Trip report by Erwin, Hester, Louise en Joppe Spaan, photos by Tommy Schultz.
‘A once in a lifetime experience!’
That’s what we thought after our trip on the Seven Seas a couple of years ago, but we were wrong!
For the second time we enjoyed even more our stay on this magnificent boat. Our welcome on the boat was like coming home again. Although the crew had changed completely, the quality was just as good as the first trip–maybe even better!
Thanks to them we all had a perfect time.
As one of the first liveaboard boats around Komodo and Rinca, the Seven Seas knows exactly where to find the most beautiful places above and below water.
Just outside of Labuan Bajo we already had our first taste of how beautiful our trip was going to be. Looking up in the sky, with no lights around, we could see the milkyway in all her might and glory. We were really lucky that professional photographer Tommy Schultz was on board and able to catch it on camera.
The rooms on board of the Seven Seas were very comfortable and tidy. The boat just had a makeover and everything looked classy! Our room had a comfortable double bed and its own shower – like all the rooms. Almost every day we woke up at a different place around Komodo and Rinca. These islands look really ancient and are perfectly made for the animals that live there; the Komodo dragons. Mostly barren, dry and brown like the animals.
My first experience with the dragons this trip was one to remember. Together with Jos Pet and Tommy we were trying to make some nice shots of the dragons on the Beach. There were seven dragons sunbathing, but one of them was really hungry and suddenly ran drooling into the water and tried to come towards the boat. Magnificant to see this creature swimming. This is rarely seen, but it also shows that this is their territory and you have to respect that. Luckily the crew of the Seven Seas knows exactly what to do.
Above the Seven Seas white bellied sea eagles were hovering around in the trade winds. Silent and gracious they flew around and sometimes suddenly took a fish out of the ocean. On our hikes on the islands they accompanied us while we were admiring the surroundings or sunset from a fantastic viewpoint.
Besides all the magnificent things above water, our reason for being there was the underwater world.
The Seven Seas offers four dives a day. One of them being a night dive if you want to do that and the conditions are right. After a short dive briefing form the cruise director, Karl Klingeler, the dive masters took us down towards the most beautiful underwater scenes. There we were astonished and flabbergasted by the sight of the beautiful colours of all the hard and soft corals, anenomes and animals.
This trip we saw manta ray’s on almost every dive. Really special, because normally you see these rays only at special places like Manta Alley, south Komodo. Each dive was fantastic and the dive guides anticipated very good on the amount of diving experience we had. Together with Karl they anticipated the sea conditions, current and tides so every dive was safe and an unbelievable experience.
The most special creature under water were not the manta’s, hawksbill turtles, nudibranchs, scorpion fishes, snappers, groupers, octopuses, sharks or barracuda’s, but the most tiny seahorse there is; the Pygmy seahorse. So small but so unbelievable beautiful! We were really amazed that the dive quide was able to find it. The Seven Seas took us to a lot of beautiful dive sites like Batu Bolong, Crystal Rock, the Golden Passage and the Seven Seas Secret Spot. On every dive we were amazed by the unbelievable richness and beauty of all the sea life we saw.
The food on the Seven Seas was very well organized. As soon as we woke there was a small breakfast to strengthen us for our first dive of the day and a big breakfast afterwards when we shared enthusiastically our experiences. Also the daily dinners and service on the upper deck were fabulous. The cooks really created the tastiest meals in their small, but well-equipped kitchen.
After our hikes and underwater adventures the crew of the Seven Seas often offered a trip to the beach so we could relax on secluded white-sand beaches. The service of the Seven Seas was also perfect there. There were drinks and snacks and sometimes they even managed to build a bonfire on a deserted atoll in the middle of the sea. A great way to end a perfect day on the boat.
It was a pity that our trip ended after twelve days. We think that a third in lifetime experience must be possible on the Seven Seas. But next time maybe in Raja Ampat!
Erwin, Hester, Louise en Joppe Spaan
Komodo, August 2017
“During our family dive we experienced the graciousness of four different Manta and stingray species. These majestic animals hypnotized us with their grace like they were flying in this underwater world of wonders. This encounter touched us deeply as we believe that all animals have great significance for this world as well as something powerful to teach us. The ability of these big rays to swim slowly through turbulent waters made us understand better how to carefully maneuver through the complex waters of our inner world. Their sudden appearance showed that you will find what you are looking for when you least expect it. Manta rays symbolize graceful strength and wisdom: trust on what you believe and let go of old outworn beliefs and adapt with the new. Be patient. Manta rays, like most things in life, take some time to get to you. Stingrays on the other hand blend in their surroundings on the ocean floor. They are not aggressive, sometimes even curious and avoid conflicts. However when they feel threatened they use their poisonous sting to defend themselves. As if they were telling us not to over react too quickly to emotions but calmly consider the situation and act accordingly!”
Joost, Vera, Jacco and Sytse