Indonesia - Dive & Snorkel

Experience a divers and snorkelersÂ’ paradise on a journey to the epicenter of marine bio diversity that spans across two incredible weeks. The first stop is an eco-friendly boutique resort, located in the heart of Bunaken National Marine Park in North Sulawesi. Snorkel and dive the fringing reefs of these stunning islands that are world famous for their clear waters, pristine coral gardens, and an amazing variety of marine animals. Travel to the Minahasa highlands for a scenic and historical tour that offers panoramic views of Mahawu and Lokon volcanos. Explore the local market of Tomohon, the traditional wooden house of Woloan, and see the beautiful colors of Lake Linaw. Then, spend a week exploring the underwater riches of Raja Ampat, a group of majestic islands, located at the heart of the Coral Triangle.

Itinerary

Day 1: Depart Home / Singapore

Travel from respective countries and meet your Expedition leaders at the gate for your flight to Manado. Depart Singapore on a Singapore Airlines flight to Manado. Be met at the Manado airport and receive a transfer by boat to your tropical island home, Siladen Isalnd Resort, for the next 4 nights. Exclusively located in the heart of the world-renowned Bunaken National Marine Park, North Sulawesi, just above the equator on the lush tropical island of Pulau Siladen, Siladen Resort is an ecofriendly, socially-responsible boutique resort. A high emphasis is placed on the protection of the Marine Park and environment here. Thanks to the strategic location in the heart of the Marine Park, 40 premium dive sites are within easy reach of the resort. Enjoy ‘Welcome’ cocktails and dinner before retiring for the evening for a much-needed rest after your long journey. Overnight at Siladen Island Resort. (D)

Days 2-4: Bunaken National Marine Park

There are three complete days to discover the treasures of the world-renowned Bunaken National Marine Park, which encompasses the islands of Siladen, Bunaken, ManadoTua, Montehage, and Nein, and is ranked among the top diving destinations in the world and is a center of marine biodiversity. The Bunaken National Marine Park is known for its rich macro life, but also pelagic such as reef sharks (black tip, white tip), eagle rays, barracudas, tuna, napoleon wrasses, and turtles are a common sight. The Park is characterized by wall dives rich in hard and soft corals. All reefs are suitable for snorkeling. As currents change in intensity according to the tides, all dives are drift dives to ensure safe and comfortable diving to all guests. Also take the time to enjoy the resort and it facilities during the stay. In the evenings, join the group for sunset drinks and dinner, and discuss all the wondrous things you have experienced and found throughout the day. Overnight at Siladen Island Resort. (B, L, D)

Day 5: Minahasa Highlands

After breakfast, transfer by boat to Manado to board buses and commence a full-day scenic and historical tour of the Minahasa Highlands. Take in the beauty of the panoramic hills and mountainous areas of Minahasa, stop to photograph Mahawu and Lokon volcano, peruse the traditional food and flower market in Tomohon, and visit a traditional wooden house in Woloan village, before the last stop at the lake that changes colors - Lake Linaw. The Minahasan region is mountainous, with groups of fine volcanic peaks ranging between 6,000-7,000 feet high, forming grand and picturesque backgrounds to the landscape. The volcanic mountains, Lokon (5184 feet) and Mahawu (4301 feet), both have crater lakes of considerable beauty. Lokons steaming crater lies 1968 feet below the peak of the mountain and the lake is about 195 feet deep. The volcanic soil of the area provides the perfect nutrients for the lush vegetation which hosts a wide variety of unique and endemic flora and fauna. At the end of the day, arrive at the Lembeh Hills Resort. Take your time to freshen up for dinner and settle into your new home for a 3-night stay. Overnight at Lembeh Hills Resort. (B, L, D)

