KBR Lembeh Dive Resort Reviews & Specials - Bluewater Dive Travel

KBR Lembeh Dive Resort



Destination: Indonesia

Kelurahan Tandu Rusa, Lembeh, Kota Bitung, Sulawesi Utara, Indonesia | Full board + 3 dives from $161++/ppn

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Important note: KBR Lembeh is currently closed and unavailable for booking. Contact us for some great alternatives.

KBR Lembeh Dive Resort Quick Pitch

Lembeh's first dive resort, Kungkungan Bay is still one of the best, boasting new renovations, phenomenal diving, and an ideal location.


Quick Information 

  • No of Rooms: 17
  • Dive Center: On-site
  • Amenities: AC, ensuite bathrooms, pool, bar, spa, camera room, nitrox
  • WiFi: Yes, free
  • Nearest International Airport: Sam Ratulangi International Airport
  • Airport shuttle: Yes


How to Get There

KBR is right in the middle of Lembeh Strait, on the west side. Once you arrive in Manado’s Sam Ratulangi International Airport, KBR's staff will meet you at the airport and escort you to our resort by private air-conditioned vehicle. This scenic drive takes approximately 80 minutes.  


Dive Overview

Lembeh Strait is known for its muck diving, making it a dream for underwater photographers.



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Types of Rooms, Amenities and Photos

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KBR Lembeh Dive Resort Accommodation Overview

KBR has 17 Luxurious rooms in 4 categories. All rooms are beachfront (with one exception) and are just steps from the magical waters of the Lembeh Strait. The resort is secluded and isolated from the bustle and noise of everyday Indonesian Village life. Here you can lie in bed at night and listen to the sound of small waves lapping on the beach as you fall asleep. You can then wake to the sounds of Birds in the Trees on a sunlit morning. All of the rooms are Air Conditioned with Ceiling Fans. Standard Room Amenities include: In-Room Telephones, Free Wi-Fi, Stocked Mini-Bar, Coffee/Tea Facilities, Un-Limited Bottled Water, Large Bathrooms w/ Walk-in Showers and Hair-dryer. There is a “Turndown” service every evening so your room is freshened and prepared for your night rest.


 KBR Lembeh KBR Lembeh

Beachfront Cottage Suites

These beautiful Coconut Wood cottages are the original rooms that KBR opened with in 1994. These rooms were built with the help of a Woodworking School run by Missionaries that is located in Tomohon. Over the years, these rooms have seen numerous upgrades, rebuilds and refurbishments to keep them fresh and beautiful. These are duplex units that have a large spacious layout, with an Air Conditioned Bedroom and a separate Fan-Cooled Living Room. The large Bathroom is attached to the bedroom and has a big Stone Walk-In Shower. There is a large Waterfront Veranda with chairs that is shared with your neighbor and which has beautiful views of the Bay and the Strait and beyond.

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KBR Lembeh KBR Lembeh

Beachfront Traditional Houses

These rooms are separate units and are “L shaped” with a Queen-sized Bed at each end of the “L”. That makes this room perfect for non-couples as this gives each bed some privacy from the other. There is a common sitting area located between the foot of each bed and a wood and stone bathroom with a Walk-In Shower. In addition to the standard amenities, this room is equipped with Satellite TV with Movie Channels.

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KBR Lembeh KBR Lembeh

Beachfront Villas

The Beachfront Villas were designed in-house as the resorts Luxury Rooms and they were built by the Craftsmen of KBR. The Beachfront Villas are separate units with a large open floor plan that includes a sitting area, a separate work area with desk & chair and a wardrobe for storage. The attached bathroom has a Bathtub and a separate Stone Walk-In Shower. There is a very large Veranda with breathtaking views of the Bay. Each Veranda has a dining table and comfortable chairs where you can enjoy some delicious food from our Room Service in privacy and comfort.

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KBR Lembeh KBR Lembeh

Hillside Villas

The Hillside Villa is our version of a Tree-House. It is a romantic two-story building with an Air Conditioned sitting area on the 1st floor. The 2nd floor is the Air Conditioned bedroom with French Doors that open onto a small balcony that is basically at treetop level and the view is fantastic. The attached bathroom also has separate bathing and shower facilities as above. In addition to the above standard amenities, all Villas are equipped with a Satellite TV w/ Movie Channels, the bathroom has separate bath and Room Service is available from 7:00 am to 9:00 pm (07:00 to 21:00).


