*please check our "Agenda" for your date.
The WAOW staff will pick you up in your hotel or await your arrival - not later than 12h noon - at Sorong Airport to assist and accompany you on board SMY WAOW at Sorong Harbour, only a short drive of around 15-20mins away. Our experienced staff will look after your luggage and transfer it to your cabin onboard SMY WAOW while you enjoy our "refreshing welcome drink". As soon as the last guests are onboard, you will be introduced to our team and have plenty of time to settle in, get everything ready and enjoy life onboard with us.
Early breakfast befor disembarkation & transfer to the airport or hotel between 06.00am and 11.00am at the latest
Papua Barat, located at the western tip of New Guinea, is one of the few hotspots of underwater biodiversity on earth. In the whole area scientists have counted more than 1800 different species of animals, more than anywhere else in the world
Raja Ampat (The 4 Kings) is a group of four big islands (Waigeo, Batanta, Salawati and Misool) and a large number of small of sand and rock islands west of Sorong. When you are descending on the plane towards Sorong you can see Raja Ampat below in shades of blue, with many green, jungle covered islands and white sandy beaches with thousands of Isles. The 4 Kings is really two destinations, the north and the south. It is possible to see both in one trip but you'll only barely see the highlights. If you have the time it really makes sense to visit twice or do back-to back trips with different itineraries. The 4 Kings is all about diversity - not only diversity of species, but also of dive sites. There are some areas where soft corals and sea fans dominate, others with amazing diverse hard corals, seagrass beds, mangroves, shallow reefs, drop offs, caves, white sand…Then there are the fish, lots of them, in more shapes and sizes than anywhere else in the world. Not only are there loads of fish, but all the levels of the food chain are well. The reefs in Raja Ampat just buzz with life! Raja Ampat is huge, 50,000 sq km, with hundreds of islands and an astounding diversity of habitats, which translates to wildly different diving experiences from pelagic drift dives to magic muck dives and even some habitats that are special to Raja Ampat such as clear water mangroves with coral growing right next to them! There are thousands of potential dive sites. Exploration is still continuing, and on every trip there are chances for new and amazing discoveries. Even on a 12 day trip you will only have a chance to see some of what Raja Ampat has to offer. Many species are believed to be endemic to the seascape, meaning that they are found nowhere else on Earth. Among the new species are two kinds of epaulette shark (Hemiscyllium sp.) – small, slender-bodied bottom-dwellers that use their pectoral fins to "walk".
Welcome to the majestic land of magnificent Manta rays. Here is the most reliable site to observe manta ray‘s behaviour, especially when you approach them right! If you keep your position, they will make loop after loop or swoop by again and again often somersaulting through the water while being cleaned. Besides cleaning, the manta rays also come to feed on current borne plankton, so be prepared for strong currents and reduced visibility.
Other dive sites like Airborek Jetty, Sardine Reef, Cape Kri and Mioskon are some of the very finest wide-angle photo opportunities. Beautiful hard coral bommies are hosts to dazzling soft corals and rainbow-colored crinoids with a foreground of oriental sweet lips, snappers, a swirl of glassfish and anthias, and a background of schooling surgeonfish, batfish, barracuda, jacks and the occasional tuna. When the visibility is right, this can be an underwater photographer's heaven.
One of the best macro sites around the northern part of The 4 Kings, the bay’s sheltered waters provide good habitat for many kinds of critters. The jetties have become overgrown with encrusting marine life over time and attract a nice mix of critters. Aljui bay will fill out your critter list; blue ring octopus, bobtail squid, ghost pipefish, ribbon eel, toadfish or wobbegong shark and especially on night dives this is one of the places that you would not want to miss…the best!
