Raja Ampat SEA Centre
Daytrip to Penemu and the Fam Islands in Raja Ampat
Departure time from the resort: 8:00am
Arrival time back at the resort: approx. 4:00pm
Time to first dive site: around 1hr 15 min.
Included: Morning snacks, drinks, island tour, picnic lunch.
What to bring: Plenty of sun cream and a hat. And don’t forget your camera.
Minimum pax: 4
Penemu and the Fam Islands group contain some of the most beautiful coral reefs in Raja Ampat. These remote reefs are bursting with colour and life. We start out from Papua Explorers Resort by boat in the morning. After a boat ride of approximately one hour westward, we arrive at the Fam Islands.
On this day trip our first dive is Melissa’s Garden; considered to be amongst the oldest and most pristine coral reefs in Raja Ampat. Not just a garden in name, this reef truly seems a never ending garden of soft and hard coral. The top of the reef is at 8-12m depth and nestled between 3 small limestone islands. The reef then slopes down to a sandy bottom at 25 meters. Everything from wobbegongs and reefsharks, Ribbon Eels, to schooling fusiliers, pinjalo snapper, anthias, as well as surgeonfish can be found at Melissa’s Garden. And for macro lovers this site hosts an abundance of Pygmy Seahorses, Ghost Pipefish, Mushroom Coral Pipefish and Nudibranchs. Melissa’s Garden is also a beautiful snorkeling site.
Our surface interval is taken at Fam Lagoon, on Penemu Island, also called Piyanemo. We’ll have some refreshments and snacks first. After that, a short walk up the wooden stairs will reward you with the a panoramic view across the lagoon and the Halmahera Sea. In the photos below for instance, you can see how beautiful it is. But in reality it is even more spectacular!
Our second dive or snorkeling session is a short distance away at Penemu Wall. Again an amazingly colourful reef, that host many different species of sponges can, huge gorgonian fans (up to 3m across!) whilst in the shallows yet another brightly colored coral garden awaits you.
Lunch is either at a deserted sandy beach, where beautiful snorkeling is just a few meters off shore, and impressive monitor lizards observe you from a distance (and happily pose for photos as well!), or at the incredible Batu Rufus. Batu Rufus is a large limestone formation with a fringing coral reef and lagoon inside. Therefore it is a breathtakingly beautiful location. With a small entry through the rocks, the inner lagoon opens up into a natural swimming pool. Luncheoning at a small beach, you can swim in the emerald green lagoon. Or simply turn around and face the blue waters of the open ocean as the waves lap the shore.
This nice picnic lunch concludes our adventure on the Fam Islands. We happily head back to Papua Explorers, certainly with lots of new impressions and tales to tell.