Underwater Tourism in the waters of Raja Ampat

Underwater Tourism in the waters of Raja Ampat
A. Overview

For most people, Papua is more widely known by its culture is still very simple, unique clothes (koteka for example), as well as abundant natural resources. But for divers and lovers of the underwater world, Papua is a diving paradise which presents an amazing wealth of marine life. One is the famous waters of Raja Ampat. This region is dubbed as the Coral Reef Paradise (paradise of coral reefs) by divers of the world. Its location is above the "head bird" Guinea, precisely in the province of West Papua.

Underwater Tourism in the waters of Raja Ampat

Raja Ampat is the result of expansion of new districts with an area of ​​Sorong regency + 4.6 million hectares. About 85% of the area is an ocean, while the rest are group of islands and coral atolls number + 610 islands. Of the hundreds of islands, only 35 islands are inhabited by indigenous people. Raja Ampat name itself comes from the local folklore about the origins of the ruler in the four largest islands in the region, namely Misool Island, Salawati, Batanta, and Waigeo. In the story there is a woman who found the 7 pieces of egg, in which four of them hatch and turn into princes. The prince was then split up and became king on the four islands, so that later this region was nicknamed Raja Ampat.
Raja Ampat Islands are not only considered as the largest marine park in Indonesia, but also believed to have a wealth of marine life in the world. Reveal the underwater panorama Raja Ampat began when a Dutch berkebangsan accomplished diver named Max Ammer visit this region. Max Ammer's first visit in 1990 to Raja Ampat stems from his desire to explore sunken ships and aircraft during World War II. Penelusurannya is very impressive, so in 1998 he invited Gerry Allen, a fisheries expert (Ichthyologist) from Australia, to conduct surveys in this place. Gerry Allen saw how shocked the underwater resources that are so diverse in very large quantities.

Gerry Allen then contacted the Conservation International (CI) to conduct underwater survey of the wealth in the waters of Raja Ampat in 2001 and 2002. The survey results prove that the waters of Raja Ampat is a region with a wealth of coral reefs of the world's largest marine life. The area has at least 1300 species of fish, 600 species of coral reefs, as well as 700 types of shells, not to mention the various types of turtles, algae, and jellyfish.
B. Feature

In underwater photography records in the area of ​​Raja Ampat, Imam Brotoseno mentions that the content richness of marine life of Raja Ampat greatest in all areas of the world's coral triangle, namely the Philippine-Indonesia-Papua New Guinea. Coral Triangle is the heart of wealth the world's reefs are protected and defined by the international conservation of nature protection. Of the approximately 600 types of coral reefs in the world, 75% of them are located in the waters of Raja Ampat.

With the breadth of the waters of Raja Ampat and the wealth of marine life is diverse, then the tourists who want to enjoy the underwater panorama can choose some point dive. In the vicinity of the island of Kri, for example, tourists can see the beauty of coral reefs and various kinds of fish that is so amazing, including the type of fish the famous Queensland grouper, pompano, snapper, grouper, reef sharks, tuna, napoeleon wrasse, barracuda and giant trevally. Wealth of various fish species in the area of ​​the island of Kri was never proved by Gerry Allen, where in one dive he notes there are at least 283 species of fish. The amounts are staggering for a single dive.

Underwater Tourism in the waters of Raja Ampat

Underwater scenery in Raja Ampat

Another point dive in the Reef sardines with a depth of about 10 meters. This place serves a variety of fish, including parrotfish species of fish that have brilliant color. If you want to try the sensation of being in a rock tunnel, tourists can dive around the Bay Islands Kaboei Rock. In these islands there is a bay which is a tunnel underneath a rock. In Kaboei Bay Rock also have coral caves inhabited by bats, and in some places are found the remains of human bones.

There are many other dive spots that can be searched by divers, such as in The Passage, Island Fam, and Misool Island. In addition to enjoying the wealth of marine life, tourists can also enjoy the historical sites under the sea, including warships and combat aircraft which sank in the waters of Raja Ampat. Not only that, tourists can also enjoy the beauty of the islands in the area of ​​Raja Ampat. Mainland islands in this region is still relatively virgin, lagoon and the bay is adequately protected, has a stretch of stunning beaches and crystal clear sea.

Underwater Tourism in the waters of Raja Ampat Former fighters who drowned in the waters of Raja Ampat

C. Location

Raja Ampat Marine tourism is located in Raja Ampat, West Papua province, Indonesia.
D. Access

Tourists interested in visiting the Raja Ampat to depart from Jakarta or other big cities Domine Eduard Osok Airport, Sorong, West Papua. Flights from Jakarta to Sorong usually transit or in advance at Makassar Manado. From Airport Eduard Osok Domine, tourists can immediately went to Raja Ampat using fast ships with a capacity of 10 people at a cost of approximately 3.2 million dollars each way. The trip by speed boat takes about 3-4 hours.
E. Ticket Prices

No special tickets to enter the waters of Raja Ampat. However, the cost to rent motor boats, diving equipment, and instructors ranged from hundreds of thousands of dollars to millions of dollars in a single dive. The process of diving is usually done many times to enjoy the diving spots are different. Therefore, divers are advised to reduce total expenditure groups are relatively expensive.
F. Accommodation and Other Facilities

In the tourist area of ​​Raja Ampat undersea tourists can obtain adequate facilities at several existing resorts, such as on the island of Kri, Waigeo, Mansuar, and Misool. Some resorts set a price that is relatively expensive because the present facilities. But the tourists with a lower budget can take advantage of government-owned resorts are much cheaper.

Underwater Tourism in the waters of Raja Ampat
Pinisi ship that has been modified to dive for days

Another alternative is to choose to stay for days on the ship (Liveaboard) by renting a boat pinisi which has been modified specifically for diving activities a few days. This ship has a maximum capacity of 14 people, at a cost of around Rp 90 million to USD 110 million to cruise for a wee