By Alex del Olmo, Cruise Director on the Seven Seas
We just finished our crossing from Sorong to Kaimana, on the first leg of our current film expedition. Hit our targets in Raja Ampat, got what we hoped for there, and then started exploring Triton Bay and surrounding areas, off the South West coast of Papua Bird’s Head region. Some of you would be wondering what we are doing down there, if you would follow our positions on a chart! Well, there are many reasons, and we are adding more reasons as we go…
The larger Triton Bay area is still quite isolated and there isn’t too much tourism here yet. Only a handful of liveaboards come here and there is only one dive resort in this region. That results in not more than just some occasional presence of divers and adventurers at some of the more well-known spots near Kaimana, but it is not difficult for us to find magical spots all for ourselves, on any given day. We are hitting the spots that we already know, and we’re having new adventures every day, with a professional film camera crew with us to witness it all! It will take a while, but wait till you see the final production…😊
Down here in the Wild West of Papua, we can still have a glimpse back in time, to what it was like to dive in Indonesia 25 years ago. Already on the way down to Triton Bay, after we left Raja Ampat behind us, we stopped at this magical seamount, not too far off the mainland of Papua, with cleaning stations of magnificent oceanic manta rays and huge swirling schools of big eye trevallies. And then further South we got into the thick of it, snorkelling with multiple Whale Sharks, and finding what are arguably the best places in all of Indonesia to see brilliantly coloured soft corals in all sizes and shapes. Absolutely incredible macro diving is all over the menu here as well – hard to look away from – but always keep your eyes open for megafauna here in Papua’s Wild West – anything can happen!
Not uncommon here to bump into some great whales, as we just did, mother with a calve! And of course dolphins, which are often hanging around with the whale sharks, providing some of the best opportunities out there to swim with these marine mammals. But that is not all, look around you, top side, and behold an incredible landscape made of limestone mountains and rocky islands, some of them with ancient rock paintings of unknown meaning. Take your time in between diving and snorkelling, explore the coastlines, marvel at the jungle, and take a swim in a magnificent waterfall, tumbling down from the wilderness into the unspoilt ocean.
Back in the water, keep your mind and eyes open for unexpected encounters awaiting you here. Like a Zebra Shark lying on the sandy bottom, seemingly undisturbed by your presence. I guess that gives you an idea why we love it here, while we maximize our exploration time in the Wild West of Papua. We are doing several full trips here, and Triton Bay will become an annual adventure for us around this time of year. Exploring the seascapes along the West coast of the Bird’s Head of Papua, re-visiting what we discovered earlier, and finding new sites as we go. Right now we are off to the second leg of our current film expedition, all is ready to leave the dock, and there is a buzz of excitement on board. Come join us soon!