- Raja Ampat
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Mermaid 1 is the pride of the Mermaid fleet offering 5 star liveaboard diving all year around. From November to April Mermaid 1 runs Raja Ampat safaris in the birds head pennisula of the Papua province in north east Indonesia and from May to October you will find Mermaid1 running safaris from the beautiful island of Bali to Komodo island offering you the chance to walk with the legendary Komodo dragons.
Mermaid1 is a 28 metre, double engine steel motor yacht that, in the past years, has been modified and improved to comply with their guest's wishes and suggestions to provide arguably one of the finest liveaboard cruising experiences in the area.
Mermaid I holds 15 guests in 1 Master State Room (king bed), 1 Single and 4 Deluxe Cabins (double or twin beds) and 2 Budget Cabins (double/twin beds) below deck. The master, single and deluxe cabins have ensuite bathrooms, refrigerators and panoramic windows offering great sea views during your Komodo liveaboard.
The budget cabins are below decks with ensuite bathroom and refrigerator. All cabins have TVs for reviewing your pictures or watching a dvd, bathrobes , toiletries and loads of fluffy towels. There is a wide stern dive platform with two exit ladders and fresh water showers. 4 camera rinse tanks, a large camera table and our resident on-board video and photo professional will help keep all the photographers happy and help with your all important lens decisions.
EANX NITROX is available on every cruise.
Prices are per person and in Euros based on 2 persons sharing a cabin.
Exact pricing is available on the schedule here as prices vary dependant on the time year, destination and the length of the trip and sometimes special offers are available.
Marine park fees of E150 for Komodo and E200 for Raja Ampat are payable on board and not included in the above prices - these are subject to change if the fees from the marine park go up.
Single occupancy suppliment is 90% of the second place to have your own cabin (apart from in the single cabin)
Transfer to and from the vessel anywhere in southern Bali on the day of departure and dis-embarkation for Komodo trips and transfer to and from Sorong airport to the boat and back on the Raja trips . All meals & snacks, fruits, coffee, tea, hot chocolate, soft drinks and drinking water All dives Tanks Weights and weight belts Diving with experienced Divemasters / Instructors.
30% of booking is required within 7 days of booking - non refundable
70 % is due to 90 days prior to departure - non refundable.
Balance due 90 days before your trip departure date - non-refundable.
Individual booking made less than 90 days before the departured ate are payable in full at the time of booking.
Cancellation at any stage involves forfeit of monies already payed.
10% - within 7 days of booking - non-refundable
20% 180 days prior to departure - non-refundable
90 days before departure - non-refundable
Diving child 10 years or older - pays full diver price. Non diving child 12 years or older - pays full non diver rate. Child 12 years or under - non diving - pays 50% of diver rate if shares with 2 parents/guardians Child 12 years and under - non diving - pays full non diver rate if sharing with only 1 parent/guardian. Parents/guardians have to be with the child at all times. If both parents want to dive and the child remains on board, we will hire an additional dive crew - at euros 30 per day x total number of cruise diving days - at the parent’s cost to supervise the child’s activities only while the parents/guardians are in the water. We require a minimum of 4 weeks notice to arrange this service.
