West Papua Discoverer

South Pacific Cruise

  • True North
  • Expedition Ship
  • 36 Capacity
  • 13 Days
  • 2014 View Departure>
    • 2014
    • Oct 6 Mon
  • Price from
  • $22,995

Summary : The land of remote peoples and undiscovered species, explore the amazing Raja Ampats – an archipelago consisting of more than 1,500 islands, cays and shoals. See the breathtaking bird of paradise, snorkel amidst clouds of jellyfish and observe schools of manta ray. Snorkel through caves and take a guided walk through the jungle on an expedition for the true adventurer aboard a well-appointed ship with optional diving and private helicopter excursions.

Activities : Birding, Culture, Diving, Hiking, Snorkeling

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Prices from
$22,995 to $29,995

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Itinerary
Day 1
Darwin, Australia / Ambon, Indonesia

Your adventure begins amidst the tropical charm of Darwin. Transfer from city center early in the morning to your chartered aircraft for your flight to Ambon – gateway to the world’s last frontier, West Papua! Ambon is also where we will welcome you aboard the expedition ship. Enjoy a welcome aboard cocktail as we cruise to Banda Island. Enjoy the sight of the setting sun in this unique unfrequented land.

Day 2
Banda Island

Today we’ll explore Banda Island. Steeped in history, Banda and the surrounding Maluku or ‘Spice Islands’ were popular destinations for European spice traders up until the early 1800?s. Learn about Banda’s rich history on a guided tour and then head off in the expedition boats for a scenic cruise or a spot of fishing. Back on-board, Dr. Mark Erdmann, senior advisor to Conservation International and our resident biologist, will introduce the areas fascinating natural history.

Day 3
Fak Fak Coast / Sebakor Bay

Today is set aside for exploring the intriguing Fak Fak Coast. Start the day with a scenic cruise in the expedition boats and discover the water-filled caves of Sebakor Bay. Don’t forget your snorkel – the area is also renowned for its aquarium like qualities. Diving and fishing opportunities will also present. After lunch join the hike to Mommon Waterfall. Enjoy a swim or perhaps hike on to the top of the falls. Diving and snorkeling are also possible.

Day 4
Kalig Island / Misool Island

A day devoted to swimming, snorkeling and diving off South East Misool, Wayibatan, Kalig and Fiabacet Islands. Spend a lazy day on a palm fringed beach or take an expedition boat out for a spot of fishing – it’s entirely up to you! In the afternoon we will visit the Misool Eco Resort.

Day 5
Misool Island / Karst Islands

This morning we continue our adventure at Misool Island. The waters surrounding this island are teeming with fish life and the huge sea fans are equally impressive. Snorkel through Tomolol Cave or dive on the outer reef. Fishing and sightseeing are also on the agenda. In the afternoon join your favorite expedition boat for a ‘drinks and nibbles’ cruise through the beautiful Karst Islands.

Day 6
Majalibit Bay

Start the day with a visit to a local village. Sample a morning-tea of ‘local fare’ and be entertained by traditional dancing. After lunch, snorkel and dive ‘The Big Blue’ or join a fishing tender. Then grab the hiking boots and discover the local flora and fauna on the banks of a pristine river. Take a scenic ride in the expedition boats or sign up for an optional helicopter flight over spectacular Majalibit Bay.

Day 7
Swingkai Island / Kri Island

It’s an early start today as we head to Swingkai Island to see the magnificent red bird of paradise. On the way back we visit Srwinki village – meet the locals and join-in the song and dance. In the afternoon, visit Kri Island and Pulau Putus where you can snorkel, dive and encounter abundant marine life!

Day 8
Fam Islands

Start the day with a refreshing snorkel amongst the stunning corals of the Fam Group islands or, try your hand at catching breakfast. The morning is yours to explore Fam’s breathtaking beauty. After lunch we’ll make our way north to Gam Bay and then it’s everyone in for another unique snorkeling experience. Surrounding currents converge to create a 1/2 mile long ‘drift’ channel. Slip from the expedition boats and the current will guide you over the stunning orange cup corals, seahorses and clownfish – the vibrant water movement is one of the reasons why the area is so rich in coral and fish life! At the end of the channel the ship’s expedition boats will be waiting – you may just want to do it all over again! Enjoy a cocktail on the observation deck and marvel at yet another stunning sunset.

