5 of the best spots to visit in remote East Timor

The channel at Jaco Island


Raymond Heer, captain of 42m Angiamo, reveals the best spots in the remote Southeast Asian region of East Timor

1. Dive in the channel at Jaco Island

Descending past 20 metres will bring you colourful soft corals, sponges and large schools of black tangs. Close to the surface, staghorn corals are covered in bright anemones.

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Cristo Rei of Dili


It’s worth climbing the 500 steps up to this statue of Jesus for the great view of the bay at Dili. At 27 metres tall, it is only three shorter than its counterpart in Rio. The statue was erected in 1996 as a “gift” from Indonesia during the occupation, but funds fell short and local businesses were obliged to contribute.

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Tais Market, Dili


The markets in the capital Dili are a good place to meet the people, who are exceptionally friendly despite the trauma of the 25-year occupation by Indonesia. The fresh market gives a good insight into daily life, while the Tais market offers local crafts, particularly the traditional Tais cloth. Tais weaving is done solely by women, who pass the method down through the generations and use the cloth in religious ceremonies.

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K-41 Dive Site


This site is considered to be one of the best in the world and should be on everyone's diving bucket list. Diving the site from west to east, you’ll see large sponges surrounded by schools of slender sweeper fish. Pairs of angelfish and soft coral emerge as you move along the wall, until you arrive at a large rock outcrop with beautiful anemones.

Atauro Island


East Timor is one of the best places in the world to see whales and dolphins. You are likely to see whales along the entire coast and there’s a huge resident dolphin pod off the south-west coast of Atauro Island. The dolphins here play with the tenders, so get out there and enjoy the experience.

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