In a remote part of Indonesia's Banda Sea lies the still active volcano Gunung Api, or "Fire Mountain" - and below its lava-encrusted shoreline the volcano is home to hundreds of highly venomous sea snakes that hunt in packs and show little fear of human scuba divers.

Deep within Indonesia's 17,000 islands lies Gunung Api, one of the remotest volcanic atolls within the Banda Sea. One hundred and twenty miles away from the nearest landmass, getting there takes several days of solid cruising from a scuba diving liveaboard boat departing from the Banda Islands. (I've included Gunung Api's location on a Google Map below if you're interested in seeing exactly where it is). For our trip we were on the MSY Seahorse with whom I'd previously explored Raja Ampat. There are only a few months in each year where the Banda Sea is calm enough to be safely crossed. And the reason for all this effort is because below the water the slopes of "Fire Mountain" are home to hundreds, possibly thousands of venomous sea snakes that we were going to go scuba diving with.

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About this author

  • Chris Mitchell

    My site, www.Divehappy.com is a personal guide to scuba diving in South East Asia and Australia edited by me, Chris Mitchell, a…

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