|Transfers from/to airport and all points in the south - Airport, Nusa Dua, Jimbaran, Kuta Beach, Seminyak, Benoa, Sanur Beach||FOC|
|Transfers from central and northern Bali are payable on board only :-|
|Price/person each way: Ubud, Padangbai, Candi Desa, Amed, Tulamben||€ 20|
|Price per person each way: Lovina Beach, Permuteran and northern points||€ 40|
|On Board Courses:||Price|
|Nitrox||incl materials||€ 185|
|Advanced Open Water||incl materials||€ 220|
|Digital Underwater Photographer||incl materials / excl.camera||€ 150|
|Discover Scuba Diving- per dive||1st dive / repeat dives||€ 125 / € 75|
|Deep Diver, Drift Diver, Multilevel/Computer Diver, Night Diver, Underwater Naturalist, Underwater Photographer (does not include camera rental)||€ 175|
|Peak Performance Buoyancy|
|Rental Equipment||Per item/set||Price Per Day|
|Important: Prebook all rental equipment - please give sizes when booking.|
|We strongly recommend all divers use a dive computer.|
|Full Set - items marked *||full set*||€ 18|
|Regulator/gauges/octopus*||item/reg set||€ 6|
|Wetsuit - shorty*||item||€ 6|
|Wetsuit - long*||item||€ 6|
|Full foot Fins*||Set||€ 6|
|Open heel Fins plus boots||Set||€ 8|
|Dive Computer||item||€ 5|
|Dive Torch||item||No charge|
|Weights/weight belt||item||No charge|
|Surface Marker Buoy||item||No charge|
|Nitrox||fill||€ 6 per fill (-20% for all trip)|
|Digital Camera Rental without external strobe||day||€ 40|
|DVD Burn||DVD||€ 10|
|Red and White Wine||bottle||€ as per wine list|
|Note Port and Park Fees are subject to change depending on government regulation|
|Note : Port and National Park Fees are subject to change dependingon government regulation. Mermaid Cruise Ltd reserves the right to alter prices without prior notice.|
|Nitrox & Equipment Rental Price|
|Nitrox - 32% Per fill €6|
|Mermaid I - Komodo Package €130|
|Mermaid I - Raja Ampat 10D/9N Package €130|
|Mermaid I - Raja Ampat 11D/0N Package €140|
|Mermaid I - Raja Ampat to Lembeh/Ambon 12D/11N Packages €140|
|Mermaid I - Biodiversity Special Package €230|
Deluxe twin cabin
Deluxe double cabin
Check-in on board MV Mermaid I between 14:00-16:00 hours in Benoa Harbour Bali.
Start your adventure with a great dive in the calm, clear waters of Angel Reef at Moyo Island.
The Nusa Tenggara region has some extremely interesting and unique marine life. Today we spend the day diving around Sangeang Volcano - 2-3 dives for rare nudibrancs, pygmy seahorse, leaf scorpion fish, blue ribbon eels, black sand diving with all its treasures and underwater hot springs that support this very unique marine environment. Night dive here too or head on over to Gili Banta for the chance for star gazers and coral cat shark.
Current depending, we start the day at GPS Point Gili Banta famous for its sharks and pelagic fishes.
Start your day with an exciting visit to Loh Liang Komodo National Park to walk with the dragons ! And as we quietly walk through the bush setting look out for Komodo dragons, deer, wild boar and birds.
More world class dives today as we relax in Horseshoe Bay at Rinja Island - the Yellow Wall of Texas is absolutely stunning covered with enormous yellow soft corals. Go slowly along the wall looking for unique creatures but don't forget to look out into the blue to see what's coming by...maybe we make a deep dive to check if the tiny yellow pygmy seahorses are on the giant gorgonians at depth.
Today we'll head on over to Manta Alley to watch in awe as these magnificent creatures feed, play and get cleaned at the many cleaning stations. In the afternoon we can check out more big fish dives maybe at Loh Serah, Tatawa Kecil or the infamous "Current City" Batu Bolong - come face to face with reef sharks, turtles and giant Wrasse. Many good night dives around here - Gili Darat is great for sleeping turtles, colourful reef stonefish, spanish dancers - calm sea - a good place to sleep.
The diving around Gili Lawalaut, Tatawa Kecil, Gili Darat is so awesome you will all want more so today we make 2-3 dives in clear arm blue waters - loads of fish both big and small. Then we'll head off for a a night dive at either Gili Banta or maybe Batu Putih in Sumbawa - both interesting sites. Overnight we cruise back to Satonda and Sumbawa - solar powered nudibranc, ghost pipefish anyone ?
