Cendrawasih Bay

Cruise Key’s whale sharks, manta rays, great macro life/ marine diversity, healthy reefs, wreck diving, beginner and advanced divers, off the beaten track...

In Cenderawasih Bay the main drawcard is the presence of numerous whale sharks. Their behaviour here is unlike anything you may have seen elsewhere. Where whale sharks are normally seen on their own, mouths agape to filter feed on plankton, Cenderawasih Bay whale shark encounters are completely different. Here they gather together below fishing platforms, dining on the small fry that slip out of the fishing nets or are otherwise discarded by the fishermen.


Some of the photographic opportunities such behaviour offers to scuba divers are stunning. Imagine several whale sharks in your field of vision, from small juvenile to colossal mature adult, some hanging vertically in the water to access the fry near the surface. Spectacular!


It is not all about the marine megafauna in Papua Province and West Papua. There is no shortage of fascinating dive sites for those who prefer to nose around the substrate for the minute and marvellous. Cenderawasih also has its fair share of excellent macro with pygmies, tiger prawns, nudibranchs and sea snakes giving divers plenty of smaller stuff to marvel at.


Special mention should also be reserved for the World War II wrecks that Cenderawasih Bay also plays host to. The bay at Manokwari was a safe anchorage for the Japanese while allied forces held nearby Biak Island. So it is little wonder that many ships and planes met a watery fate. It is likely that many remain as yet undiscovered and several that have been are still rarely dived.


In conclusion, the Cenderawasih region is a remarkable dive destination for large animals, small animals, beautiful reefs bursting with life, and historical WWII wrecks. It is little wonder that such a reputation is making the area a must-visit destination for so many scuba divers.

Kwatisore Bay, Airborek & Manta Sandy or Cape Kri

The first thing everyone talks about in Cenderawasih Bay are the whale sharks of Kwatisore Bay, near the town of Nabire on the bay's southern coastline. There are several places in the world that offer an encounter with a whale shark and some that offer an encounter with more than one. However, nowhere really promises the same density of whale sharks in crystalline waters and on scuba.

Shinwa Maru

Near the town of Manokwari on Cenderawasih's west coastline, there are several World War II wrecks lying in various depths. Some of the wrecks can easily be dived within normal recreational limits, others are much deeper or in locations where conditions can make it tough for all but the most experienced wreck divers.

Sungei Omiand

Although most of the talk of Cenderawasih centres around the impressive whale shark dives and the World War II wrecks, you will also dive sites which focus neither on the big nor the historical. Sungei Omiand is one such location and it is more like something you would expect to find in Indonesia's Lembeh or Ambon, or Milne Bay in Papua New Guinea. This is a muck site where you dive with your nose inches from the sea bed of black volcanic sand, poking in an around the rocks and clusters of coral, looking for the weird and wonderful. An eagle eye can be rewarded with sights such as pygmy seahorses, sea snakes (and snake eels), frogfish, tiger prawn, cuttlefish and various nudibranchs. You might also spot a blue-ringed octopus if you are lucky.

Cendrawasih On Land

Sometimes, the purest heaven of earth is located on a very secluded place. Just like Cenderawasih Bay National Park. This vast paradise still has not much of visitors per year. It might be the best chance you can get to explore the pristine nature without too much distractions and crowds. If this is your dream, then you must make your agenda as soon as possible.


Altough it has no much of land area, the national park still have some tempting choices of adventure you can do on the land such a Serui Beach The vast clearwater ocean must be a nice scenery to see. In which is best to enjoy by sitting back on a quiet sandy beach. Serui Beach might be the most beautiful coastal area on this national park.

Cendrawasih Travel Information

The Papua provinces of Indonesia experience 2 wet seasons: - November/December and July/ August, however, it might rain in Papua at any time, not only in rainy season. Water temperatures are relatively constant, varying from a low of around 27°C from May to October, up to a high of 30°C between November and April.

Water Temperature
Avg. 27° to 30°
Weather Conditions
Tropical climate, nice breezes in the evening
Sea Conditions
Calm and mostly short motoring between destinations.

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