Arenui - Indonesia LiveaboardInquiry
Arenui liveaboard is a luxury traditional Phinisi, a classic Indonesian wooden sailing vessel, set to raise its anchors in June 2009 to begin its explorations of the majestic underwater world of the Indonesian archipelago.
The underlying concept of the Arenui is to provide you with the convenience of a fully equipped dive liveaboard together with all the richness, artistic touches and comforts of a top-notch luxury boutique hotel. This is the only boutique hotel that drops you off directly onto the best dive sites that Indonesia has to offer!
The same attention to detail was given in designing our cruise itineraries which include not only all of the usual popular diving sites in Indonesia, renowned worldwide for its biodiversity, but other world-class destinations which have been overlooked so far by most recreational diving operators.
The cruise programs include: Komodo, North and Central Sulawesi, Wakatobi and, for those looking for more unusual journeys, the New Frontiers of Raja Ampat, Maluku, Cenderawasih Bay, Alor and Flores.
Moreover, the dates of Arenui's cruises have been planned in such a way as to ensure the most favorable weather conditions and the best sightings of marine life according to the destination. They also offer unforgettable excursions to complete the ideal diving program and to make sure that you also have the chance to enjoy the amazing sights available on land.
Arenui - schedule
Arenui - gallery
Arenui - Video
Arenui - prices and what's included
Prices are per person per trip and in USD based on 2 persons sharing a cabin.
Exact pricing is available on the schedule here as prices vary dependant on the time of year, destination and the length of the trip and sometimes special offers are available.
The trip price includes :
Full-board accommodation in double cabin
The shore activities/excursions according to the program
Soft drinks and all meals on board
Diving activities (up to 4 dives/day) including tanks, weights and weight belt
Transfer from/to embarkation/disembarkation airport
Welcome massage (1/2 hour per person)
The trip price does not include :
International and domestic air transportation
Hotels and meals before and after the cruise
Dive equipment rental (other than tanks, weights and weight belt)
Nitrox refills (190 USD)
Massages and Spa treatments (other than welcome massage)
Administration/Port Clearance Fee
Park and Diving Fees
Master cabin surcharge is +$50 per person per night on top of the deluxe cabin price.
Standard Booking and Cancellation Terms and Conditions.
Booking deposit: 30% of your invoice total is required within 7 days of booking to confirm your booking.
Final payment of 70% is due to 90 days prior to the departure date to complete your invoice payment.
Individual bookings made less than 90 days before the departure date will be payable in full upon booking to confirm your booking.
Cancellation at any stage involves forfeit of monies already payed.
10% - within 7 days of booking - non-refundable
20% 180 days prior to departure - non-refundable
90 days before departure - non-refundable
Please note that you must have a minimum of 6 months left on your passport and one full clean page for your visa on arrival.
Dive gear rental per day
Mask, snorkel & fins * USD 8 .00
Wetsuit * USD 8 .00
Regulator * USD 8 .00
BCD * USD 8 .00
Dive computer USD 10 .00
Dive light USD 6 .00
15 Litre Tank USD 5 .00
Weights and weight belt No charge
Surface Market Buoy No charge
Dive gear rental per trip (11 nights)
Full set - items marked * USD 300.00
Full set - items marked * plus dive computer USD 350.00
Mouthpiece USD 8.00
Mask strap USD 5.00
Fin strap USD 5.00
Fin buckle USD 7.00
Weight belt buckle USD 15.00
Dust cap cover USD 10.00
HP hose USD 35.00
LP hose USD 35.00
Octopus hose USD 35.00
Inflator hose USD 35.00
Gloves USD 30.00
Reef Hooks USD 20.00
Pointers USD 20.00
Surface Marker Buoy WDS USD 70.00
Dive light UK C4 eLED USD 130.00
Per tank USD 6.00
11 nights package USD 180.00
14 nights package USD 220.00
PADI Enriched Air Diver Course
Enriched air diver qualification, including all materials and two free tanks USD 210.00
Enriched air diver qualification, including all materials and enriched air package (11 nights) USD 375.00
Enriched air diver qualification, including all materials and enriched air package (14 nights) USD 415.00
The Arenui also offers the following PADI courses
PADI Advanced Open Water Diver USD 260.00
Specialities - Deep Diver, Digital Underwater Photography.
Any other speciality courses need to be pre-booked USD 180.00
Welcome Massage (30 mins) Free of charge
Arenui Massage (1 hr) USD 50.00
Hot Stone Massage(1.5 hr) USD 70.00
Foot Reflexology & Shoulder (1 hr) USD 40.00
Traditional Facial Care (1 hr 15mins) USD 50.00
Manicure & Pedicure(1hr) USD 35.00
We have 4 kinds of special massage oil for you.
- Relaxing Massage Oil
- Rejuvinating Massage Oil
- Energizing Massage Oil
- Balancing Massage Oil
We have Satellite telephone facilities on board available for making outgoing calls and receiving incoming calls at the following rates:
- Outgoing call : USD 5.00 per minute
- Incoming call : USD 2.50 per minute
Arenui - cabins
Each of the Arenui’s cabins have been decorated and furnished in a stylish and inspirational manner according to a specific theme.