|We enjoy two good dives around Sumbawa and Moyo Islands - a chance to shoot anything you missed at the trip beginning . Then the crew wash your equipment for you while you relax on the sundeck or downloading your pictures, enjoying our trip video as well just before dinner with all your new friends.||2|
|Last Day||After breakfast we transfer you ashore at 9am to continue your vacation...or its time to head home to start planning your next Mermaid cruise !||0|
Beam 7 m / 21 feet Draft 2.5 m / 8 feet Water 20000 l Fuel 18000 l Cruising Speed 9.5 knots Max. Speed 12 knots Max. Guest 15 Persons
Engines Hino 2x 450 HP Generator Hino 2 x 50 kw Compressor Bauer 2 x 190 l/min Nitrox Blending panel Air-con. Hino
Cabin air-con. 7 double & 1 single with private bathroom Cabin Staff 4 Bathroom 8 x with hot water Shower 2 x at the stern Saloon 1 x air-con with TV, Stereo, VDO Sundeck 1 x 60 square meter
Dive deck 6 m x 7 m Dive platform 2.5 m x 7 m Tanks 20 x 12 l Air Tanks 10 x 12 l Nitrox Tanks 5 x 15 l Nitrox or Air Weights 150 x 1 kg or 2.2 pd
Raja Ampat (or the Four Kings) is an archipelago consisting of the islands of Misoool, Salawati, Batanta, and Wiageo which are surrounded by over 1,500 small islands and cays. Formerly known as Irian Jaya, this area is now part of the newly named West Papua province of Indonesia and is located on the northwest tip of Bird’s Head Peninsula, on the island of New Guinea.
Put simply, Raja Ampat could quite possibly be the best diving in the world. It certainly is the world’s most bio diverse marine region with more recorded fish, coral and mollusc species than anywhere else on Earth. The variety of marine life can be staggering. Some areas boast enormous schools of fish and regular sightings of sharks, such as wobbegongs. In Mansuar, you may encounter large groups of manta rays and turtles. From the boat and often close to shore you may get the chance to don your snorkelling gear for some unforgettable interaction with resident pods of dolphins or even some passing whales. Other highlights include the innumerable war wrecks, both ships and planes (with new wrecks being discovered constantly).
The reefs of Raja Ampat are just as varied as the marine life. There are vertical walls, reef flats, slopes, sea mounts, mucky mangroves, lagoons and pinnacles. The reefs are in pristine condition with miles of perfect hard corals and many varied colourful species of soft corals. The diving is predominantly drift dives due to the moderate prevalent currents in the area which provide nutrients for the myriad fish and coral. Currents are average to moderate and vary from none to very strong. Visibility is normally very good but can vary and is normally at its best earlier in the day so your pre-breakfast dives are not to be slept through!
This is truly “Frontier Diving”. Topside the beautiful islands stretch as far as you can see and are largely uninhabited. At night the lights of local fishing boats twinkle in the dark along the few inhabited shorelines while in more remote areas you may only see a distant spec of light over the entire horizon.
Not many liveaboards dive the Raja Ampat area, making this adventure even more unique and special.
Raja Ampat has a high season from October to May and weirdly enough it is during their rainy season due to the winds in the dry season making parts of the park inaccessable. The rainy season should not be mis-construed though. It is generally mostly a shower in the late afternoon and evening and most of the time the days are nice, wind is minimal and the skys are generally clear or slightly over cast. The seas are calmer at this time of the year as the oppposite season has winds that kick up waves and make it very difficult to dive the more exposed sites in the Southern part of Raja Ampat. The water temperature stays around the 27-30 degrees celcius mark all year round.
Recently due to the popularity of Raja Ampat a lot of boats have been running trips in the so called low season but this is also the dry season and so promotes nicer weather and better visibility but the trade of is that only the northern more sheltered part of the park is accessable but as the area is so vast and there are so many quality dive sites the reports from these northern trips have been glowing so far.
Diving in Komodo is not a new idea but recently it’s being recognised as a premier destination due to the awesome variety of diving to be had. Crystal clear water and dive sites where you never see another diver provide a little something for everyone whether it’s macro or massive you love. One day you can be crawling along the bottom looking at pygmy seahorses, frogfish and unusual nudibranch and the next you are in the big blue on an open water pinnacle as the mantas fly by, the sharks circle and the dolphins hunt and the next day diving a live volcano!! For sheer variety there is no better place on earth.
