Amed Bali Diving
Whale Sharks in Sumbawa Island

Whale Sharks of Sumbawa Island

Whale sharks!!!

Encountering a whale shark in Bali is a rare and incredible experience. These creatures evoke as much wonder as manta rays do. Imagine the awe when a fish the size of a bus gracefully swims by – it’s hard not to be amazed. Whale sharks can reach lengths of up to 15 meters and are completely harmless to humans.

Fortunately, not far from Bali, just one island away, there’s a place where whale sharks are spotted almost every day. And that place is in Sumbawa Island. So, we decided to make a trip there to see them and explore the route for future journeys. We rented a car and hit the road.

Ferry Lombok - Sumbawa

The journey wasn’t the easiest. The first ferry from Bali to Lombok takes about five hours. Then, about three hours to cross Lombok Island. Another two hours on the ferry from Lombok to Sumbawa. Finally, a five-hour drive across Sumbawa Island. We stayed overnight in a small but cozy hotel, and the next day, at 3 AM, we set off by boat to see the whale sharks. Being at the right spot at dawn is crucial, and then… there they are, gracefully swimming right next to the boat.


After swimming and diving with the sharks, it was time to head back. Three hours by boat back to the hotel, breakfast, and then by car across Sumbawa towards the ferry. We split the return journey into two parts. Not far from the port, about an hour’s drive away, there’s a lovely Whales and Waves Hotel owned by our friends, where we stayed for two nights. The hotel is located on the west coast, offering stunning views of Lombok with Mount Rinjani and breathtaking sunsets.

Whales and Waves Hotel in Sumbawa

After a day of relaxation, we set off early again, took two ferries, and crossed Lombok Island…

The total duration of the trip to whale sharks was 4 days:

First day – Early departure from Bali and journey to the hotel in Sumbawa.
Second day – Early departure to sea, snorkeling with whale sharks, transfer to the hotel on the west coast.
Third day – Relaxation at the hotel, optional visit to the waterfall.
Fourth day – Early departure and journey back to Bali.

A small note: The ferries between the islands operate on some sort of unclear schedule, so the trip may take a bit longer.

Yes, the trip is quite challenging and packed with activities, but believe us, it’s worth it!

If you’d like to join us for whale sharks next time, feel free to reach out. We’d be happy to help you fulfill your dream!