Whale Shark & Wildlife Watching in Indonesia
- Vessel: Katharina
- Where: West Papau, Indonesia
- Duration: 10 days
- Embark: Kaimana, West Papua - 23 January 2023, 08:00
- Disembark: Sorong, West Papua - 1 February 2023, 13:00
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Explore the coasts of West Papau and the Raja Ampat archipelago in Indonesia with traditional boat Katharina.
Anchor in bays of limestone spires as you snorkel mysterious caves, world famous coral reefs and swim with manta ray, sea turtles and whale sharks. Enjoy traditional villages as the local people welcome guests with open arms performing fascinating traditional Indonesian dance rituals.
Trek through the rainforest with your guide in search of the Bird of Paradise and watch the sunrise over the stunning volcanic landscapes as you breathe in the fresh ocean air. Enjoy tropical island exploration at its finest with a bucket list adventure holiday on board traditional Indonesian vessel Katharina.
- Traditional Indonesian Villages
- Luxury All-inclusive Adventure
- World famous Coral Reefs
- Rainforest trekking
- Private ensuite cabins
- Sail area & highlights
- Life on board
- Sample menu
- Travel planning
- The boat
- What's included
- Boat schedule
A day to day guide
D A Y 1
Start your Indonesian adventure holiday on the island of West Papau in Indonesia. A crew guide will meet you at the airport and take guests directly to the boat. The first stop once guests have settled into their cabins will be Triton Bay.
D A Y 2
Cruise through undisturbed coves, caves and lagoons as the boat heads north through the Namatote Passage. The high cliffs here are a gallery to prehistoric art with cave paintings, glyphs and pictorial signs left by nomads high on the rocks. Spend the afternoon with ultimate tropical relaxation making use of the boats kayaks and paddle boards or sitting back on board with a book.
D A Y 3
The limestone landscape of Triton Bay is full of natural wonders. Tall cliffs and numerous islands are separated by blue lagoons and narrow channels. Local fisherman collect baitfish here and keep them in nets attached to specially built platforms known as “bagans”. These baitfish nets attract the graceful whale sharks so if we are lucky, spend a couple of hours swimming with these magnificent creatures.
After lunch, take the boats kayaks and paddle boards to explore the limestone landscape and beautiful white sandy beaches before heading west to begin our overnight crossing to the west coast of Papua.
D A Y 4
The primal scene of a jungle waterfall where a roaring river surrounded by rainforest pours into the sea is quite a sight to wake up too. Enjoy breakfast in this picturesque anchorage as you spend some time here swimming though the waterfall and exploring the nearby coral reefs.
D A Y 5
After a freshly prepared buffet style breakfast, head ashore where guests can visit a local village, meeting the residents as they share their traditions of fishing and growing nutmeg.
Back on board the boat, cruise to a picturesque cluster of tropical islands where guests can explore the beaches and crystal clear waters with vibrant coral reefs.
D A Y 6
Let the crew cruise overnight as guests wake up on the southern Raja Ampat island of Misool, a picturesque archipelago of forest covered limestone islets teeming with colourful reefs. Swim through a fascinating dome-roofed sea cave with giant stalagmites and stalactites. Next, explore the mysterious stingless jellyfish lake, one of only 20 in the world where these incredible creatures live.
After lunch, take the boats tender’s to explore the many bays and inlets along the coast watching for native bird species before stopping to see some prehistoric cave paintings said to be between 3000-5000 years old. As the evening draws in, enjoy a beach BBQ and bonfire with the crew with singing and dancing late into the night.
D A Y 7
Today, guests can enjoy a relaxing day of snorkelling, swimming, exploring the coastline by paddle board or kayak or kick back with a book on the white sand beaches and enjoy a little slice of tropical paradise. Enjoy dinner aboard as the crew cruises north to reach the island of Waigeo for the first of our tropical bird encounters.
D A Y 8
An early start begins before dawn as guests travel to a local village and are met by local guides to take us on our first jungle trek in search of the beautiful Wilson’s Bird of Paradise performing mating rituals upon the forest floor. As the rainforest wakes, our walk back to the boat will be accompanied by the sounds of the rising animals where there will be the opportunity to watch a number of bird species along the way.
A freshly prepared buffet style, late breakfast sets guest up for the rest of the day as guests enjoy snorkelling, swimming and exploring the reefs and islands of the local area by kayak or paddle board.
D A Y 9
Today is the second and final early morning as guests head off in search of the Red Bird of Paradise high up in the canopy of the rainforest. Extroverted, show-offs, these fascinating creatures dance and squawk their way through the trees trying to impress their female friends.
Return to Katharina for breakfast as guests prepare to snorkel some of Raja Ampat most impressive coral reefs of the Dampier Strait. If the tides are in favour, there may be the opportunity to watch some larger marine animals, attracted by the currents bringing nutrient rich water.
End the day on a local island where the local village kids show guests around their beautiful village and join the locals to perform some impressive traditional folk dancing. Tonight sees an impressive farewell dinner with the captain and crew to mark the end of your Indonesian adventure.
D A Y 1 0
Spend the morning anchored off the white sandy beach of a small tropical island where guests can enjoy a final swim and snorkel before our last lunch onboard. The crew will take you offshore to the airport for your onward travel.