The Arenui can host a maximum of 16 passengers who can luxuriate in exceptionally spacious cabins that are tastefully furnished with exquisite handicrafts from each of the Indonesian provinces. Each cabin, which far surpasses anything one would expect to find on a liveaboard (starting from 17 square meters), has a private en-suite bathroom and individually controlled air conditioning. A king-size bed and separate salon area assures our guests’ comfort. The Arenui can be your private sanctuary and second home, but one located amidst a constantly changing tropical landscape!
The Arenui has been designed to host a maximum of 16 passengers in cabins which are exceptionally apacious (starting from 17 m²) and which have been luxuriously furnished in a sophisticated and tasteful manner.
The cabins’ individual themes and styles were inspired by handicrafts from each of the Indonesian provinces. Each one has a private en-suite bathroom and individual air conditioning.
A king-size bed or roomy singles and a distinct lounge area guarantee maximum comfort and ensure that our guests never feel crowded.
You will have your own truly private space on the Arenui to make you feel completely at home even while thousands of miles away.
The 6 Deluxe cabins are ideal for couples, individuals or a small group or family.
They are located on the lower deck and are varying sizes.
Amenities include: king-size bed, sofa/relaxing area (sofa can be converted into an extra bed), en-suite bathroom, 3 large portholes, individual air conditioning, minibar and safety deposit box.
Rama and Shinta Master cabins are ideal for couples and have a with stunning sea-view.
They are located on the upper deck and are 215 sq ft (20 sq meters) in size.
Amenities include: king-size bed, sofa/relaxing area, en-suite bathroom, 7 large windows, individual air conditioning, minibar and safety deposit box.
Rama and Shinta double cabins - Upper deck
Double cabin with a single bed or day couch
Rama and Shinta double cabins - Upper deck
Double cabin with a single bed or day couch
Barong and Ganesh twin cabins - Upper deck
Barong and Ganesh twin cabins - Upper deck
Legong and Garuda twin cabins - Lower deck
Legong and Garuda twin cabins - Lower deck
Dayak and Toraja double cabins - Lower deck
Double cabin with a single bed or day couch
Dayak and Toraja double cabins - Lower deck
Double cabin with a single bed or day couch
Cabin names and history
Rama is one of the main characters in the story of the Hindu epic
Shinta is the other main character in the story of the Ramayana.
Barong is the name of the King of the spirits, leader of the forces of good and enemy of the demon Queen in the mythological traditions of Bali.
Ganesh is the most beloved Hindu deity of all. Ganesh is the god of wisdom, scribes, learning and the remover of obstacles. A prayer to Ganesh
is said to ensure success.
Garuda is a large mythical bird or bird-like creature that appears in both Hindu and Buddhist mythology. A Garuda is the national symbol of
Legong is a classical dance which is usually staged in the palace courtyard to entertain the King.
Toraja are an ethnic group indigenous to a mountainous region of South Sulawesi.
Dayak are a people indigenous to Borneo. One of the main ethnic groups of Dayaks is Dayak Bukit from South Kalimantan, the Indonesian portion of the island of Borneo.
Arenui - itineraries
Raja Ampat 12 Days/11 Nights Sorong
Day 1 Embarkation in Sorong
Raja Ampat means ‘Four Kings’. In an archipelago of over 1,500 small islands there are four main islands or ‘kings’– Waigeo, Salawati, Batanta, Misool. The majority of Raja Ampat is in Marine Protected Areas. These islands usually experience varying visibility depending on the weather conditions and warm water around 27-30C (81-86F).
Days 2-8 Misool, Raja Ampat (25 dives)
Misool is in the south of Raja Ampat and we will dive at the many small islands in the southeast. Over the past years Misool has become Raja Ampats best diving area, being famous for the profusion of colorful soft corals, sea fans beautifully draped all over the reefs and a huge amount of all kind of fishes on every single dive. Take a look at some photos taken in this area in our album Soft Coral Heaven.
The islands in southeast Misool are grouped by areas. Here are the names of the areas and dive sites we may visit (weather permitting):
Misool – Boo Area
Boo Windows is the famous dive site in this area. It is best known for the “windows” or rounded openings on the end of the largest rock that completely pierce the reef from the surface down to about five meters/fifteen feet. Although the two rocks appear separate from the surface they are in fact connected underwater by a magnificent reef draped in soft corals and brimming with fish. See photos of the Windows here. Boo Ridge is an underwater ridge coming off the eastern point of Boo Island. Both sides are covered in huge gorgonian sea fans. At these dive sites look out for turtles, reef sharks, pygmies, nudis and schooling batfish, fusiliers and snappers. Shadow Reef is a submerged seamount south of Boo. The fish life here is profuse with napoleon wrasses of all sizes, baby white tip reef sharks sleeping under the table corals, schooling barracuda and batfish and for the lucky ones maybe a manta ray circling the cleaning stations.
Birthday Cake is a beautiful ridge in the Boo Area. Look for pygmy seahorses, flatworms and nudibranch in the deeper section and beautiful soft corals in the shallows, where we even have seen the famous “walking shark” – epaulette shark. Eagle Nest is a seamount close to the island of Warakaraket. With the right current we have been lucky to see lots of fish action, including grey reef sharks, giant travellies hunting in clouds of fusiliers and even manta rays.
