A remote island chain in northern Indonesia, Wakatobi offers pristine reefs and abundant fish life across dozens of world-class sites. Wakatobi can be explored from either a liveaboard or a resort, and here at Bluewater, our staff has first-hand knowledge of the best way to explore these amazing islands.
Have you been lucky enough to dive Wakatobi National Park? Or is it still on your bucket list of dream destinations? Here are some fun facts about Wakatobi that you probably don't know, and will certainly get you excited about diving there.
1. It's All In The Name
The name 'Wakatobi' is a portmanteau of the four largest populated islands of the Wakatobi Regency. They are Wangi-Wangi, Kaledupa, Tomia, and Binongko. While the archipelago is made up of hundreds of islands, the majority are either unpopulated or home to only a few families.
2. Protected Status
The Wakatobi National Park is the third-largest in Indonesia and covers an area of 1.4 million hectares. In 2012 it was included in the UNESCO World Network of Biosphere Reserves and has been a tentative candidate for the UNESCO World Heritage List since 2005.
3. Traditional Crafts
The area is traditionally known as the Tukangbesi Islands after an indigenous tribe with skilled knowledge of ironwork. In particular, they make machetes and there is even an island, Palau Tukang Besi, named for this art form.
4. Local Politics
Each section of reef around the Regency is owned by the local community who lease access rights to tour and dive operators. The income from these arrangements is used to make improvements to the village facilities such as building repairs or the installation of electricity.
5. Thriving Corals
Of the 850 species of coral, 750 of them can be found on the reefs around Wakatobi. Scuba diving is the primary tourist attraction for the region, and there are over 50 stunning dive sites to discover.
Contact Bluewater Dive Travel today to book your trip to Wakatobi National Park.
Learn more about the diving in Wakatobi from the Underwater Photography Guide.
Find out which camera to buy from the Bluewater Photo Store.