All voyages for Katharina
Guest berths: 14 Rig: Gaff Ketch
Built in 1995 on the Indonesian portion on the island of Borneo, Katharina was originally planned for use a commercial freighter but caught the eye of her current owner with her elegant sailing lines and sleek hull shape.
They saw her transformation into a charter vessel as an exercise to conserve her Indonesian authenticity and in 2014, employed local craftsmen to complete a beautiful interior refit. Working alongside her sister ship Ombak Putih, (larger but equally as beautiful!), they are both fine examples of some of the few original boats that still sail these waters.
Now led by Captain Ferdi, Katharina takes guests on skippered sailing holidays to explore the cultural heritage, natural wonders and wildlife of the Indonesian islands.
Read more about what to expect from life on board Katharina.
The top deck is a raised sun-lounging area sitting on the roof of the saloon and bar, giving guests secluded relaxation and stunning views. On the main deck, Katharina is rigged traditionally to make best use of the wind as the weather permits. A generous and comfortable saloon and bar sit to the stern of the boat while a large dining table sits under a canopy at the bows, perfect for alfresco dining under the stars.
Below decks, her interior refit has been to a high standard with spacious cabins and campion-ways. Hand-crafted beds using local timber and locally made soft furnishings give the boat an authentic Indonesian feel. There are six private ensuite cabins for guests in a combination of double beds, twin bunks and three berth cabins.
The galley sits to the stern and is really where this boat comes to life. With 12 crew on hand, you won’t have to a lift a finger with freshly-prepared meals showcasing the very best of Indonesian cuisine and hospitality.
Deck planMore about Katharina
Life on board
Indulge in a world of adventure as you discover the natural beauty of the Indonesian archipelago from the water. Walk barefoot along sandy shores, enjoy delicious local cuisine and wonder at the endemic wildlife species across the islands.
Life on-board Katharina is one of traditional Indonesian culture, from the welcoming local crew to the fresh local delicacies, fascinating endemic species and breath-taking Indonesian landscapes. The local people are at the heart of everything that Katharina does. From employing local people to sail her to the traditional craftsmen that built her, the networks and connections that have been nurtured by the crew are heart-warming. Visit remote villages where you’re greeted by running children, laughing and joking, sharing their local crafts. Dance around the fire, play music, exchange gifts and wonder their fascinating corner of paradise.
Sleeping and Relaxation
With six private, air-conditioned en-suite cabins full of traditional Indonesian charm, spacious communal area, alfresco dining areas and sun-lounge deck, Katharina offers plenty of seclusion and relaxation. There are kayaks, snorkel gear and SUP’s for guests to use and the crew can arrange extra activities ashore from kite-surfing to cookery classes.
There are a total of 12 crew on Katharina so you really won’t have to lift a finger. From home-made cocktails, freshly prepared Indonesian cuisine, there is even a host to take care of any extra excursion planning.
Read more about what to expect from your Indonesian sailing holiday aboard Katharina here.
- Full board including all meals, soft drinks, tea, coffee and snacks. (Starting and ending with lunch on first and last days)
- All Indonesian tour leaders
- All park fees, cultural performances, local guides and off-boat activities.
- Welcome drink, cold towel upon boarding and each time guests return from off-boat excursions.
- Daily room cleaning
- Two pieces of laundry each day
- Towels and linens
- Complimentary cotton backpack, luggage tag, fan and stainless steel water (which guests are encouraged to take home)
- First aid kit containing all major medicines
- Sunscreen lotion
- Soaps, shampoo and conditioner
- Beach BBQ
- Free wine, beer and selected cocktails at the beach BBQ
- Selected wines with special farewell dinner
- All port fee
- Use of on-board TV and multimedia facilities
- Library of books, kids games and TV documentaries
- Use of all facilities on board including snorkelling gear, paddle boards, kayaks, board games
- Use of sleeping bags for sleeping on deck
- All transfer to and fro the boats
- Fuel surcharge fee
WHAT’S NOT INCLUDED
- Domestic flights
- Transit hotels
- Alcoholic drinks outside of specials dinners and beach BBQ
- Crew and tour leader tips
- Incidental expenses on land (souvenirs, private purchases etc)
Are all meals included?
Yes - all meals are included in the price (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner, Hot Drinks)
Are there any added extra's?
No, unless you go ashore. Excursions are not included.
Can you cater for dietary needs?
Vegetarian, halal, kosher, children’s fare, low fat dishes, allergies, etc. However, we must be notified in advance of any special needs so we can make arrangements.
What language is spoken onboard?
What are the sleeping arrangements?
(All cabins are ensuites) 2 x double cabins, 2 x triple cabins (one double bed & one upper single bunk), 2 x twin bunk cabins.
How many toilet/showers does she have?
There are six ensuites with each cabin.
Is there WIFI?
No! Time to disconnect from the modern conforms and reconnect with nature!
Can I charge my phone/Camera?
Are there life jackets provided?
Are Waterproofs provided?
Do I need sailing experience?
No, absolutely not! Just a need for adventure.
Will I be sea sick?
Everyone reacts differently but we recommend if you are at all worried to take some medication 24 hours before departure. Ginger tea and biscuits also help with sea sickness.
Is bedding included?
All bedding and shower towels are included. Please bring your own swimming towels.
From: Kaimana, West Papua
To: Sorong, West Papua
To see where the ports are, along with your likely sailing area, please view the sail area & highlights.