Misool – Yuliet Area
The tiny islands of Yuliet and Romeo both have surrounding plateaux in the shallows that slope down to reefs or small walls. At Yuliet there is a good chance to see the ‘Santa Claus pygmy’ a red colour variation of the Denise pygmy seahorse. In the shallows are large coral heads completely covered in colourful soft corals. Schools of barracuda and batfish as well as napoleon wrasses are often seen here. Romeo is a great night dive where we will look for the endemic epaulette shark, the ‘walking’ shark.
Misool – Fiabecet
Fiabecet area has a selection of dives where the colourful soft corals and beautiful sea fans literally smother the reefs. The soft corals here are truly outstanding. There is a deep underwater ridge connecting the island of Boo in the east to the island of Kalig in the west. In parts this ridge moves up shallower and forms the dive sites of Boo West Corner, Batu Kecil (aka Tank Rock), Nudi Rock, Whale Rock and Kalig Ridge. Expect healthy fish life, pygmy seahorses galore, nudis, colourful anemones, reef sharks and perhaps a Wobbegong shark. Anti-chovy is a large underwater seamount with some deep pinnacles covered in stunning corals. Mobula rays, golden trevallies and Napoleon wrasses can be found here. On top of the seamount look for turtles, stonefish and reef octopus.
Misool – Wayilbatan Area
Neptune Fan Sea is a small channel between two islands with a shallow wall completely covered in some of the biggest gorgonian sea fans you will ever see. At the start of the dive explore the beautiful coral heads where huge groupers can be hiding. Then drift along the wall and enjoy the view of the sea fans, stopping once in a while to find the tiny pygmy seahorse. Four Kings is a stunning dive site made up of four underwater pinnacles. Swim from one rock to the next enjoying the soft corals and fish life. Look out for schooling big eye jacks, spadefishes and grey reef sharks. Wedding Cake, Dunia Kecil and Wayili Rock offer chances to see schools of batfish, trevallies, barracuda, pygmy seahorses and reef octopus.
Misool – Daram Area
Daram is the most easterly point of the islands we might visit in Misool. The reef at Andiamo is stunning and is large enough for at least two dives. There is a submerged pinnacle where sea fans are surrounded by schools of fusiliers and batfish. A short swim across a sandy bottom brings you to the main reef lush with soft corals. In between the two islets is a gap thick with sea fans and is excellent for wide-angle photography. Look out for black tip reef sharks and Napoleon wrasse, if you can see them through all the fish! Candy Store is so named because the first divers to explore this reef felt like kids in a candy store. Huge sponges, beautiful soft corals and sea fans cover this dive site, especially in the valleys where schools of fusiliers, butterfly fish and sometimes barracuda gather. Warna Berwarna in Bahasa Indonesia means “Vibrant Colors”. Expect to see sea fans in all possible colors and watch out for pygmy seahorses. On the north western side of the island there is a beautiful ridge coming out where tons of fusiliers and orange spotted trevallies hang out in the blue. The shallows are covered with healthy hard corals and often we get to see schooling bumphead parrotfishes.
Misool – Pele Area
Kaleidoscope is so called because of the profusion of colours produced by the huge soft corals draping the shallow rocks and coral heads. A ridge extends out west from the island which can full of fish when the current is running. Back at the island finish the dive under the overhangs.
Misool – Sagof
The little islets of Baby Rock and Two Tree Island create amazing dive sites with abundant fish life. There is a resident school of batfish at Baby Rock and Two Tree Island is often full of thousands bait fish. The Watch Towers is a massive seamount with tons of black coral in the deeper section. Schools of yellow snappers, barracudas and giant trevallies can be found in the up-current side. On the hard coral plateau look out for Wobbegong sharks and crocodile fish.
Misool – Tomolol Cave
There is a possibility on this day to visit Tomolol Cave that has a river-sized waterway running through it. We take a 20-minute tender ride through a pearl farm and into the rugged interior. Once at the cave we float and paddle our way inside to enjoy the amazing rock formations. There is a large opening at the other end and also a ‘secret’ cave to explore. This tour is dependent on receiving permission from the pearl farm and local village. Check our Tomolol Cave photo album.
Day 9 Penemu Area (3 dives)
Penemu is an island west of Waigeo with a selection of dives sites. Melissa’s Garden is the most well known. Here there are very healthy hard coral reefs in the shallows and a beautiful coral garden sloping to the sides where schooling fish hang out in the current. Wobbegong sharks like to sleep under the coral heads and inside the large cup corals here. Hundreds of anthias dance in and out of the corals where you might also see a sea snake. Penemu Wall and My Reef are also great dives in this area. After the two morning dives we will visit the viewpoint in Penemu where you can appreciate the iconic Raja Ampat view of the groups of islands nestled inside beautiful blue lagoons. Check out our Beaches & Islands album. At sunset we will dive at Batu Rufus. There is a shallow swim through framed beautifully by soft corals and sea fans. Below this is a sloping reef where hard corals shelter cardinal fish in the shallows and in the deep, Pontohi seahorses and nudibranch can be found on the coral heads.
Days 10-11 Dampier Strait (5-6 dives)
The strait that flows between Waigeo and Batanta is rapidly becoming known as having really good diving in Raja Ampat as a result of the nutrient-rich ocean currents passing through. Everything that makes for a wonderful dive can be found here. But even beyond the usual delights and the satisfaction of spotting prized macro subjects such as the newly discovered Pontohi pygmy seahorse on the coral heads, there are surprises to be found in every dive.