Komodo is one of the few places left in the world where sharks are not rare and down south is one of the places where manta rays have their legendary aggregations, meaning they are here in the area in their hundreds!!!
One of the highlights of these trips is the rare opportunity to walk with the lengendary Komodo dragons. These truly awesome beasts can reach 3 metres plus and can reportedly run at 20km an hour chasing their prey. It’s the icing on the cake, Stunning diving and one of the world’s last surviving dinosaur descendants all one amazing package.
Covering the best of both worlds, from up close and personal with aggragating mantas to shy pygmy seahorses and rare nudibranches Komodo diving has it all. The beauty of Komodo liveaboard diving is in the balance between the large and small animals. One day you will be in the blue swimming with mantas and sharks and the next swimming along a bubbling volcanic reef covered with venting submerged fumeroles blowing bubbles into the water and hiding one of the worlds best kept secret macro dive sites.
These are some of the top sites that most liveaboards visit.
We start our Komodo liveaboard with the first dive of the trip and the check out dive. This dive site doesn’t disappoint. A beautiful wall stretching down to 50 metres covered in hard and soft corals very reminiscent of Bunaken in North Sulawesi. Schools of bannerfish and trevally patrol the walls with the occasional reef sharks making an appearance. Ribbon eels hide in crevices and many different nudibranchs crawl over the vast elephant ear sponges that hang from the beautiful soft coral infested wall.
A protected bay on Satonda island north of Sumbawa hosts a treasure trove of macro critters, the more we dive here the more we find. The rare Denise pygmy seahorse lives in fans here, frogfish hang out in big barrel sponges and ghost pipefish hide amongst the featherstars that cover the reef slope. In the sandy bottom you can find jawfish with their mouths full of eggs, myriads of anemonefish, mushroom coral pipefish and spearer mantis shrimps.
Sangieng island is a perfectly round volcanic island jutting up from the sea bed. Still active and last blowing in 1996 this well kept secret is one of the world’s finest macro dive areas. With diving available all around the island there is not one specific spot but always new ones to be discovered. Bubbles of volcanic gas seep through the sand creating a surreal atmosphere and a warm black sand bottom hosting rare and unusual nudibranch. Pygmy seahorses, frogfish, Pegasus sea moths and carnivorous shells and all common here, this is my personal favourite dive site as every time we dive here there is a surprise in store of something new that is often not in the books - this site is why you go Komodo liveaboard diving.
Gps point is an open sea mount prone to strong currents at certain times of the day. This provides prolific hard and soft coral growth that is home to hundreds of different types of reef fish. Loved by sharks, white tip sharks cruise around the whole dive in amongst the hunting giant trevallies and schooling jacks and surgeon fish, an exciting dive.
This is one of my favourite sites on the Komodo liveaboard itinerary and is very similar to Gps point this site takes it to the next level. Grey reef shark, white tip sharks, occassional dolphins and a literal fish soup created by jacks, surgeonfish, giant trevallies and bannerfish surround this large sea mount as you hang on to the reef edge and watch the action. Again this site is prone to strong currents but we time our dives to hit around slack tide and a little current brings in the big fish. Great pelagic action, my favourite blue water dive.
An adrenalin pounding drift dive along the wall and around the corner under the lighthouse. Sharks, mantas, dolphins are all frequent visitors on the dive with some of the best coral reef top in the area around the corner out of the current at the end of the dive you can hunt for porcelain crabs, cuttlefish and unusual seahorses whilst waiting for the adrenalin to funnel out of your system and your heart rate to return to normal-this is what Komodo liveaboard diving is all about!.
A stunning soft coral and sea fan covered pinnacle with crystal water clarity this is a great site for those magazine cover wide angle shots. With at least 5 different types of angelfish, 4 types of trigger and butterflyfish everywhere it is a excellent reef fish dive with frequent visits from eagle and manta rays and the resident sleepy hawksbill turtle.
Colder water and lower vis here due to the huge amounts of organic matter in the water due to the southern currents but this is more than made up for by the astounding life available to see here due to this phenomenon. Normally done as a night dive it also makes a good day dive with everything from white tip sharks to pygmy seahorses; zebra crabs, Coleman shrimp, many coloured frogfish, xeno crabs, Spanish dancers, and unusual nudibranchs are hidden amongst the dense coral growth.
