When was the last time you went on vacation to somewhere truly magical? Someplace almost forgotten by time, and untouched by the Western world? When you discover Indonesia, you can do just that.
Escape the tourist laden areas of the Caribbean or Mediterranean, and take a turn off the beaten track in the Coral Triangle. Spanning 6 million square kilometres (2.3 million square miles), The Coral Triangle expands across six countries from the Philippines to Timor-Leste. Within its heart you will find many of the 18,000 islands that make up Indonesia.
The Coral Triangle is named for the staggering number of corals here. It contains over 76% of all known coral species in the world. More than 3,000 species of fish, including the largest – the whale shark and coelacanth, and 6 of the world’s 7 species of marine turtles, all inhabit the Coral Triangle. It is truly underwater wonderland.
Here are some highlights that you just can’t miss.
In the West Papua region
Within the West Papua region, you’ll find Raja Ampat, truly a diver’s paradise, and something you simply must do. Of course, the clear blue seas are perfect grounds for snorkeling, too. Slap on a mask, grab some fins and surf along the surface spying colourful fish, reef sharks (don’t worry they won’t bother you!), sea turtles and so much more. Recently ranked number one snorkeling destination by CNN Travel, come and see what all the fuss is about.
A truly unforgettable water life experience awaits you in Triton Bay. Famously touted as the “last best place untouched by time.” The marine life is exquisite here, as is the local culture which features many indigenous people.
The 1500 islands that surround the main islands of Waigeo, Salawati, Batanta and Misool offer plenty of quiet bays, rugged terrain and white sand beaches to escape to. Grab a cold cocktail after another *hard* day of exploration and relax watching the deep sunset with nothing but gentle waves to be heard.
In the Lesser Sunda Islands
Ancient worlds are begging you to explore them. Head over to the Lesser Sunda Islands and get up close and personal with the famed Komodo dragon that lives here. Recently branded one of UNESCO’s seven new world wonders, you’ll want to visit before everyone else gets the same idea!
Other unmissable sights include the exotic island of Sumba and the mystical island of Alor. And there is plenty of diving to be had here! Colourful reefs, untouched beaches and exotic wilderness awaits.
In The Moluccas
Situated at the intersection of the Indian and Pacific Oceans, the Moluccas is yet another veritable hotbed for snorkeling and scuba diving. Here you’ll find large pelagic schooling species, such as the barracuda and hammer head shark. These Spice Islands were originally discovered by European traders, with ample opportunities to explore the 150 active volcanoes that still inhabit the area.
Regardless of where you decide to go during your time in the Coral Triangle, may we also suggest extending your stay to enjoy time on the romantic island of Bali. Perhaps one of the more well known of the Indonesian islands, this is the perfect stepping off (or finishing) point for wherever your adventures in Indonesia take you.
With so much to see and so many islands to visit the best way to experience the wildlife, crystal clear bays and rich cultural history of this region is sailing aboard your own private yacht.
OceanScape Yachts has put together a free digital guide to luxury yachting in Indonesia. Come, discover a whole new way to “sea” the world.