The fish life in this area is as plentiful as can be expected at sites with a great deal of healthy hard and soft coral. Wobbegong sharks can also be found at any of these dive sites, especially at Mioskon. Cape Kri holds the impressive record of 374 fish species identified during one 90-minute dive. Blue Magic is a submerged seamount where there is a chance to encounter Giant manta rays.
Ironically, sardines are about the only reef fish not found at the site of Sardine Reef, but you won’t even notice as you see swarms of fusiliers, surgeonfish, trevallies, rainbow runners, sweetlips and bannerfish practically blocking out the sky swarming over a reef decorated with sea fans, soft corals and huge orange elephant ear sponges encrusted with pastel colonies of tunicates. One of the more unique thrills of this site is being able to hear “fish thunder” – the loud booming sound made when a large number of fish move rapidly through open water.
There is also a small village with Sawandarek Jetty. In the shallows the jetty posts are covered in soft corals and below look for sweetlips, big eyed jacks and massive green turtles. On the reef see huge giant clams nestled among pulsing soft corals. At night look for huge lobsters and maybe even catch a glimpse of the endemic epaulette shark, the ‘walking’ shark. The reef also provides shelter for many interesting small animals like hermit crabs, flatworms and the very cute pughead pipefish.
Between the dives there is an opportunity to visit the village on Sawandarek Island to see the traditional way of life for these island people. Be ready to be greeted by many children who are more than willing to pose for photographs. Anyone joining our cruise is more than welcome to bring along some goodies for the children at Sawandarek. Obviously the children love sweets but we encourage people to bring pencils, pens, notebooks or coloring books – all of which don’t rot their teeth! The school always needs more materials and the girls love hair clips and bands. Please try to limit the amount of plastic packaging, leave this at home where it can be correctly recycled.
On the last full day of the cruise there will be one or two dives depending on the flight times out of Sorong the next day. After the dives we will travel back to Sorong.
Day 12 Disembarkation in Sorong
Total dives: 33-34 dives - how to get to Raja Ampat.
|Cruise Name||Cruise Program|
|Triton bay - Raja Ampat||Kaimana, Triton bay, South Misool, Central Raja Ampat, Sorong|
|Maluku - Papua||Ambon, Nusa Laut, Banda Islands, West Seram, Misool, Wai, Kri, Sorong ( or viceversa)|
|Raja Ampat||Tour Raja Ampat|
|Maluku - Triton bay||Ambon Bay, Nusa Laut, West Seram, Triton bay|
|Komodo||Bali, Pulau Mojo, Pulau Banta, Komodo National Park, Sangean, Pulau Satonda, Bali|
|Trans-Nusa||Maumere Bay, West Flores, Komodo National Park, Banta Island, Sangean, Pulau Satonda, Pulau Mojo, Bali (or viceversa)|
|Banda sea||Ambon Bay, Nusa Laut, Bandaneira, Manuk, Seroea, Terbang, Ramong, Wetar, Alor, Pantar, Maumere Bay|
Arenui - specs
To live up to our motto of being “The Boutique Liveaboard”, attention has been given to every aspect of the Arenui to ensure that it fully embodies our philosophy of providing a unique dive holiday experience, giving you the best there is in terms of diving and leisure activities, without sacrificing any of the comforts and luxury you would expect to get from a top-notch hotel on land. Intimate but roomy, the Arenui is an exquisite ship and a work of art in itself with its wooden detailing and decorative touches. Moreover, it aims to differentiate itself from other liveaboards by providing personalized accommodation, services and facilities.
On the Arenui, all amenities, such as a full range of massage and spa treatments, are included with the intent to make you feel as comfortable and relaxed as possible at all times. We constantly strive to ensure that our service is attentive yet relaxed, and never intrusive. We believe that this individual service and our personalized touches on board will make your holiday an unforgettable one.
We have given the same attention to making our meals extraordinary, from the setting to the decor and choice of dishes. Rather than the typical dive liveaboard buffets, you will be able to choose from our daily la carte menus.Our food is plentiful, fresh, and centered around local and flown-iningredients and our internationally trained chefs then add in their own touch of magic, drawing inspiration from local and international cuisine. Even lovers of gourmet cuisine are sure to discover new taste experiences.
Leisure activities. In addition to providing the perfect setting for enjoying the beautiful surrounding scenery in between dives or at the end of the day, our Skydeck and Indoor Bars are equipped with a full range of leisure and recreational facilities such as an on board spa, a computer with internet connection, as well as an extensive selection of books and movies in our library/entertainment centre for your relaxing moments
The Restaurant & The Lounge
Arenui believes that, even when sailing around remote islands, there’s no reason to forego fine dining! After all, a relaxing meal prepared with care and style is the best way to remain full of energy for the next dive! On Arenui, the food is always plentiful and fresh. Local seafood is of course a specialty, but imported meats, organic fruits and vegetables and special ingredients are flown in as well, all of which allow our renowned chefs to create delicious and inventive dishes!
We can easily cater to anyspecial dietary needs as we propose an a’la carte menu for each mealto all our passengers, offering two or three options for each course. With fresh new selections for each meal and an emphasis onproviding a wonderful gourmet experience, you will soon forget that you are sailing in the middle of the Indonesian archipelago! Moreover, you have the option of dining either in our exotic, yet comfortable restaurant or al fresco under the canopy of our unique sky deck.
