Raja Ampat, Indonesia ~ Paradise Dancer ~
Paradise Dancer is the largest yacht in the Dancer Fleet coming in at 57 meters (188 feet) in length. Constructed out of wood, she is a three masted motor schooner inspired by the majesty of the US Schooners circa 1800.
The interior style is that of a “floating boutique resort” and features high end amenities guests expect of the Dancer Fleet!
All of the state rooms are larger than traditional liveaboard state rooms (at 180 sq. ft. each, more than 60% larger than an average Liveaboard cabin) and each cabin has private ensuite facilities and air conditioning. There is also a 470 square foot "Master and Commander Suite " at the stern of the main deck that features a king size bed, separate sitting area with a sofa, and table with chairs that reminds guests of the "captains quarters" from the schooner design that inspired her.
Following the standards of the Dancer Fleet®, the Paradise Dancer replicates Dancer Fleet service, amenities and the highest standards of safety in the industry.
Welcome to Raja Ampat
Based in Raja Ampat, Indonesia, November through March, the Paradise Dancer will explore the bio-diverse waters of the Raja Ampat Islands.
Paradise Dancer is a traditionally-crafted, threemasted wooden motor sailor, stretching 188 feet long, 39 feet wide and accommodating 18 adventurous divers. All of the state rooms are larger than traditional liveAboard state rooms (at 180 sq. ft. each, more than 60% larger than an average liveAboard cabin) and each cabin has private ensuite facilities and air conditioning. There is also a 470 square foot "Master and Commander Suite " at the stern of the main deck that features a king size bed, separate sitting area with a sofa, and table with chairs that reminds guests of the "captains quarters" from the schooner design that inspired her.
Charters will be 11 nights, 9 & 1/2 days of diving, 3-4 dives per day. Between October and March the Paradise Dancer will cruise out of Sorong exploring the virtually untouched areas Raja Ampat islands. This is one of the world's richest areas in terms of marine biodiversity and truly a pristine paradise just waiting for you to discover.
According to the vessel's managing partner, Guido Brink, "Our goal is to build the finest liveAboard yacht in the region and then put it in the best diving locations during the best diving season for that area."
About Raja Ampat:
As stunningly beautiful above water as it is below, Raja Ampat Indonesia (which literally translates as “The Four Kings”) has a startling diversity of habitats to explore. Each of these – from the stark wave-pounded slopes that drop away beneath the karst cliffs of Wayag and Uranie to the deep, nutrient-rich bays of Mayalibit, Kabui and Aljui to the “blue water mangrove” channels of Kofiau and Gam to the plankton-rich upwelling areas of Misool and the Dampier Strait – are home to unique assemblages of species that, when taken together, add to produce the most impressive species lists ever compiled for a coral reef system of this size.
Indonesia marine tourism, as a sustainable alternative to overfishing, mining, and logging, has the potential to play a key role in the conservation of Raja Ampat Indonesia’s spectacular underwater realm, while also creating real benefits for the local communities.
Raja Ampat 's Top Dive Sites:
The area known as Raja Ampat Indonesia (or the Four Kings) is an archipelago consisting of the islands of Misoool, Salawati, Batanta, and Wiageo which are surrounded by over 1,500 small islands and cays. Formerly known as Irian Jaya, this area is now part of the newly named West Papua province of Indonesia and is located on the northwest tip of Bird’s Head Peninsula, on the island of New Guinea.
According to the Conservation International Rapid Assessment Bulletin the marine life diversity for scuba diving in this area of Indonesia is considerably greater than all other areas sampled in the Coral Triangle. The Raja Ampat area is considered home to more than 1,000 fish species, 101 of which were previously unknown in Raja Ampat and four that are new to all of Indonesia. A world record 284 sightings on one single dive was set at Kofiau Island. A benchmark figure for an excellent dive site is 200 fish species sightings, this was surpassed on 51% of Raja Ampat dives! There were 537 coral species and 699 mollusk species - again another world high.
