Fancy doing something different in 2014? Perhaps this is the year you’ll finally book that Asian culinary tour, that iconic Australian road trip or that romantic South Pacific getaway.
The editor of RainbowTourism.com, AKA The Rainbow Rambler, decided her something different would involve marine tourism - snorkeling inside remote West Bali National Park at a very unique coral reef. Bali's Biorock Project was the lure.
Winner of the 2012 Equator Prize for Coral Restoration, Biorock registered a wow factor with our resident diver. While most divers and snorkelers head to Menjangan Island - known worldwide as a snorkeling and scuba diving paradise - Biorock 25kms to the east, remains little known except to the intrepid coral lovers.
Biorock is a 14-year-old project that has been restoring degraded coral reefs and improving fish and coral abundance and diversity while generating sustainable livelihoods for villagers.
How do they grow new coral?
The Biorock method uses solar power to generate low-voltage currents to grow natural limestone rock and coral skeletons that are anchored to steel structures in shallow water of Pemuteran Bay - just 50 m from the beach. The community-managed project has successfully experimented with radical approaches to artificial reef construction by means of mineral accretion to literally grow a reef - now 500m wide!
About 60 coral nurseries have been installed since 2000, making it the largest project of its kind worldwide. In 2011, the Coral Goddess Sculpture was installed. Last month, baby coral "Deetours" was added to a new steel structure beneath the solar collector on a buoy. "I look forward to monthly photos showing her growth until I can return to view my adopted coral," says Dee who has been diving and snorkleing around Bali and Lombok for the past two years.
Where to stay & snorkle, swim and fish: Taman Sari Bali, a mountain resort & spa by the sea, Pemuteran.
OUT There Starts Here
Dee Farrell is a Bio Rocker - by virtue of adopting a baby coral at Bali's Biorock in pristine Pemuteran Bay. Where? West Bali National Park, the last frontier of marine tourism.
See why Bali the Beautiful attracts so many visitors by taking a guided day trip - or two. Sensational sightseeing and unique things to do with English-speaking locals in eco and culture friendly tourist destinations.
Singaraja and Bedugul North Coast Bali Mountain Tour (from $67 AUD)
Explore the tranquil rural countryside of Bali as you travel the whole length of the island, journey through the central mountains to Singaraja and Lovina Beach on the North Coast and walk through tropical rainforests and waterfalls.