Gorgon Giant at Misool. (Raja Ampat, West Papua, Indonesia, November 2015.)
Gorgon Giant at Misool. (Raja Ampat, West Papua, Indonesia, November 2015.)

At the heart of the Coral Triangle

#Indonesia

Dear English-speaking readers, this page is an automatic Google translation from a post originally written in French. My apologies for the weird sentences and the funny mistakes that could gave been generated during the process. If you can read French, the original and correct version can be found here:

  Indonesia: Banda + Raja Ampat - October 2015

Here, there are clouds of sparkling fish and multicolored coral in a mess ... I take you diving in the waters of Misoolin the south of Raja Ampat.

Head to Raja Ampat and Misool!

Behind the Waow, the karst islets south of Misool. (Raja Ampat, West Papua, Indonesia, November 2015)
Behind the Wow, islets south of Misool Island. (Raja Ampat, West Papua, Indonesia, November 2015)

November 2, 2015. I'm aboard the Wow, a magnificent three-masted boat specially designed for diving cruises. After the Banda Islands and incredible encounters with Hammerheads, we now approach the south of Raja Ampat, with the island of Misool (Pulau Misool, in Indonesian).

Waow burningUpdated 2018. The Waow, this magnificent dive-cruise boat aboard which I had the chance to embark on in 2015, no longer exists ... 😢 He unfortunately burned and sank, in Cenderawasih Bay, Indonesia, at night January 31 to February 1, 2018. I refer you to the message posted on their Facebook page and on their site.

See as well :
→ All my articles on Raja Ampat
→ Raja Ampat: practical information to organize your trip

We discover a cluster of karst islets, capped with greenery. Typical landscape of Raja Ampat, reminiscent of the bay of Phang Nga in Thailand (Krabi, Koh Phi Phi).

The crew of the Waow maneuver, in front of the islets south of Misool. (Raja Ampat, West Papua, Indonesia, November 2015.)
The crew of Wow at the maneuver, in front of the islets south of Misool. (Raja Ampat, West Papua, Indonesia, November 2015.)
Nice, the walk in the middle of the islets! (South Misool, Raja Ampat, West Papua, Indonesia, November 2015.)
Nice, the walk in the middle of the islets! (South Misool, Raja Ampat, West Papua, Indonesia, November 2015.)
The karst cliffs plunge into the turquoise water. (South Misool, Raja Ampat, West Papua, Indonesia, November 2015.)
The karst cliffs plunge into the turquoise water. (South Misool, Raja Ampat, West Papua, Indonesia, November 2015.)
Secrets od Seram. Diving cruise on the Waow, from October 27 to November 8, 2015.
"Secrets of Seram" dive cruise itinerary on the Wow, from October 27 to November 8, 2015.

Here, we are at the heart of what is called "The Coral Triangle". It is the richest region of the world for marine biodiversity, home to 76% of the coral species! This triangle is broadly defined by the Philippines to the north, Borneo to the west, the Sunda Islands, Timor and Papua to the south, to the Solomon Islands to the east (see map below) .

At this point, the waters of the Pacific meet those of the Indian Ocean. In the middle, there are the islands of the Indonesian archipelago.

With the tides, monsoons, seasons, the influence of El Niño or La Niña, powerful and nutrient-laden currents rush into the straits between all these islands. The phenomenon is called in English The Indonesian Throughflow. A true brewing, source of life and a unique underwater profusion in the world! More than 1,400 species of fish and some 600 species of coral identified to date ...

The coral triangle. (Source: Wikimedia)
The coral triangle. (Source: Wikimedia)
Diversity of coral species in the world. (Source: WWF Australia report, May 2009)
Diversity of coral species in the world. (Source: WWF Australia, May 2009)
(Source: TheCoralTriangle.com)
(Source: TheCoralTriangle.com)

I am often asked why I always go back to Indonesia ... For the diver I am, one of the main reasons is the beauty of the underwater landscape and the exuberance of the coral reefs! Impossible to get tired of the seas of the Indonesian archipelago!

