The best of Indonesia by Amr A. Abdul-Majeed

The best of Indonesia by Amr A. Abdul-Majeed

 

 


Raja Ampat & Lembeh Indonesia   

by Amr A. Abdul-Majeed


Raja Ampat 

 

 

Raja Ampat (the four kings):

It is a must, for any diver to dive there whether they are a photographer / videographer or simply a recreational diver wanting to see something amazing. Raja Ampat is an archipelago comprising over 1,500 small islands, cays, and shoals surrounding the four main islands of MisoolSalawatiBatanta, and Waigeo, and the smaller island of Kofiau.The oceanic natural resources around Raja Ampat give it significant potential as a tourist area. Many sources place Raja Ampat as one of their top ten most popular places for diving whilst it retains the number one ranking in terms of underwater biodiversity.


Raja Manta


For Diving Raja Ampat you have two options either liveaboard or staying in a Resort and do boat diving.  For me I was traveling alone and I want to explorer many diving sites around Raja Ampat so the live aboard option was my choice. I booked a spot with the Indo Siren liveaboard and the trip was to start from Sorong going south to Misool. Spending few days there in Misool, it then started to cruise to the north to Gam diving all the way, to then return to Sorong.  May wasn’t the perfect season for Raja Ampat but still it was an AMAZING trip, the best seasons are from September to February.  Reaching there is not easy, it took me almost 2 days of traveling from Jeddah-Dubai-Jakarta-Makassar-Sorong but it was well worth it.



Indo Siren   Indo Siren



Raja Ampat is a heaven for wide-Angle photography and videography and you can also find many great macro subjects, such as (pygme seahorses, skelaton shrimps, nudibranch and many more).  In addition, schools of big fishs, such as (Jacks, Barracuda, bumpheads, black tip sharks ,wobbegong) in addition to a very healthy colourful reef combination of soft and hard corals, sea Fans, huge sponges, etc.  The reasons for why it's named as one of the best dive destinations in the world becomes evident very quickly.


 

Raja Ampat   Indo Siren



The crew at Indo Siren were incredible from the cruse director to the dingy driver, their dive guides were well trained and good spotters for macro subjects and they can even help photographers in their work!  The food was great, the boat was well furnished and organized, it was a wonderful life experience and I would definently recommend them. At the end of the trip (10 nights and 11 days ) no one wanted to leave and we felt like we were leaving our family behind.



Raja Ampat   Indo Siren



Lembeh (Macro Heaven):

As I am a macro lover I did the 2nd part of my trip in Lembeh Straits in the Manado area, stayed in Lembeh Resort which was recommended by Bluewater Travel.  The resort was excellent having all the facilities divers and photographers need, such as camera room, rinsing tub for cameras, equipment, showers ..etc. The ambiance was awesome and the staff very friendly and helpful. On their breaks you can hear them singing their local songs which was really nice to see them enjoying their work and life.



Lembeh Resort   Lembeh Resort


How to reach Lembeh: You can take a direct flight from Jakarta or other places in my case was from sorong to Manado, then around 90 min by land and 5-7 min by boat to reach the resort.


The diving in Lembeh is muck diving along black sand so don’t expect great visibility and don’t let the black sandy bottom and garbage frustrate you because once you see your first subject your camera will not stop shooting. You'll keep spotting more and more critters, even 4 dives a day were not enough.  You'll be going up, to end your dive and your eyes will continue scanning the bottom for more critters!  The dive guides are very well trained, and they will find whatever you ask them to search for.  Their keen eyes not only spot the critters, but they then can give you the name of every critter you see, along with the behaviour of that subject, which I really enjoy learning about while shooting pictures of them. 



   Frog fish



What can you see in Lembeh: Alot of these critters you will not see anywhere else except muck areas.  To mention just a few; Nudibranchs, sea horses, pygme sea horses, many kinds of octopuses, pygme cuttlefish, shrimps, crabs ….etc.



Cuttlefish   Frog fish



 

For macro lovers Lembeh is a perfect and a must destination and I will go back there for sure :) 


   



 

 

HOW TO BOOK PAPUA PARADISE ECO RESORT

Bluewater Travel can book you on the Fiji Siren or to Lembeh Resort or any other resort/liveaboard in Raja Ampat for the same cost or less than booking any other way. We know the cabins, and when to go better than anyone else!

 

Email us at info@bluewaterdivetravel.com and tell us that you read this article to get a special price for your next dive trip.

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