liveaboard

Raja Ampat Central and North

Raja Ampat Central and North

After motoring all night, we’ve left Misool and are now in the Pyanemo (central) region of Raja Ampat, and this is our first dive in the area. You'd think no dive pioneer would name an unsightly reef after his own daughter, and indeed, this reef is home to some of the most beautiful hard corals we’ve yet seen. Small fishes darted in and out of the staghorns, and a school of spadefish lazed about a cleaning station, unperturbed by our approach.

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Raja Ampat South

Raja Ampat South

Ever since our first trip to The Similans onboard The Mariner, we’ve been itching to go on another sea adventure; and whenever we talked to other divers, Raja Ampat would inevitably come up as a favorite. An archipelago spanning over 1,500 islands and more than 40,000 km2, Raja Ampat (Four Kings) is considered one of the most biodiverse areas in the world: over 1,500 species of fish and 600 species of hard coral have been documented here, representing over 75% of all coral species known worldwide (!!). Its relative remoteness has also left its reefs relatively intact and pristine, and so our Raja Ampat dream was borne.

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SZX to HKT: All aboard!

SZX to HKT: All aboard!

We've arrived in Phuket, Thailand, on a first visit to Southeast Asia proper for both of us, and were welcomed by the unmistakable heat and humidity of the sub-tropics. It’s 2am but we were not quite finished traveling yet. At the airport exit we scanned for someone holding up a sign for our names, and after a nail-biting hour, our anxiety growing as waves of travelers arrived and left, finally espied our driver. We hopped on and sped towards our bungalow in Khao Lak.

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