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Kraken Travel Sailing Holidays

Various dates available

Papua’s Whale Sharks And Birds Of Paradise (Kaimana-Sorong)

From £6130 per person

Deposit 25%. Balance due 12 weeks before departure
Sail from Kaimana to Sorong and discover Papua’s whale sharks and birds of paradise.
Clear
Pay a 25% deposit per item
Suited to
Families, Couples, Groups, Solo Travellers
Difficulty
Leisure cruise where you can relax and explore incredible nature and vibrant cultures
Nights onboard
9
Vessel type
Traditional wooden Indonesian pinisi boats built by the highly-skilled seafaring peoples of Sulawesi, using hand tools and traditional methods of construction
Vessel length
38 or 42 metres
Skipper
Yes
Berth Style
Combination of double cabins, triple cabins and twin-bunk cabins
Insurance Required
Yes

From $7,500 /£6,130 per person*

*Trips are priced in the operator's local currency. The amount you pay in sterling will change with currency fluctuations.

Papua’s Whale Sharks And Birds Of Paradise (Kaimana-Sorong)

Duration: 9 nights with various dates available

Sail from Kaimana to Sorong and discover Papua’s whale sharks and birds of paradise, immerse yourself in local traditions and culture, and navigate through awe-inspiring landscapes.

Encounter Birds of Paradise in the wild. These birds are extremely extroverted. They show off, dance and squawk their way around the trees trying to impress the females of the species – it is quite the show! However, that is not the only animal we will encounter. We will get a chance to swim with magnificent whale sharks in Triton Bay and cruise through serene coves and limestone landscapes nearby.

In southern Raja Ampat on the island of Misool, we will visit a picturesque archipelago of forest-covered limestone islets just teeming with coral reefs that have plenty of adventures to offer. Then we will journey to a small, secret lake inhabited by thousands of stingless jellyfish, where we will snorkel among them.

History is all around the area if you know where to look. We will visit local communities, hear from them and witness their traditional dances and way of life, as well as visit prehistoric cave paintings said to be between 3,000 and 5,000 years old. Every day is full of bucket list adventures, which will leave you with countless stories to tell.

Why You’ll Love This Trip

  • Explore the pristine coral reefs and vibrant marine life of Raja Ampat, a paradise for snorkelling!
  • Visit a local inhabited island, where the village kids will show us around their beautiful village and then perform some local folk dances for us.
  • Trek through lush jungles in search of waterfalls and rare bird species, including Wilson's Bird of Paradise and the Red Bird of Paradise which have charismatic displays.
  • Snorkel, swim, and kayak in crystal-clear waters, discovering hidden coves and secret beaches including a small, secret lake inhabited by thousands of stingless jellyfish, where you snorkel among them.
  • Encounter gentle whale sharks in Triton Bay, and learn about the local's fishing practises
  • Explore prehistoric cave paintings said to be between 3,000 and 5,000 years old

Who The Trip Is For

  • Adventure seekers who want to visit an area of the world which few people get to see. This remote area is perfect for travellers who have already checked off more mainstream bucket list items like an African safari and would like to experience something truly special.
  • Explorers who want to learn about the area, the wildlife and local traditions, while balancing planned activities with time for themselves and for relaxation.
  • Photographers and artists who want to capture breathtaking landscapes, vibrant wildlife, and rich cultural moments.
  • Cruisers who want to enjoy life on board a comfortable, retrofitted pinsi boat. Our boats are traditionally made by local builders, spacious and include many modern amenities. We will take care of sailing, preparation of food and guiding your activities.
  • Those who want to join a responsible travel initiative that promotes eco-friendly practices and supports local communities, contributing to the preservation of the environment and the well-being of the local people.

Itinerary: Papua’s Whale Sharks And Birds Of Paradise

Day 1

On the first day of your adventure, be met at the airport by your tour leader and taken directly to the boat, which will be at anchor in the bay.

After settling into your cabin, weigh anchor and eat lunch as you head off on our adventure in the direction of Triton Bay, stopping off for a refreshing swim and snorkel along the way on the first of many beautiful coral reefs you encounter during our cruise.

Day 2

Spend the morning cruising through the undisturbed coves, caves, and lagoons before heading north through the Namatote Passage, where there is an impressive collection of ancient cave paintings high up on the cliffs.