Underwater, it's even more beautiful

Two dive days are planned here, south of Misool, before we reach the north of the Raja Ampat archipelago for the end of the cruise. I prepared carefully my box the day before for my photos under the water. Misool has the reputation of owning a beautiful coral. I can not wait to see it !

First good surprise when I go under the surface: the water is hot, much warmer than the previous days when we were in the sea of Banda! We go from 24-25 ° C to 28 ° C! ! ! Raaah ... The non-divers do not realize, but the dive has nothing to do with swimming and these few small degrees make a big difference when we stay an hour immersed (and we're a super chilly like me ).

The rest ... It's just fantastic. 😮 I almost cry for joy in my mask, so beautiful. Everywhere, it explodes with life and colors. The reefs abound in gorgonians giant and there is a spectacular mass of fish.

Images are better than a long speech. To begin, I give you below a short video sequence, full of life (with scintillating fish balls that form and reform in an instant as in Nemo), which sums up well the underwater atmosphere that reigns at this place ...

At the site of Andiamo, where I made the small sequence above, we even saw a little further, in the blue, a squadron of rays mobulas ... (Sigh.)

Coral side, I let loose in photos, during these two days!

Gorgon Giant at Misool. (Raja Ampat, West Papua, Indonesia, November 2015.)

The coral in Misool is sumptuous. (Raja Ampat, West Papua, Indonesia, November 2015.)

The coral in Misool is sumptuous. (Raja Ampat, West Papua, Indonesia, November 2015.)

In Misool, there are fish everywhere! (Raja Ampat, West Papua, Indonesia, November 2015.)

In Misool, there are fish everywhere! (Raja Ampat, West Papua, Indonesia, November 2015.)

At Misool, the sea fans are huge! (Raja Ampat, West Papua, Indonesia, November 2015.)

In Misool, there are fish everywhere! (Raja Ampat, West Papua, Indonesia, November 2015.)

In Misool, there are fish everywhere! (Raja Ampat, West Papua, Indonesia, November 2015.)

In Misool, there are fish everywhere! (Raja Ampat, West Papua, Indonesia, November 2015.)

The coral in Misool is sumptuous. (Raja Ampat, West Papua, Indonesia, November 2015.)

The coral in Misool is sumptuous. (Raja Ampat, West Papua, Indonesia, November 2015.)

At Misool, there is healthy coral and fish everywhere! (Raja Ampat, West Papua, Indonesia, November 2015.)

I take photos, I go into video mode, I come back to the photos and I do not know where to turn ... 😯 😮

The splendor of coral

As I explained above, to Raja Ampat, we are right in the heart of Coral Triangleat the epicenter of marine biodiversity. You do not have to be a marine biologist to check it. It can be seen at first glance, on sites still preserved from degradation due to human activity.

For coral and fish, this translates into a hallucinating variety and density as I have rarely seen elsewhere, except perhaps at Komodo. I often use the word "profusion" to describe Raja Ampat's background and that's exactly it ... I do not get tired of it. These two days around Misool unfortunately pass too quickly!

The coral in Misool is sumptuous. (Raja Ampat, West Papua, Indonesia, November 2015.)

In Misool, there are fish everywhere! (Raja Ampat, West Papua, Indonesia, November 2015.)

The coral in Misool is sumptuous. (Raja Ampat, West Papua, Indonesia, November 2015.)

The coral in Misool is sumptuous. (Raja Ampat, West Papua, Indonesia, November 2015.)

The coral in Misool is sumptuous. (Raja Ampat, West Papua, Indonesia, November 2015.)

The coral in Misool is sumptuous. (Raja Ampat, West Papua, Indonesia, November 2015.)

The coral in Misool is sumptuous. (Raja Ampat, West Papua, Indonesia, November 2015.)

The coral in Misool is sumptuous. (Raja Ampat, West Papua, Indonesia, November 2015.)

The coral in Misool is sumptuous. (Raja Ampat, West Papua, Indonesia, November 2015.)

The coral in Misool is sumptuous. (Raja Ampat, West Papua, Indonesia, November 2015.)

Batfish at Misool. (Raja Ampat, West Papua, Indonesia, November 2015.)