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KBR Lembeh KBR Lembeh

Owner’s Suite

This Suite has 2 bedrooms, a large bedroom with a luxury King-size bed and a comfortable daybed for curling up with a book, and a second smaller bedroom with 2 twin beds. The bathroom has been upgraded with stylish Vanity and Shower fixtures. We have even installed a Bidet equipped toilet. The living room has beautiful Rattan Furniture, Mini-Bar, separate Desk & Chair and a 32-inch Flat screen Satellite TV. There is a separate Air Conditioning unit for each of the rooms. The front porch of this room is up off the ground as this is a stilt house. It is private and has great views of the resort and strait. This room is centrally located in the resort, so it is close to everything. The Owners Suite has all the above standard room amenities and the amenities of the Villas.

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Resort Facilities

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KBR Lembeh KBR Lembeh

Restaurant & Pool


KBR Lembeh Features

  • Private jetty with camera rinse tanks and hot showers
  • Camera charging room
  • Air-conditioned bar
  • Swimming pool with swim-up bar
  • Lounge
  • Internet access
  • Lending library
  • WIFI hotspots available throughout the resort
  • Restaurant service available 24-hours of every day
  • Spa


KBR Lembeh Food & Drinks

Food at Kungkungan Bay Resort is plentiful and of the highest quality. The Menu features both Indonesian and Western Cuisine.


KBR Lembeh Activities

  • Diving
  • Spa
  • Land excursions


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Package & Rates

Important note: KBR Lembeh is currently closed and unavailable for booking. Contact us for some great alternatives.


For information on rates, availability and to book, drop us an email at bookings@bluewaterdivetravel.com or call us at 310-915-6677 and we will gladly help you plan your dream dive vacation!  

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Dive Information

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Dive Overview

Lembeh Strait and Kungkungan Bay Resort is simply the best place in the world for macro photography! Lembeh plays host to a cornucopia of weird and wonderful creatures to be found here and here alone. We moor over shallow black sandy slopes, where seahorses and nudibranchs are in abundance. Then there are the Inimicus devilfish, dwarf lionfish, scorpionfish, pufferfish, octopus, pegasus sea moths, frogfish, ribbon eels and flying gurnards. Truly a one-off opportunity for all photographers and anyone looking for the unusual and unseen, you’re sure to see something that you have never seen before, no matter how experienced you are.

The exceptional year-round weather conditions provide a variety of diving experiences, from “muck dives” on pure black volcanic sand to colorful coral reefs and enticing historic wrecks. Whatever your pleasure, Lembeh is always sure to offer fascinating and exciting underwater discoveries.



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Dive Center Information

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KBR Lembeh KBR Lembeh


KBR Lembeh Dive Center Overview

KBR has a full-service PADI dive center complete with Camera Room, Equipment Rental, Instruction and there is NITROX from the “Membrane System”. A full range of Aqualung dive equipment are available for rent. There is also a wide-range of Scubapro full-length wetsuits in various sizes in 3mm and 5mm thickness (we usually recommend 3mm).

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Other Information

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Practical Information

  • Electricity: 220 V
  • Time zone: UTC+8
  • Languages: Indonesian & English
  • Accept Credit Cards?: Yes, Visa & MasterCard

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Got Questions? Ready to Book?

Call us today at 310-915-6677 or email us bookings@bluewaterdivetravel.com

And let us book your dream vacation! 

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Underwater Gallery 

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KBR Lembeh KBR LembehKBR Lembeh KBR LembehKBR Lembeh KBR Lembeh


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Reviews (4)



Very nice, I really enjoyed the resort and stayed in one of the Beachfront Villas, which I found very comfortable. To be honest, I didn't spend a lot of time hanging out in my room, but what I did was very comfortable. The AC in the room worked very well. I would usually eat breakfast outside over the water so I could watch the boats and the fish below, and lunch and dinner in the main dining area.

Traveling alone, in addition to the amazing staff at KBR who all learned my name almost immediately, I was lucky to meet some other very nice guests and would join them for dinner. Very friendly, relaxing and welcoming atmosphere.


I mostly tried the local Indonesian courses, which varied from interesting to very tasty. No complaints on the food, I really liked the cinnamon toast with peanut butter and bananas for breakfast... yum! And also feeding the fish bread was a lot of fun too.


Fantastic all around. Extremely polite and welcoming, so much so that you'll start to miss them when you leave.

Dive operation:

Fantastic as well. Detailed briefings and comfortable boats, even though most sites are only minutes from KBR. To get a little nit-picky, I would have liked to have one of the more experienced guides for my whole stay. If you aren't extremely photography focused, this comment doesn't apply to you. You will still see tons of things with any of the guides, but for someone very focused on photography there is a noticeable gap in the guides, which understandably comes from lots of experience.

