Diving through quarantine in Indonesia

Mandarinfish, Bunaken (Steve Weinman)

Itching to get back to diving Indonesia? Siladen Resort & Spa, located on an island in Bunaken National Marine Park in North Sulawesi, is offering overseas visitors the chance to take advantage of its “bubble” status and be able to scuba dive while still under quarantine.  

The resort reopened in January after using the pandemic shutdown to carry out what it says are a number of renovations and improvements, initially accepting only local guests. However, because of the remote location the authorities have designated Siladen a bubble resort. This means that even though overseas guests might have to be in quarantine initially they are allowed to dive from the day they arrive. 

Guests who are fully vaccinated to booster level need to quarantine for only three nights. After this, a negative PCR test result allows them to take part in excursions as well as resort diving. Guests who have had only one or two vaccines are required to quarantine for seven or five nights, but can still dive. The same rules apply to children.

On to Raja Ampat?

Guests travelling to quarantine in the Bunaken area must fly into Manado from Singapore with Singapore Airlines subsidiary Scoot Airlines on Wednesdays or Fridays. There are also daily direct flights east from Manado to Sorong, so Siladen suggests that anyone planning a trip to Raja Ampat could enter Indonesia via Manado and quarantine while diving at the resort before moving on.

“We are optimistic that, from 1 April onwards, the government will drop the quarantine requirement for vaccinated travellers, so you will be able to enjoy Siladen Resort & Spa for as long as you wish, with no restrictions,” says the resort. At present a specific visa needs to be obtained in advance to enter the country, but the resort says that it can arrange this for guests staying seven nights or more. 

Indonesia is rolling out changes to admission for foreign nationals, but at present divers seeking a visa need to supply proof of full Covid-19 vaccination; a letter stating willingness to obey Indonesian health protocols including quarantine requirements; proof of insurance including Covid-19 health coverage and a letter stating willingness to pay for own treatment in the event of testing positive; the past three months’ bank statements; and proof of accommodation including payment. A negative Covid test certificate is also required on arrival.

Room rate per night for a Garden View Villa full board in April is 410 euros (around £340). Transfers are not included. 13-25 air dives cost 43 euros each (49 euros nitrox). Find out more from Siladen Resort & Spa.

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