You may wish to spend time on our sky deck other than during meals - to enjoy an aperitif or just to soak up the magnificent scenery. In addition, our indoor lounges also offer a complete range ofleisure and recreational facilities, such as an onboard spa, a computer for looking through your photos of theday’s dives, an internet connection and an extensive selection ofbooks and movies in our library/entertainment center to relax in whatever way you see fit!
Spa and massages
Make the most of your non-diving time and indulge yourself! We’ve included a full range of massage and spa treatments on the Arenuiwith exactly this in mind.
You’ll even have the choice of enjoying your luxury treatment either in seclusion under the Spa Tent or by being at one with the elements out on the deck where you can listen to the tranquil sounds of the sea splashing on the hull.
For those who are looking for simpler pleasures, there are deck chairs and sun loungers on the sundeck as well as in the outdoor lounge to allow you to just lie back and soak up some rays or to sip a cocktail while watching the sun descend below the horizon across the water.
Computer and IT
Nowadays, no diving liveaboard would be complete without modern communication, sound and computer systems, and The Arenui has all of these, complete with the latest technology and software to ensure that they are compatible with different needs. Our facilities include: a downloading station and photography table, iMac and PC computers with photo-video editing software, an internet connection, an Ericsson satellite phone, a TV a music system.
We know that not everyone has the same taste in films,
which is why we have over 100 movies to choose from!
You can watch a movie anytime during the cruise: in the lounge area or, for those with an individual DVD player, in the privacy of your own cabin.
On Arenui Liveaboard you willnever have a chance to feel bored!
On Arenui, we have thought of every comfort to make you feel as at home as possible during
your time with us. These amenities include a first-rate library with an excellent collection of
books on the local area and marine life as well as a diverse selection of all those ones you’ve
always wanted to read but have been saving for your next holiday
2 Bauer Mariner, Nitrox available
30 × 11 liters tanks
Mitsubishi marine 10 cylinders 440 HP
Individual charging station, photography table,
radar 35 MM Furuno, echo sounder Furuno,
iMac computers witd photo editing softwares
GPS Furuno, WHS SSB Radio,
Max 16 guests, 8 double-twin cabins,
satellite phone, internet access, on request possible tdird bed for families or groups, TV Music system, iMac and PC computers
For each cabin: min 17 squared meters, sofa' area,
8 -11 knots
2 × 20 persons inflatable life rafts, life jackets (40 pcs), buoys,
individual AC, electricity 24 hours/day
safety flares, smoke detectors in each cabin,
a-la-carte daily specials menu', sky bar,
fire extinguishers, first aids equipment, oxygen onboard,
onboard SPA service (massages treatments),
internet connection, books-movies selections,
1 × Mitsubishi 60 KW ~ 1 × Mitsubishi 20 KW
220 Volt, 50 Hertz avalaible for cabins ~ 110 Volt available in tde camera room
18 persons (2 western cruise directors,
2 fiberglass dinghy (8 mt each) witd
4 multilingual dive masters)
outboard 40 HP Yamaha engine
All precautions are taken to ensure that the Arenui fully complies with current international safety standards.
The Arenui is dry docked every year so that the hull can be stripped and repainted while the main engine and generators are fully serviced. In addition, the vessel frequently receives additional maintenance as part of its regular daily operations. All of this is to make certain that the highest standards of reliability and safety are met.
We consider your security and safety while on board our priority. This includes providing an efficient crew, led by a qualified captain with experience on domestic and western cruise ships and the most up-to-date navigational and safety equipment to guarantee your security and needs.
- Life rafts
- 2 x 8 meter dinghies
- VHF & SSB radio
- Global Positioning System (GPS)
- Echo sounder
- Satellite telephone
- Mobile telephone and satellite internet access
- Complete first-aid kit
- Oxygen kit
- Life jackets in each cabin
- Smoke detectors and extinguishers
Dive insurance for the passengers is not included. It is highly recommended that all divers purchase international diving and medical insurance.
Arenui - diving
Raja Ampat diving
All our boats run fantastic Raja Ampat liveaboards of varying length visiting all the best places each with their own unique itinerary and features.
They are all different prices dependant on the length of the trip and standard of the liveaboard.
All our boats are liveaboards for people enthusiastic or serious about their diving but also welcome snorkellers and non-divers who will have their own separate itinerary." author: "Raja Ampat liveaboard
**Raja Ampat (or the Four Kings)** is an archipelago consisting of the islands of Misoool, Salawati, Batanta, and Wiageo which are surrounded by over 1,500 small islands and cays. Formerly known as Irian Jaya, this area is now part of the newly named West Papua province of Indonesia and is located on the northwest tip of Bird's Head Peninsula, on the island of New Guinea.
Put simply, Raja Ampat could quite possibly be the best diving in the world. It certainly is the world's most bio diverse marine region with more recorded fish, coral and mollusc species than anywhere else on Earth. The variety of marine life can be staggering. Some areas boast enormous schools of fish and regular sightings of sharks, such as wobbegongs. In Mansuar, you may encounter large groups of manta rays and turtles. From the boat and often close to shore you may get the chance to don your snorkelling gear for some unforgettable interaction with resident pods of dolphins or even some passing whales. Other highlights include the innumerable war wrecks, both ships and planes (with new wrecks being discovered constantly).
