally. Sea birds and shorebirds are many while Javan deer are frequently seen taking bath on the beach.
On the eastern tip, a temple named Segara Giri Dharma Kencana is beautifully situated on the tip of a hill. Painted in all white, the complex is adorned with huge Ganesha statue facing toward the sea. Though there are residents on the island, the temple is well tended and regularly used as the venue for festive religious ceremony.
One needs to go on three hour drive from Kuta area to get to Menjangan island. It can be traveled by both private car and public bus. But be warned that taking public transport will double the travel time due to the frequent stops and the long waiting time at the main terminals. The transit point is usually at Labuan Lalang harbor in Pemuteran area before a boat transfer you to the island. This boat ride only takes 30-45 minutes.
It indeed needs an effort to get to Menjangan island, but it is worthy to see the real nature of Bali.