The afternoon will be filled with more snorkelling, swimming, kayaking and paddling as you relax amidst the beauty of the surrounding jungle-covered islands and cliffs

Day 3

Triton Bay is a place of unsurpassed natural splendour, 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 collect baitfish and keep them in nets attached to specially built platforms, also known as ‘bagans’. It is these and their fish that attract whale sharks.

Head out in the tenders to see if the sharks are around, and if you are lucky, spend a couple of hours in the water with these magnificent creatures.

After lunch, explore the bays and limestone outcrops by tender, kayak, and paddle board as well as swim and snorkel from the beautiful white-sand beaches, before heading west later in the day for an overnight crossing.

Day 4

Wake up off the coast of Papua to a most serene and primal scene of a jungle waterfall where a roaring river surrounded by virgin rainforest pours into the sea.

Swim and play in the waterfall and the sea as you take in this most tranquil tropical scenery. Take the chance to snorkel through the corals on a nearby reef.

Later in the day, continue our journey west, stopping off late afternoon for another swim and snorkel on the way.

Day 5

After breakfast you visit a local village and meet the residents, who will welcome us into their village, sharing with us their way of life which consists of fishing and growing nutmeg.

Late morning and through lunch, cruise to a small group of picture-perfect islands, spend the afternoon exploring the beaches and crystal-clear waters and then top it off with a long snorkel over the vibrant reefs.

Late afternoon you weigh anchor and head west for the Raja Ampat National Park.

Day 6

Today you wake up in southern Raja Ampat on the island of Misool, a picturesque archipelago of forest-covered limestone islets just teeming with coral reefs that have adventures aplenty on offer.

You swim through a massive and ancient sea cave, adorned with giant stalagmites and stalactites. you then journey to a small, secret lake inhabited by thousands of stingless jellyfish, where you snorkel among them.

After lunch, explore the area by ship’s tenders, going in and out of the many bays and inlets looking for birds, and also stopping to see some prehistoric cave paintings said to be between 3,000 and 5,000 years old.

Have a beach BBQ with the crew as you dance and sing your way through the night before spending a quiet night at anchor.

Day 7

Today, have a relaxing day of snorkelling on the reefs, exploring the inlets and local areas by paddle board and kayak, or swimming and sunbathing from the white sand beaches of this beautiful piece of paradise.

After a full day of fun and relaxation, head north for your overnight cruise to the island of Waigeo for the first of your bird-of-paradise encounters.

Day 8

Waking before dawn, be ferried to a local village, where local guides will take us on a trek through the jungle in the hope of finding the beautiful Wilson’s Bird of Paradise to perform its mating dance ritual upon the forest floor. On your way back to the boat, be accompanied by the sounds of the jungle coming to life and you will be sure to spot a number of bird species along the way.

After a well-earned late breakfast, spend the remainder of the day enjoying snorkelling, swimming and exploring the reefs and islands of the local area by kayak and paddle board.

Day 9

Today is your second and final early morning wake-up as you head off to see the Red Bird of Paradise, this time high in the canopy of the rainforest. Extremely extroverted show-offs, these birds dance and squawk their way around the trees trying to impress the female of the species, making for an incredible show.

After returning to the ship and breakfast it will be time for some snorkelling on some of Raja Ampat’s most spectacular reefs in the Dampier Strait. If the tides are in your favour you might get to see some of the area’s larger species of marine life, which are attracted by the currents in these nutrient-rich waters.

End the day at a local inhabited island, where the village kids will show us around their beautiful village and then perform some local folk dances for us.
This evening during the journey south, enjoy a final night celebration dinner and party with the crew.

Day 10

This morning you will be anchored off a white-sand beach on a small tropical island, where you can swim, paddleboard and kayak.

After lunch onboard, say farewell to the crew and tour leaders and head to the airport for your onward journeys.

