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Snorkel with sea turtles as you cruise along Indonesia

Papua's Whale Sharks & Birds of Paradise I

Example 10 Day Cruise aboard Katharina
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In 1858, Wallace conceived the theory of natural selection independently of Charles Darwin. It was published, along with a description of Darwin’s own theory, in the same year. Explore some of the areas that Wallace found so fascinating: remote mountainous islands with forested coastlines, idyllic white sand beaches, and jungle waterfalls. Go bird watching, snorkel through Raja Ampat’s marine wonderland, swim through a mysterious cave, and cruise through a maze of karst islets. Experience the magic of seeing the birds of paradise performing their extraordinary courtship dances within their natural habitat. You may even have the opportunity to snorkel with whale sharks in Triton Bay. 

Day-by-Day Summary

Day 1 : Sorong | Embark
Day 2 : Sapokren
Day 3 : Dampier Strait
Day 4 : Misool Archipelago
Day 5 : Misool
Day 6 : Pisang Islands
Day 7 : Cape Papisol
Day 8 : Triton Bay
Day 9 : Triton Bay
Day 10 : Kaimana | Disembark


  • Enjoy unique birdlife and the most biodiverse coral reefs in the world
  • Trek into the forest in the hope of seeing the Wilson’s bird of paradise
  • Test out your paddling skills in the sea kayaks or watch for birds perched on the rocks
  • Swim under the Kitikiti waterfall and explore the extraordinary reefs



Places Visited


Trip Type

  • Small Ship

Activity Level


Trip Snapshots

Snorkel with sea turtles as you cruise along Indonesia Sorong, Indonesia Sunset at an ocean resort in Raja Ampat, West Papua, Indonesia Sealife at Manuar Island, Raja Ampat, Indonesia Cruising Adventures! Raja Ampat SUP Snorkle the reefs of Indonesia

Day 1 Sorong | Embark

Your flight will arrive in the West Papuan port town of Sorong, the gateway to Raja Ampat. From the airport, you will be transferred to the harbor where the Katharina will be waiting at anchor. Once settled into your cabin, your cruise director will familiarize you with the vessel’s facilities and safety procedures. Ready to start your adventure, you will weigh anchor, leave the harbor behind, and enter the marine protected area of Raja Ampat, home to unique birdlife and the most biodiverse coral reefs in the world. Cruise towards the island of Waigeo, stopping for a refreshing swim along the way before watching the sunset on your first day at sea.

Day 2 Sapokren

  • Ship
  • 1 Breakfast, 1 Lunch, 1 Dinner
While it is still dark, your tenders will ferry those who are feeling fit and adventurous to the village of Sapokren, where a local guide will take you on a challenging trek into the forest in the hope of seeing Wilson’s bird of paradise. The male is red and black with a yellow mantle on his neck, light green mouth, rich blue feet and two violet tail feathers. The featherless crown is turquoise, ornamented with double black crosses. If you are lucky, you may be able to observe the male dancing from a distance of just five meters. Before the dance, he will clear the ground from any leaves or other obstacles that may disrupt his performance. On your way back to the boat, accompanied by the sounds of the jungle coming to life, you will be sure to spot a number of bird species along the way. You will spend the remainder of the day resting from the morning’s activities and enjoying the waters and reefs of Raja Ampat.

Day 3 Dampier Strait

  • Ship
  • 1 Breakfast, 1 Lunch, 1 Dinner
Today will present another opportunity for keen birdwatchers, as you rise early and walk into the forest on a pre-dawn quest to spot the remarkable red bird of paradise, one of the species that Wallace was most anxious to collect. With a little luck and the help of your knowledgeable guides, you might catch sight of this rare bird’s elaborate courtship display as dawn breaks over the forest canopy. After returning to the ship, you will turn your attention from the sky to the sea as the Katharina makes her way through the Dampier strait, home of some of Raja Ampat’s premier reefs. If the currents are in your favor, you might see some of the area’s larger specimens of marine life, which are attracted to the strait’s nutrient-rich waters. You will end the day by mooring off Pulau Arborek in front of Arborek Village. Here, you can easily circumnavigate the tiny island by foot and gain a sense of the Asai culture, which is still kept alive by the villagers living in this isolated place.

