Our aim is to show you all the best Raja Ampat has to offer, with the maximum time spent at play. So we kick off on Raja Ampat islands themselves. Most flights arrive at Sorong early in the morning. With a 9am departure of the fast ferries from Sorong (8 Euro), you can get from airport, and be in the islands to meet us at Waisai, before lunch.
DAY 1 We will meet you alongside the Park entrance fee counter inside the arrival wharf building. This fast ferry leap-frogs you from the mainland to calmer island waters, and saves you a day wasted, crossing open-ocean. Our boat has a shallow draft advantage over all other liveaboards, and as such Bigkanu can glide through a jungle lined passage between the islands of Gam and Waigeo, taking us to places few see, and avoiding most back tracking on the 270km/7day trip. On arrival we serve a lunch (all meals are included) while heading to a beach inside Kabui bay for a swim. There are some pretty spectacular beaches along the dense jungle coast of Kabui bay, so we start with a wow. Kabui Bay’s corner is dotted with limestone karst islands that burst out of the water, making for quite an extra-terrestrial excursion, and a disused jetty in the middle of this sculptured madness, makes for a curious, first night overnight stopover.
Day 2 takes down a river-like passage between Gam and Waigeo, where it’s fun to don a mask and glide with the current along the 1km ‘Disneyland’ river cruise. Along the way, psychedelic coral vies for attention, peacefully set under the overhanging jungle branches. It’s a rare experience. A couple of picture perfect islands greet us, about 18 nautical miles further on, offering us choice of our first village jetty stop over at maybe Mutus, where the bait fish under the jetty part their waters as though we are Moses.
A liveaboard trip on a spacey 24m multihull, will cost 990 Euros for a 7day/6 night cruise.
Nearly all the boats cruising Raja Ampat are for divers, and cost around 260 to 360 Euros per night, and their itineraries are all about the underwater landscape. The choice we offer is a much bigger experience than just diving, as the real ‘wow’ of Raja Ampat is where the reef meets the rainforest. This means beaches, karst cruising, villages, snorkelling, kayaking, beach dinner parties, and a ‘see it all’ agenda.
Day 3 and 4... The poster child islands of Raja Ampat are known as Wayag, and everyone wants to see this phenomena, yet few are able to get there. At 37nm, this is a long run, so we start early, and once there, the magnificence and beauty of Wayag is overwhelming. Karst cone shaped islands fill this lagoon. Here Bigkanu backs itself onto its own circular sand spit beach, to set up dining tables ashore for a two night stay of dinner parties on the beach. From, here we mount mini expeditions by tender. There is great snorkelling off the ranger’s station, or wading amongst the baby reef sharks. Another tidal joy ride, awaits the amateur snorkeler in Wayag’s inner azure passages, this time accompanied by gruff, bump head parrot fish.
Most everyone wants to climb the Wayag karst pinnacle and get that amazing pan shot photo, in a sea of islets. This location is surely a finalist for the world’s most beautiful natural anchorage. Two nights here is almost life changing, and few want to leave.Our mission is to boost humanity’s conservation ethos, and with nature’s cry encouraging everyone to actively help collect any plastics we find, we do not lament the, “plastic oceans’, instead we do something about it. Please join in.
Day 5 and we have a choice. At the north east tip of Raja Ampat there is a spectacular bay called Alyui, and near its entrance there canyon chanels, a quaint village and some full Jurassic Park jungle. Sometimes we head to a smaller version of Wayag called Piaynemo, which is a magic place as well, albeit its a long haul from Wayag in one day, so depending the conditions, we decide day 5's anchorage on the day.
Day 6 takes us through the Dampier Straights to Arborek and onto to the island village of Friwen, with Manta cleaning stations along the way. The island home of Friwen is a sort of semi orderly, German Protestant missionary village, blessed with a little beach of great charm, with an inviting swing rope hanging out of the azure drop off.
On Day 7, a Saturday, many guests, want to avoid another night in Sorong, and fly out to Bali or Jakarta on the afternoon flights around 2pm. In 2020, we are going to be returning to Waisai so everyone can catch the 0900 ferry, which arrives in Sorong about 1100 to 1130, allowing time to grab a lunch and be at the airport , 3km from the ferry wharf. This then gets you on the early afternoon flights. You are back in Bali or Jakarta in the early evening. Flying back westards is easy and relaxing, and can all be done on the last day of the trip. For anyone staying on in Raja Ampat, being in Waisai at 0900 allows you to get the boats headed back to the resorts and homestead that leave about 1100, when the Sorong ferry arrives.
SCHEDULE TOURS OF 7 Days AND 6 Nights €990
15 December to 21 December 2019
22 December to 28 December 2019
12 January 2020
2 February 2020
9 February 2020
8 March 2020
12 April 2020
10 May 2020
14 June 2020
12 July 2020
9 August 2020
13 September 2020
11 October 2020
8 November 2020
13 December 2020
27 December 2020