Day 9 – 10
Wayag Islands

More days of unique experiences! Cross the equator as we continue north to the Wayag Islands. These small beehive atolls are totally uninhabited and quite spectacular. Take a stroll along a pristine beach or for the more adventurous, climb to an island summit and enjoy spectacular views of the surrounding islands. Sign up for an optional scenic helicopter flight over the island or hop in an expedition boat for some exceptional fishing.

The crystal clear waters around the Wayags will also begin to reveal the unrivaled underwater diversity of the Raja Ampat - a region that it is home to 450 confirmed species plus countless yet to be discovered species of coral – a stark comparison to the only 70 species that are found in the Caribbean!

Day 11
Alijui Bay

Wake this morning in beautiful Alijui Bay. After breakfast it’s time to take part in a manta ray convention! Plankton rich currents attract large numbers of manta rays to this area – a shallow coral ridge surrounded by crystal clear oceanic waters. As many as 20 mantas line up on the ridge to be cleaned by schools of colorful wrasse. Jump in and have a swim with these gentle giants of the sea. This afternoon visit a pearl farm and fish for the revered mangrove jack – a great fighter and one of the best tasting fish you can catch!

Day 12
Ayau Atoll / Miosbekwan Island

Start the day with a visit to the village of Pulau Dorehkar in the Ayau Atoll. The villages have few encounters with people from the western world. The area was colonized by Papuan fishermen from Biak Island (to the east) over 100 years ago and the Ayau people are skilled at all means of fishing – from collecting edible worms from the powdery-white sand beaches to free-dive spearfishing in the depths. The pristine waters are ideal for snorkeling or sightseeing and fishing! The ship’s helicopter will offer optional discovery flights over the atoll – one of the largest atolls in eastern Indonesia. The atoll waters are frequented by large pods of dolphins and the outer-reef drops sharply to over 1,000m (3,280ft). Clouds of beautiful fishes carpet the reef walls. Snorkel and dive at several sites around the atoll, or head off to the big-blue (outside the Ayau Marine Park) to try your luck at some deep water fishing.

In the afternoon, enjoy a traditional dance on the island of Miosbekwan with exceptional drumming.

Day 13
Sorong, West Papua / Darwin, Australia

Enjoy breakfast this morning before clearing customs onboard. A private car transfer will escort you to Sorong airport where you’ll board the plane for a chartered flight back to Darwin.

Notes

This itinerary is subject to change due to prevailing conditions and local arrangements. ExpeditionTrips is not responsible for itinerary changes.

Optional Helicopter Excursions:
Scenic helicopter flights can be purchased as a package or individually. Please contact ExpeditionTrips for details.

Optional Diving:
Divers must provide proof of certification onboard. Divers are provided with cylinders, weight belts, weights, mask, snorkel and fins. Divers must arrange their own personal dive equipment including regulators, BCD and wetsuit. It is highly recommended that divers bring their own dive computer. the sharing of dive computers is not permitted. Divers must dive with a safety sausage. If you do not bring your own you will be required to purchase one onboard. Night dives may be offered. If you intend to night dive, you must bring your own primary light source. A secondary or back up light source is also recommended.

'No shoes onboard' policy:
This policy assists with safety and promoting a casual atmosphere onboard. However if a medical condition necessitates, footwear may be worn. All passengers will need appropriate footwear for shore excursions.

Included:
Accommodations as booked; meals aboard the vessel; non-alcoholic beverages; all excursions in the expedition vessels; snorkel gear; divers are provided with cylinders, weight belts, weights, mask, snorkel and fins; transfer from Darwin city center to airport for charter flight to Ambon; charter flight from Darwin to Ambon; transfers between ship and charter flights; charter flight from Sorong to Darwin; port charges and taxes; fishing gear (except lures).

Not Included:
Airfare; passport and visa fees; scenic helicopter flights; alcoholic beverages; diving regulators, BCD and wetsuit, safety sausage, dive computer and dive light (must bring your own of these items); items of a personal nature including but not limited to travel and medical insurance, onboard shopping, valet and laundry service; satellite phones and Internet Cafe charges; fishing lures (available to purchase onboard); fuel surcharge may apply.