Colder water than the north but touted by many as one of the worlds best 10 sites, yes I know there seems to be way more than 10 “top 10 sites” but this one really is one if you like macro. Everything is here even the rarest of the rare, the Rhinopias scorpionfish. It’s nudi heaven with only the special and the rare getting to appear here, more species than I care to mention along with large and different frogfish mixed in with schools of fish and the resident dopy turtle we do 2 dives here and it’s still not enough!! You will love it, I personally adore this dive site.
Just next to cannibal rock and where the boat moors is a beach that has wild pigs, monkeys and Komodo dragons in the daytime and hosts a myriad of critters in the waters in front if it at night. Named for the large amount of torpedo rays found here, a member of the electric ray family- no touching! They cover the sandy bottom along with loads of nudis obvious on the black sand bottom along with bizarre crabs and octopus.
In the cooler waters in the south of Komodo there is a bay in which there are a series of pinnacles that seem to be a magnet for aggregating mantas. They are here in their tens, often we come up having seen over 20 different individuals. Often a little shy, their evasive spins and pirouettes makes the watching of them that much more enjoyable.
This is our other manta site. A little bit more of a risk to see them as it is a huge area and we drift along the bottom in about 10 metres but along the way we always run into loads of turtles, napoleon and humphead wrasse, white tip sharks and very very occasionally you will be incredibly lucky and run into the resident dugong that inhabits this area along with scores of mantas as they migrate north.
A series of underwater pinnacles reaching nearly to the the surface off the coast of Padar island next to Komodo this site constantly springs surprises on you from silvertip sharks and mobular ray schools to marbled rays and rare nudibranchs.
Sorong is the harbour town in West Papua and the normal departure point to dive Raja Ampat. If you are unsure of how to get to Sorong to start your trip it will depend on where your international flight into Indonesia is landing. We recommend Jakarta or Bali to make your entry point into Indonesia amnd each has it’s pros and cons.
From Jakarta to Sorong most flights route through Makassar (UPG) in South Sulawesi and are over night flights arriving in the morning perfect for a pick up by your liveaboard crew at the airport. The downside of this is that you may be awake most of the night before your board the liveaboard but most boats cruise only on the first day so you can catch up on your sleep during the day.
Flights from Bali are not quite so simple and cannot be done in one day, you will need to fly from Bali to UPG the day before your liveaboard and over night in Makassar and the continue on with the UPG to Sorong flight the following morning, the day of your liveaboard departure, and this ends up being perfect tining to be picked up on your arrival in Sorong at the airport to then be taken to the boat. This takes longer but you will arrive more refreshed than the Jakarta rooute and of course you could always factor in a stay in Bali before or after your trip.
In the past it has not been possible for someone outside of Indonesia to purchase domestic flights in Indonesia so these can be purchased for you by us, if you would like, and added to your invoice. It will be about $650 return dependant on exchange rates, availability and where your entry airport is in Indonesia. The cost of the domestic flights are not included in the trip price.
Recently Garuda, our recommended airline, has made it possible to purchase their tickets online and we recommend you take this approach as it is often cheaper than the set price we have to charge. Other airlines are cheaper but are not so trustworthy or have such good luggage allowances. Again, we highly recommend trip as well as diving insurance just in case something were to go wrong with your flights.
Premier liveaboard diving and its local flight agent can purchase the tickets on your behalf, however, in doing so, Premier liveaboard diving is only acting as an agent for the airline and is not responsible for, and can accept no responsibility for, cancellations, delays, schedule changes, or problems caused by the air carrier. We highly recommend trip interruption and cancellation insurance.
Number of Dives / Site selection:
We plan a minimum of 20 dives subject to weather conditions and security/safety issues. Dive site selection detailed in the published itinerary is subject to change by the Captain or Cruise Director without prior notice. There are numerous fantastic sites in Nusa Tengarra and Komodo and our objective is to take you to the best of the best ! Repeat guests - we’ll take you to some new sites or more of those you really love !