The reefs of Raja Ampat are just as varied as the marine life. There are vertical walls, reef flats, slopes, sea mounts, mucky mangroves, lagoons and pinnacles. The reefs are in pristine condition with miles of perfect hard corals and many varied colourful species of soft corals. The diving is predominantly drift dives due to the moderate prevalent currents in the area which provide nutrients for the myriad fish and coral. Currents are average to moderate and vary from none to very strong. Visibility is normally very good but can vary and is normally at its best earlier in the day so your pre-breakfast dives are not to be slept through!
This is truly "Frontier Diving". Topside the beautiful islands stretch as far as you can see and are largely uninhabited. At night the lights of local fishing boats twinkle in the dark along the few inhabited shorelines while in more remote areas you may only see a distant spec of light over the entire horizon.
Not many liveaboards dive the Raja Ampat area, making this adventure even more unique and special.
Raja Ampat has a high season from October to May and weirdly enough it is during their rainy season due to the winds in the dry season making parts of the park inaccessable. The rainy season should not be mis-construed though. It is generally mostly a shower in the late afternoon and evening and most of the time the days are nice, wind is minimal and the skys are generally clear or slightly over cast. The seas are calmer at this time of the year as the oppposite season has winds that kick up waves and make it very difficult to dive the more exposed sites in the Southern part of Raja Ampat. The water temperature stays around the 27-30 degrees celcius mark all year round.
Recently due to the popularity of Raja Ampat a lot of boats have been running trips in the so called low season but this is also the dry season and so promotes nicer weather and better visibility but the trade of is that only the northern more sheltered part of the park is accessable but as the area is so vast and there are so many quality dive sites the reports from these northern trips have been glowing so far.
Diving in Komodo is not a new idea but recently it's being recognised as a premier destination due to the awesome variety of diving to be had.
Crystal clear water and dive sites where you never see another diver provide a little something for everyone whether it's macro or massive you love.
One day you can be crawling along the bottom looking at pygmy seahorses, frogfish and unusual nudibranch and the next you are in the big blue on an open water pinnacle as the mantas fly by, the sharks circle and the dolphins hunt and the next day diving a live volcano!!
For sheer variety there is no better place on earth.
Komodo is one of the few places left in the world where sharks are not rare and down south is one of the places where manta rays have their legendary aggregations, meaning they are here in the area in their hundreds!!!
One of the highlights of these trips is the rare opportunity to walk with the lengendary Komodo dragons. These truly awesome beasts can reach 3 metres plus and can reportedly run at 20km an hour chasing their prey. It's the icing on the cake, Stunning diving and one of the world's last surviving dinosaur descendants all one amazing package.
Covering the best of both worlds, from up close and personal with aggragating mantas to shy pygmy seahorses and rare nudibranches Komodo diving has it all. The beauty of Komodo liveaboard diving is in the balance between the large and small animals. One day you will be in the blue swimming with mantas and sharks and the next swimming along a bubbling volcanic reef covered with venting submerged fumeroles blowing bubbles into the water and hiding one of the worlds best kept secret macro dive sites.
In North Komodo the water temperature is normally 27-29°C. Around Southern Komodo and Rinca Islands the water temperature drops can drop a bit to 22-26°C. A 5mm long suit is advised and hood and booties are strongly recommended for the southern area.
These are some of the top sites that most liveaboards visit.
Angel reef, Moyo, Sumbawa diving
We start our Komodo liveaboard with the first dive of the trip and the check out dive. This dive site doesn't disappoint. A beautiful wall stretching down to 50 metres covered in hard and soft corals very reminiscent of Bunaken in North Sulawesi. Schools of bannerfish and trevally patrol the walls with the occasional reef sharks making an appearance. Ribbon eels hide in crevices and many different nudibranchs crawl over the vast elephant ear sponges that hang from the beautiful soft coral infested wall.
Satonda island bay
A protected bay on Satonda island north of Sumbawa hosts a treasure trove of macro critters, the more we dive here the more we find. The rare Denise pygmy seahorse lives in fans here, frogfish hang out in big barrel sponges and ghost pipefish hide amongst the featherstars that cover the reef slope. In the sandy bottom you can find jawfish with their mouths full of eggs, myriads of anemonefish, mushroom coral pipefish and spearer mantis shrimps.
Sangeang island diving
Sangieng island is a perfectly round volcanic island jutting up from the sea bed. Still active and last blowing in 1996 this well kept secret is one of the world's finest macro dive areas. With diving available all around the island there is not one specific spot but always new ones to be discovered. Bubbles of volcanic gas seep through the sand creating a surreal atmosphere and a warm black sand bottom hosting rare and unusual nudibranch. Pygmy seahorses, frogfish, Pegasus sea moths and carnivorous shells and all common here, this is my personal favourite dive site as every time we dive here there is a surprise in store of something new that is often not in the books - this site is why you go Komodo liveaboard diving.
Gps point - Gili Banta diving
Gps point is an open sea mount prone to strong currents at certain times of the day. This provides prolific hard and soft coral growth that is home to hundreds of different types of reef fish. Loved by sharks, white tip sharks cruise around the whole dive in amongst the hunting giant trevallies and schooling jacks and surgeon fish, an exciting dive.
