If you have been to Raja Ampat before, please share your experiences, ideas and feedback (Hotel, Excursions, General Feeling,…) in the comments section below, by doing so you will help fellow travellers to plan their next trip
In this page you will find practical information to plan a scuba diving trip to Raja Ampat:
Table of contents
Raja Ampat Photos
Cleaning Shrimp Raja AmpatPhoto by Jihye Lee
LeopardPhoto by Jihye Lee
Octopus HidingPhoto by Jihye Lee
Underwater Forest Raja AmpatPhoto by Jihye Lee
Long Black White FishPhoto by Jihye Lee
Orange Blue NudibranchPhoto by Jihye Lee
Cleaning ShrimpPhoto by Jihye Lee
Mandarin Fish CheekyPhoto by Jihye Lee
Orange Yellow NudibranchPhoto by Jihye Lee
Underwater ForestPhoto by Jihye Lee
Raja Ampat is one of the most magical scuba diving destinations you can imagine! This archipelago is located in West Papua in Indonesia. Most of the Islands are still unexplored and only few Liveaboards and dive resorts offer diving in Raja Ampat.
Photo Credit: http://www.flickr.com/photos/diverslog/5714828164/
This area was even voted the richest reef in the World in 2007 by National Geographic. The biodiversity here is just outstanding. Many new species have been discovered in recent years in the area and passionate underwater photographers come from all over the world to discover this gem.
Raja Ampat Islands are truly spectacular, covered by lush jungle and surrounded by pristine reefs with a teeming marine life. Diving in this area is great for macro photography and critters as well as big fishes and Manta rays! The coral is magnificent and still untouched.
In Raja Ampat, the beauty is everywhere, above and below the surface.
Where to stay?
I usually use this website to book in advance my hotels in Raja Ampat as they usually have the lowest rates I find. I like it because it's free to cancel and change the dates.
For the resorts, you will have the choice between:
- Kri Eco Resort
- Sorido Bay Resort
- Misool Eco resort
- Raja Ampat dive lodge
Activities and excursions in Raja Ampat
Raja Ampat is 100% about scuba diving and snorkelling. For the non divers, there is not much to do. You can go trekking in the lush tropical forest to have a glimpse of the fantastic fauna of the local forest. If you are lucky you can even spot the superb Bird of Paradise! Sea Kayaking around the Islands is also a great experience!
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Best time to visit Raja Ampat
The climate is tropical with hot and humid air. The weather is sunny all year with some rainy days. From May to September, there is more rain than the other months but nothing too bad.
Health and Safety
If you are planning an upcoming dive trip or travelling to Raja Ampat, it is a really good idea to invest in travel insurance for scuba diving, because you never know what could happen and when you might need it (because accidents do happen!). I recommend this diving insurance as they offer worldwide coverage and focus on providing scuba divers a quality insurance and medical assistance service.
Where is Raja Ampat located in the world?
Raja Ampat is located in Papua Archipelago in Indonesia. See the map below.
Raja Ampat Map
How to get to Raja Ampat?
The Raja Ampats Islands are very remote. To go there you need to:
- Step 1: Fly firstly to Jakarta, Bali, Kuala Lumpur or Singapore.
- Step 2: Once you are in one of these cities, get a flight to Sorong in West Papua, Indonesia. Most of the flights have a stopover in Makassar (Ujung Pandang airport) in Sulawesi. There are also flights from Manado to Sorong.
If you are in Indonesia, the companies you can take are Garuda Indonesia (the National Company), Batavia Air, Merpati, Express Air, and Lion Air.
If you are in Singapore, you can take Silk Air to reach Manado in Sulawesi first then another flight to Sorong with Merpati or Lion Air.
- Step 3: Local staff from your liveaboard or from your dive resort should wait for you at Sorong Airport. You will then embark the liveaboard or take a fast boat to reach your diving resort.
Note: You need a permit to enter West Papua. The formalities will be completed by your dive operator but don’t forget to bring your passport, 3 photocopies of your Indonesian Visa and an ID picture.
Photo Credit: http://www.flickr.com/photos/dodol/1308850135/
There are no roads, no transportation infrastructure in Raja Ampat. The only way to get around is by boat.
You will find all information about sea life, best time to visit, top dive spots, etc. in our review: Raja Ampat Diving