  • Professional cruise directors
  • Outdoor sleeping facilities
  • Complimentary snorkelling equipment and two sea canoes (add SUP)
  • Free tea, soft drinks, juices, coffee and mineral water
  • Excellent food and snacks (vegetarian and special menus on request)
  • Dining in the spacious air-conditioned lounge
  • Teak wooden furniture in the lounge, cabins and on the deck
  • Spacious sun and semi-covered decks
  • Mooring fees
  • Fuel surcharge
  • Visits to restaurants, museums, galleries etc during the trip
  • A fine selection of wines, beer and spirits for sale
  • Travel to and from the vessel (including internal/domestic airfares)

What To Expect

While many of you are seasoned travellers, some of you may be unfamiliar with the ways and means of travelling in the remoter regions where we journey. Cruising in eastern Indonesia on a traditional wooden pinisi ship can be an exciting new world for some.

Each cruise is led by professional, multilingual tour leaders who will escort guests in all activities both on land and at sea, answer any questions, provide in-depth daily briefings, and ultimately ensure the smooth running of every aspect of the cruise.

Life On Board

Life on board our ships is one of pure enjoyment, with good food, top-class service and fine company mixed with just the right balance of exploration and relaxation. Whilst on board, guests are immersed in a world of barefoot fun and adventure, with air-conditioned private en-suite cabins, indoor and outdoor social hubs and dining areas, sun decks, a wide selection of Indonesian, Western and Asian cuisine, a full bar, and highly attentive service from our crew, whose smiles and friendly personalities offer an even greater insight into the Indonesian way of life.

Food

Our galleys are staffed with talented individuals who pride themselves on being able to conjure up all manner of dishes and delicacies from across the world, using only the best quality meat, seafood and fresh produce available – with the latter often sourced from local markets and the fishermen we meet along the way. Vegetarian dishes and most special dietary requirements can be accommodated with minimal fuss. Our stewards are on hand all day to serve meals and make sure you have all you need; from cold towels and fresh juices to a full plate of food and an iced drink whenever you need it.

While all non-alcoholic drinks are inclusive, each boat has a full cash bar stocked with local and imported wines, imported spirits and domestic beer, usually at local prices.

Accommodation

Our comfortable cabins are located below decks and offer all the necessary amenities, including double beds or twin bunks, private en-suite bathrooms, lots of natural light, individually controlled air-conditioning, ample storage space, and plenty of electrical and USB outlets.

Each boat also includes a salon, bar, sundeck and outdoor dining areas.

We Respect the Environment

We respect the environment in which we operate and are deeply committed to the integrity and preservation of the Indonesian Archipelago.

We show locals the value of protecting the species they have. For example, whale sharks are under constant threat due to the sky-high value of their fins, but thanks to our visits, local fishermen are paid a healthy fee for spotting the whale sharks and letting you in the water to be up close to them. As a result, the fishermen are very glad to protect these beautiful animals.

We also work with local NGOs on coral restoration projects in the area, and support centres like the Tasikoki Wildlife Rescue Centre which helps to rehabilitate animals back into the wild and put an end to animal trafficking.

We Support Local Communities

Our motto for these sailing adventures is “Seeing Indonesia through Indonesian eyes”. We hire locals and work with local communities to promote authentic cultural experiences and interactions between tourists and locals to foster mutual understanding and respect.

More than half of our tour guides are women. In Indonesia the workforce is extremely male-dominated, so this is a way for us to break down barriers and create a more inclusive workforce.

We partner with local NGOs working on community development projects. As well as make an effort to bring life-changing water filters, glasses, school books and LED lights to the remote villages we visit. We buy from local fishermen, and vendors and always pay the locals when they treat us to a cultural performance.

We have created a series of three books which are available for sale on our boats. The money from each book sold is entirely invested back in creating new books to distribute to communities we visit. These are just some of the ways we work to offer a responsible and equitable sailing experience.

Kaimana Airport

Domine Eduard Osok Airport Sorong (SOQ)

Itinerary: Papua’s Whale Sharks And Birds Of Paradise

Day 1

On the first day of your adventure, be met at the airport by your tour leader and taken directly to the boat, which will be at anchor in the bay.

After settling into your cabin, weigh anchor and eat lunch as you head off on our adventure in the direction of Triton Bay, stopping off for a refreshing swim and snorkel along the way on the first of many beautiful coral reefs you encounter during our cruise.

Day 2

Spend the morning cruising through the undisturbed coves, caves, and lagoons before heading north through the Namatote Passage, where there is an impressive collection of ancient cave paintings high up on the cliffs.

