Diving in Raja Ampat is done either by liveaboard or from a dive resort. There are many liveaboard boats operating in Raja Ampat with different itineraries offering the best opportunity to cover a large area and variety of dive sites. Both Mermaid Liveaboards and the Aggressor fleet are well-established liveaboard operations with several ships, routes and itineraries in Raja Ampat. For a more boutique experience, the Arenui is a traditional Indonesian wooden ship made by hand mostly from recycled wood and comes completely with wood carved details from Bali and Java.
Pick one of Raja Ampat’s many dive resorts if you prefer to stay on land and have more freedom to do other activities. There are resorts for different budgets, which allow you to tailor make your own dive itinerary. Local homestays offer the cheapest way to dive Raja Ampat, but extra care should be taken in to make sure your homestay or local dive shop operates safe dive practices. The Raja Ampat Biodiversity Resort, Kri Eco Resort and Wicked Diving are all good options within the mid budget range. For divers with less of a budget restrain the Misool Eco Resort and Papua Paradise Eco resort are some beautiful boutique choices. Dive packages usually include local dives and a supplement is charged for dive sites that are further away.
The gateway to diving in Raja Ampat is Sorong, which has connections to Jakarta, Singapore, Makassar, Bali and Manado. Both Jakarta and Singapore have the best international connections. Domestic airlines that fly to Sorong include Sriwijaya Air, Express Air, Garuda Indonesia and Lion Air. Some routes will have a stopover in Manado.From Sorong there are both speed boats and slow boats to get to the islands of Raja Ampat, which take anywhere from between 1-4 hours depending on the location of the resort. Divers that book with a resort or liveaboard often receive free boat transportation on selected days. Before heading out to the dive sites, it is compulsory to get a permit from the local Papua police station.
Superb all round trip Boat- beautiful and well appointed. Good facilities and very spacious cabins. Crew- real highlight of the trip. All had roles and did them to perfection with a smile and enthusiasm. Nice to see empowerment in the staff and strong emphasis on safety. Cruise Directors- top notch. Knew dive sites and gave excellent briefings. Also looked after me really well which i am very grateful for. Itinerary- really good itinerary with variety and thought. Bambang- the guy will be on tv ...
Excellent boat - cabins well appointed and spacious Staff - Superb. Dive briefings were exceptional and every single crew member was attentive and knew their roles inside out. Empowerment is obviously very important and its great that the crew have the opportunity to learn and develop. Knowledge of dive sites and area was second to none. Food - Unbelieavable. Amazing what came out of that tiny kitchen and always plenty available. 10 out of 10 from me in every aspect of the trip