Skip to content
Home » Blog » Spotlight on December: An Underrated Komodo Diving Season

Spotlight on December: An Underrated Komodo Diving Season

    What do you picture when you think of the Komodo Islands? For many, images of massive, scaly Komodo dragons are the first to come to mind. Others conjure images of Komodo liveaboard diving, the nearby Padar or Rinca Islands or the quaint town of Labuan Bajo (the location of Azul Komodo’s PADI 5 Star Dive Shop). When we think of Komodo Island, we picture vibrant coral reefs, a thriving manta ray population, enjoying the Indonesian sunset from our trusty dive boat and exploring the depths of Komodo’s best dive sites. In Komodo, the adventures are endless – especially in the December Komodo diving season.

    It’s finally December, which means a plethora of new and exciting marine life to observe in Komodo! Keep reading to learn the ins and outs of scuba diving this UNESCO World Heritage Site in December.

    komodo diving season

    An Overview of the December Komodo Diving Season

    Most scuba divers and tourists tend to flock to Komodo National Park in the high season from mid-March to October. Although December falls during Indonesia’s rainy season, there are a ton of perks to diving Komodo in the off-season. In fact, the December Komodo diving season is one of the most underrated times to dive Komodo! 

    Enjoy an abundance of rare marine life, currents specific to the December season and the freedom of having popular dive sites to yourself this time of year. Heard enough already? 😉 Click here to book your December dives with Azul Komodo

    *Keep in mind that Komodo dive sites are easily accessible by day-trip year round. It’s not necessary to book a Komodo liveaboard to experience the best diving in the region. 

    komodo islands

    Currents in December Komodo Diving Season

    Most dive sites in Komodo are affected by currents, especially when it comes to the Northern dive sites. Komodo National Park is blessed with currents that bring nutrient-rich water that attracts plankton. In turn, this plankton attracts marine life like manta rays and new species of corals. 

    In December, the Komodo dive sites that offer the most protection from currents tend to be Siaba Besar, Sebayur Kecil, Mawan/Makassar Reef and Tatawa Besar in Central Komodo. These sites are perfect for Discovery divers or PADI Open Water Course students! 

    komodo diving season

    Marine Life in Komodo National Park in December

    Komodo’s flourishing marine life is constantly changing! Species migrate with changing water temperatures, varying currents and environmental changes like disruptions to marine ecosystems and variances in the food chain. This means that every scuba dive in Komodo is guaranteed to be different and exciting! 

    Like every other month, December brings its own distinct changes to Komodo’s marine life. Below, you’ll find a list of exciting creatures you might be lucky enough to see on your next dive during Komodo’s December diving season! 

    scuba diving komodo

    Manta Rays

    The December Komodo diving season is a fantastic time to observe Komodo’s claim to fame: manta rays. So far this December, our divers have seen countless manta rays – even at dive sites where they aren’t normally spotted! 

    Although manta rays are currently classified as a vulnerable species, a new study found that Komodo National Park is home to around 1,085 reef mantas! The thriving population in Komodo is dubbed “a ray of hope” for manta ray populations around the world. Mantas are attracted to the plankton-rich waters around Komodo Island and often gather here to feed, mate and clean themselves at reef cleaning stations. 

    komodo diving season


    Indonesia is home to one of the world’s only thriving green sea turtle populations – the Gili Islands. Although you won’t find nearly as many green sea turtles in Komodo, we are still blessed with more turtles than most – especially during December. 

    Hawksbill, loggerhead and green sea turtles are spotted daily in Komodo National Park at dive sites like Siaba Besar in Central Komodo. They are usually observed feeding on the reef, sleeping on the coral or swimming gracefully up to the surface for a gulp of air!

    komodo in december

    Black/White Tip Reef Sharks

    Blacktip reef sharks and whitetip reef sharks are always an exciting sight when you’re diving Komodo Island! In December, the reef shark population flourishes and divers are rewarded with tons of sightings during their dives. 

    We often find reef sharks during the December Komodo diving season at dive sites like Siaba Besar, Tatawa Besar and Batu Bolong (for our Advanced Open Water Divers). 

    komodo diving season


    Although the name is a bit confusing, cuttlefish are actually not fish at all. They are mollusks that, along with octopus and squid, belong to the cephalopod group. 

    However they’re classified, it’s always a treat to see them on a scuba dive! During the December Komodo diving season, cuttlefish sightings are quite common. Never seen a cuttlefish? Click here!

    december scuba diving


    Pufferfish are another abundant sighting during the December Komodo diving season! Many of our new scuba divers – like our Discover Scuba Diving and Open Water Course students – are surprised to learn that “puffing” can be very harmful to pufferfish. Although it is a successful method of discouraging predators, it can sadly lead to the death of the pufferfish. 

    Remember: being a responsible diver means to observe ONLY – never touch the marine life or attempt to influence specific behavior.

    komodo diving season

    Moray Eels

    Moray Eels are another common December sighting when you dive Komodo Island. These snake-like creatures are very elusive and spend most of their time hiding in holes and crevices along the coral reef. Their behavior allows them to stay hidden from predators but easily ambush their prey when it swims along.

    komodo national park

    Shoals of Fusiliers 

    Diving Siaba Besar in December often brings schools of fusiliers. These little blue fish with bright yellow fins congregate and travel in the hundreds. It’s an exciting day of diving when you find yourself caught up in a shoal of fusilier!

    komodo diving season

    Jackfish (A.K.A. Giant Trevally) 

    Jackfish, also known as giant trevally, are commonly found in the currents of Batu Bolong and Siaba Kecil in the December diving season. Even on the small side, these fish are massive! We usually observe jackfish in the 55 – 170 pound range on dives in Komodo National Park.

    komodo national park

    Less Tourists During this Komodo Diving Season 

    Diving in the Komodo off-season means more marine life and fewer humans! If you’re someone who gets frustrated pushing through crowds or being elbow-to-elbow with other divers during your scuba dives, then the December Komodo diving season is the season for you. 

    December brings tranquility to Labuan Bajo and Komodo National Park. Even the most popular Komodo dive sites are free and clear during the off-season! 

    komodo diving season

    If you’re ready to book your Komodo December dives, our Azul Komodo family would love to host you! Click here to get in touch about booking your dives or here to browse our selection of PADI Diver Courses. And, if you enjoyed this guide to the December Komodo diving season, be sure to follow us on Instagram @azul.komodo and like us on Facebook @azul.komodo.diving

    -Team Azul Komodo

    Open chat
    Questions about diving in Komodo?