Wayag Islands, the Icon of Raja Ampat
Most of Raja Ampat’s advertising shows the picture of Wayag Islands. This area is without doubt an excellence choice to be the icon of Raja Ampat (West Papua, Indonesia). Wayag is a cluster of uninhabited small islands. They are stunningly scattered like a maze above the crystal blue seawater. Magnificent view! Wayag is definitely the most beautiful area that we visited during our diving holiday in Raja Ampat.
We spent two nights in Wayag, arriving in late afternoon after heavy storm and waves to reach the islands. Our liveaboard boat had problem with its generator and we did not have electricity and fresh water for half day. It was terrible, however the splendid view of Wayag islands made up for it.
We climbed to the peak of Wayag to see the archipelago up of the hill. It was not easy since the hill formed of rocks inclining almost 90 degree. Oh well, I was exaggerating but I felt that way when climbing its rocky hill :D. It took us around 20 to 30 minutes to reach the peak to see the amazing view of Wayag islands. Our liveaboard boat was the only boat in the area back then, yup, only seven scuba divers and the boat crews in the stunning archipelago! What a luxury!
Its underwater beauty is as stunning as its above landscape: colorful corals with numerous of fishes. I also spotted numerous groupers, nudibranch, flatworm, orangutan crab and barracuda. We did five dives in the archipelago and had a tour around Wayag with our liveaboard’s zodiac boat. At night, the boat crew prepared a barbeque party at the beach in one of the islands.
Wayag is also prefect for snorkelers. After climbing the peak, you might want to jump into the sea! If you wish to visit Wayag (and you must if you were in Raja Ampat), the first option is taking a liveaboard diving holiday that cover a scuba-diving journey to the Central and Northern part of Raja Ampat like we did.
Another option to reach Wayag islands could be:
- Staying in Waisai, the capital of Raja Ampat in Waigeo Island. Waigeo Island can be reached from Sorong Port in the mainland West Papua by public ferries. The ferries operates daily with cost around 14-15 USD (price is subject to change). Other option is renting a private speedboat from Sorong Port, but the cost could be very expensive.
- When you are in Waisai, you can rent speedboat to reach Wayag Islands. The speedboat trip will take around three hours one way. The cost could be very expensive. What I have heard the price is around 700-1,000 USD. It is advised to visit Wayag in a group to share the cost. Mostly Indonesians do so when visiting Wayag. Some even asked other tourists whom they just met in Waisai to join the trip.
Of course the post of Wayag’s beauty is incomplete without showing what lays beneath. For photos of various marine species spotted in Wayag as you may find in the photo-slide. I use a “fish bible book“, to identify the species I took picture of. Hope you enjoy the photos 🙂