Sailing Indonesia: The Spice Islands
Be transported back in time on this 10- to 12-day Indonesian cruise as the 24-guest Ombak Putih or 12-guest Katharina sailing vessel winds her way among remote palm-fringed coral islands, majestic rainforests and huge smoking conical volcanoes. The Moluccas are the original Spice Islands of Indonesia: a magical destination, beautiful, remote and unspoiled, with a long, fascinating and turbulent history. For millennia these fertile volcanic isles were the world’s only source of the holy trinity of rare spices: cloves, nutmeg and mace, which were once worth their weight in gold. Sail Indonesia and relish the opportunity to swim, snorkel, kayak and stand-up paddleboard in waters rich in marine life.
On the main itinerary, go in search of Wallace and his living treasures, taking in firsthand experiences of unique ecology. Visit some of the places that most fascinated Wallace: the Spice Island of Ternate, Wallace’s base for his eastern travels and once the center of the world clove trade; the mysterious island of Halmahera where Wallace discovered evolution by natural selection; and the remote Raja Ampat Islands with their pristine, incredibly diverse coral reefs and up to five species of Birds of Paradise. Also hope to see giant clams, massive manta rays, humongous coconut crabs, endangered black macaque monkeys and possibly dugongs.
On the alternative Exquisite Birds of Paradise itinerary, seek out Indonesia’s vibrant and unique birds in their hotspots. Amateur birders to experienced ornithologists will appreciate this fantastic sailing expedition through the remote, rainforest-clad islands of northern Raja Ampat and North Maluku, including a two-night stay at the famed Weda Resort on Halmahera. Raja Ampat is one of the most noteworthy ecological niches on the planet and Halmahera is where some of the world’s rarest and least-known birds occur.
Passage is aboard the 24-guest sailing vessel Ombak Putih or 12-passenger ketch Katharina. These traditional pinisi-style ships offer romance, Indonesian culture, rustic charm and superior service, and are therefore also AdventureSmith favorites for private charter cruises. Complimentary onboard snorkeling equipment, kayaks, stand-up paddleboards, fishing gear and tender boats equip guests with daily adventures among a string of Indonesian islands.