Day 4 Misool Archipelago

  • Ship
  • 1 Breakfast, 1 Lunch, 1 Dinner
This morning you will wake to see the sun rise over the picturesque chain of islands that makes up the Misool archipelago. The topography is typical of ‘karst dissolution,’ featuring a great number of tiny islets whose bases have been eroded over time by the relentless motion of the tides. A swim through Tomolol’s mysterious dome-topped cave is undoubtedly one of Raja Ampat’s most memorable activities. After an early breakfast, your tenders will take us into the heart of the bay to see this partially submerged cave where it is possible to swim, snorkel or simply float while gazing up at the cavernous grotto adorned with astonishing stalactites. The more adventurous can swim or paddle through the dark waters to the other mouth of the cave. After returning to the ship, you will use your tenders to explore more of this impressive maze of karst islands, both above and below the surface, complete with mysterious skull cairns in sea-cave cemeteries, and prehistoric ‘petroglyph’ cave paintings, estimated to be anything from 3,000 to 5,000 years old and depicting various human figures and huge human palms, fish, flowers and plants, tools and vessels. You will then spend a quiet night at anchor.

Day 5 Misool

  • Ship
  • 1 Breakfast, 1 Lunch, 1 Dinner
Today you will have a relaxing day in Misool. You will spend the day maximizing everything that this fascinating area has to offer by marveling at both the marine wonderland under the water and the magnificent landscape above the surface. You can test out your paddling skills in the sea kayaks, watch for birds perched on the rocks, or just sit back and take in the glorious scenery. After a full day of island hopping, the Katharina will begin her overnight journey.

Day 6 Pisang Islands

  • Ship
  • 1 Breakfast, 1 Lunch, 1 Dinner
This morning you will explore the Pisang Islands. These tiny gems isolated in the vast waters of the Ceram Sea offer you a chance to relax and enjoy the sparkling white-sand beaches, clear waters, and vibrant reefs before making your way to the shores of West Papua. Here you will follow the shoreline until you reach the village of Sipitnanam. After visiting the village and meeting the residents, who spend their days fishing the nearby waters and tending their nutmeg plantations, you will continue south along the coastline through the night.

Day 7 Cape Papisol

  • Ship
  • 1 Breakfast, 1 Lunch, 1 Dinner
Today you will wake up to the beautiful sight of Kitikiti waterfall. Here, in the wilderness, a roaring river cascades down the jungle-clad mountains and crashes into the sea below. You can swim under the waterfall and explore the extraordinary reefs nearby before rounding Cape Papisol to the Karawawi region, where you will stop to refresh yourselves before journeying on to Triton Bay.

Day 8 Triton Bay

  • Ship
  • 1 Breakfast, 1 Lunch, 1 Dinner
Triton Bay is a place of unsurpassed natural splendor, where time and tides have sliced the limestone landscape into tall cliffs and numerous islands separated by lagoons and narrow channels. It is also home to fishermen who keep masses of baitfish in nets that attract a migratory group of whale sharks, which you may have the chance to swim and snorkel with. You will also spend our time swimming from secluded beaches, snorkeling the vibrant turquoise waters and kayaking amongst the rocky outcrops. You can also enjoy watching the birdlife from the comfort of your tenders as you explore this extraordinary maze of karst islands, before visiting the village of Lobo, which is a friendly place at the foot of a 1000-meter-high cliff.

Day 9 Triton Bay

  • Ship
  • 1 Breakfast, 1 Lunch, 1 Dinner
You will make the most of your last morning in Triton Bay by cruising through the undisturbed coves, caves, and lagoons before heading north through the Namatote Passage. Namatote’s cliffs are also well known as a gallery of prehistoric art, boasting an impressive collection of cave paintings, glyphs and pictorial signs left by ancient nomads high upon the rock walls. You will spend your final evening on the ship resting at anchor and enjoying a farewell dinner with your captain and crew.

Day 10 Kaimana | Disembark

  • 1 Breakfast
In the morning, you will find yourselves at anchor in the harbor of Kaimana. After a final, hearty breakfast, you will say goodbye to the Katharina and her crew. Your tenders will take you ashore for your transfer to the airport for your onward travel.


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Cabin Deck
Cabin Deck. Spacious, air-conditioned twin-share cabins with twin bunks or double beds. Private bathroom with toilet, washbasin, and hot shower.


- All rates are quoted in USD and represent cost per person, based on double occupancy.
- Cabins are available for single occupancy at 1.75 times the published rate.

Rates Include:
  • Accommodation in air-conditioned cabins with private shower and toilet
  • Full board, tea and coffee, soft drinks, mineral water
  • Excursions
  • Use of towels
  • Use of snorkeling gear
  • Experienced tour leader
  • Transfer to and from the ship in all harbors with the exception of Serangan Harbor, Bali
Rates Exclude:
  • Domestic and international Airfares
  • Personal insurance
  • Social alcoholic beverages
  • Crew gratuities
Payment & Cancellation Policies
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Our guide and driver were very good with their knowledge and were very helpful with our questions. It was a very pleasant visit that would have been impossible to do on our own. Hotels and restaurants were fantastic. The special places we got to go to, like the kitchens, were great. Enjoyed the entire trip!
Meyer Smolen

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