The afternoon will be filled with more snorkelling, swimming, kayaking and paddling as you relax amidst the beauty of the surrounding jungle-covered islands and cliffs

Day 3

Triton Bay is a place of unsurpassed natural splendour, 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 collect baitfish and keep them in nets attached to specially built platforms, also known as ‘bagans’. It is these and their fish that attract whale sharks.

Head out in the tenders to see if the sharks are around, and if you are lucky, spend a couple of hours in the water with these magnificent creatures.

After lunch, explore the bays and limestone outcrops by tender, kayak, and paddle board as well as swim and snorkel from the beautiful white-sand beaches, before heading west later in the day for an overnight crossing.

Day 4

Wake up off the coast of Papua to a most serene and primal scene of a jungle waterfall where a roaring river surrounded by virgin rainforest pours into the sea.

Swim and play in the waterfall and the sea as you take in this most tranquil tropical scenery. Take the chance to snorkel through the corals on a nearby reef.

Later in the day, continue our journey west, stopping off late afternoon for another swim and snorkel on the way.

Day 5

After breakfast you visit a local village and meet the residents, who will welcome us into their village, sharing with us their way of life which consists of fishing and growing nutmeg.

Late morning and through lunch, cruise to a small group of picture-perfect islands, spend the afternoon exploring the beaches and crystal-clear waters and then top it off with a long snorkel over the vibrant reefs.

Late afternoon you weigh anchor and head west for the Raja Ampat National Park.

Day 6

Today you wake up in southern Raja Ampat on the island of Misool, a picturesque archipelago of forest-covered limestone islets just teeming with coral reefs that have adventures aplenty on offer.

You swim through a massive and ancient sea cave, adorned with giant stalagmites and stalactites. you then journey to a small, secret lake inhabited by thousands of stingless jellyfish, where you snorkel among them.

After lunch, explore the area by ship’s tenders, going in and out of the many bays and inlets looking for birds, and also stopping to see some prehistoric cave paintings said to be between 3,000 and 5,000 years old.

Have a beach BBQ with the crew as you dance and sing your way through the night before spending a quiet night at anchor.

Day 7

Today, have a relaxing day of snorkelling on the reefs, exploring the inlets and local areas by paddle board and kayak, or swimming and sunbathing from the white sand beaches of this beautiful piece of paradise.

After a full day of fun and relaxation, head north for your overnight cruise to the island of Waigeo for the first of your bird-of-paradise encounters.

Day 8

Waking before dawn, be ferried to a local village, where local guides will take us on a trek through the jungle in the hope of finding the beautiful Wilson’s Bird of Paradise to perform its mating dance ritual upon the forest floor. On your way back to the boat, be accompanied by the sounds of the jungle coming to life and you will be sure to spot a number of bird species along the way.

After a well-earned late breakfast, spend the remainder of the day enjoying snorkelling, swimming and exploring the reefs and islands of the local area by kayak and paddle board.

Day 9

Today is your second and final early morning wake-up as you head off to see the Red Bird of Paradise, this time high in the canopy of the rainforest. Extremely extroverted show-offs, these birds dance and squawk their way around the trees trying to impress the female of the species, making for an incredible show.

After returning to the ship and breakfast it will be time for some snorkelling on some of Raja Ampat’s most spectacular reefs in the Dampier Strait. If the tides are in your favour you might get to see some of the area’s larger species of marine life, which are attracted by the currents in these nutrient-rich waters.

End the day at a local inhabited island, where the village kids will show us around their beautiful village and then perform some local folk dances for us.
This evening during the journey south, enjoy a final night celebration dinner and party with the crew.

Day 10

This morning you will be anchored off a white-sand beach on a small tropical island, where you can swim, paddleboard and kayak.

After lunch onboard, say farewell to the crew and tour leaders and head to the airport for your onward journeys.

Everyone tends to dress very casually, so choose clothes that are comfortable for walking/trekking and suitable for wearing on the boat.

Clothing

The tropical climate means you can safely leave all of your warm weather gear at home. Bring cool cotton t-shirts and shorts. We cruise during the dry season in each of the regions that we visit but rain is always a possibility so bring a lightweight waterproof jacket. It can sometimes be a bit windy on the boat and this will also help keep you warm. Likewise, a lightweight fleece could be useful for pre-dawn trekking or if there is a cool wind on the boat – even if you don’t need it onboard, it will be useful for the plane.