What diver certification level is needed for Komodo liveaboard diving?
Everyone is welcome on board, no matter what level your certification. Dive groups and site selection will be chosen to meet your safety, comfort and diving ability - and is subject to the discretion of the Cruise Director. Our professional dive crew will take you on the easy route or to another site if you don’t like currents. If you are up for it, we’ll take you right into it for all the action the site offers ! You may wish to bring a reef hook for some dive sites.
Dive Guides and Diver Safety:
Our experienced dive crew would be delighted to assist you. Divers are welcome to dive with their buddy on sites deemed suitable by the Cruise Director. All divers are required to dive with a dive computer - available for rent on board if you don’t have your own. Nitrox fills and courses are available on board to enhance your diving safety. Please allow 24 hours between last dive and flying. Guests are requested to show diving certification cards on checking in and are strongly recommended to have valid dive insurance (Padi, Dan or equivalent).
Komodo liveaboards departure and Arrival Times:
Guests are required to arrive in Bali no later than 14:00 hours which will allow us to make our planned 16:00 departure from Benoa port. Final cruise departure time is subject to guest arrival times. Please liaise with Mermaid Liveaboards if your flight times cannot fit this schedule.
Transfers to and from your Komodo liveaboard:
Transfers from/to the airport or hotels in the south are free of charge. From destinations in central and northern Bali, there is a small charge. Please refer to the price list. Guests arriving before 12 noon on departure day will be transferred to Absolute Scuba at Sanur Beach where you can leave your luggage in safety till boarding transfer at 14:00 hours. After meeting the friendly crew at Absolute Scuba you can relax on the beach, enjoy a massage,go sight seeing or shopping.
Pick up times:
13:30 - Nusa Dua, Jimbaran, Seminyak; 14:00 Kuta Beach, Legian, Sanur Beach; 12:00 Tulamben; 13:00 Candi Desa, Padangbai, Ubud; Time to be advised for Lovina Beach and northern Bali.
Komodo liveaboards water temperature and wetsuit recommendations:
The Flores Sea with its usually clear blue waters, great visibility has water temperatures of approx 26-28 degrees (northern dive locations) - a 3-5 mm shorty is okay with most guests comfortable with a 3-5mm long. The Sumba Sea (southern dive locations) has an average temperature of approx 24 degrees - the awesome diving let’s you forget about the cooler waters ! Think about a 5mm long possibly adding a vest or renting a shorty to go over the top if you feel the cold. Hood, gloves and booties are strongly recommended for these cooler waters.
Equipment on board:
Rental equipment is available on board. Our tanks are 12 litre steel and we have a few 15 litre steel/aluminium tanks available. Tank valves are international and some DIN adapters are available on board. Any dive equipment failure or loss will require you to rent a replacement from Mermaid Liveaboards at our published rates. If Mermaid Liveaboard equipment is lost/damaged, full replacement cost will be charged at the discretion of the Cruise Director. Published equipment prices will be available on board.
Our Thai cook is excellent, preparing a variety of Thai, Indonesian and Western dishes…even Barbeques ! Please advise any special meal requirements on the guest information form.
How much money should i bring?
(Currency: If possible, please pay all on board costs in Indonesian rupiah.) Up to you but we suggest you have some rupiah for souvenir shopping in Komodo, trip dvd, massages, small items etc at Sanur Beach. Exchange rates vary. The airport’s rate is lower than the rate you find at most small currency exchanges. Bank rates are low and take a long time. US$ are accepted in the Komodo National Park but rupiah is preferred. There are several currency exchange services and ATM machines near Absolute Scuba and at the airport and ATM’s at Benoa port.
Luggage and what should I bring on a Komodo liveaboard:
All luggage will be taken on board. If you have large bags you do not need on the trip, please arrange to leave at your hotel if possible.
I want to dive Bali as well:
There is loads of excellent diving in and around Bali as well. Contact me if you fancy diving in Bali also. Detail how many days/diving days you would like, where you are staying and what sort of diving you would like to do and I can recommend a package to suit.