Are There Sharks in Bali? [Explained]

Are there sharks in Bali? The answer is yes. Although it’s rare to spot a shark while swimming or snorkelling in the ocean around Bali, they do live here and can be seen occasionally.

The most common Bali shark species you might see while scuba diving or snorkelling in Bali is the reef shark, such as blacktip, whitetip and grey reef sharks. Some other sharks are also there.

In this article, I will discuss in detail the various sharks found in Bali and provide some safety tips to ensure you have a safe experience when swimming or snorkelling.

Are There Sharks In Bali

Which Sharks Are There in Bali?

Sharks are among the most fascinating creatures in the ocean, and Bali is home to a few species of these amazing creatures. Below are the different kinds of sharks that you can find in Bali:

Black reef shark in bali

Blacktip Reef Sharks

Blacktip reef sharks are a common species of shark found in the waters of Bali. These sharks are known for their black-tipped fins and slender body structure. They usually live in shallow waters and feed on small fish and crustaceans.

Whitetip reef shark in Bali

Whitetip Reef Sharks

Whitetip reef sharks are another common species found in Bali. These sharks have a sturdy and thick body structure with white-tipped fins. They are known to be nocturnal and are usually found resting during the day in caves or crevices.

grey reef shark in Bali

Grey Reef Sharks

Grey reef sharks are a larger species of reef shark and can be found in deeper waters around Bali. These sharks have a greyish-brown color and are often seen swimming in groups. They are muscular and can swim up to 60 km/h.

Indonesian Angel Sharks in Bali

Indonesian Angel Sharks

Indonesian angel sharks are a unique species found in Bali. These sharks have a flattened body structure and are usually found resting on the ocean floor. They are camouflage experts and can blend in with their surroundings very well. They feed on small fish and crustaceans.


Thresher Sharks

Thresher sharks can also be found in the waters around Bali. These sharks have a long tail and are usually seen swimming in groups. They feed on small fish and use their tails to stun their prey before feeding.

Bali Catsharks in Bali

Bali Catsharks

Bali catsharks are a small species of shark that is native to Bali. They have a unique pattern of black spots on their body and are known to be a nocturnal species. They feed on crustaceans, small fish and squid.

Hammerhead Sharks in Bali

Hammerhead Sharks

In Bali’s waters, there are also Hammerhead sharks, which have a distinct head shape resembling a hammer. They typically hunt in clusters and consume fish, squid, and crustaceans.

Bull Sharks in Bali

Bull Sharks

Bull sharks are a rare species found in Bali. They are known for their aggressive behaviour and are considered to be one of the most dangerous sharks in the world. They have a stocky body structure and are found in both freshwater and saltwater environments.

Grey Sharpnose Sharks in Bali

Grey Sharpnose Sharks

Grey sharpnose sharks are a small species found in Bali. They have a greyish-brown colour with a long and slender body structure. They are usually found in shallow waters and feed on small fish, crustaceans, and squid.

Wobbegong Sharks in Bali

Wobbegong Sharks

Wobbegong sharks are unique and distinctive species found in Bali. They have a flattened body structure with a wide head and a broad mouth. They are ambush predators and are known to hide on the ocean floor, waiting for their prey to pass by. They feed on crustaceans, small fish, and cephalopods.

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Are There Great White Sharks in Bali?

Great white sharks are not a common sight in Bali, as they are a cold-water species, and the waters around Indonesia are typically too warm for them. However, it is not impossible to see a great white shark in Bali, as certain water areas may have a cold stream from the ocean’s depths. This means that while their presence is rare, it is not entirely out of the question.

While there have been reported sightings of great white sharks in Indonesian waters, they are generally considered to be a rarity. It is more common to see other species of shark in Bali, such as the blacktip reef shark or the whitetip reef shark, as these species are better adapted to the warmer waters.

Even though great white sharks are not commonly found in Bali, divers and researchers have reported encounters with them in the past. In some cases, these sightings have led to increased interest in studying great white sharks’ behaviour and movement patterns in Indonesian waters.

Do Sharks Attack Bali?

Shark activity and attacks in Bali are relatively rare. While some species of sharks are known to be aggressive, most of the sharks found in Bali’s waters are gentle creatures. But if you ask do sharks attack in Bali, the answer is yes.

How many shark attacks have there been in Bali? 

Since 1990, there have been only five recorded shark attacks in the island’s waters, all of which happened in the small surfing village of Uluwatu on Bali’s west coast. 

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Although these incidents were scary, none of them resulted in fatalities. This indicates that sharks in Bali’s waters are not particularly hazardous to people. 

The most recent shark attack in Bali occurred back in 2016. A surfer from San Diego was attacked by a bull shark while surfing the river mouth wave at Balian. While the surfer suffered serious injuries and nearly lost his arm, it is worth remembering that this was a highly unusual occurrence.

Is It Safe from Sharks for Diving in Bali?

If you are planning to explore the underwater world of Bali, you might be wondering if it is safe from sharks. As I discussed above, only five shark attacks have been reported in the island’s waters since 1990, and none of these were fatal. So, in general, it is safe.

Most sharks are gentle creatures that do not pose any threat to humans. In fact, many divers consider encountering a shark in the wild to be an exhilarating and awe-inspiring experience.

However, some sharks can be aggressive and potentially dangerous, such as the bull and the great white shark. These species are rare in Bali’s waters, but it is still a must to be aware of their risks and take precautions accordingly.

To ensure your safety while diving in Bali, following some basic safety tips is advisable.

  • Always go diving or swimming with a buddy or a group, as this will help to reduce the risk of shark attacks.
  • Never go diving or swimming alone, as this can increase your vulnerability to shark attacks.
  • Avoid wearing shiny jewellery or bright-coloured clothing when diving, as this can attract sharks.
  • Dive and snorkel only in designated areas that are known to be safe. Local authorities typically monitor these areas, which are free from underwater hazards such as strong currents or sharp coral reefs.
  • Be cautious during the early morning and late afternoon hours when sharks are most active.
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Diving With Bali Sharks: Best Time to Come

You should know the best time to dive with Bali sharks. Typically, the best months for diving in Bali are from April to October, the prime season for scuba diving with sharks.

During these months, Bali’s waters are calm and clear, with ideal visibility for spotting the sharks. The water temperatures are also relatively warm, making for a more comfortable diving experience.

Bali is home to several species of sharks, including reef sharks and even the occasional hammerhead. However, the sharks can be somewhat elusive, so dive with a reputable guide who can help you find them. Also, follow the tips mentioned above.


Now you have detailed information about all the sharks of Bali. If you are in Indonesia, Bali is a great place for diving and snorkelling. Sharks are an important part of the marine ecosystem and should be respected, so make sure to take all the necessary precautions when diving with them. With a bit of luck, you may be able to spot some beautiful specimens in the wild!

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