Kayaking Raja Ampat – Hidden Paradise
One of the best ways to truly experience the ocean is by kayak. Being low in the water, without the noise from an engine, is the best way to get close to nature. Thankfully, Indonesia is one of the world’s top destinations for kayaking.
Kayaking is an easy going activity that everyone in the family can enjoy. Although many people think of river rapids when they think about kayaking, that is not what we are talking about here. Ocean kayaking is a safe and fun sport best enjoyed in calm and quiet conditions. Raja Ampat offers the perfect environment to enjoy paddling in the ocean. With thousands of islands and islets to explore, there is always a beautiful adventure to be had.
Kayaking in Lagoons
Nestled on the west side of West Papua Province, the islands of Raja Ampat are karst limestone structures. These sharp and jagged rocks are porous and have been carved by eons of ocean movement and rain. These geological conditions have created picture perfect lagoons throughout the area. The protected waters of these lagoons boast flat, calm water during most of the year. These are ideal waters for kayaking. The shores are filled with rich forest growth that is home to a large variety of birds and other wildlife. There is nothing more relaxing than paddling a kayak into a quiet lagoon and listening to the wonderful bird songs. Lucky adventurers may even spot the giant hornbill, a giant bird that is native to the area.
One of the most interesting attractions of the area are the beautiful mangrove forests. Kayakers can paddle in the shallow water to study the intricacy of the trees and the beautiful coral underneath. These mangrove areas are a nursery for many fish as well as baby sharks and rays. The mushroom shaped islands of Raja Ampat offer a unique site for kayakers who can paddle underneath many islands to see the erosion process at first hand. It’s always a treat to spot hard working mollusks called chitons busily eating the soft limestone rock.
Kayaking Aboard the Samata
On the Samata Luxury yacht we have kayaks available for our guests to use. Early mornings and late afternoons are the best times to explore as the sun is less direct during that time. All of our anchorages boast beautiful surroundings and calm lagoons. Our crew are familiar with the ins and outs of area and can guide you in the right direction. We always recommend our guests to bring their mask and snorkel when kayaking in order to explore the beautiful reefs underneath. Of course don’t forget the beaches! With an abundance of fringing reefs around every island, it can be difficult to approach many beaches with a boat. However, the shallow draft of a kayak is the perfect vessel to visit this pristine white sand paradises.
If spending time kayaking in beautiful landscapes and the sweet sound of bird song sounds good to you, then a trip to Raja Ampat is for you! There are very few places in the world that offer such a diverse amount of natural attractions that Raja Ampat does. It’s one of the jewels of Indonesia and one of our favorite cruising grounds. We can’t wait to guide you through one of the last “best” places on Earth. If you would like to see more of this beautiful destination, please read our “Incredible Beaches of Raja Ampat” entry.