I love liveaboard diving. The convenience of having your hotel move around with you means no long trips on uncomfortable speed boats, but can also mean incredible service, ideal for the lazy diver such as myself. Having a staff member help you into your gear, onto the skiff/rib, back on board the main boat, remove your equipment from your back, hand you a towel and cup of hot cocoa… It cannot be beat.
Indonesia is a great country to enjoy a liveaboard cruise. Comprised of over 18000 islands, many of which are unacceptable by plane, this sprawling country has some of the world’s best diving. Liveaboard diving allows guests to reach more remote areas; these are often the sorts of places where the reef is in great condition, he pelagic species roam free and the water clarity is undisturbed by run offs etc.
Here are some of our favourite liveaboards in Indonesia. Several of these boats offer various itineraries depending on time of year, but none will disappoint even the most seasoned diver.
Accommodating 18 guests in the individually air-conditioned, en suite cabins, The Amira offers ample space for relaxation both in the sun and the shade, a comfortable lounge and TV room, a computer room, equipped with computers and DVD/CD burners for editing and saving photographs, and a spacious dining room. The dive deck is well thought out and spacious. Equipment is kept mounted to a tank throughout the trip. The tanks are refilled in their wracks. The service is outstanding, the food is freshly prepared to suit the requirements and preferences of the guests.
The Dewi Nusantara
Dewi Nusantara was purposely designed to cater to those who seek quality, safety, caring service and the most elegant schooner available. The dive team of 5 experienced dive instructors and masters tends to the diving needs of a maximum of 18 guests, ensuring small groups. The spacious en suite rooms really have the feeling of an upmarket hotel. The tenders are fiberglass and have ladders, making exiting the water easy and comfortable. Equipped with a photography room and washbasin, every convenience is provided. The staff are extremely friendly, helpful and accommodating. The food is delicious and abundant, with snacks served between dives. Itineraries include top dive destinations in the eastern part of Indonesia.
The Blue Manta
This 45m longth steel hulled vessel accommodates a maximum of 18 guests in 14 spacious modern cabins. Offering all the luxuries one may expect- spacious sun deck, great comfortable lounging areas, purpose built camera preparation room and large dive deck, The Blue Manta is a modern take decorated with clean white lines and beautiful en suite bathrooms. The staff are very experienced and service orientated, and cater to guests every whim.
At over 50 meters in length and with just 9 guest cabins the Waow is one of Indonesia’s premier liveaboards, on board you’ll quickly notice that special care has been taken in the detail of this vast vessel with extra levels of guest comfort in mind. There’s a spacious saloon for relaxing between dives, a great restaurant and bar area for evening socialising, and a large and comfortable sun deck to soak up the atmosphere as you pass by uninhabited islands, remote reefs and beautiful topside vistas. With experienced passionate staff, this liveaboard really combines spectacular hospitality with unforgettable diving itineraries.
Damai I and Damai II
Arguably two of the most luxurious liveaboards of the size in Indonesian waters, the Damai vessels offer outstanding accommodations, service and itineraries. The Damai II is a slightly newer vessel and even more luxuriously finished. The large cabins are all are furnished with en-suite toilets and showers. The vessels have been designed with three large deck areas for relaxing in both the sun or shade and for enjoying relaxing massage and spa treatments. Delicious food, exceptional service, relaxing spa treatments and exclusive diving itineraries make these boats deserving of this list.