One of the Wild Frontiers on Our Planet

Overview

Head off the map with us to Indonesia’s far-flung Raja Ampat archipelago, one of the last wild places on the planet and a realm that few travelers have experienced. The snorkeling here is mind-boggling as we explore an underwater universe of extravagant coral reefs that support an astonishing diversity of species—technicolor soft corals, ghost pipefish, tasseled wobbegongs, hawksbill turtles, octopus, and eight different species of anemonefish. Above the water’s surface, we’ll relish Raja Ampat’s dramatic limestone islands, dazzling aquamarine lagoons, and rare birds, including the red bird of paradise. Our home away from home is a 100-foot traditional Indonesian schooner, with evenings spent in remote anchorages savoring the unspoiled beauty of our surroundings.

Itinerary at a Glance

Days 1-3
Sorong / Penemu

Boarding our yacht in Sorong, we cruise into Raja Ampat and discover its unusual marine and terrestrial ecosystems, from shallow bays with rare shrimp gobies, octopus, nudibranchs, and “twilight zone” critters, to limestone rock islands undercut by the sea and covered with tunicates, sponges, and corals. Our snorkeling adventures around the isle of Penemu reveal a brilliant spectrum hidden beneath the sea surface, from frogfish and opulent lionfish to reef sharks and pygmy seahorses.

Days 4-6
Wayag Island / Uranie Island

At Wayag, a stunning island of jungle-covered rock outcrops, we snorkel through mangroves and among schools of silvery sardines and juvenile reef fish. On Uranie Island, we visit a spectacular beach-lined bay and hike to the summit for a 360-degree view of lush jungle-covered islands. In the evenings, we anchor in a serene setting and watch for manta rays gliding around our boat—it’s a magical experience.

Days 7-12
Waigeo Island / Gam Island

We navigate into Alyui Bay on Waigeo Island, exploring by dinghy in forest-lined inland waterways. We search for hawksbill turtles feeding on jellies at Gam Island and enjoy fabulous drift-snorkeling near Manta Point. On an island hike, we look for the red bird of paradise, first made known to the Western world by pioneering naturalist Alfred Russel Wallace, who made his famous voyage here in 1860. Depart on Day 12.

Highlights

Highlights

Explore one of the most biologically diverse and remote areas on earth
World-class snorkeling above pristine coral reefs, spectacular stargazing at night
Travel aboard a traditional double-masted Indonesian schooner, anchoring in coves with no one else in sight

Details

Length: 12 days
Cost From: $5695  
Arrive: Sorong, Indonesia
Depart: Sorong, Indonesia
Lodging: 11 nights aboard yacht
Meals: All meals included (B=Breakfast, L=Lunch, D=Dinner)
Activity: Small Boat & Yacht Cruising, Snorkeling, Wildlife & Natural History, Sea Kayaking
Trip Level:

Snorkeling, exploring by dinghy, optional sea kayaking