Mermaid I March 17-28th, 2019 Rare Encounters

A Magnificent journey from Raja Ampat to Ambon through Koon and the Banda Islands. 800 Nautical miles of pure biodiversity and a full blast of rare encounters!
When you start a trip with a Flamboyant Cuttlefish right off the first night dive…Well you know you are going to have a wicked trip!

Flat seas, good vis and just enough current to bring all the schoolings together. The Dampier Strait was a delightful start of the crossing!  Giant Trevallies feeding nonstop on Fusiliers, big balls of Sweetlips and extra pristine reefs, especially on Melissa’s Garden were the shallow reefs were surrounded by Blacktip sharks and big Napoleon Wrasses that kept the action going!
3 days spent at Misool, pygmy seahorses on most of the dives and a few Reef Mantas interacting with each other at the Ridges of Magic Mountain!

Heading down south. Koon Island with beautiful visibility and loads of fish. at “Too Many Fish” that’s right that’s the dive site name! Massive Bumpheads and Giant Groupers, walls of Batfish, Barracudas and more Jacks!
Entering the Banda Sea. Steep deep walls, giant Sponges,  and very healthy corals. Some of the divers were fortunate to see single Hammerheads passing by as well. Dusk dive to see Mandarin fish mating was a sweet way to finish the day.

Last dives in the Bandas before heading to Ambon, Suangi island, an outstanding stop!  Best visibility we had on the trip reaching easily 35m.  Incredible hard coral fields that I never paid attention before. Schooling Surgeon fish, Rainbow Runners and one huge Hammerhead (I missed the shark again)
Ambon!! Heaven for macro lovers, Harlequin shrimp, Frogfish and 3 different Rinophias. Night diving with Coral Cat sharks, Ghost Pipefish, Nudis and small cephalopods!
Such a complete package when it comes to diversity, the Small and the Big Stuff! A trip that will satisfy any diver, any photographer, anytime!!

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