Additionally, I'm not a fan of their 60 minute dive policy. As a solo traveler, I would have liked to dive their house reef but I didn't get the chance.

Marine life:

This was my first trip to Lembeh, and I loved it. It is similar to somewhere like Anilao, with a mix of much and sand/rubble sites but there are definitely differences in the critters. I was able to see several flamboyant cuttlefish, mimic, wonder, long arm, coconut and blue ring octopus and lots of frog fish as well as ghost pipefish, especially ornate. I could dive here for a really, really long time.

If you haven't done a mandarin dive, DO THE MANDARIN DIVE! That was definitely a worthwhile experience!

Overall, for any divers who are not hard core photographers, I can highly, highly recommend KBR. For me, I don't travel for the relaxing destinations, I travel for the diving and photography, so I am extra critical in that regard (hence the lack of a star).

Visited on 09/2015 - Submitted on 10/24/2015

In summary the KBR staff provided the most friendly and attentive service of any resort my wife and I have stayed at. When you combine that with the critter diving of Lembeh, this was a vacation of a lifetime. I will not give away the sendoff they provide, but let's just say my wife was a bit teary eyed when we left.

The Rooms

We are divers and tend to pick vacation destinations and accommodations purely based on the diving. That being said, when we arrived at KBR we were extremely pleased with the rooms. Through an odd twist of events and again amazing staff we got to try three different rooms. There was a bit of weather one night and a tree was hitting our room. We didn't mind or even say anything. The staff noticed and offered to move us to an upgraded room so they could cut down the tree branches. The quality of every room was excellent. The pictures on their site are accurate. If you want more privacy and/or a bathtub then I would recommend looking into an upgrade.

The Diving

The diving is unparallelled. If you are into macro photography then this place is heaven. They ask you to give them a wish list of critters. I gave them a list of about 12 which they took care of by day 3. I needed to expand the list. The guides have been doing this for many years. At least one is actually credited in some of the fish identification books. They know the behavior and environment of the critters. It is nature, so I am sure you could stump them, but I was impressed with their ability to find very specific things underwater. The guides also seem to really enjoy their jobs and remember for them it is a job. They take care of your tanks and gear for you. They are doing all sorts of work in between dives that we take for granted. Take care of them at the end of the trip with a little extra thank you.

The Food

We ate mostly from the Indonesian menu. My wife and I were not familiar with Indonesian food so I cannot provide you with an informed opinion. That being said, we LOVED the food. We became addicted to the chef's preparation of the local water spinach. I think we added that to every lunch and dinner. Our friends tried a couple of non-Indonesian dishes throughout the week and also were impressed. So much of their menu is made from scratch, including the bread! I did have the American breakfast most mornings and was extremely pleased with their home made smoked bacon. You might gain a pound or two on this trip, but heck, it's a vacation right?

The Staff

I need to save the best for last. The staff from the dive guides to the front desk were all top notch. Everyone is there to help make your stay memorable and everyone helps with a smile. The entire place has an energy that is contagious. Beary, the manager, and the dining room staff, greeted us after every morning dive to offer up snacks and ask us about what critters we saw. One of our dive guides, Stenely, would get excited and fist pump under water when he would find a critter from my list. Liberty, the legend, was constantly pointing out critters that I would have never found on my own in a million years. On several occasions both the staff and dive guides would accommodate special requests that my wife and I didn't even make! Seriously! I am not making that up. We aren't big into making special requests, but several times throughout the trip we would talk to each other about revisiting a specific dive site, or having a specific food at dinner. The staff must have excellent hearing, because the next thing we knew they were delivering that request.

In Conclusion

Go! You will have a great time with some great people!

Visited on 07/2015 - Submitted on 08/09/2015

Kungkungan Bay Resort (KBR) just outside of Bitung, Indonesia, which is a city famous for processing tuna, was the third stop for me in Indonesia on a so-called swimabout in 2013 and 2014. So my travel route was a transfer from Gangga Island Resort by boat/car, and the switch took place at the Manado airport. It is a 1.5 hour scenic drive after that to Lembeh Strait. Silk Air flies into Manado several days a week so in fact you can book an itinerary all the way through on Singapore Airlines which makes Lembeh/North Sulawesi a highly attractive dive destination in addition to all of the other reasons related to marine life.

The dive day started at 8:15, and we would dive again at 11:15, and 14:45. But if you want, you can have all the shore dives that you would like. If you are awake for that. Each dive is preceded by a dive briefing that is accompanied by an illustration on a white board. The guides describe the general geography of a site, sandy slope, wall, rubble, and indicate what kind of critters we might find. When the dive guide got to the part where he told us how long it would take to arrive at the dive site, we laughed every time because usually it was only five to seven minutes and sometimes less.

