Located off the northwestern tip of West Papua, Raja Ampat is in the heart of the Coral Triangle. It is an archipelago of over 1500 small islands and reefs surrounding the four main islands of Waigeo, Batanta, Salawati in the north and Misool in the south. The marine diversity in this archipelago is staggering and - quite literally – like nowhere else on earth. Raja Ampat is reef diving perfection – one with a promise of exploration and discovery.
The diving in Raja Ampat can be broadly divided into two main areas. The north with its nutrient-rich currents, denser fish life and better hard corals. While Misool Island in the south offers divers better visibility and more plentiful soft corals.
The easiest way to get to Raja Ampat is to fly directly to Sorong either from Jakarta, Makassar or Manado. There is no direct flight from Bali to Sorong. Should you fly from Bali, an overnight transit in Makassar will be needed before flying the next early morning to Sorong. However to fly back from Sorong to Bali, it is only a day transit without overnight. For most of these connections, you can fly with Garuda, Batik/Lion Air or Sriwijaya.
October to April is considered as best season to dive Raja Ampat. June to September is the rainy season. However as Raja Ampat is close to the equator and rainy season is normally not heavily wet like other regions in Indonesia, it is still diveable especially the north. Whilst Misool in the south is closed as weather is normally extreme during the rainy season.