Article by ONBOARD Magazine
INDONESIA HAS INCREDIBLE CRUISING GROUNDS WITH OVER 17,000 ISLANDS COVERING 3 TIME ZONES. THIS IS COMPLEMENTED BY A TROPICAL, EQUATORIAL YEAR-ROUND CLIMATE AND ENDLESS ADVENTURES – THERE IS SOMETHING TO SUIT EVERYONE ON BOARD
Indonesia offers something to suit every guest on board. The remote scenic anchorages, pristine marine life and unique cultural activities found across this vast archipelago will be the highlight of your trip through Southeast Asia. Exhilarating cruising itineraries can be developed to include a unique mixture of natural beauty and diverse cultural experiences, with both a delightful array of marine and topside activities making Indonesia an ideal superyacht destination. Indonesia is currently only being explored by the adventurous among us and is still considered to be off the beaten track, but with remoteness comes certain challenges, and an understanding of the local regulations and environment is essential. On shore support from an agent and an on board local guide will maximise your experience while you get to focus on your guests’ enjoyment of this beautiful country.
Popular destinations include Bali, ‘Island of the Gods’. Logistically, Bali is an excellent base to start your trip. With international flight connections, excellent provisioning and good infrastructure the crew can easily get set for the upcoming trip. For the guests, the island offers a unique Balinese temple culture, luxurious hotels, spas and restaurants, breathtaking scenery and outdoor activities like heli tours, cycling, walking and surfing. The island of Nusa Penida offers the unique chance to dive with the elusive but comic sunfish, while the picturesque UNESCO World Heritage Site rice fields make a peaceful backdrop to your time on this enchanting island.
Recommended routes through the country would need to consider the duration of the visit and the guest preferences, along with the vessels’ global itinerary before and after their Indonesian exploration. The natural flow of the Indonesian cruising grounds offer the opportunity to cruise throughout the country east to west or west to east, and there is also the option to split visits, to just explore one or two of the multiple cruising grounds and save others for a subsequent visit Bali is the perfect place to begin your journey east to Komodo. Travelling by yacht offers some hidden gems along the way; the island of Lombok with the majestic Mount Rinjani and the perfect location to play with the cool, onboard toys, the limestone waterfall at Moyo and the Crater Lake at Satonda are just a few of these.
Once you arrive in the famous Komodo National park with its dramatic island landscapes, you can snorkel with mantas, dive on some world class, current swept sites, get up close and personal with famous Komodo dragons, trek up to some breathtaking views and enjoy strolls along beautiful pink beaches. This World Heritage Site is considered to be one of the most exciting natural world adventure destinations in the world, a real ‘Jurassic Park’ both above and below water.
The pristine Raja Ampat is a tropical paradise named for its four main islands found off the coast of Papua. This is a huge national park boasting a variety of marine habitats offering world class diving and snorkelling. There are hundreds of potential dive sites and exploration of this area is still continuing. Topside entertainment includes speedboat rides through limestone lagoons, panoramic viewpoints, trekking the jungle for a glimpse of the elusive Birds of Paradise or a dip under the waterfall and fascinating tours of a pearl farm. Combine this with picture perfect anchorages and remote, sandy beaches this destination is truly one of the best in the world.
An itinerary through the Banda Sea will include volcanic islands rising from the depths, a chance to dive with schooling hammerhead sharks and the discovery of the cultural and historical importance of the Banda Islands. Nicknamed the Spice Islands, West Papua is the home to tribal villagers and the jungles inhabited by endemic wildlife like Birds of Paradise and Casuawry. Cendrawasih Bay and lesser-known alternative destinations are becoming more interesting to experienced owners, or those on repeat visits to Indonesia. West Sumatra’s Mentawai Islands offer some of the best surf breaks in the world against the back drop of picturesque tropical islands.
Certainly, cruising in Indonesia is not straightforward and requires additional advanced planning, but every country has its idiosyncrasies and those differences are part of the adventure. Perhaps that’s even part of the reason yacht owners wish to visit other countries and what keeps the yacht industry evolving. So it’s important to arrive in Indonesia with an open mind – and a bag full of patience – embracing the cultural variation and enjoying all the incredible things that can be experienced.
The Lighthouse Consultancy provides 360° support for yachts cruising throughout Indonesia. From document procurement, itinerary development and logistical planning phases, to arrival clearances, provisioning and the cruising experience, Lighthouse works in close partnership with captain and crew to ensure all elements of the vessel experience are anticipated. Their experienced and knowledgeable cruising guides join vessels to lead explorations and ensure diving and topside highlights are discovered. So with Lighthouse’s support and the peace of mind that logistics are taken care of, your yacht crew are able to focus solely on the needs of their owners and guests, making sure their Indonesian cruising experience generates memories that last a lifetime.
For more details Tel:+62 (0)361 289 587 or visit www.thelighthouseconsultancy.com