Days 6-7: Lembeh Strait

Two days of in-water activities offer a chance to plunge into the water on a hunt for the weird and wonderful critters that inhabit the Lembeh Strait. Alternatively, dry out and enjoy a guided nature walk, birding, village visit, or just take the time out to relax by the pool. Lembeh Strait offers a variety of diving and snorkeling, including some coral reefs and wrecks; however it is best known for the small and difficult to find creatures that inhabit the world of muck. The world-renowned Lembeh Strait lies off the northern tip of Sulawesi, 1.5 hours from the center of Manado city. The extremely diverse marine habitat in this stretch of water offers a plethora of macro species, many of which can be found nowhere else on the planet. The sites are either sandy areas or small reefs, with over 30 dive sites to choose from all within a short boat ride over calm waters from the resort. Meet with the group in the evenings for dinner and discussions about the bizarre and unique critters found that day. Overnight at Lembeh Hills Resort. (B, L, D)

Day 8: Tangkoko National Park

After an early morning breakfast and final dive/snorkel, prepare for departure to the Tangkoko National Park. You will be guided through the national park on an afternoon visit in the hope of seeing the prized sighting of the day, the Tarsier spectrum. Tarsiers are small animals with enormous eyes; each eyeball is as large as their entire brain. A nocturnal animal with a taste for insects, they spring from tree to tree to catch their prey. Tangkoko National Park is a flora and fauna conservation area on Mount Tangkoko, Bitung in the province of North Sulawesi. Habitat varies throughout the park from primary lowland rainforest to sub-mountain rainforest displaying physical changes in both structure and species composition. The national park is home to the Crested Black Macaques monkey (macaca nigra), small ancient primates Tarsier (Tarsiers spectrum), Hornbills, chicken-sized bird Maleo, and a large variety of spectacular flora and fauna. Arrive late into Manado to dine and overnight before flying onto the next part of the Indonesian adventure. Overnight at Manado Novotel Golf and Convention Resort. (B, L, D)

Day 9: Manado / Sorong / Raja Ampat

Depart Manado on a flight to Sorong in the early morning. You will be met at the Sorong airport by a representative from the Misool Eco Resort and escorted by boat (4-4 ½ hours) to your private island getaway to happily lap up the sunshine and serenity from over-water cottages for the next 6 nights. Misool Eco Resort is located in the southern part of Raja Ampat, Indonesia. The private island is nestled deep in a vast archipelago of uninhabited islands, in the heart of marine biodiversity. Your over-water cottage is raised on stilts over the placid North Lagoon. Each of these spacious cottages features a private veranda on which you'll enjoy gentle tropical breezes and glorious equatorial views. With steps leading down from your veranda, the house reef is just a few fin-kicks away. Come together and feast on a delicious meal before retiring for the evening. Overnight at Overnight at Misool Eco Resort. (B, L, D)

Days 10-15: Raja Ampat

Over the next 6 days, enjoy the chance to take part in any one or all of the scheduled boat dive and snorkel trips to the many surrounding sites, along with unlimited shore diving and snorkeling right from your over-water bungalow. Alternatively, take the time to explore the island and let time drift away as you relax on your verandah or in your hammock, or enjoy a drink in the beach-front restaurant overlooking the shallow turquoise lagoon. Raja Ampat is home to the world's richest reefs and dive sites. Located at the heart of the Coral Triangle, the region sprawls over 17,000 square miles and boasts the majority of the world's reef-building corals. In fact, in an area the size of two football fields, scientists discovered more than six times as many coral species than that which live in the entire Caribbean Sea. Raja Ampat has over 700 species of mollusks and 1,397 species of fish. Counted among those is the newly-discovered 'walking' epaulette shark, commonly seen on night dives. Expect a wide selection of coral covered walls, reef flats, caves and swim throughs, gentle sea mounts, placid lagoons, and current-raked pinnacles. There is nothing like a sunset cocktail while winding down from a day of in-water activities, as you watch sharks patrol the shallows in hunt of circling sardines. Overnight at Misool Eco Resort. (B, L, D)

Day 16: Sorong

Bid farewell to the island paradise this morning and depart by boat (4-4 ½ hours) for Sorong. Enjoy lunch at the Je Meridian before venturing out for a casual exploration of the wondrous sights and smells of the Sorong market or feel free to have the afternoon at leisure. Come together for dinner at the restaurant and rest up before your homeward journey tomorrow. Overnight at Je Meridian. (B, L, D)

Day 17: Return Home

Place your luggage out for collection and enjoy breakfast before departure for the airport. Continue homeward bound to respective cities. (B)

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