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East Timor

East Timor is a young country located on the eastern part of the island of Timor and bordering Indonesia. Just north of Australia and west of New Guinea. The country may not be associated much with diving yet, and that's probably because it's just starting to get tourism off the ground. However, there are many species-rich waters and a nice mix of big and small to experience.

You can fly here from Singapore, Australia or Bali in Indonesia and land in the capital, Dili. From there it's not far to good diving and there are dive resorts already here. The best diving can be found on the small island of Atauro, which is just over an hour's boat ride north. Here the reefs are healthy and well and not so affected by humans yet. There is also an incredible diversity of fish. In fact, more fish species have been recorded on average per dive than in the much more famous Raja Ampat in New Guinea.As well as fish, there are also plenty of different invertebrates with noodles, squid, crustaceans, cnidarians, echinoderms and flatworms and more.

Whales are common

The area is also known for its frequent sightings of whales. Blue whales, sperm whales, beaked whales, pilot whales and many different species of dolphins are quite common. Many backpackers go here just to experience encounters with these real beasts of the sea. The strait here between the island of Timor and the islands of Alor, Pantar and Wetar is very deep, over 3000 metres. It is used by these large mammals for their migrations. As a result, sometimes huge groups of whales can be found right here.

East Timor therefore has enormous potential but the infrastructure, mainly electricity and water, could do with a little push in the right direction. Virtually all electricity today is produced by generators and you should avoid drinking water unless it is purified or from bottles. For those who want to try going to East Timor for a scuba diving trip and adventure, it will be an exciting holiday.

All pictures with © approval from Atauro Island Dive resort, East Timor

Travel information East Timor

  • Time zone: GMT +9
  • Currency: US Dollar
  • Language: Portuguese and Tetun.
  • Water: Avoid drinking tap water and ice made from tap water. Buy bottled water instead.
  • Visa: As a Swedish citizen, you do not need a visa to travel to East Timor.
  • Health: Contact your nearest vaccination clinic for advice
  • Hyperbaric chamber: not available in Timor-Leste, the nearest are in Denpasar (Bali) and Darwin (Australia)
  • Country code: +670
  • Electricity: 220 volts. Most electrical outlets correspond to our outlets in the Nordic countries
  • Weather: The climate is hot and tropical, temperatures vary between 25-34 degrees depending on the season. The rainy season usually lasts from November to April, when short but often heavy showers usually occur in the afternoon.
  • Tips: about 5-10% of the bill is common..
  • Clothing recommendations: casual attire is appropriate at all times, even when visiting the finer, trendier restaurants.

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