Seven Seas - East Indonesia Liveaboard
Newsletter July/August 2007

Our latest cruises

Our 3 last cruises (in July) were in Komodo National Park and saw many old and new friends, including Howard and Michelle Hall, who were checking out the reefs and logistics for their next underwater IMAX film project, scheduled for shooting in October 2008 using the Seven Seas as the expedition platform. The large pelagics schooling off castle rock, provide probably a bit too much fast and large movement for the enormous IMAX 3D camera (which weighs 1,300 pounds!!), but the fantastic reef around crystal bommie and the hawksbills feeding on sponges were the subjects that the Halls were looking for and also the boat and crew passed their tests with flying colors! In general the diving in Komodo in July was great, including some great pelagic action in the North and Mantas and critters in the South. Robert Delfs had another productive week, shooting close and personal with his wide angle. This goes to show that even with bulky underwater camera's, with the right guides at the right tides and with just the right bit of current, you can be so completely absorbed in fish bowls that it feels dizzying. Check out 3 of Robert's latest pictures and feel the fish!

White tip shark, Crystal Bommie (2007)
White tip shark, Crystal Bommie (2007)

Pair of Giant Trevallies hunting in schooling fusiliers (2007)
Pair of Giant Trevallies hunting
in schooling fusiliers (2007)
Giant Trevally hunting in school of rainbow runners (2007)
Giant Trevally hunting
in school of rainbow runners (2007)

Next Year

The Komodo season for next year is filling up and Jos, Lida and their kids are planning to be onboard for a couple of back-to-back trips in July 2008. Please think about joining them and contact us soon to secure a space for the cruise of July 16-23. We are filling up real fast now for 2008, the first half of the season is booked solid, until docking in June. After that we have some availability again for Komodo, but not much as you can see below. Also some more Alor-Wetar expeditions in the plans, upon special request.

June 2008 Route Dep from Spaces Remark
23/06 - 03/07 Bali to Komodo Bali OPEN guaranteed
July 2008 Route Dep from Spaces Remark
05/07 - 14/07 Komodo National Park Labuan Bajo full Family Cruise
16/07 - 23/07 Komodo National Park Labuan Bajo 12 guaranteed
26/07 - 06/08 Alor Maumere enquiry end Larantuka
August 2008 Route Dep from Spaces Remark
08/08 - 19/08 Alor Larantuka enquiry end Maumere
22/08 - 31/08 Komodo National Park Labuan Bajo 15 guaranteed
September 2008 Route Dep from Spaces Remark
02/09 - 12/09 Komodo National Park Labuan Bajo enquiry flexible

The cruise currently underway in the Alor-Wetar area, generated much excitement already and over the phone, the guests asked for two full new charter bookings only 2 days into their trip! Another enquiry came in for an Alor-Wetar charter also so it seems that we will be spending some time there again next year in July-August! After our Komodo-Alor season we are full until December 2008, which is the first available slot in our Raja Ampat season of 2008-2009.

New tourism fees Raja Ampat

Later this year, the Raja Ampat government plans to launch a new fee system that is accompanied with a tag system. The annual tag will normally be valid from the 1st January until the 31st January of the following year. The tag will cost Rp 500,000 per person for all foreigners, and Indonesian citizens can opt to pay Rp 250,000. This tag fee is included in the US$ 150 which Seven Seas charges for your combined port clearance and conservation fees. Conservation International and CORAL have worked hard to set up support for this new fee system. Seven Seas will ensure advance purchase for all our guests. The proceeds from this fee will be used by the fee fund managers for Community Development (40%), Conservation Management and Patrol (40%) and Administration (20%). We will update you when the relevant new website will be up. This website aims to promote diving in Raja Ampat and provide information on the fee and fund.

New web site features

Our website has got some new features. We have made an information package about Seven Seas with some maps, and background information. You can download this from our travel info page and Robert Delfs also helped us with some new pictures of the interior and lounge decks, check out a photo galleries slide show. Then there is a new short movie on the first page, click the little arrow on the picture of the boat and get a feel for a dive experience in Raja Ampat. This was made by the German film team who came out to Raja Ampat last year and it was part of a TV show that was aired by the Nord Deutsche Rundfunk recently.

Stew Esposito will be back for the Banda and Raja Ampat Season

Good news: starting in September, Stew will join our team again and lead some of the cruises for the Banda and Raja Ampat season!

The Seven Seas - Kuta Poleng D7 - Jl. Setiabudi Simpang Siur - Kuta 80361 - Bali - Indonesia