At Misool, there is healthy coral and fish everywhere! (Raja Ampat, West Papua, Indonesia, November 2015.)

The coral in Misool is sumptuous. (Raja Ampat, West Papua, Indonesia, November 2015.)

I love when there is such a debauch of coral, with poiscaille everywhere! The little I saw of Misool impressed me a lot, I admit. I'll have to come back ... 😈

The more I dive, the more the beauty of the underwater world touches me, moves me. The more I am sensitive to his fragility too. Because these kind of reefs intact, sparkling health, where life proliferates, are fewer and fewer in the world. I feel privileged to have admired such beautiful.

😍

I was the guest of Wow from October 27 to November 8, 2015, for this diving cruise called "Secrets of Seram". All opinions expressed here remain 100% mine. 

  Indonesia: Banda + Raja Ampat - October 2015

  1. Indah sekali!
    During our last stay, I met people holding homestays in the region of Misool, and I more and more want to try the adventure (ground). To have…

    Countdown also started, third visit to Pulau Kri in 18 days.

    b

  2. Congratulations for the photos, it's dreaming. It's beautiful! To believe that the fishing explosives did not reach the corals here ..
    Just a quick question, this dive is beyond 18 meters? If yes, how much?

    Jeans

    1. @Jean: No, no destructive explosives in the corner. Part of the area is protected.

      The above images are a compilation of several dives around Misool and were taken between 6 and 30 meters ... But I am unable to say how deep precisely was this or that gorgon ... 🙄

      As everywhere, we dive to the depth where we are able to go, knowing that the underwater floor does not stop at 18 meters ... The organizers adapt in principle the outputs to the levels of the divers and will not bring level 1 or Open Water beyond 18 meters ... 🙄 In general, in areas as far away from any help, sticks to it for safety to recreational diving preferably without deco. It is therefore rare for dive tourists to go beyond 40 meters. The majority of the dives start, for their deepest part, in the zone of the 20-30 meters then one goes back progressively as the time passes.

      But in these waters, it is not so much the depth that can pose a problem (and it is enough to make your eyes full at all the depths), that the currents, which one must know how to manage, that the one is at 12, 18 or 26 meters ...

  3. @Corinne: still beautiful your photos! Well, we did not have the same temperatures in the far north! 😆
    Well, that's right, I do not get tired of seeing your underwater photos, and these beautiful corals. Hope we will keep them for a long time! Preserve the bottom of the oceans, and nature in general! Well done ! 🙄

    1. @Didier: thank you !!! Yes, I, too, every time I "rediscover" my photos by preparing a post, I tell myself that I was very lucky to have been able to contemplate all these wonders, while hoping that these funds will be underwater. still as beautiful in 15-20 years and beyond ...

  4. Waow: this cruise is aptly named.
    These beautiful images that you show us give a crazy desire, that of immersing himself.
    I'm going to Mimpi Indah in March, but I'm already thinking afterwards when I see these cruising images.
    Thank you for making us dream at first, and to give substance to these dreams later. 😉
    I look forward to the next comments accompanied by these photographic wonders.
    Eric S

    1. @ Eric S: thank you for this small comment very nice ... The Mimpi Indah in Bangka, North Sulawesi, is a good base to turn the dream into reality! And already dream of the following trips ... Have a nice stay !!!
      8)

  5. It's true the photos are beautiful, I'm in the caribbean perso ... I'm actually "live" some comments, the brilliance of colors, the majesty of ballista and royal angels, the clouds of blue dolphins ... a turtle has even made us the honor of his presence ... it is beautiful our infra planetes pity that my camera has failed me and my camera has problems ... suddenly I fell on a Mobo ... Mexican go pro ... but what I just read confirms me ... I'm going to go diving in Indonesia ...

  6. Waouhh sublime, I'm absolutely mad about gorgonians and soft corals. I will be at Raja Ampat in a short time, and although I do not dive, I feel that I will take full eyes in snorkeling 8). Thank you for these photos and videos.

  7. Hello and thank you Corinne for your blog and the time you spend there.

    This will help me a lot for my itinerary in November.

    Continue like that bravo.

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