Takat Toko, Gili Lawalaut diving
This is one of my favourite sites on the Komodo liveaboard itinerary and is very similar to Gps point this site takes it to the next level. Grey reef shark, white tip sharks, occassional dolphins and a literal fish soup created by jacks, surgeonfish, giant trevallies and bannerfish surround this large sea mount as you hang on to the reef edge and watch the action. Again this site is prone to strong currents but we time our dives to hit around slack tide and a little current brings in the big fish. Great pelagic action, my favourite blue water dive.
Lighthouse reef, Gili Lawalaut diving
An adrenalin pounding drift dive along the wall and around the corner under the lighthouse. Sharks, mantas, dolphins are all frequent visitors on the dive with some of the best coral reef top in the area around the corner out of the current at the end of the dive you can hunt for porcelain crabs, cuttlefish and unusual seahorses whilst waiting for the adrenalin to funnel out of your system and your heart rate to return to normal-this is what Komodo liveaboard diving is all about!.
Crystal rock, Gili Lawalaut diving
A stunning soft coral and sea fan covered pinnacle with crystal water clarity this is a great site for those magazine cover wide angle shots. With at least 5 different types of angelfish, 4 types of trigger and butterflyfish everywhere it is a excellent reef fish dive with frequent visits from eagle and manta rays and the resident sleepy hawksbill turtle.
Pink beach, Komodo diving
Colder water and lower vis here due to the huge amounts of organic matter in the water due to the southern currents but this is more than made up for by the astounding life available to see here due to this phenomenon. Normally done as a night dive it also makes a good day dive with everything from white tip sharks to pygmy seahorses; zebra crabs, Coleman shrimp, many coloured frogfish, xeno crabs, Spanish dancers, and unusual nudibranchs are hidden amongst the dense coral growth.
Cannibal rock, Rinca island diving
Colder water than the north but touted by many as one of the worlds best 10 sites, yes I know there seems to be way more than 10 "top 10 sites" but this one really is one if you like macro. Everything is here even the rarest of the rare, the Rhinopias scorpionfish. It's nudi heaven with only the special and the rare getting to appear here, more species than I care to mention along with large and different frogfish mixed in with schools of fish and the resident dopy turtle we do 2 dives here and it's still not enough!! You will love it, I personally adore this dive site.
Torpedo alley, Rinca island diving
Just next to cannibal rock and where the boat moors is a beach that has wild pigs, monkeys and Komodo dragons in the daytime and hosts a myriad of critters in the waters in front if it at night. Named for the large amount of torpedo rays found here, a member of the electric ray family- no touching! They cover the sandy bottom along with loads of nudis obvious on the black sand bottom along with bizarre crabs and octopus.
Manta alley, Komodo diving
In the cooler waters in the south of Komodo there is a bay in which there are a series of pinnacles that seem to be a magnet for aggregating mantas. They are here in their tens, often we come up having seen over 20 different individuals. Often a little shy, their evasive spins and pirouettes makes the watching of them that much more enjoyable.
Takat Makassar, Komodo diving
This is our other manta site. A little bit more of a risk to see them as it is a huge area and we drift along the bottom in about 10 metres but along the way we always run into loads of turtles, napoleon and humphead wrasse, white tip sharks and very very occasionally you will be incredibly lucky and run into the resident dugong that inhabits this area along with scores of mantas as they migrate north.
3 sisters, Padar island diving
A series of underwater pinnacles reaching nearly to the the surface off the coast of Padar island next to Komodo this site constantly springs surprises on you from silvertip sharks and mobular ray schools to marbled rays and rare nudibranchs.
Arenui - faqs
Standard Indonesian FAQS
Please note these are generic FAQs about Indonesia in general and not always boat specific.
If you are unsure about something please ask us to get confirmation.
What documents will I need to show on the boat?
Dive certification cards and dive logbook.
What money will I need?
Most boats accepts payment by Visa or Mastercard, Indonesian Rupiah, Euro or US Dollar. Please be advised that foreign notes should be clean, new and crisp. Indonesian banks and money changers will not accept old notes or notes which are damaged in any way. You can also use your credit or debit card at ATM machines in towns prior to boarding the boat to withdraw Rupiah, which is better should you wish to purchase local souvenirs or for tips. It is advisable to inform your bank or credit card company that you will be visiting Indonesia prior to your departure, as it is not uncommon for the bank to put a block on the card if they suspect it has been misappropriated.
Will there be any opportunities to go ashore during the cruise?
There are many different land excursions which are dependent on the schedule and guest preferences. Some land excursions available are beach visits, village visit and other treks dependant on the area, weather and local conditions.
What if I am prone to sea sickness?
If you are prone to sea sickness we strongly urge you to bring some motion sickness medication.
What is the voltage on the boat?
Voltage in Indonesia is 220-240 V.
If you feel you will need an adaptor please bring one.
What time zone is Indonesia located?
Komodo, Flores, Derawan and Sangalaki, Kaimantan and Sulawesi are 8 hours ahead of GMT. Raja Ampat is covered by Eastern Indonesia Standard Time which is 9 hours ahead of GMT.
Is smoking permitted?
A designated area on the boat is available for smoking.
Smoking is not permitted in any other area for any reason.
What about crew gratuities?
Gratuities for the crew are not included in your trip price. If the crew performs to your expectations, we suggest a gratuity of approximately 5-10% of the published package price per person be considered normal aboard a liveaboard dive boat.