We are respectful of the local cultures and customs – bring clothes that cover your shoulders and knees for village visits. Finally, you might want to bring at least one smart-casual outfit for sunset cocktails and evening meals on the boat.

Ladies: beach throw-overs, kaftans and sarongs are always useful; choose fabrics that dry easily. Also, bring a lightweight sundress or two – the boat offers a great setting for a photo shoot, live it up!

Sun Protection

You’ll be spending plenty of time out in the scorching tropical sun, so be sure to pack sunscreen with a high enough SPF to protect your skin from the sun’s damaging rays, which are stronger in the water, and some sun-protective clothing as well.

Cover-ups, sarongs, sun shirts, and other such clothing will ensure that you come back from your trip with just happy memories and photographs – and not sunburn. A good hat is essential; a wide-brimmed hat or cap will keep the strong equatorial sun off your face and neck. Sunglasses keep your eyes protected. A strap to hold your glasses can be a good idea for more active adventures. Just in case you fail to avoid getting sunburnt, bring an aloe-based lotion to soothe burned skin.

Footwear

Pack comfortable trainers, trekking sandals, sturdy walking shoes or hiking boots for hikes and walks. Bring socks to wear inside your walking shoes to avoid getting blisters. Many travellers appreciate the added stability of a walking stick or hiking pole; lightweight telescopic poles are easy to pack. You might also want waterproof sandals or reef shoes for wet landings and water activities. Flip-flops are great for the beach but it is standard practice to go barefoot on the boat.

Bags

A day backpack is essential on day hikes to carry things such as your water bottle, camera, binoculars, and rain jacket. We will provide you with a metal water bottle, which can be refilled as often as required. A waterproof wet/dry bag is a good idea for gadgets like your phone or camera.

Swimwear

Don’t forget your swimsuit/bikini/shorts/trunks/Speedos —and preferably more than just one swimsuit, so that one or two can be drying while you are wearing another. Luckily, swimsuits and/or swim trunks don’t take up too much space in your luggage. The water is warm but a rash guard (or a wetsuit) will protect you from the sun, abrasions and stings.

Skin and Hair Protection

Ladies, it’s important that you take good care of your skin and hair. The sun, seawater and salty air may be beautiful to experience but it can be tough on your body and will wreak havoc on your locks. Bring moisturising lotion to soothe skin parched by the sun and the saltwater; bring a leave-in conditioner to detangle your hair with ease because the water, mask, and hair ties will leave it in knots. Also consider bringing a scarf or headband to hold back unruly hair, or hair ties/pins to keep your hair off your face and therefore prevent water seeping into your mask.

Note: Your cabin is outfitted with towels, shampoo, conditioner and body wash.

Camera Equipment

If you are a photo enthusiast bring all of the camera and video equipment that you will use as you can expect exceptional opportunities for photography. If you prefer the ease of a point & shoot, bring that. If you want to take underwater photos you might want to invest in a waterproof camera or waterproof housing to capture photos of the incredible marine life.

It’s a good idea to bring a spare memory card; our cruises explore remote regions where memory cards cannot be purchased.

Electronics

The voltage on board is 220 volts. There are several electric sockets and USB charging ports in each cabin suitable for European-type plugs, but we do have a selection of adaptors for non-European-type plugs. Additional sockets are located in the saloon, where we have a dedicated area for the charging of electronic devices and cameras.

Miscellaneous Items

Snorkels, masks & fins in all sizes are provided onboard. If you are an avid snorkeller, you may prefer to bring your own mask & snorkel. If you’re new to snorkelling, you might want to consider purchasing a full-face snorkel mask to bring with you, it’s an easier option for beginners.

Even if you think that your stomach is rock-solid, a squall could turn up and make you feel sick. Sea-sickness tablets are provided on board but you may have a preferred brand, in which case bring your own.

You’ll find reference books and paperback novels on board. However, books of your choice or an e-reader will come in handy for down hours.

There is a comprehensive wilderness first aid kit on board but remember to bring any personal medications.

Essential items should be packed in your carry-on luggage. Medications, corrective lenses, spare underwear, cameras and documents should not be checked in case your bag does not arrive with you.