Green sea turtle rising for a breath in Raja Ampat

 

Raja Ampat has magnificent reefs that grow right up to the limestone islands

Calm, clear water of Raja Ampat

Beginning in Misool and ending in the Dampier Strait, our latest Coral Triangle Adventures Raja Ampat snorkeling exploration went incredibly well. Excellent weather made the overnight crossing from Sorong to Misool as easy as if we were moored in a lake. In general, we enjoyed weather that was virtually perfect for snorkeling throughout the trip. Misool is always a great place to begin and offers an unlimited number of snorkel site choices, from calm, protected bays to narrow, current-swept channels full of soft corals and gorgonians. Plus, the topside scenery is about as exotic as it gets with hundreds of bizarrely-shaped limestone islands rising from the seas.

feather stars come in a variety of colors in Raja Ampat

A bouquet of feather stars

After several days of snorkeling different island groups near Misool we headed north towards the islands of Batanta and Waigeo. Gentle currents around the entire area made our snorkels easy to navigate while still providing just enough flow for the innumerable planktivorous fishes and filter-feeding organisms plenty of food. Among the daily vibrant menagerie of marine fauna, we were able to enjoy close encounters with tasseled wobbegong, seahorses, a multitude of nudibranchs, turtles, schools of blackfin barracuda, and even a well-camouflaged sargassumfish.

 

Peacock mantis shrimp are colorful inhabitants of coral reefs

Peacock mantis shrimp

Hypselodoris bullockii, photographed in Raja Ampat, Indonesia

Bullock’s nudibranch

All in all, this was a truly spectacular adventure made even better by the fantastic and inquisitive group of snorkelers who joined Coral Triangle Adventures. The only thing difficult about this Raja Ampat trip was trying, periodically, to get people out of the water! We can’t wait to get back to this amazing area again!

One Comment

  • John F says:

    What a great trip. And the comment “The only thing difficult about this Raja Ampat trip was trying, periodically, to get people out of the water!” was really true. We did not want to get out of the water. Ethan and Dave were just awesome in leading the trip.

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