Here at NAD-Lembeh we truly love Blackwater Diving it is exciting, fascinating and something new to many divers. If you’ve never done a Blackwater Dive before keep on reading as we’ll take you through the basics.
Blackwater diving can be described as dropping in the water at night and looking for planktonic/larval forms of marine creatures that migrate from the depths of the ocean to the surface. The two different ways we do this is through “Bonfire” diving or “Blackwater” drift diving.

Bonfire dives are great if you are new to the concept. We put a large light source on the sand in a relatively shallow area (maybe two if we have a bigger group). The lights attract plankton and in turn other marine life. During this dive you will be able to see the bottom at all times usually diving at a maximum depth of 12-15m….but spending most of our time in the top 5m.

Blackwater drift diving is done a bit differently. We attach lights to a hangline and drift through deep water. All going well you will not see the bottom on this dive, unless we choose a location close to a reef wall in hopes of finding a particular critter. The hangline sits at around 10-12m depth and it’s in those top 10 metres where you will see most activity.

The key for you as a diver to have a successful Blackwater Dive………is buoyancy! The less time you have to spend adjusting your buoyancy the more time you can spend photographing all the amazing creatures. If you are a beginner or a little nervous, starting out with a Bonfire Dive is not a bad idea at all. This will allow you to get used to the darkness and “Blackwater style” whilst knowing you are not far away from the bottom.

A lot of guests ask us about Blackwater Drift Dives and how the current affects the dive. The truth is a bit of current is actually a good thing! Since you are swimming around a drifting hangline, you will just drift at the same speed as the line. Most of the time you won’t even notice until you get back to the surface just how much distance you’ve actually covered in the water.

So what do we expect to see on these dives? Your guide will be swimming around looking for anything interesting to point out to you. This might be various species of jellyfish, crustaceans, cephalopods and many many different species of juvenile fish , You might see some pelagic nudibranchs or flatworms free-swimming in the water column. If you’re extremely lucky you may get a chance to see some of the Blackwater Diving “Holy Grails”, such as the ribbonfish, blanket octopus, wonderpus, paper nautilus or the oarfish!

If you are interested in trying Blackwater Diving, please contact us via the form here, or send us an email at It is great fun and definitely something you should try if you haven’t already.

Why Dive with NAD-Lembeh Resort?


NAD-Lembeh Resort is a small, owner-operated, photography-oriented dive resort in the Lembeh Strait. We are situated in a private bay on Lembeh Island, away from the hustle and bustle of the mainland. We guarantee a 2:1 guest to guide ratio as standard, which makes for a private dive experience and lots of time to take pictures.


All our rooms (10 Beachfront Rooms, 5 Seaview Bungalows) offer ocean view, air conditioning, hot water, wifi, including full board. Our resort has only few steps, which makes our layout extremely convenient to get from your room to the restaurant, camera room, bar and floating jetty.


Our dive team consists of 15 full-time guides, with over 100 years of combined experience! Air as well as Nitrox and various cylinder sizes (both DIN and Yoke are available onsite).


NAD-Lembeh has 4 large, purpose-built dive boats. Each at around 15m long, they offer lots of space and comfort for the divers. Boats feature onboard toilets, towels, drinks and snacks and first aid/ oxygen.

Our jetty allows our guests dignified and quick boat entries – all our dive boats can be moored simultaneously, so there is no wading through the shallows to get on the boat for the dive!


Our focus at NAD is to take your underwater photography to the next level. We offer 1:1 photo classes and our guides are all proficient with photography, using our rental equipment for fun dives when not diving with guests.

We shoot video up to 8K, along with Nikon/ Canon SLR and mirrorless setups. This gives us a rounded knowledge of all cameras. We are also the go-to location for natural history filming in the Straits.


Our newly renovated, huge camera room offers one work space for each and every guest. The spacious, individual benches with lots of power points were purposely built for underwater photographers. NAD’s dedicated camera room is also the perfect place to work on and edit your pictures.

Several rental cameras and strobes are available onsite. We have basic tools and spare parts in our gift shop in case of minor camera problems as well as a drying cabinet, and computer for you to work on and edit your photos.