Maumere was regarded as one of the best dive sites in the whole of Indonesia. That was until a devastating earthquake and Tsunami hit the area in 1992 causing widespread damage on land as well as under the waters too. Happily life has returned to Maumere however signs of the devastation live on as you will undoubtedly come across buildings never rebuilt after the disaster. The coral reefs are also starting to take a hold and marine life in the area now is starting to flourish.
You should not put off a trip to this part of Indonesia as Maumere has a lot to offer the adventurous traveler. You may find yourself transiting en route to Larantuka or Ende or even spending a few days checking out the great dive sites on offer. Maumere bay itself is very picturesque surrounded by volcanoes and rugged mountain peaks draped in a lush tropical rainforest. The bay of Maumere is relatively calm and this is due to the two magnificent outlying islands of Palau Besar and Dambilah. These islands act as a natural barrier offering you great views and calm waters.
A popular dive site near Maumere is Wairterang which lies just to the East of the town. Here you will find a Japanese shipwreck that lies in around 12 metres of water. As with most wrecks it has become a thriving home for the sealife here and the wreck homes some fantastic coral.
Babi Island is also a very popular spot amongst divers due to its proximity to Maumere. Babi Island bore the brunt of the devastating earthquake in 1992 and the resulting tsunami wiped out practically everything on the island. Today things are looking much better and you can expect to find pristine waters as well as a very exciting 50 meter reef wall that will have you diving into the depths. You can expect to spot angel fish, parrot fish and damsel fish all inhabiting the wall.
Apart from diving, the other attraction to Maumere is the larger marine life in the area. It is very common to spot dolphins as well as pilot whales. These mammals can be seen all year round. Another great sight has been the magnificent sperm whale which comes into these waters during the rainy season of November through to December. You can arrange trips onto the open water to spot these magnificent beasts, just ask at your hotel for the information.
Weaving is very popular in Flores and Maumere has a very distinctive style of geometric blue, marroon and white patterns. Weaving these fabrics is a very large part of the culture and you can see the influence in the markets and even villages. If you want to buy these fabrics make sure you agree a price that is suited to you and the seller. Check out our tips on how to negotiate in Indonesia; they will come in handy.
Maumere is a place for the underwater lover. Whether it be scuba diving or just snorkeling you will surely be amazed at the beauty this part of Flores has to offer.