BE PREPARED TO BE FLEXIBLE
Our mission is to provide the best experience possible for our guests given the current conditions and when unexpected opportunities for adventure may present themselves along our cruise routes. Sometimes weather conditions, tides or other local factors dictate that we need to vary from the published route, and at times there are special opportunities to explore and discover new locations, events and activities. These explorations will always be a definite enhancement to the published itinerary and will be undertaken after discussion and agreement among guests. Ultimately, the boat captains and your tour leader will make decisions to maximize trip safety and your overall enjoyment, so please come prepared to be flexible!
D a y 1
-Starting your adventure today we will have a tour of Ternate's historical highlights before boarding our SeaTrek ship and meeting the crew and settling into your new home for the next two weeks.
- Over lunch, we will set sail for for the short journey to Halmahera Island's Dojinga Village, a pivotal place in scientific history, where the naturalist Alfred Russel Wallace first came up with the Theory of Evolution by Natural Selection.
- Later that afternoon, we will enter the water for the first time and snorkel and swim on our first coral reef before heading south as the sun sets behind the perfectly conical volcanic islands peaks of the northern Moluccas.
D a y 2
-Today we will visit the Guraici Archipelago, a chain of islands with white sandy beaches, vibrant coral reefs and some lovely local villages. We will spend a full day here snorkelling, swimming and pay a visit to one of the villages to meet the local people.
-The islands are part of a government-controlled conservation area, designed to protect the reefs and the many beautiful marine species that live there.
-These protected waters also provide the perfect location for beginner or rusty snorkellers to become familiar with the water and to home their skills for the many days of snorkelling that lie ahead.
D a y 3
- Today we will be searching for some very special species of butterfly, some unique birds and some quirky mammals.
- We will explore the deep forest and rivers of Bacan Island, where Wallace first saw what he called ‘the most beautiful butterfly in the world, the Golden Birdwing. During our trek the other species that we might see here include cuscus, the black-crested macaque and some hornbills.
- After lunch we will spend the afternoon snorkelling and swimming on the nearby reef and beaches.
D a y 4
-We will spend today exploring the islands and local habitats of Balang Belang Island, which offers fantastic snorkelling both on the reefs and the mangroves, which act as a nursery to many marine species, including baby sharks and many kinds of school fish.
-We will explore the huge inland lagoon which we can explore from the boats tender.
-The island is home to healthy populations of birds including parrots, tree swift, imperial pigeon and many more.
D a y 5
- Today will be a day for snorkelling, culture and history as we find ourselves in the middle of the Banda Sea in the remote and breathtaking Sulu Archipelago.
- We will spend the morning exploring the beaches and reefs of Mangoli Island, where the reefs are teeming with fish and other marine life. True to the desert island locale, we will also kayak, paddle, swim, explore and relax on the white-sand beaches.
-Later that day, we will feast on some history and culture as we visit the local village market and visit the ruins of a 17th century Dutch fort, which once protected the spice trade along these routes.
D a y 6
- The cultural experiences ratchet up a notch today with a war dance performed in our honour, while the night time will be filled with Indonesian music.
- We will go ashore on Taliabu Island, where we will be treated to a traditional dance known as the ‘cakalale’, by local warriors. We will also have a chance to explore the local village and meet the people of this remote isle.
- The afternoon will see us snorkelling on a reef teeming with fish before moving to another deserted island, where we can swim, kayak and relax. This evening the crew will prepare a beach bbq for us, and they will regail us with traditional Indonesian folk songs and sea shanties as we party by firelight late into the night.
D a y 7
- The Bokan Islands are an area of unsurpassed beauty and today will be a day of marine exploration and relaxation as we snorkel, swim, paddle and kayak around the glorious reefs, beaches and islands with many caves and snorkelling spots.
- We also have the rare privilege to swim in a small marine lake filled with stingless jellyfish, the exotically named Danau Piasu Botangan, one of only 20 lakes of its kind in the world.