Kawe’s advantageous geographical position and varied habitats translate into world-class sites that attract marine life like powerful magnets. Some of The 4 Kings richest fish life, especially when the currents run through the off shore coral labyrinths. An outstanding site where reefs are vibrant with multicolour sea fans that are home to several kind of pygmy seahorse, massive bommies where shy blennies hide among encrusting sponges, with thick black coral bushes surrounded by glassfish dashing above, wobbegong sharks, manta rays and schooling barracudas as well as the occasional reef shark checking out the area. Kawe sites are perfect for both wide and macro scenery.
Most spectacular view above and below the surface, Wayag is the place where Raja Ampat images are taken for dive magazines. The most diverse underwater scenery The 4 Kings can offer ranges from lovely hard coral gardens, leisurely swim-through's, colourful coral bommies that are completely covered with all sorts of invertebrates, overhangs, underwater caverns full of windows that you can look through, and outstanding fish life that vibrates the reef with excellent fish action as the current sweeps past. If the current is right…paradise is waiting for you.
Beneath Penemu’s surface, submerged ridges extend in all directions, schooling fish whipped into feeding frenzies by the gusting current that count as some of the strongest currents in the Dampier Strait. With the decent water flow, massive schools of fusiliers swarm over the divers, while underneath the reef becomes a diffusion with huge patches of pastel colours, anthias, turtle, and napoleon wrasse. Bumphead parrotfish and giant trevallies join in the frenzy as well as rainbow runners and barracudas that gather in the blue near by. Fam’s delicate hard coral gardens, are full of life in the shallows and make it a wonderful snorkelling spot during your surface interval or you can just explore the picturesque white sandy beaches surrounded by clear turquoise blue water.
A labyrinth of thousands of small mushroom like islands form tiny dots of lagoons with sparking white sand surrounded by extensive formations that make the Misool area one of the most wonderful places on earth. Not only will the land scenery take your breath away but the underwater scenery is even better and holds some of the richest species in the world! Massive seamounts, rocky outcrops, lime stone arches with windows that are overgrown by fountains of life; clouds of glassfish dancing away from tuna and golden jacks, a ground for mobula rays drifting by with the sweeping of currents. It’s really hard to take it all in, with so much action happening at once.
Not to be missed, “Boo Rock”, the gully called “The Windows”, where two rocks connected by magnificent soft corals and sizzling with fish. The surface crashes through the top of these window arches creating a constant pounding noise, which can be felt through your whole body. The fish life is outstanding with jacks and dogtooth tuna feeding in the surge and schooling bannerfish sitting behind sea fans catching tiny bits of plankton floating in the current. Hardly a spot on the reef is left uncovered by sea fans, soft coral and thick schools of baitfish.
One of the most radiant reefs in all of The 4 Kings, each dive is never an ordinary dive, it’s always special and there’s always a new scene to be found. The reef is covered in short growth pastel soft corals that form larger purple and pink soft coral, red and white sea fans and enormous barrel sponges jutting out from the steep slopes and walls. Excellent fish life: Fusiliers, surgeonfish, small schools of barracuda and profuse schools of anthias all milling about in the rising and falling tides.
With the numerous shallow bays along Batanta’s coastline, it makes a perfect home for weird critters. A good combination of dark sand, fresh water inlets, and small bays or coves where critters can benefit from passing currents but still thrive in basically sheltered waters. Batanta has become known as a muck diving spot, where critter hunting is rewarded with the sights of rare halimeda ghost pipefish, mimic octopus and wonderpus, tiger shrimps, frogfish, flamboyant cuttlefish and many more. If it still doesn’t satisfy your appetite, Batanta is also one of the wonderful places for nudibranch hunters and lovers.
Penemu, Wayag or Misool. Sit back and relax in our comfortable tenders while we take you cruising into the labyrinths of a thousand lagoons, to Wagmab's caves for the gorgeous views of stalactites and stalagmites, or the magic surrounds of Misool Island. Either take a walk up the top of a limestone ridge for a spectacular picturesque view of lime stone Islands or do some canoeing along the limestone cliff. It’s just another of those unforgettable moments in life. A Water proof bag is ideal here to transport your camera and other electronic devices.