Leaving to see the wonderful Raja Ampat

Today we had to pack everything. All of our bags and food, water, etc. We were pretty excited to finally getting out from the house and see Raja Ampat as we should. We had to go first to Una’s office to get the permission to Raja Ampat. Everyone who enters the islands have to pay this fee. It’s a very expensive IDR 1,000,000 for tourists and IDR 500,000 for locals. It is god for a year though which isn’t bad in case someone wants to come back within a year, they don’t have to pay this again. After saying goodbye from Una and Olivia, we finally got on the boat. It takes 2 hours from Waisai to Pyanemo but we had 3 engines which is quite fast. On the way the sky was very cloudy and I was mumbling to myself, ‘please brighten up’.. and it did. By the time we got to Pyanemo and walked up the more than 300 stairs, we got to see Pyanemo’s view at its best. It’s incredible and the pictures on the internet don’t lie. It is exactly the same breathtaking view of little islands and coral reefs around as they promise you on google. We took our time and when we left I knew, I won’t ever forget this day.
Side note: people in Raja Ampat look completely different than people in other parts of Indonesia. They look more like African people. It is really strange how they look so different. This is still Indonesia yet it looks like it’s a different country (just by looking at the people).
Our next stop was downstairs to a little ‘market’ where you could buy endangered coconut crabs (alive, IDR 350,000/crab) and of course, coconut. We had one each and just enjoyed the view, the people and our boat driver’s Rasta music 😁. I wanted to see the star lagoon which is a beautiful green water lagoon and it has a star shape. We had to drive 5 mins and walk more steps but this time all types were made out of coral. It is a bit of a challenge but it’s worth it for sure! It does have a star shape and it calls you to jump in (except it’s a bit high). It was very hot and I could not think of anything else but to jump and swim in that beautiful green coloured water. But thankfully next stop was a gorgeous white beach where Harry made us lunch and we (Katherine and I) snorkelled in the meantime. Katherine is a dive master and she showed me where to go. It was amazing!! Like hundreds and hundreds of fish was swimming in a circle but not the little ones… big ones. It was fantastic. Then we saw lots of beautiful colourful fish and lovely corals and I just hope it’s only gonna get better as we visit the different islands. After lunch and snorkelling and sunburn on my face, we headed back to Arborek. It’s a tiny island with a village in the middle and lots of homestays around the edge. The island is so small, you can actually walk around within 7-15mins 😋 Brian introduced his friend to us who has a homestay here which looks absolutely amazing. He has these wooden houses by the beach and his kitchen has sand instead of a floor and his got like wooden sun chairs. It’s really very cute. Since our plan is to camp everywhere, we asked if we can camp but since we would use their water for shower and toilet, etc he asked for IDR 500,000. We can’t pay that much… we wanted to camp so we don’t have to pay… in the end we negotiated the price down to IDR 350,000 which is still more than we could afford but since Brian gave us his boat for 3million, we agreed to pay. Brian is great. He speaks a bit of English and his got a beautiful homestay 15mins from Pyanemo. If you’d ever come here, you should definitely contact him. He has instagram: travelrajaampat.
It’s great here. It’s so quiet and peaceful. We hear the waves and we made some fire. We sat by the beach and just watched the stars. Our plan for tomorrow is to go and see the manta rays ☺️ and snorkel a lot. Weather is promising, clear sky, no clouds. Let’s hope it stays like this

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