Newsletter September 2018
In Search of Island Perfection: Discovering the perfect beach beyond Komodo
By Tommy Schultz.
Stretching further than the width of the entire continental U.S., the more than 17,000 islands of Indonesia have a mind-boggling 54,000 kilometers of coastline.
That's a LOT of beaches - more than even the most dedicated beach-addict could hope to see in a lifetime. But to be totally honest, I am that beach addict.
So when I heard the Seven Seas was going on an exploratory mission to check out some secret beaches and coral reefs well outside the boundaries of Komodo National Park, I dropped everything to join the adventure.
We launched from Labuan Bajo on a cloudless blue-bird day, traversing the rugged islands of Komodo. We spent the first few dives in and around the legendary seamounts in the Park, watching a pack of cruising white tip sharks while they hunted, an unforgettable safety stop spent with a friendly eagle ray.
But Captain Wahyu and the Seven Seas crew had a weather eye trained to the west, waiting for the optimum conditions to sail across the Sape Strait.
We made our passage overnight, arriving in the pre-dawn hours on the coast of Sumbawa. Previous surf trips have brought me to the island, but until our trip on the Seven Seas I had never seen the sheltered bays lying beyond the reach of powerful Indian Ocean swells.
Waking up in Sumbawa, the rugged coastline rose up to frame our anchorage, a lone fishing boat the only other humans in sight.
We decided to hop in one of the Phinisi's three tender boats to see if we could find one of Sumbawa's famed 'secret beaches'.
Our journey passed limestone cliffs reminiscent of South Bali, dramatic caves carved out of the soft rock. Below the surface, flashes of brilliant color flickered as the morning sun illuminated a kaleidoscope of shallow coral reef.
Rounding the corner into a sheltered bay, a perfect crescent of white sand stretched for hundreds of meters, the gin-clear water shining sapphire.
The. PERFECT. Beach!
» CLICK HERE FOR TOMMY'S FULL TRIP REPORT AND A LOT MORE PHOTOS
"What a great trip! Good company, great crew and of course great aquatic life. 12 out of 10!"
Polly and John (Komodo, September 2018)
"To have a great crew, skilled bootie, a magician in the kitchen (Totok) with a bunch of wizards to help, constant beaming smiles (specially from Yovin) it is incredible. And on top of that we got amazing dives. Villages visits, walks on beaches, great conversation and new friends. Not forgotten the very able Karl. Thanks to all Seven Seas."
Susan (East of Flores and Komodo , June/July 2018)
» Click here for more testimonials.
Seven Seas opens the storybook on coral reef survival
By Rod Salm.
Since "retiring" one year ago, my wife Suze and I have put together three trips to Indonesia. We were there a month each time, two weeks of which were aboard the liveaboard Seven Seas exploring remote islands both above, but mostly below, the seas. Surrounded as we are on such trips by interesting and interested people makes each trip special: weíve seen volcanoes, both quiescent and boisterous, traditional villages, cultures, practices, dance, arts, and architecture. But most of all, weíve seen coral communities that donít even know they are supposed to be stressing from climate change. They are vibrant and robustly resilient. Some have ancient corals, the true methuselahs: boulder corals hundreds of years old, and table corals 50, 60, even 70 years old, which is significant for these most susceptible of corals.
All the while, I do what Iíve always done: keep my eyes wide open, try to see, really see, what Iím looking at, think about what I see, and ponder what it means for the future of coral reefs and how we manage them. Keeping hope alive can be challenging at times. But then one needs to be a zealous optimist to weather 50 years of marine ecotourism and conservation without being calloused into a cynic. While optimism can be a distraction and the equivalent of burying oneís head in the sand (only to drown later as sea levels rise), it can also be the fair wind that keeps us sailing through the doldrums of despair.
A trip such as any of the three completed this past year: Forgotten Islands, Spice Islands, and Komodo and East Flores certainly raises hope for the survival of coral reef communities and their plethora of species. And while itís true that I focus on unraveling the story of coralsí health and resilience, the enthusiastic eagle-eyed dive guides, including the cruise director Karl and his two dive leaders, Irwan and Jeffry, easily draw attention to the weird and wonderful critters they have found.
» CLICK HERE FOR ROD'S FULL REPORT AND MORE PHOTOS
Remaining Availability on 2019 Seven Seas Cruises
- Jan 20 - Feb 1, Raja Ampat, 7 available
- Feb 3 - 15, Raja Ampat, 12 available
- Mar 17 - 29, Raja Ampat, 3 available
- May 5 - 19, East of Flores & Komodo, 2 available
- Jul 13 - 25, Komodo Family Cruise, 2 available
- Jul 27 - Aug 10, Komodo & East of Flores, 10 available
- Aug 24 - Sep 7, Komodo & East of Flores, full boat available
- Sep 9 - 23, East of Flores and Komodo, 4 available
- Oct 20 - Nov 1, Forgotten Islands, 6 available
- Dec 22 - Jan 1, Raja Ampat, 12 available
See our live schedule for itineraries and available spaces until 2021.
The Seven Seas - Pertokoan Simpang Siur (Kuta Poleng) C1 - Jl. Setiabudi
Kuta, Badung 80361 - Bali - Indonesia