Lembeh Strait is famous muck diving so you spend a lot of time on the bottom, which might include digging through some local refuse, and yet Lembeh is on most divers’ wish list because all sorts of fabulous, unusual and even colorful creatures, with sometimes whirling parts (that may be their eyes), live there. Many probably have yet to be discovered. Why they do live in such a habitat is a mystery to me-it is a busy and sometimes noisy area-but for some reason they seem to love to inhabit the rubble or the garbage that floats into the sea and reproduce in it. The trash in Lembeh Strait however is relatively moderate compared to Ambon (2010).

As a well-read diver, you can arrive at KBR with a long list of creatures that you want to see. There is a wish list board at KBR and some critters are 100% guaranteed, like pygmy seahorses, whereas others are not, such as a hairy frogfish or harlequin shrimp. I do not like to make lists of critters because I feel sure then that I will not see them. But KBR is really like a make-a-wish place for divers. The guides will say there is no guarantee-they are always saying this-but they pretty much can find whatever you have read about.

Sea creatures tend to be territorial and in the case of KBR, so do the dive guides. My dive guide for part of the week was Ade who has been working for the resort for nearly 18 years, his colleague, Liberty, almost 19! Together they have logged over 25,000 dives. I am not sure who expects to see whom underwater. The critters may themselves have special names for these two. It was always fun to dive with them because they still like to do it, and they do it with a sense of humor.

Secretly however, I did have a list…one creature that I had never seen was the blue-ringed octopus. After many years of diving muck sites, on my first dive in Lembeh, the 8:15 dive at Pulau Abadi, a blue-ringed octopus went gliding across the bottom in front of us. It became routine to see them. I had a second wish…to see a Lembeh sea dragon. One day at Nudi Retreat 3, Ade made his underwater call, and when it was my turn to look, a Lembeh sea dragon was bouncing around in the water in front of me, like a tiny rubber band attached to something at one end. I do not know how often the guides find the sea dragons, but I am glad I was with Ade on one of the days that he did.

Early December seemed to be a shoulder season of sorts for the resort (perhaps I should keep this observation a secret!), and the management bumped me up to a deluxe bungalow on the beach. Extremely luxurious accommodations, especially for a single traveler.

The area, though, has a high density of resorts so sometimes we had to go to another dive site because there already were boats from other resorts. Once, however, the guides scheduled a dive to Angel’s Window 15 minutes ahead of time to beat the other boats, but there are also plenty of incredible dive sites so you are never disappointed. There is always a plan A, B, C, D etc. which are in essence always an “A” plan. The only dive that did not work was the mandarin fish dive. Plenty of some of the largest mandarin fish I have ever seen, but no mating pairs. The lights of the two divers I was with probably interfered with the mating ritual. I still had my own dive guide for most days, and one day I was completely alone on the dive boat for three dives. For only two days did I have to share Ade with one other guest.

The only disappointment (besides having to leave) was that there was no nitrox the week I was there. Some of the dives are deep (25 m), to see the Coleman shrimp or Denise or Bargibanti pygmy seahorses, so we were a bit rushed to look and take a photo.

Accommodations & Food

KBR was the first resort built in Lembeh. I was in a deluxe beach bungalow which was incredibly luxurious and spacious. Lembeh Strait is a busy area so the boat traffic is constant during the day, but there is no industry in Kungkungan Bay and you have a view of the sunset. The food is a mixture of Western and Indonesian dishes. It is not fancy but it is well prepared. Their version of fried banana with melted cheese is to die for.


It is muck/reef diving and the macro life is rich. The guides have been there forever and seem to have infinite powers to find something you have never seen before at any dive site, even in the bleakest looking ones. The schedule is strict-three times a day-starting at 8:15, unless you do shore diving which is unlimited. Dives are generally 25 m and above, and 60 minutes passes in a microsecond.

Visited on 12/2013 - Submitted on 08/28/2014

The perfect critter scavenge hunt. Dive sites withing minutes of the dock, a well polished operation with excellent guides. Accommodations are nice and clean with double beds, private bathroom,wireless internet that worked, AC works. Food was varied, both local and international types, well prepared, plenty to eat and is excellent. Ideal to combine with a Bunaken visit. Plan on at least a week. Nitrox is available. Camera workroom has all that you need, electrical connections and air blower with good lighting
We hired a private guide, but the ratio was 1:4 when we were there. They had a house reef that looked good but we did not have time to dive it

Visited on 10/2008 - Submitted on 03/01/2014


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