Celebes Sea

Located in the Western Pacific Ocean, the Celebes Sea covers a space of 280 000 squares km (110 000 squares miles) of the ocean!

This sea flows into the Java Sea through the Makassar Strait.

The Celebes Sea is part of a basin in the ocean; the countries that form part of this basin are popular holiday destinations like Malaysia, the Philippines, and also Indonesia! If you’re not sure what a basin is, it’s the region of land that drains into the sea.

Celebes Sea Facts for Kids

  • Did you know that over half of the area that the Celebes Sea covers is more than 4000m (13123.36 feet) deep? The greatest depth recorded in this sea is 6220m (20406.82 feet) deep!
  • This sea dates back far into history and is thought to be part of an ocean basin that is 42 million years old. This sea basin provides many interesting studies because of how old it is.
  • The Celebes Sea is an interesting part of the ocean world because of the complexities caused by surrounding factors. There are active volcanic islands that border this sea as well as deep-sea trenches and the ocean has a strong current in this area.
  • The Celebes Sea is a sharing sea and shares a border with the Sulu Sea. This border is found at the Sibutu-Basilan Ridge.
  • This ocean is quite good for the economy as it is part of an important trade route for the area as well as being a popular area for scuba diving with tourists. Not only do people, scuba dive, here, but this is also a stop on many luxury cruises! We would love to explore this area and the history of it.
  • The waters also are a great area for commercial fishing which further boosts the money-making capabilities in the area. Some of the most popular types of fish found in this area are Tuna and yellowfin tuna.
  • Sea Tang is often harvested from the Celebes Sea. Sea tang is a popular aquatic product and is a form of seaweed.
  • Not only is there sea tang and fish but other marine life too! There are whales, manta rays, marlin, sea turtles, dolphins, and also amazing coral species – this would be a scuba divers dream so we are not surprised that it is a popular destination for this sport.


1. Which sea does the Celebes Sea share a border with?

2. What are two activities in the area that improve the economy?

3. What is the deepest depth recorded in the Celebes Sea?

4. How old is the basin that the Celebes Sea is in?

5. Name the two most popular fish found in this part of the ocean