About Banda

The Banda Islands belong to the Molucca region in eastern Indonesia. They are located 180 km southeast of Ambon and are surrounded by the 5000 m deep Banda Sea. About 22 000 people inhabit the 7 largest of the 11 islands, with the main island, Banda Naira, and the largest, Banda Besar, being most densely populated. The Bandanese are mainly living from fishing and from the export of spices such as nutmeg and cinnamon. In colonial times, nutmeg was the subject of conflict between Portuguese, Dutch and English seafarers on Banda, thus creating a very dramatic and moving past that is still visible when visiting the islands’ colonial buildings and museums and that is present with each step you take on Banda. If more people knew about the secret fame of the island Run, for example, the Bandas would definitely attract much more attention worldwide: Pulau Run was traded between the Dutch and the British against what is now Manhattan, New York. Some Bandanese tend to say now that the Dutch – who received Pulau Run for giving away Manhattan – made the much better deal.

When arriving on Banda Naira you can immediately feel the island’s great vibes. You will love this place more and more the longer you’re staying while you’re making friends, climbing the volcano that arises above Banda Naira, taking a tour into the nutmeg and almond plantations, relaxing at nice beaches and – of course – discovering the vivid underwater life.

The volcano island, Gunung Api, is a prominent feature of the Bandas. Gunung Api last erupted in 1988 and from its 656 m high peak you can still look down into the crater and feel warm vapor streaming out of little cracks in the rock. Hiking up takes about 1.5 to 2 hours and is nicest early in the morning to watch the sun rise behind Banda Naira. The stroll up leads you through a dense forest that becomes thinner the closer you get to the top. You will actually pass four different zones of vegetation during your hike. On Banda Naira, the capital and most densely populated island, you find most accommodations and nice restaurants that will serve you excellent Bandanese food with a special local combination of spices. You will be surprised in how many dishes you can find all different parts of the nutmeg fruit. Dried or candied nutmeg, nutmeg jam or the super-rich almond biscuits are excellent “Oleh-oleh” – the Indonesian term for a local specialty to bring home from travelling. For adventurers, the island of Banda Besar offers steep forests with interesting wildlife to be discovered. A Hike from the village Lonthoir, on top of the hills in the west of Banda Besar, across the mountains to the southern villages and beaches will reveal mostly untouched forests where – with a little luck – you have the chance to see tropical birds and Cuscus, a huge-eyed nocturnal marsupial. But not only Banda’s forests are mostly untouched: under water, you will find some of the world’s best and healthiest coral reefs. With more than 300 hard coral species and more than 500 fish species, the reefs give you the impression of diving into a different world of hundreds of different colors and motions. Every season in Banda has its own appeal: the transition seasons from October till December and from February till May are spoiling you with magnificent visibilities whereas the more turbid plankton-rich times after the southeast monsoon in August and September will surprise you with incredible numbers of fish and more frequent encounters with larger pelagics. Before I get too nostalgic about diving… no matter whether you’re a diver or not, you will definitely find lots of different things to do on Banda and at the end you might get nostalgic yourself when leaving this sunny place with its vibrating past.


Email (Deutsch):


Email (English): dive.bluemotion@gmail.com


T: +62 81 247 143 922



Jl. Pelabuhan, Laguna Hotel. Bandaneira, Maluku, Indonesia



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Apr, 2017: Come dive in paradise!

Get a taste of what diving with Bluemotion Banda is like:


Feb, 2017: Free NITROX!

Bluemotion Banda now offers Nitrox FREE OF CHARGE for divers with EAN32 certification or higher. If you are not certified for Nitrox yet, you can take a quick course with us -very easy, only 1-2 hours :) Please check our course rates here.

Feb, 2017: Fast ferry has resumed operation.

The fast ferry is operating normally again -except in case of really bad weather. The schedule will be as last year: Tuesdays and Saturdays at 9 am from Tulehu (Ambon) to Banda and Wednesdays and Sundays at 9 am from Banda to Tulehu. Please check all the info here

Feb 2017: EcoDiver Courses & Marine Research Internships available

Our partner Sea Ventures offers a new range of marine research and conservation programmes at Banda. Visit their website at sea-ventures.co

Oct 9th, 2016: Old laptops needed for children's computer lab on Banda

We have supported the re-opening of a computer lab on Banda. The lab was setup more than a year ago supported by a social fund but had to close a few months ago as the operational costs couldn't be covered. It was now revived thanks to our volunteer teacher Masha. Children come there every afternoon to learn about computers, Mathematics and English. The interest and feedback has been very positive but, unfortunately, only 3 computers are functioning and available for more than 30 children. If you are going to visit us for diving and have an old laptop you don't need anymore, we would be very thankful if you could donate it to the lab.