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Swim with Stingless Jellyfish in Kakaban Lake in Borneo

Change the way you perceive these soft and slippery jellyfish by joining their underwater dance

Best time: March–October

Swim with Stingless Jellyfish in Kakaban Lake

Many people are afraid to swim in the sea with jellyfish, whose touch can be harmful. There is one activity in Borneo, which can help you cope with that fear.

On the island of Kakaban near the coast of East Kalimantan, a unique lake welcomes swimmers from around the world. Four species of stingless jelly fish inhabit this clean water basin, and they attract much more attention than small reef sharks and other fish. Thousands of jellyfish swim around people with no fear—they bounce from your legs, slide along your back, and you can easily play with them in your palms. Those who have experienced this activity say that the first unpleasant feeling turned into excitement very fast.

Visit Kakaban lake during the dry season between March and October, as the path there gets slippery and dangerous during rain. Moreover, the visibility is rather crucial for diving activities, and it's higher during the dry season.

Practical info

What can be said about the location and characteristics of Kakaban Lake?

Kakaban Lake is situated in the remote island of Kakaban near East Kalimantan and was created due to uplift and subsidence, consequently resulting in the formation of the lake and the limestone ridges around it. The rise and fall have resulted in the lake containing saltwater, which has created a unique environment for life. The journey to the Island takes about two hours from Berau Regency. Show more

What species of jellyfish live in Kakaban Lake, and what are some interesting facts about them?

Kakaban Lake is a natural habitat for four stingless jellyfish species-the moon jellyfish, golden jelly, box jellyfish, and upside-down jellyfish. These jellyfish species' distinctive quality is that they have evolved and lost their sting since no predators can harm them. Swimming with these beautiful creatures has become one of the most popular tourist activities in Kakaban Lake. Show more

Are the jellyfish in Kakaban Lake safe to swim with?

Visitors can safely swim and snorkel with the stingless jellyfish species in Kakaban Lake. Due to the absence of predators in the lake, the jellyfish have lost their stinging cells, and therefore, their tentacles are entirely harmless to humans. Visitors can enjoy swimming alongside them, touching them, and appreciating their beauty without fear of being stung. Show more

When is the best season to visit Kakaban Lake, and why?

The ideal time to visit Kakaban Lake is between March and October, which is the dry season of the island. During November to February, the weather can cause the path leading to the lake to be slippery and dangerous. Moreover, underwater visibility is also at its best during the summer season, allowing for a clear and stunning view of the fascinating underwater environment found in the lake. Show more

Can you describe what it's like to swim with jellyfish in Kakaban Lake?

Swimming with the jellyfish in Kakaban Lake is an unparalleled experience. These magnificent creatures swim around visitors who can touch them as they are stingless. The limestone cliffs surrounding the lake provide a surreal environment in which visitors can enjoy the company of jellyfish continually. Visitors describe the feeling as being mesmerized, and the experience as captivating due to the peaceful and dream-like underwater surrounding. Show more

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Last updated: by Eleonora Provozin