Raja Ampat Uncover the Immense Wonder
of the Four Kings
Raja Ampat or the Four Kings is undoubtedly one of Indonesia’s
evolving destinations for visitors wanting to experience some of the worlds’ most spectacular and beautiful areas
Planning my first trip here was one of the most anticipated experiences I can remember. To get to Raja Ampat, one needs to take a flight to Sorong, a coastal city and regency in the eastern Indonesia province of West Papua. From there a 2 to 3 hour trip by fast boat to Waisai brings one to the capitol of the Raja Ampat Regency.
The name Raja Ampat or the Four Kings refers to the four main island of the group, namely Salawati, Batanta, Misool and Waigeo. It is Waigeo that is the largest of the islands and home the region’s capitol. Raja Ampat is an archipelago of over 1,500 small islands, cays and shoals that surround the four main islands. These four possess their own distinct identity but share a commonality of offshore islands, lagoons and the sheer magnificence of their beauty.
Raja Ampat is a haven for divers. In fact, it is recognized as one of the 10 best areas for diving around the world and among marine biologists has been officially acknowledged as possessing the greatest diversity of marine fauna and flora on the planet. There are large numbers of dive sites among the four islands and some diving resorts are now established in the area.
The crystal clear waters of the Raja Ampat islands provide amazing snorkelling opportunities also. It is snorkelling in this area that has been described by some as swimming in a huge tropical aquarium. Here large schools of fish may be seen along with shark sightings, manta rays and turtles, adding contrast to the colour of coral reef life.
Besides water activities the area in its natural state is a magnet for island jungle trekkers, bird watchers and those interested in the unique cultural aspects of village life on different islands. Spending time at one of the resorts allows one to relax and enjoy beach, sun, glorious sunsets with the attention of good service and facilities.
In this ever-developing world, Raja Ampat is still largely untouched and offers so much more of unspoilt nature and beauty than the major resort areas in Asia. This is a changing world and the splendour of Raja Ampat is not to be missed.