Wednesday, May 30, 2012

Snorkeling over the coral reef for the first time

Last week, I accompanied Georgie - a Biologist from England on a snorkeling trip to Mansinam island. This is a small tropical island located in the middle of Dorey bay. The southern coast of the island was surrounded by coral reef. We walked for around 30 minutes along the concrete path that led us to a newly built hatchery. We passed by it and continued walking for around 15 minutes. We arrived at a point where the beach was relatively clean. The high tide was going down I could feel its current when I was swimming to the coral reef area which was around 100 meters away from the beach.
It was Georgie's first experience snorkeling over the coral reef. She looked really excited.
Also read: Snorkeling along the shore of Arfak mountains

Thursday, May 17, 2012

Coral reef of Manokwari a nice snorkeling destination

As a tour guide, I have accompanied a lot of tourists on various snorkeling trips in Dorey bay and the Northern Coast of Manokwari. Geographically, the regency is located within the coral triangle that extends from the Philipines to Indonesian archipelago. Last year, I accompanied 4 guests from Jakarta. They were the participants of Aci.Detik.Com - a program from one of the most popular news sites in Indonesia that sent 60 youths throughout the country for free to promote the tourism potentials of Indonesia. The Dorey bay attracted the attention of scientists in Europe after Alfred Russel Wallace conducted a research trip in 1858.
The hard coral reef of Dorey bay is the natural habitat of hundreds of species of marine animals including the striped surgeon fish, and parrot fish as well as scorpion fish.

The above underwater photographs created by Ms. Audrey Jiwajennie show how diverse and how beautiful the corals are. I have been providing snorkeling tours to tourists since 2010 to raise awareness among city dwellers about the importance of coral reef to human life from the economic, and environmental perspectives. As the tropical rainforest of the ocean, coral reef is able to provide food and absorbs CO2 gases.
When Manokwari became the capital of the newly formed West Papua province by the Government of Indonesia, the population of the city is rising rapidly. This causes increasing pressures on coral reef. Fishing activities are rising as well as the drifting of plastic wastes from the city to the corals after rainy days. I hope that the introduction of ecotourism scheme to the coral reef areas in Manokwari will attract more attention from the local government to give more attention to the management of wastes.

Monday, May 7, 2012

Snorkeling in Manokwari

Mansinam island
Do you like snorkeling? Have you ever snorkeled in Manokwari? If not, then you should try it. This city is located in the bird's head region of New Guinea - the largest tropical island in the world. It is not difficult to go to Manokwari.
  • First, you need to fly from your country to the capital of Indonesia which is Jakarta. 
  • If you don't like the huzzle and buzzle of the metropolitan city, you can check the airlines in your country whether they have flights to Bali or Manado (two tourist destinations in Indonesia).
  • From one of these city, you can take a domestic flight served by Express Air, Lion Air or Sriwijaya Air to Manokwari - the capital of West Papua province. This city stretches along the Dorey bay with the magnificent view of Arfak mountains in the south and three small tropical coral islands in the bay.
When I mention coral islands, you know that there must be coral reef thriving around these islands. To enjoy snorkeling, you need to bring your own snorkel, mask, and fins. Don't forget to bring your underwater camera. As a snorkeling guide, I have accompanied  tourists who are interested in seeing the underwater world of Manokwari where coral reefs thrive. When you descend yourself to the reef, you will see hundreds of species of marine animals and plants. When you are in the water, I and the boat driver will continue monitoring your movements to make sure that everything is OK. Sometimes, we will ask you to avoid swimming too close to the beach because big waves may push you to the hard corals.
The Underwater World of Manokwari
In addition to the Doreh bay of Manokwari, another snorkeling location that is highly recommended to tourists is its northern coast area or also called Pantura. The best snorkeling time is between May and October. After that the waves here will be bigger and more suitable for wave surfing. In addition to snorkeling and other water sports activities, visitors can enjoy hiking in the jungle to watch paradise birds.