All tips are generally split equally among the boat crew. Personal tipping is frowned upon. Payment of gratuities can be by cash or credit card.
Do I need evacuation/dive insurance?
It is mandatory that each guest purchase comprehensive evacuation and dive accident insurance.
The boat will be operating in extremely remote areas. Emergency evacuations from remote locations can cost in excess of USD $100,000.
We recommend Divers Alert Network (DAN): www.DiversAlertNetwork.org (in USA), www.daneurope.org (in Europe).
Are there any limitations or restrictions on the diving?
You should stay within the limits and standards of your qualifying agency.
All dives should be no- decompression dives. Solo diving is not permitted.
What dive equipment do I need?
Tanks, weights and weight belts are provided onboard. Divers will need to bring BCD, regulator, wetsuit,fins, mask, snorkel and dive light.
Rental equipment is available and will need to be ordered in advance.
What can I expect the water temperature to be and what wetsuit do you recommend?
This is always a difficult question to answer because people have different reactions to temperature.
Typically temperatures range from 25-30C or 80-86F so usually a 3mm suit or even a skin is fine.
The southern waters of Komodo can be colder with 20-25C or 70-75F so a 5mm suit with a hood is recommended.
How do we dive from the boat?
All dives will be made from the tenders. Equipment will be transferred to the tenders and guests will board the tender with only their wetsuit on.
Can I drink alcohol and dive?
No. Drinking alcohol and diving can increase your risk of decompression problems.
You can drink alcohol once your have completed your last dive of the day.
Can I pay by Credit card on board?
For most things yes you can but there is a bank charge of 3%, normal in Indonesia. Please check with us beforehand about this.
The average air temperature in the regions you will visit ranges from 25 - 35 Celsius or 77-90 Fahrenheit.
Health and innoculations:
Vaccinations for typhoid, paratyphoid, tetanus, Cholera, Polio, and Hepatitis A are recommended but not mandatory.
Malaria is endemic in many parts of Indonesia, please check with your local Tropical Disease Centre for anti-malaria/diver friendly medication.
The Indonesian currency is Rupiah. Rates fluctuate enormously, please check with our cruise directors for your cruise exchange rates.
Population and people:
Regarded as the fifth most populous nation in the world, there are approximately 200,000,000 in Indonesia. The majority, around 60% reside on the island of Java.
An amazing diversity of religions exists. Predominantly a Muslim nation, islands like Timor, North Sulawesi and Flores are Christian.
Hinduism is found mainly in Bali.
Scattered throughout the region are a variety of other beliefs.
Bahasa Indonesia, almost identical to Malay is the one national language.
Several local dialects exist in each region as well. English is widely spoken in the more popular tourist destinations such as Bali.
Out of 14,000+ islands in the archipelago, there are a plethora of exclusive dive locations in Indonesia, boasting up to 80% of the worlds species of undersea life. With Indocruises we take you to pristine spots not that known in your average dive travel guide and which are still being explored.
Dive conditions in Indonesia
- Diving all year around is possible.
- Watertemperature 24°(75°F) to 30°C(86°F) (In the south of Komodo it drops down to 21-23°C (70-75°F)
- Visibility is mostly very good (up to 30m)
Safety Procedures and Emergency Evacuation Information:
There are 6 recompression chambers in Indonesia to treat decompression sickness
Bali: Sanglah General Hospital (in Indonesian language) USUP Sanglah Denpasar JI. Diponegoro, Denpasar 80114 Bali, Indonesia Phone 62-361-227911 through -15 ext. 232 (hyperbaric medical department) Fax 62-361-22426 Run by Dr. Antonius Natasamudra and Dr. Etty Herawati
Manado (Sulawesi): At the Malalayang Hospital (chamber for 3 to 4 persons) Phone: 0811430913 and ask for Dr Jimmy Waleleng (Phone home 860953).
Makassar (Sulawesi): Rumah Sakit Umum Wahidin Sudirohusodo. Contact person: Pak Daniel Address: Jl. Perintis Kemerdekaan Km. 11, Tamalanrea Kampus UNHAS Indonesia TEL:++ 62 - 0411 (584677) , 584675. Said to be for 3 to 4 persons.
Jakarta (Java): Rumah Sakit Angkatan Laut (Navy Hospital) in Jl. Bendungan Hilir No.17, Central Jakarta (see text in italian with some addresses - list of help)
Kalimantan: The Borneo Divers have the only professional recompression chamber located on Sipadan island (Borneo - Malaysia)
Surabaya (Java): Rumah Sakit Angkatan Laut (RSAL) (Military Marine hospital) Jl. Gadung no. 1, SurabayPhone 031-45750 and 41731 (another number given was 031-838153 and fax 031- 837511) Run by Dr Suharsono
Available SAR (search and rescue) contact information:
- SAR Bali : ph 0361 - 751111 Radio : 13545.0
- SAR Lombok : Ph 0370 - 633253 Radio : 13545.0
- SAR Makassar : Ph 0411 - 554111 Radio : 13545.0
- SAR Manado : Ph 0431 - 825986
- SAR Kupang : Ph 0380 - 831111
- SAR Ambon : Ph 0911 - 351111
- SAR Sorong : Ph 0951 - 323816
**Available SAR (search and rescue) contact information:
Medivac facilities from Travira Air www.travira-air.com