Sumatra has several different dive destinations which don't get as much attention as other Indonesian dive sites. That's mainly because they are not as good, however they still have plenty to offer in their own ways and Sumatra has a lot to offer other than just diving, including jungle treks and volcanic lake retreats.
What's more there is still a lot of underwater Sumatra to be explored. For example, Padang, on the west coast, has some decent Indian Ocean dive sites with plenty of fish life and the Mentawi Islands, already discovered by surfers, holds promise for divers prepared to backward roll into unexplored waters.
One advantage that Sumatra has is it's proximity to Singapore and Kuala Lumpur, although transport logistics tend to slow down once on Sumatra. Padang can be reached by flight from Singapore and Air Asia fly from KL to Banda Aceh (for Pulau Weh, however tourist visa's must be arranged at an embassy in advance).
Bintan in the Riau archipelago can be reached by ferry from Singapore making it a popular weekend dive getaway. The diving is decent, if not as world class as other Indonesian destinations. The Riau archipelago, actually consists of around 3,000 islands, Bintan is the largest and the one with the dive resorts. There are many dive sites, most of them fringing reefs. The visibility isn't that good due to the proximity to the Malacca Straits, one of the world's busiest shipping channels. Visibility can be 20m but is often just 5m. However coral is healthy and there are plenty of reef fish and macro critters. It's a great location for training dives. Also, there are seveal ship wrecks in the area to be explored.
Discover villages scarcely touched by the modern world, trackless forests where elephants, predatory tigers, honeybears and orangutans dwell. Visit Bukittinggi, home of the Minangkabau people, who live in exquisitely decorated houses or the wandering Kubus with their fascinating taboos and jungle lifestyle. Also, visit the Bohorok Orangutan Reserve (nearest town is Medan) which is a rehabilitation center. There is much to do on this huge island of natural wonders and charming people. Our inbound operator in north Sumatra, Suma Terra Holidays, offers exciting and well-planned adventures. Build a trip to include jungle exploration, archeology trekking, white water rafting, wildlife viewing, beach and sailing holidays and more.