Of all islands and karst hills in this tourism sites, Pianemo Raja Ampat is arguably the most beautiful sight in this eastern region of Indonesia. For those who have seen it for themselves, they surely agree. Many of them even come back to enjoy it once more although the journey to get to Raja Ampat Islands is not easy.
The world’s famous Raja Ampat is not only proud of its nautical beauty, but also its magnificent island. One of the destinations in West Papua for your reference is Pianemo Island or Karang Island. As one of the biggest islands, this island is a favorite among the travelers when they visit West Papua Province. Pianemo Island also popular for the karst hills and its amazing underwater landscape. That means most tourists tend to enjoy sightseeing once they reach Pianemo. In terms of size, Pianemo Island is smaller than others, especially Waigeo Island.
1. Natural Beauty
As mentioned previously, Pianemo Island has several karst islands. Although not as big as Wayag Island, Pienamo Island has the same beauty that will pamper your eyes. People even call the karst hills as mini Wayag. So, what’s next? Pianemo Island is rich for its natural beauty, covered with lush trees and bushes. Since there are several amazing islands, that means travelers tend to sail at Pianemo islands. There are also speedboat services available here for you to get around exploring the islands easily.
2. Explore Pianemo Raja Ampat
Despite its small size, Pianemo Island is worth exploring. Hiking is the most popular activity to do thanks to the several karst hills where tourists can climb. The problem is that you have to really be careful during hiking because the terrain is uncomfortable and slippery.
Not to mention the sharp rocks scattered around the island. This means that tourists might get hurt when they are not careful during their exploration. With a little effort and awareness, tourists can reach the top of the hills and watching the magnificent views of the coral islands and the turquoise sea.
The next thing that makes Pianemo Island popular is its famous cape called Bintang. As the name suggests, this cape is star-shaped when viewed from above. The nearby islands surround the cape formed such shape. To watch it clearly, travelers need to climb the hill first.
It indeed takes some effort to reach the hills. As for the tip, you are advised to hike in the morning, when the temperature is nice and the sun is warm. At least, you won’t get tired easily when hiking a hill in Raja Ampat Islands.
The next adventure is to explore the nearby sights that feature stunning blue seas and a comfortable atmosphere. Pianemo is considered a small archipelago. That means it makes sense to visit all the islands. Don’t worry, there is a speedboat service available at an affordable price. This is even cheaper during weekdays. On the other hand, the price is more expensive during the holidays. To make it even cheaper, you should come in a group here.
3. History of the name of Pianemo Raja Ampat
Behind the story of the beauty of Pianemo, there is one interesting thing, that is the meaning of the word Pianemo itself. In Biak, this name means the connection between the head and the spear or harpoon. A harpoon is a long tool shaped like a spear used to catch fish or large marine mammals such as whales.
The harpoon is tied with a rope or chain to make it easier for fishermen to pull their hunt. The island looks like three disconnections when seen from afar. The end of the island looks like a head of a spear. Seen closer, they look united. This spear-like-shape island can be seen from the Arborek Tourism Village which is one of the favorite Raja Ampat diving spots.
The closer you get to Pianemo, the islands will appear connected to each other. This harpoon shape is on the north side of the island.
4. How to Get to Pianemo Raja Ampat
- First way: There are many flights from Jakarta (Soekarno-Hatta International Airport) to Raja Ampat (Marinda Airport). The one-way flight ticket prices are around IDR 1.7 million to IDR 3 million. From Jakarta, it takes about 2 hours 10 minutes for transit at Sultan Hasanuddin International Airport, Makassar. Then proceed to Domine Eduard Osok Airport in Sorong, West Papua, which takes around 2 hours 15 minutes. From Sorong, proceed to Marinda Airport in Waisai, which takes about 30 minutes. Then, you can go to Pianemo from Waisai which is part of Raja Ampat Regency, or you can go there from Sorong City. It takes about 2 hours to go to Pianemo from Sorong by speedboat. Meanwhile, if you are sailing from Waisai, it only takes about 1 hour by speedboat. The speedboat with 30 people capacity from Sorong to Pianemo can cost around 30 million per boat. You just need to divide the cost with all of the passengers. While from Waisai to Pianemo, the speedboat costs around IDR 5.5 million divided by 8 people. They are the round-trip costs (PP). A 2 hour trip from Sorong to Pianemo will give you a little bit adrenaline rush. During the high waves, the trips will be more challenging accompanied with not many islands around. However, it is different if you are sailing from Waisai to Pianemo which is relatively calm and pass through several islands.
- Second way: The first point that you have to visit is Sorong City. The Airport in Sorong, Domine Eduard Osok Airport currently serves flights from Jakarta, Manado, Makassar, Jayapura, and from several other cities around. From Sorong, continue your journey by boat to Waisai City. There is also another alternative from Marinda Airport which is located in Waisai City. From Waisai, take a speedboat to Pianemo Island. Be sure to get the best price by comparing prices!
5. Entry Ticket to Raja Ampat
Once you arrive at the Pianemo waters, be prepared to climb the roof of the ship or stand on the edge of the ship to enjoy the group of islands up close. But before actually entering Pianemo, you need to pay the entry fee in the post of IDR 500 thousand or USD 35 for a boat and IDR 300 thousand or USD 21 for a speedboat.
6. Raja Ampat Dive Resort in Pianemo and Arround
Pianemo is a karst hill complex, so there is no place to stay there. You can stay on the nearby islands. Below are some of the best Raja Ampat Dive Resort options:
- Cove Eco Resort
- Miosba Homestay: Mios Ba, Pam (Fam) Islands, Raja Ampat, Pam, Waigeo Bar. Kepulau, Waigeo Barat Kepulau, West Papua 98481
- Agusta Eco Resort: Agusta Island, Raja Ampat, Sauandarek, Meos Mansar, Raja Ampat Regency, Papua Bar.
- Waiwo Dive Resort: Jl. Marinda – Waiwo, Waisai City, Raja Ampat Regency, Papua Bar. 98482
- Lalosi Homestay: Arborek Island, Raja Ampat, Arborek, Meos Mansar, West Papua 98482
- Raja4Divers: Pef Island, Kampung Kabui, Meos Mansar District, Raja Ampat, Kapisawar Meos Mansar Kapisawar Meos Mansar Kapisawar Meos Mansar, Kapisawar, Meos Mansar, Raja Ampat Regency, West Papua 98482
- Raja Ampat Dive Lodge: Kurkapa Village, Suandarek, Meos Mansar District, Mansuar Island, Sauandarek, Meos Mansar, Raja Ampat Regency, Papua Bar.
- Papua Explorers Dive Resort: Pantai Pinsilim, Yenwaupnor, Kec. Meos Mansar, Yenwaoupnor, Meos Mansar, Raja Ampat Regency, Papua Bar. 98482
Choosing the best Raja Ampat Dive Resort is not really difficult because they all have international standards with first class service. These accommodations also provide tours to Pianemo Raja Ampat. Happy holiday!