Raja Ampat 1 - Raja Ampat 2 - Bunaken - Lembeh

Bunaken

The next morning at 5 Joe had prepared breakfast but I am not really a breakfeast person. I drank a coffe but didn't want to exagerate since I knew that I wouldn't have a restroom for a couple of hours.

We left at 6 AM while it was still pitch dark and a thunderstorm was going over us. This is the boat and I can tell you that I didn't feel very confident in it... it got better when the sun came out but still... I was glad when we arrived in Sorong after nearly 3 hours...
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At the airport Rome negotiated a little bit for me as my luggage was (again) too heavy. But I knew that in advance and the surcharge wasn't really that much. Went into the gate area and waited for my flight to Manado/Sulawesi.

For some reason I had gotten a window seat (normally I prefer aisle) but in this case I was happy about it. While we were still at the airport.
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Here you can see the Papua Paradise Resort
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This is the entire Birie Island so you can see that I was really in the middle of nowhere... :)
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Once again reflections on the water...
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Who would have guessed that this is a volcano? ;)
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A driver from TwoFish Divers was already waiting for me at the airport and we were on our way to the harbour. Along the way I saw this sign and thought that this sounded more swiss than indonesian.
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When we arrived at the island of Bunaken (took some time since the motor was overheated) it was low tide and we had to walk through the water. I hadn't known that and had put on jeans for the flight. I tried to move the jeans up as high as possible but still had to wash it afterwards... :D

The manager waited for me and after the formalities I was shown to my room. When I saw it I had the feeling like someone had thrown a bucket of icewater on me. It was broom closet ;) with shared bathroom. My shock must have shown on my face because I was immediately asked if something was wrong and I told the manager that I had thought that I had a bungalow (with my OWN bathroom!). She sent me to lunch and when I came back the problem was solved for the next 4 days as they had a bungalow available that I could have.

I will continue with the overwater adventures and do underwater afterwards. I stayed in Bunaken 4 nights and stayed out of the water for one entire day since my ears started to hurt. In addition to that I had problems with my sinuses. Earlier this year it looks like I got hayfever but I have never had any problems with it before and didn't think about having problems with it while travelling. I know better now and in the future I will have allergy meds with me whenever I am travelling.

When I started diving the next day I was put into a buddy team with the 'cajuns' Jackie and Hank. We were a good team. :) Since Jackei and Hank were interested in the island as well we decided to walk over to 'Bunaken-city' one afternoon. Which is what we did.

The bar at Two Fish Divers
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Jackie and Hand at the entrance to the resort
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Mangroves
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The 'highway' into the city. :D
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I have no idea what this is supposed to mean but I can read the work 'klakson' which is why I think that this tells people that they are not allowed to use the signal-horn.
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Children playing in front of a house
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This is something I always find funny in Indonesia: they sell gas in cola bottles...
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Washing mashine Bunaken-style
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Pets...
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This looked like 'main street'
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This is inside a beautiful church which was rather big.
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Not sure what these signs are supposed to say... ;)
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And this is the big church. I think it was catholic. There was a writing on it. I think it was 'Jesus loves you'
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This is the old entrance to the city that welcomed guests
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A B&B
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I think this gate was prepared by a school
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This is the new pier. The strange thing about it was.... once it was on the beach there was no connection whatsoever... no street leading into the village... it doesn't look like anyone uses it but I think it is in use
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Playing around in the sand (of the dirty beach)
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Nice house, huh? ;)
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And I admired the creativity they used for the flower pots. :)
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On the road back we came by the cemetery as well. This grave was astounding..
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Those were already the overwater highlights... ;) Like I said I wasn't there long. When I wasn't diving I spent my time again in my hammock (can you tell I love hammocks? :D).

While I was in Bunaken I did 6 dives. Part were walls which could have been nice but when you want to take pictures and someone is below you the bubbles are a pain in the až$%. We did have some strong currents too but fortunately I left out the worst ones (Jackie told me about them afterwards).
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One thing I loved in Bunaken were the giant sponges.
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Guess this is a pole dancing nudi... ;)
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Always on the watch-out
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Beautiful fish
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Don't get spooked it is just an oyster.... ;)
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Small white scorpion fish
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Goby on a whip coral
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Whenever I saw these I thought about footballs (soccer balls).
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The pufferfish looked comfortable...
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Love clownfish... :)
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And again giant clams
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And giant sponges
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Lots of fish
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Not exactly sure what this was but it was something that has been put there to create an artificial reef
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Sand eels
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This murray eel seems to have been hurt on the head
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Turtle
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Beautiful fan here as well
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Tis sponge looked like a heart to me
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I was fascinated by the different sizes of the clown fish...
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Swarm of catfish babies
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Aaaaaaand at last: the PONTOHI pygmy seahorse. It was really, really tiny and I was happy that somehow I found it on my pics.
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I forgot a couple of dive pics from Bunaken...
Goby being on watch (usually they are living with shrimp but the shrimps hide much faster than the gobies)


A mushroom shrimp. Best pic of them that I could ever take. I have always asked myself where their body is but obviously they don't really have one...


Rebreather divers. The interesting thing is that the guy to the right is the founder of an organization called 'shark guardian'. They try to help protect sharks by educating people. In Europe we have a similar organization called 'shark project' and since I know someone from sharkproject I established a contact between them because basically they are doing the same thing.


That turle seemed rather comfortable...


Anemone crab


And a last look on the reef....