The variety of marine life can be staggering. Some areas boast enormous schools of fish and regular sightings of sharks, such as wobbegongs. In Mansuar, you may encounter large groups of manta rays and turtles. From the boat and often close to shore you may get the chance to don your snorkeling gear for some unforgettable interaction with resident pods of dolphins or even some passing whales. Other highlights include the innumerable war wrecks, both ships and planes (with new wrecks being discovered constantly),
The reefs of Raja Ampat Indonesia are just as varied as the marine life. There are vertical walls, reef flats, slopes, sea mounts, mucky mangroves, lagoons and pinnacles. The reefs are in pristine condition with miles of perfect hard corals and many varied colorful species of soft corals.
The diving on the Paradise Dancer LiveAboard is predominantly drift dives due to the moderate prevalent currents in the area which provide nutrients for the myriad fish and coral. Currents average moderate and vary from none to very strong. Due to these currents and the number of wrecks, Irian Jaya is not really considered a destination for absolute beginners, rather for divers with a few dives under their weightbelts looking to get away from the crowds. Visibility is normally very good but can vary and is normally at its best earlier in the day so your pre-breakfast dives are not to be slept through!
The pristine beauty of the area, both above and below the water is truly unrivalled. This success of area's staggering abundance of marine life can also be attributed to the areas incredibly low human population density. Its remote location and lack of infrastructure have inhibited the growth of tourism.
This is truly "Frontier Diving". Topside the beautiful islands stretch as far as you can see and are largely uninhabited. At night the lights of local fishing boats twinkle in the dark along the few inhabited shorelines while in more remote areas you may only see a distant spec of light over the entire horizon.
Not many liveaboards dive the Raja Ampat Indonesia area, making this adventure even more unique and special. The newly constructed Paradise Dancer LiveAboard is the perfect platform that delivers modern comforts and outstanding service to adventurers exploring this remote outpost of civilization.
Getting to your Paradise Dancer LiveAboard Raja Ampat Indonesia is a two step process.
Step 1: Arrange your international air transportation to one of three Indonesian Gateway cities—Manado, Bali, or Jakarta.
Step 2: Purchase a domestic air ticket from your Indonesian Gateway city to Jefman Airport in Sorong on Papua Island (formerly known is Irian Jaya). This is the starting point for your Paradise Dancer Raja Ampat Indonesia LiveAboard voyage.
Since the majority of the Indonesian domestic air carriers do not participate in global ticket distribution, Dancer Fleet has made arrangements with our local owners in Indonesia to provide a purchasing service for the domestic tickets on our guests behalf. In order to purchase tickets, guests will need to provide us with the guests name as it appears on their passport, nationality on passport, and the international flight details for the guests arrival and return home.
LIVEABOARD VACATIONS®, Dancer Fleet's travel specialist, will be happy to assist with hotel or flight arrangements. Be sure to contact LIVEABOARD VACATIONS for the most competitive airfares.
800-9-DANCER or 305-669-9391
Welcome to Komodo National Park:
The Paradise Dancer has added a special Komodo National Park Season for 2012 for all divers and especially fans of the yacht who have been asking for an expanded schedule featuring new locations that allow them to continue traveling on this fantastic LiveAboard. This area of Indonesia offers good diving any time of the year, but the Paradise Dancer will be operating a special limited season in 2012 from May 31st to August 28th as guests on board will visits the dive sites in and around The Komodo National Park Indonesia, part of the Lesser Sunda Islands.
Paradise Dancer will be offering unique 10 Day / 9 Night cruises featuring an enhanced itinerary that allows guests more time diving, more time in the signature area of the Komodo National Park and an opportunity to explore the newly discovered area of the Sangeang Islands Indonesia. To achieve this, each sailing of the Paradise will begin and end in Labuan Bajo which is only a short flight from Bali.
Many of our guests are avid photographers who like nothing more than hunting out weird and wonderful critters on the reef and sand. As part of the enhanced Komodo itinerary we have added two locations to the west of the Komodo National Park – Sangeang Indonesia, an island volcano to the north of East Sumbawa and Bima Bay Indonesia, an inlet that meanders down to Bima town on Sumbawa. There are two specific sites in both of these areas that are producing a dazzling array of rare creepy crawlies on a regular basis – “Estuary” on Sangeang and “Fuzzy Bottom” at the entrance to Bima Bay.
