Diving Raja Ampat most certainly sits near the top of every diver’s bucket list. Part of the Coral Triangle – a marine zone that’s known for its incredibly rich biodiversity – this Indonesian region comprises around 1,000 little islands that surround four main ones, namely Waigeo, Misool, Batanta, and Salawati. Raja Ampat is so untouched and remote that getting there alone usually costs visitors an arm and a leg, and staying on a liveaboard adds greatly to any expense sheet. Enter homestays – a great option for budget-conscious divers who want to explore the waters of Raja Ampat without breaking the bank. Check out these five homestays that, according to Stay Raja Ampat, are super popular with scuba enthusiasts.
Yenkoranu Homestay offers several types of accommodation choices: standard, private rooms in a bungalow where common areas are shared as well as private VIP bungalows (Type 1 are beachfront ones; Type 2 options are not) that feature ensuite private bathrooms. Yenkoranu has its own fully equipped dive centre and you can explore nearby sites like Manta Point, Kabui Passage, and more. Other activities you can consider include jungle expeditions and birding tours. Yenkoranu is great if you intend to stay in Raja Ampat for more than a week as they offer different deals such as one free night for guests staying 11 nights.
Koranu Fyak Bungalows
Aside from its seven single room private bungalows, Koranu Fyak also has a two-room family bungalow – great for large groups. Note that none of the bungalows have an ensuite bathroom/toilet; instead, there are shelters that house bathrooms with showers and toilets. Koranu Fyak has its own fully equipped SSI-certified dive centre called Wobbegong Dive Adventures. Nearby sites worth visiting include Blue Magic, Cape Kri, and Chicken Reef, but if you prefer to head out further, that can be arranged (at a cost, of course).
Located in Southern Gam, Kordiris Homestay can accommodate a maximum of 20 people in 10 rooms across stays like a four-room bungalow and three private bungalows (one of which is over water). Kordiris has an excellent house reef; even if you choose to snorkel on your non-diving days, there’s a chance you can spot dugongs in front of the homestay and walking sharks down on the seabed. A on-site dive centre can be found at Kordiris and offers guided dives at all the famous spots along Dampier Strait.
Before it was known as Daroyen Village in December 2016, this homestay was branded as Mambrasar Guesthouse. It’s situated on the north coast of Kri Island and with its small number of bungalows and rooms, it’s perfect for those that don’t quite fancy big crowds. Bathroom facilities are shared by all guests. Daroyen Village houses its own dive centre and comes equipped with gear for up to six divers at a time. Sites like Turtle Point, Sardines, and Mike’s Point are highly accessible from the homestay via speedboat, but if you don’t want to venture too far, there’s always the house reef, which will keep you busy for hours with its colourful variety of marine life.
One of the best things about Mambetron Homestay is that they have 10 huge private bungalows, all of which offer stunning views of the ocean. Like many other homestays, bathroom facilities are shared by everyone (the property houses two bathroom buildings). Three meals a day are included in the accommodation price. Mambetron has a splendid house reef with a dropoff about 50 metres from shore. Divers have to go with nearby centres of Koranu Fyak and Yenkoranu – which are a few hundred metres from Mambetron – and trips can be easily arranged for guests staying here. On your off days, you may get the staff to help you organise a visit a local village or short hiking trips to lookout points you can drink in views of Dampier Strait, Bantata, Dam, Friwen, and Waigeo.
Note: The accommodation choices at almost all homestays in Raja Ampat are extremely basic so don’t book a room without doing your research and understanding what is and isn’t available. Read this page on the Stay Raja Ampat website as a way of setting expectations.
For more info, visit Stay Raja Ampat – your one-stop travel guide to Raja Ampat where you can find accommodation and activity rates, images, reviews, contact details, and more.