The U.S.A.T. LIBERTY, a 120 meter long shipwreck,
is the remains of a US World War II freighter, torpedoed on January 11,1942 at 4:15 a.m.
by a Japanese submarine while crossing the Lombok Strait carrying material (rubber and
railway parts) from Australia to the Philippines. Two US destroyers hitched up to the ship
and tried to tow it to the port of Singaraja. The damage was immense, she was taking too
much water and her crew ran the vessel up onto the beach of
Tulamben 70km away from
the nearest safe
For 21 years she stayed there, the people of
Tulamben secured all items of any value, even parts of
the deck. In 1963 the Liberty was pushed to her present location by the fatal eruption of
the volcano Gunung Agung. During this process the hull broke into two pieces. Now she is
laying only 30 meter from the Tulamben beach on a sandy slope 90° on her side parallel to the
shore. The deck side faces the ocean.
The Liberty ship wreck is the most visited diving site of Bali at a perfect depth for scuba diving
ranging from 2.5 meters down to 29 meters. There are a couple of impressive swim throughs,
but one must be cautious because the structure of the wreck is unstable,
every year parts collapse.
An amazing growth of encrusting animals cover the wreck, marine biologists estimate that about
species of reef fish live on the Liberty. It is not usual for this site
to be visited by big pelagic species.
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