Banggai - Sulawesi
WHAT TO EXPECT
The warm hospitality of the Bajau communities
A visit to the forest-dwelling Wana tribe
Lunch and dinner barbecues on empty white sandy beaches
Exceptional snorkeling on remote and pristine reefs
Support our marine protection initiative at Pulo Dua
Diverse topography with plenty of photo opportunities
Sustainable Banggai Sulawesi Liveaboard & Bajau Cruise Trips
Chartering a liveaboard boat or joining a cruise trip in this part of Sulawesi, also known as Celebes, is almost indispensable as getting there can be notoriously difficult, let alone exploring it.
By participating in one of our liveaboard cruise trips aboard the Bugis you will get to see much of what Sulawesi and the islands of Banggai have to offer–pristine waters and marine environment, lush tropical rainforests, unworldly mangroves, and of course the incredible sea nomads of Indonesia—the Bajau people—who are known for their superhuman ability to free dive and hold their breath underwater for an impressively long period of time.
The Banggai Islands are a string of islands located in Central Sulawesi between the Indonesian archipelagos of Sulawesi and Moluccas. The archipelago is made up of more than a hundred islands, the five main ones being Peleng, Banggai, Bangkurung, Salue Besar, and Labobo.
In this wild paradise, you will find heavenly beaches, lush forests, exceptional sea beds, and Bajau villages built on stilts, above a green sea, in front of a forest that is just as green. The amazing topography of the archipelago is also not to be overlooked and will provide plenty of unique photo ops to please even the most discerning photographer.
Explore Banggai with Purpose
The Bajau aside, the Banggai regency also offers exceptional world-class underwater scenes that can be observed through snorkeling or scuba diving. Moreover, our NGO Nomad Plastic is actively supporting Tompotika Foundation and Tompotika Dive Lodge which have been working on restoring the health of the reefs and marine life of this part of Sulawesi.
In accordance with our "Explore with Purpose" motto, a portion of our profit will go to funding this amazing initiative, and by participating in our cruises you will help us to do just that.
Sulawesi Cruise Highlights
MEET THE BAJAU
Known for their impressive ability to hold their breath underwater for an impressive period of time due to their larger spleens, the Bajau also possesses a unique traditional way of life.
These communities still live a very traditional lifestyle in small villages with houses built on stilts over the sea, and their livelihood depends entirely on the sea. Our Banggai cruise will call on small and remote islands where the Bajau people form the majority of the population.
During your boat charter or shared liveaboard trip, we will visit their villages where we can get up close and personal with these seafarers, watch them as they demonstrate their supernatural freediving ability, and learn how they make their living from the sea.
Be prepared for a once-in-a-lifetime experience with the Bajau!
DISCOVER THE JUNGLE-DWELLING WANA TRIBE
In the depths of the jungle in Morowali Nature Reserve, lives the Wana tribe–jungle dwellers and one of the first tribes to ever settle in Sulawesi, presumably since the Mesolithic period.
Unbeknownst to many, there are over 600 Wana families inhabiting the vast reserve, living mainly by hunting and gathering, and agriculture. The park also houses a great diversity of wildlife, some of them endemic to Sulawesi–anoa, maleo birds, babi rusa, and the world’s smallest bats–although they are rarely spotted.
During our cruise, we will travel to one of their settlements with a motorized version of their traditional longboat through untouched landscapes with tall mountains as the backdrops.
You will be treated to unforgettable moments in the midst of nature, where other tourists and foreigners are unlikely to be found.
EXPLORE UNTOUCHED ISLANDS AND VILLAGES
Part of the idea behind our ‘slow travel’ philosophy is that we believe in taking time to really get to know the locals and immerse yourself in nature.
Instead of rushing from one place to the next, we encourage our guests to really take their time and establish a connection with the locals. Tourists and villagers have so much to learn from each other.
What’s more, with the off-the-beaten-path nature of this route, we will be able to stop on a myriad of little known islands, such as Sombori Islands or "Little Raja Ampat" (as pictured) with plenty of opportunities for afternoons on untouched white sand beaches, and zodiac explorations to hidden bays and coves.
SNORKEL OR SCUBA DIVE SULAWESI’S HIDDEN GEMS
Situated within the Pacific Ocean’s Coral Triangle, Sulawesi–Banggai included–is blessed with world-class snorkeling and scuba diving sites, boasting a plethora of healthy and colorful coral reefs, teeming with fish life.
Our marine conservation partner, Tompotika Foundation, has been working hard for many years in order to stop illegal fishing in the area and restore the health of the reefs in the area, and you will be able to enjoy the fruits of their hard work.
You will also be able to see the endemic Banggai cardinal fish. At Burung Island, we’ll visit the “blue” mangrove–a lagoon where mangrove trees grow in crystal clear waters with spectacular reefs growing within the trees, and colorful juvenile fish that call these trees home.
Please note that scuba diving is available at an extra cost.
GIVE BACK & HELP PROTECT THE ENVIRONMENT
A portion of our profits will go to financing our non-profit initiatives under our NGO Nomad Plastic which runs a number of projects including waste management in Labuan Bajo and a marine protected area in Banggai, Sulawesi, in partnership with Tompotika Foundation.
During your Banggai cruise, you will get a chance to visit the foundation to understand more about their efforts in protecting the area and see their team in action. These initiatives not only help combat the destruction of the natural environments that we love dearly but also provide jobs and income to locals in these areas.
Over time, we hope to cover more locations in Indonesia. By participating in our cruise trips, you will help us get closer to fulfilling our missions.
Learn more about our commitment to sustainable tourism in Indonesia
OTHER SULAWESI LIVEABOARD ACTIVITIES
We offer a myriad of amenities aboard the Bugis and tons of eco-friendly activity options
We offer a myriad of amenities aboard the Bugis and tons of eco-friendly activity options.
From kayaking and paddleboarding, to yoga, sunset drinks, and BBQ at the beach...the possibility during your your Komodo boat charter or cruise trip on the Bugis is endless.
Learn more about our Slow Travel Experience
Banggai - Sulawesi Travel Information
HOW TO GET TO BANGGAI ISLANDS
We recommend flying internationally into Jakarta (CGK) airport. You can then take a flight to Kendari (KWI) where our team will pick you up.
A flight from Jakarta to Kendari takes a bit less than 3 hours. Contact us for flight recommendations.
BEST TIME TO VISIT SULAWESI
We recommend visiting the area between October-November and April, as these months provide the best sea conditions for safe sea explorations and excellent water visibility. You can expect occasional rain, light winds, and a bit of swell–but nothing more than what you’d normally encounter in tropical countries.
WEATHER IN BANGGAI
Seasons: November to March (rainy and humid) and June to September (dry)
Topside Temperatures: Lowest at night 16 °C (60.8 °F) and highest 23-32 °C (73-90 °F)
Water Temperature: Avg. 28-30 °C (82-86 °F)
GOOD TO KNOW
Local Currency: Rupiah (IDR)
Language: Bahasa Indonesia
Credit Card & ATMs: Once you are onboard we will accept cash payments only. You can find ATMs at Luwuk (LUW) or Kendari (KDI) airport and several while you are still close to city centers.
Electricity: The onboard electricity system is 220V, with standard European plugs and 2 round pins Please bring your own universal plug adaptor.
Bring a copy of your travel documents such as your passport, air ticket, and travel insurance.
COVID-19: proof of complete vaccination is required to enter Indonesia. For the latest information please visit the official Indonesian Immigration Website or consult the Indonesian embassy in your home country.