Vibrant local cultures, Komodo Dragons, colorful coral reefs and abundant marine life are perfectly paired with superior accommodations and a professional, attentive crew to make Indonesia and the Paradise Dancer LiveAboard the ideal choice for diving adventure in the Pacific
Komodo National Park's Top Dive Sites:
The Paradise Dancer LiveAboard's primary itinerary focuses on diving in Komodo National Park Indonesia which sits at the heart of the intersection between five major ocean currents, making it one of the most biodiverse places in the world. The park is home to more than 1,000 species of fish, 385 species of reef building corals, 70 species of sponges, 10 dolphin species, six whale species, giant sea turtles, dugongs, and various species of sharks and rays.
The underwater terrain ranges from thrilling vertical walls and pinnacles to tranquil sandy flats. The marine life provides a broad spectrum of experiences from heart-pounding encounters with mantas and other large pelagics down to the total satisfaction of spotting tiny pygmy seahorses.
The Paradise Dancer LiveAboard's new itinerary adds visits to Bima Bay and Sangeang Island Indonesia where the “black sand diving” rivals that of the Lembeh Straight. Paradise Dancer LiveAboard also offers several special “East of Flores” charters each year that take guests off the beaten path to visit the virgin areas of the Alor Islands Indonesia. Indonesia’s underwater diversity reveals itself again with fantastic black sand diving and a wide assortment of large animals, while beautiful topside scenery creates visually stunning transits between locations.
The Komodo National Park Indonesia is a destination that offers great LiveAboard diving year round and the Paradise Dancer will be exploring this area between May 31st to August 28th, 2012. The area is much drier than Bali Indonesia (shown in the table) and lies within one of the driest regions of Indonesia. A wetsuit is necessary, though some people choose more thermal protection (a 5mm suit) to ensure continued core temperature warmth throughout their visit.
About Komodo National Park:
The Komodo National Park Indonesia is part of the Republic of Indonesia and is located 8 to 9 degrees south of the equator between Java Indonesia on the West and Lombok Indonesia and the rest of the Lesser Sunda Islands Indonesia (Sumbawa, Flores, Sumba and Timor) on the East.
Komodo National Park Indonesia was established in 1980 and was declared a World Heritage Site and a Man and Biosphere Reserve by UNESCO in 1986. The park was initially established to conserve the unique Komodo dragon (Varanus komodoensis), first discovered by the scientific world in 1911 by J.K.H. Van Steyn. Since then conservation goals have expanded to protecting its entire biodiversity, both marine and terrestrial. The Komodo National Park encompasses 1,817 square kilometers of spectacular land and marine wilderness, including the islands of Komodo, Rinca, Padar, and Gili Montagne and their surrounding waters. The signature land attraction on your Komodo Dancer LiveAboard cruise will be an encounter with the world’s largest lizard - the flesh eating Komodo Dragon.
The majority of the people in and around the Park are fishermen originally from Bima (Sumbawa), Manggarai, South Flores, and South Sulawesi Indonesia. Those from South Sulawesi are from the Suku Bajau or Bugis ethnic groups. The Suku Bajau were originally nomadic and moved from location to location in the region of Sulawesi, Nusa Tenggara and Maluku, to make their livelihoods. Descendants of the original people of Komodo, the Ata Modo, still live in Komodo, but there are no pure blood people left and their culture and language is slowly being integrated with the recent migrants. There are about 583 languages and dialects spoken in the archipelago. Bahasa Indonesia is the national language. In all tourist destination areas English is the number one foreign language.
Little is known of the early history of the Komodo islanders. They were subjects of the Sultanate of Bima, although the island’s remoteness from Bima meant its affairs were probably little troubled by the Sultanate other than by occasional demand for tribute.
Bali/Komodo National Park Indonesia is a popular tourist destination and ensures a great land-based extension to your live-aboard vacation. A wide range of accommodations are available to suit a variety of tastes and budgets. Stay a few extra days and experience Bali’s one-of-a-kind culture and the natural hospitality of her people.
For Komodo National Park Indonesia itineraries embarkation and disembarkation occur in Labuan Baji (LBJ). To get there you will take a short domestic flight from Bali (DPS). At the conclusion of your cruise you will fly back to Bali. We recommend that guests arrive in Bali and overnight the day prior to embarkation. Domestic flights are not part of the cruise package. However, the Dancer Fleet will arrange these flights on your behalf and add the charges to your cruise invoice.
800-9-DANCER or 305-669-9391