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Best of Indonesia
Sorry. There are no scheduled departures for this expedition.
Below please find the day-by-day itinerary for this expedition. Unless otherwise noted, daily excursion options are included in the cost of the trip. We do our best to adhere to the scheduled itinerary, but in the spirit of our expeditionary style of travel we may deviate slightly to take full advantage of encounters with the destination and its people, culture, and wildlife.
An itinerary from a previous expedition is displayed below.
Day 1-2 Depart USA
Board your independent flight to Singapore. Cross the International Date Line en route, losing a day.
Day 3 Singapore
Arrive in Singapore midday and transfer to our hotel for a chance to relax before dinner and overnight.
Day 4 Singapore / Manado, Indonesia / Embark Clipper Odyssey
This morning return to the airport for your flight to Manado. Upon arrival enjoy a city tour visiting the open air produce market and the North Sulawesi Provincial Museum where a local guide presents the history of the region. This afternoon board the Clipper Odyssey.
Day 5 Bunaken National Marine Park
Bunaken lies off the coast of Manado and encompasses more than 185,000 acres of crystal-clear waters. Established as a national marine park in 1991 the biodiversity here is phenomenal and its coral reefs are considered some of the best in Indonesia. During your day here, explore both above and below the waters, snorkeling or diving among kaleidoscopic reefs, investigating walls covered in colorful soft corals, and viewing the amazing invertebrate community that includes an abundance of sea stars, anemones, sponges, and sea urchins.
Day 6 Ternate
Tiny volcanic Ternate is situated just west of Halmahera. This island was once, along with its neighbor Tidore, the only source of cloves in the world. Caught between the tug of the Dutch and Portuguese for its spicy riches, Ternate offers fascinating cultural and historical sites including two impressive forts. After a stop at the local market, enjoy a traditional cultural performance.
Day 7-9 Raja Ampat
More than 1,500 karst limestone islands make up the majestic archipelago of Raja Ampat. The marine environment here, known as the Bird’s Head Seascape, is heralded as the most biodiverse on earth and includes 75 percent of all known coral species and more than 1,220 types of reef fish. Spend three days enjoying this unsurpassed coral wonderland and abundant marine life that calls it home. Birders go ashore to look for species such as the red bird of paradise, sulphur-crested cockatoo, beach kingfisher, varied honeyeater, spice imperial pigeon, and singing starling in the dense forests.
Day 10 Kokas, MacCluer Gulf
A breathtaking coastline of natural bays, tiny islets, pristine rain forest, and soaring mountains surrounds MacCluer Gulf. Dozens of local seafaring tribes populate the shores. In the morning our Zodiacs weave among clusters of mushroom-shaped limestone islets where rock ledges protect outstanding displays of ancient Papuan rock art. Then go ashore to visit Kokas, strongly fortified by the Japanese during WWII, and today a prosperous fishing town of 3,000 residents. A cultural heritage presentation includes the traditional gabagaba, or stick dance.
Day 11 Mommon Peninsula
The spectacular Mommon Peninsula is covered in forest often veiled in wisps of cloud. A strong river empties into the sea as a beautiful waterfall and, if tides permit, you may land on a small nearby beach. Snorkeling and diving reveal huge and colorful soft corals fed by channels teeming with fish.
Day 12 Aiduma Island
This afternoon the ship drops anchor off Aiduma Island for snorkeling and diving in the aquamarine waters. Dazzling soft coral “forests” teem with colorful reef fish, including dinner plate-sized blue-ring angelfish, six-bar angelfish, and lionfish.
Day 13 At Sea / Agats, Papua
Ten thousand square miles of mangrove forest, bamboo, and sago palms have long sheltered the Asmat region from outsiders. At high tide the ship enters the shallow channel of the Flamingo River to anchor for the night near the village of Agats, the regional capital of the Asmat.
Day 14-15 Asmat Villages
A remote riverine world is revealed as Zodiacs carry you along narrow waterways lined with the entwined branches of thick mangrove forests, home to Torres Strait imperial pigeons, sulphur-crested cockatoos, and bright red lorikeets. As you make your way upstream, villagers—whooping and chanting in elaborate warrior gear and war paint—paddle vigorously toward you in intricately carved canoes. You are escorted ashore, where enthusiastic welcomes await. A walk along elevated wooden boardwalks leads to a cathedral with superb carvings, and the museum with displays of ancestor poles, drums, body masks, shields, daggers, and skulls, a reminder that cannibalism was practiced by the ancestors of some villagers. Asmat woodcarvings are known for their powerful lines and coarse, expressive motifs, and are widely considered by collectors and scholars to be among the world’s finest. With our anthropologist helping you to communicate, you have the opportunity to purchase carvings directly from village artisans.
Day 16 Sailing the Arafura Sea
Enjoy a relaxing day and attend informative lectures as you sail into the Torres Strait.
Day 17 Thursday Island, Australia
Australia’s northernmost point, Thursday Island lies in the strategic Torres Strait. Settled in the late 19th century, its early fame rested on pearling by Japanese fishermen. During WWII, Australian and American troops were stationed at the base here. Explore the small sleepy town and take in the sweeping view from Green Hill Fort, built in 1893, then return to the ship for lunch. There is free time this afternoon to explore on your own.
Day 18 Torres Strait / Ashmore Reef
Ashmore Reef, a fully submerged reef, is a vast atoll-like ring that encloses a deep lagoon. Make an expedition stop here today to snorkel or dive in this rich marine environment.
Day 19 Port Moresby, Papua New Guinea / Disembark
This morning disembark in Port Moresby and visit the National Museum and Arts Center, exhibiting one of the finest collections of primitive art in the world. After lunch check in to our hotel and enjoy an afternoon at leisure before dinner and overnight.
Day 20 Port Moresby / Australia / USA
Board your independent flight to Brisbane this morning and connect with your homeward flight.