Day 1 (1 dive): OFF TO NEW ADVENTURES
- We meet up in front of the tourist information centre in Waisai at 11 am where we will board the Jaya. If you would like to be picked up in Sorong (VIP transfer, no extra charge), we meet you between 7.30 and 8.00 in the morning at the Je Meridien Hotel just next to the airport.
- Once on board, we make sure all the necessary paperwork is in order, allocate your cabins, set up dive equipment and brief you on the boat and dive safety procedures.
- After lunch, we depart to our first dive site in central Raja Ampat. The check dive is usually at Friwen Bonda, a beautiful reef teeming with colourful fish.
Day 2 (3 dives): MAIDEN CONQUEST
- We start the day with a drift dive at Sardine or Chicken Reef. Both sites are seamounts with a shallow top that gently slopes down to about 30m. Schools of snappers, fusiliers, and surgeonfish provide a snack for pelagic predators such as barracuda, giant trevallies, or reef sharks.
- A little bit further west in the Dampier Strait on the eastern tip of Pulau Mansuar lies Yenbuba, a local village with a rugged jetty that provides shelter for schools of sergeant majors, snappers, and sweetlips.
- Our third and last dive of the day is at Mioskon, also called “Bat Island” because of its residential fruit bat population. At dusk, they fly to the bigger islands to snack on fruit and return at dusk to settle in the trees for the day.
- After our last dive, we head south to Batanta.
Day 3 (3 dives incl. sunset dive & waterfall visit): NYMPH’S TALE
- Batanta, one of the four kings and the southern border of the Dampier Strait, is a lush jungle paradise. An enchanted path leads up to a dramatic waterfall where we stop for a dip in fresh, clear water.
- For the first dive of the day, we have something special in-store. On the southern side of Pulau Wai is the last resting place of a U.S. Air Force P47. This Fighter Aircraft from WW2 is overgrown with beautiful coral and a joy to dive into.
- After a big breakfast, we go on a little hike to admire a stunning waterfall embedded in the lush jungle near Arefi Village.
- Now that we have dispensed our energy, we are ready for some calm muck diving! On the southwestern side of Batanta are several bays and inlets crawling with alien critters like blue-ringed and mimic octopus, ornate ghost pipefish, and flamboyant cuttlefish. We like to do a day dive and a sunset dive in this area to give all creatures an equal chance to show off. Some of our favourite sites are Black Beauty and Happy Ending.
- After our last dive, we start our 12-15h crossing south to Misool.
Day 4 (3 dives & jellyfish lake visit): ARIEL’S PLAYGROUND
- On our first day in Misool, we spend in the Goa Farondi region. Unusual topography, clouds of fish, and enchanted coral gardens give you a warm welcome to the south. Also – what little mermaid wouldn’t want to play with (non-stinging) jellyfish!
- The opening dive will most likely be at Farondi Cave for some light cavern diving where we navigate through a few swim-throughs in search of the local bump head parrotfish population.
- As a second dive, we love the spectacular Three Rocks, a collection of submerged pinnacles busy with barracuda and trevallies.
- If weather permits, a truly unique island visit waits for you. Close by lies the Lenmakana lake, home to a multitude of stingless jellyfish. And guess what – you get to swim with them!
- We end the day with a dive at No Contest – if there is enough daylight left. If the time has gotten away from us, we jump at one of the surrounding sites for a night dive, like Love Potion or Number 9.
Day 5 (4 dives (incl. night dive)): SUNKEN CORNUCOPIA
- On our second day in Misool, we explore the Fiabacet chain. Conditions and logistics with Misool Eco Resort will decide which of the sites are dived and in which order. We hope you are well-rested because this is going to be a spectacular day.
- Good morning! This is the dive site you all came here for. Shadow Reef, also called Magic Mountain is one of the signature sites of southern Raja Ampat. This offshore pinnacle with a long ridge boasts everything you could possibly wish for.
- Coral encrusted reef teeming with butterflyfish and yellow snappers, persistently hunted by giant trevallies and reef sharks. Massive schools of fusiliers and bannerfish make it hard to spot the passing napoleon wrasses and barracudas. But what we really hope to see here are the gentle giants – the site is a cleaning station for reef and oceanic mantas.
