The focal point of the global spice trade in the 16th and 17th century, this region is endowed with well-preserved European relics alongside vibrant local traditions. Enriched by lava flows from the immense active volcano of Gunung Banda Api, nutrient-rich underwater gardens flourish in a kaleidoscope of colors. Watch for unique wildlife both on land and underwater, and experience the rich local culture. Explore the Spice Islands of Indonesia from the luxurious Aqua Blu.
Discover local pottery-making at Ouw village
Stroll through history at the Dutch Fort Belgica on Banda Neira
Explore the oldest nutmeg plantations in the world, found in Indonesa
Watch out for wildlife while cruising like, fish-hunting birds
Early morning, depart for the island outpost of Saparua, sailing along the scenic north coast of Ambon. Disembark en route at the coastal town of Hila to explore the old Dutch fortification, Fort Amsterdam. Continue onto Sarapua, where a host of water activities await. Discover local pottery-making at Ouw village, visit a local market, see European relics, explore bird habitats or go diving before departing Sarapua for an overnight crossing to Banda Islands.
Approach the Banda Islands as the sun rises, greeted by Kora-Kora war canoes as the boat enters the harbor. Stroll through history at the Dutch Fort Belgica on Banda Neira, once the most hotly contested island in the world in the 16th and 17th century, and learn about the colorful story of the Old World spice trade.
Spend the day exploring the oldest nutmeg plantations in the world, learning about the cultivation and history of the spice. Hike the active volcano of Gunung Banda Api. In this remote part of Indonesia, experience local life with traditions unchanged for decades before departing Banda Harbour at night.
Savor a sunrise breakfast on board against the backdrop of 300-meter tall cliffs of Pulau Manuk, a volcanic island rising 3 kilometers from the seabed. This is a haven for fish-hunting birds, as well as sea snakes and reef sharks flocking to enjoy the area’s underwater thermal springs. After sundown, cruise northwards to Pulau Run, a historic island traded by the British for Manhattan in 1667.
Arrive at Pulau Run, the westernmost of the Banda Islands, at sunrise. Swim, fish, snorkel, and dive in the crystal-clear waters, or go on village tours, trekking and birding. After finding the ruins of an old British fort, arrive at a pristine beach where a cocktail party awaits. Later, board the ship for an overnight crossing to Nusa Laut.
On the north side of Nusa Laut, bike through the scenic fishing villages of Ameth and Akon. This is also home of the dugong, the Southeast Asian cousin of the American manatee and a vulnerable species. Cruise to Molana Island, a small but heavily forested island with fantastic reefs.
Day 8: Ambon | Disembark
Awake to the bustle of Ambon and disembark after a sumptuous breakfast for your outbound flight.
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Category III Suite
Averaging 12-14 square meters. Located on the Main Deck and Lower Deck. Featuring twin beds, en-suite bathroom, and porthole windows.
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Category II Suite
Averaging 22-31 square meters. Located on the Bridge Deck, Main Deck and Forecastle Deck. Featuring a King bed or twin beds, oval or porthole windows, lounge area in selected suites, en-suite bathroom, and interior sofas.
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Category I Suite
Averaging 25-31 square meters. Located on the Bridge Deck, Forecastle Deck, Main Deck or Lower Deck. Featuring a King bed, large windows, en-suite bathroom, and interior sofas.
This was my first experience with Adventure Life - and I couldn't have been more pleased with the trip. The guides and local staff in both Buenos Aires and Uruguay were terrific - extremely helpful and accommodating. I really enjoyed meeting the friendly staff in Buenos Aires in person (I left my bags with them for the afternoon).