D a y 8
- A trio of unique experiences await us today involving culture, conservation and wildlife.
- We will visit the bustling Indonesian island port town of Bangai, a place filled with activity and commerce. Here on Banggai Island we will visit the local market, explore the neighbourhoods, the sultan’s palace and the maleo bird egg ‘museum’, and all from our fleet of brightly-coloured motor rickshaws, which will be on the dock awaiting our arrival.
- We will pay a hands on visit to LINI, an NGO doing great work with coral restoration on the surrounding reefs, in addition to working with local fishermen in finding sustainable solutions for supplying fish for overseas markets and the live aquarium fishing trade.
- The last of the day’s highlights will be a snorkel on a local reef where we will see the most elegant, but very threatened, Banggai Cardinal Fish – a darling of saltwater aquarium lovers worldwide.
D a y 9
- Today you will have the chance to see possibly one of the strangest and most unique flightless birds found in the world - the Maleo.
- After a morning snorkel, we will sail north to visit the endemic Maleo in their beachside environment, the symbol of the province within which it lives. We visit a conservation project on the mainland where scores of Maleo live and breed. Entering in twos, we can watch them at their sandy nesting sites from a camoflagued hide as they go about their business.
- Later that afternoon, we set sail for the Togean Islands National Park, for some island hopping and spectacular snorkelling, wildlife and culture.
D a y 1 0
- The Bajau sea gypsies of Southeast have a very uqique way of life living in harmony with the water, and today you will get to see it up close.
- We will go ashore to Kabalutan Village, where a population of about 2500 Bajau call home, and we will be welcomed into their world to meet and talk with them about their lives.
- In the afternoon we will snorkel and swim on some pristine coral reefs before moving on further into the park.
D a y 1 1
- Some great wildlife experiences await us today both in the water and the air, with birds, fish and invertebrates as the main features.
- We will enjoy a snorkel on the lush reefs near the island of Malenge, before taking our snorkels and masks for a rare second swim with stingless jellyfish in nearby Lake Mariona, the second jellyfish lake on our route.
- We will visit a local village and meet the people, and enjoy a late afternoon walk in the local forest before being witness to a most amazing show of nature as flocks of hornbills come flying in to roost in the trees – a once in a lifetime sight only accessible with SeaTrek.
D a y 1 2
- Waking up in the east of the park, we will go snorkelling and visit a local village before setting sail on a long crossing towards the Sulawesi mainland, where we can relax, watch the world go by and take in the beauty of the sea from the decks of our ship.
- In the afternoon, our chef will offer a cooking class for those interested in learning how to prepare some traditional Indonesian dishes. For the rest of us, it's sunbathing, reading, relaxing and reflection.
- To finish the day, cocktails will be served on the back deck before a specially prepared dinner is served, followed by a party with the crew's band providing the music and entertainment.
D a y 1 3
- This morning we are on the outside 'elbow' of North Sulawesi and we will have the chance for some more cultural exchanges and some impressive snorkelling.
- After breakfast we will go ashore to a remote village and meet the local people as they invite us into their village to share in their way of life. We will also go for a walk in the nearby forest on the look out for birds.
- We will snorkel a local reef before we head north, stopping off en-route for another snorkel and a swim towards the end of the day before the crew throw us a final beach BBQ, where we will dance and sing into the night under the stars next to a roaring bonfire.
D a y 1 4
-Waking up just off the coast near the Tasikoki Rescue Centre, we will go ashore and have a short tour of the impressive facilities at this NGO and hear all about their conservation programme and also have the chance to see orangutan, cackatoos, sun bears, monkeys, and other endangered wildlife.
- After a final swim and snorkel on the beach and then a short sail into Bitung Harbour, we will say a fond farewell to our crew and tour leaders and head to Manado City for either your onwards flights, or to start one of our special SeaTrek add-on programmes. Whatever your schedule, it will have been our pleasure having you on board.