- Another signature dive site is Boo Window. The reef features picturesque, window-like swim-throughs, ideal for some wide-angle photos, and a magnificent reef draped in soft corals.
- West of Pulau Boo a rock protrudes out of the water that looks like a nudibranch from a distance, hence the name Nudi Rock. The dive site delivers what was promised, lurking among the soft corals we usually find an abundance of Nudis.
- For the night we retire to Yilliet. But before we go to bed, we take a peek at the underwater action at Yilliet Kecil.
Day 6 (3 dives): A REGAL AFFAIR
- For our third and last day in Misool, we venture further west to Pulau Wayilbatan.
- We start the day at Four Kings, a dive site that is made up of four underwater pinnacles.
- Enjoy a kaleidoscope of colours, abundant fish life, and coral munching turtles diving from one rock to the next.
- Up next is Barracuda Rock with large schools of predatory pelagic species.
- We’ll do our final dive in Misool at Wedding Cake, home to part of Misool’s pygmy seahorse community.
- Exhausted from the sensory overload we can now rest for a while. The Jaya starts her 15-18h journey back to central Raja Ampat, where new adventures await.
Day 7 (3 dives & Piaynemo viewpoint): STAIRWAY TO HEAVEN
- Whether you climb on top of a hill to admire the stunning view of Piaynemo or plunge into the depths of the underwater realm, it’s not just the destination, but also the journey that changes your perspective of the world.
- Early in the morning, we dive into Melissa’s Garden, named after the pioneer Max Ammer’s daughter.
- Moving on to Kerou Channel we hope for current! The spectacular drift dive rushes us past a rich, coral-covered reef where huge sea fans hold on for dear life feeding on the current. But don’t worry – there are also some sheltered areas where we can search for pygmy seahorses, nudibranchs, and other colourful reef critters.
- Batu Rufas – dive site number three – is on the east side of Piaynemo and features a very photogenic submerged arch.
- We conclude our day with a trip to the iconic viewpoint at Piaynemo. 341 steps lead to a platform where we can observe one of nature’s most artistic designs. The spectacular view is composed of the turquoise sea framed by jungle where a handful of karst islets jut dramatically out from the calm surface of the lagoon.
Day 8 (3 dives & beach BBQ): POSEIDON’S BOUNTY
- This is the last full day to show off the biodiversity in Raja Ampat. We chose lush, healthy reefs in the Dampier Strait, that foster a large number of species. From pygmy seahorses to mantis shrimp to sharks and Mantas – chances are we see them all.
- A morning dive at Citrus Ridge is a sure way to put a smile on your face. Teeming with fish the reef is coated in yellow and orange soft coral creating a fresh and happy backdrop for large schools of barracudas, playful sharks, and hungry tunas.
- Heading further east, we stop for an adrenaline rush. Manta Ridge is prone to very strong currents, but it is also a cleaning station for reef mantas where you have a chance to swim eye-to-eye with one of the majestic giants.
- On the eastern tip of Pulau Kri lies the famous Cape Kri, the record holder for the most fish species found in one dive.
- The sunset can be enjoyed on the white sandy beach of Mioskon with a cold beer in your hand. If you’re lucky and weather permits – there will be a beach BBQ later on!
Day 9 (1 dive): GENTLE GIANTS
- The last day starts early. Really. But it’s worth it, trust us. We try to be the first to jump at Blue Magic, a cleaning station for oceanic mantas. The dive site can be a wee bit currently.
- But while you cling to a rock and your jaw is locked tightly around your regs while you leave a horizontal stream of bubbles behind you, hundreds of schooling jacks, grey reef sharks, Spanish mackerel, and hopefully a few graceful mantas will make you forget all about it.
- Back on board, we gently prepare you for your departure. This includes a debriefing, delicious food, a group photo and plenty of time to gather your items while pondering how your belongings ever fit in your backpack when you left home.
- If time permits, we visit Mioskon Island again so you can get a last glance at paradise.
- After lunch, we say our tearful goodbyes and drop you off at the harbor – hoping the goodbye is not forever!
- Diving will be finished by 10 am or earlier. If you are returning to Sorong on the same day, you will be ready to board the ferry by 2 pm. The expected arrival in Sorong is 4 pm.