The Maluku Islands (or Moluccas) are also commonly referred to as the Spice Islands. They encompass many islands, estimated at over 1,000, of which the better known are Ternate, Halamahera, Misool, Ambon, the Banda Islands and Wetar.
These mainly verdant, forested and mountainous islands sit in the magnificent Maluku sea, home to vast and remotely scattered coral reefs in deep seas. They sit between two lines of flora and fauna designation, Asian and Australasian, and are host to a vast array of species. As well as being home to the famous spices of clove, nutmeg and mace the cultivation of coffee, cocoa and fruit generates further income on the fertile slopes fed over the years by ash deposits from the many active volcanoes.
Dive the House Reef and Nusa Laut
Nabucco's Cape Paperu Resort is perfectly situated for all the dive sites around Saparua, Molana, Nusa Laut, Haruku and Ambon. If you are lucky you may even see one of the Dugongs. One thing for certain is you will discover a wealth of macro species.
Extra Divers Cape Paperu benefits from a lovely house reef of more than 1km in length with multiple entry points. Snorkellers will gain as much from the house reef as divers, and a snorkel guide can be organised locally for a small fee.
The Cape Paperu crew will happily set up and look after you kit for you if you wish, whilst their experienced guides will safely show you all the underwater wonders.
Boat dives sites between 15 and 45 minutes journey away skirt the magnificent reefs of Nusa Laut, Ambon, Molana and Haruka on half and full day dive trips.
Click here to view a PDF of dive sites
How do I get there?
It is recommended to fly into Jakarta on Singapore Airlines (via Singapore) or Emirates (via Dubai), with a further domestic return flight from Jakarta to Ambon. Overnights on the way out and back are likely to be required due to flight schedules, as well as allowing for some slack in the itinerary to absorb any potential flight delays.
Nabucco’s Cape Paperu Resort is a 1¾ hour car and boat journey from Ambon town, sitting in the quiet bay of Saparua.
Extra Divers Cape Paperu
This well organised and personal dive centre is run by the Extra Divers international team in the remote and exotic location of the Maluku Islands.
The dive centre has two boats taking 6 to 10 divers each and one boat taking 4 divers.
There is an extensive house reef offering plenty for the keen diver at this PADI / CMAS centre.
Nitrox is available for a charge per fill, and special day trips are run to more remote reefs (local supplement may apply) which include lunch.
Please note: The dive centre closes during the peak monsoon months of July and August.
Options available include 10, 16 and 20 dive packages, which include house reef dives day and night, as well as boat dives. Please discuss your requirements with the Regaldive team, who will prepare a quotation suited to your needs.
Extras in Resort
Prices listed below are an indication only, and subject to change.
- Ahmet entrance fee: €7
- Nitrox 32%: €6 per fill
Equipment rental per day:
- Full equipment excluding computer: €30 per day
- Dive computer: €6
- Fins: €2
- Booties: €3
- Mask & Snorkel: €4
- Wetsuit: €6
- BCD: €6
- Regulator: €6
- Dive light: €6 per dive
- Tanks: 12l Aluminium. International and DIN valves available.
The Maluku Islands have an equatorial tropical climate, with day-time temperatures averaging 30°C (mid-80s°F) throughout the year.
Central and southern Maluku Islands experience the dry monsoon between October to March and the wet monsoon from May to August, which is the reverse of the rest of Indonesia. The dry monsoon's average maximum temperature is 30°C while the wet's average is 23°C.
Ambon is in the central and southern group.
Northern Maluku has its wet monsoon from December to March in line with the rest of Indonesia.
Each island group have their own climatic variations, and the larger islands tend to have drier coastal lowlands and their mountainous hinterlands are wetter.
Average water temperature is 27 - 30°C year round.
GMT +8 to 9 hours.
Indonesian Rupiah (IDR). Approximate rates:
£1 = 18,931 IDR
€1 = 16,750 IDR
$1 = 13,653 IDR
Cash payments only at present - Euro and US Dollars (notes prior to 2006 not accepted).
It is recommended to change a small amount of IDR before you travel, then you can draw cash from the ATMs or exchange bureau in Jakarta.
Although it is entirely voluntary, tipping is a recognised part of life in this region of the world. Some local staff may look to guests for personal recognition of particular services offered.
Flights are with Singapore airlines, via Singapore or Emirates via Dubai, into Jakarta.
A return internal flight from Jakarta to Ambon is then required. Overnights in Jakarta may be required subject to flight times. Nabucco’s Cape Paperu Resort is a 1¾ hour car and boat journey from Ambon town, sitting in the quiet bay of Saparua.
Stopovers in Singapore or Dubai can be arranged.
Passports and Visas
Passengers travelling to Indonesia should have minimum six months valid on their passport from the date of return to the UK, plus one full page free. Hotel receptions may be required to take a photocopy of your passport for registration purposes.
British nationals travelling to Indonesia can enter the country without a visa for up to 30 days at certain airports' Immigration Check Points: Soekarno-Hatta Jakarta ( CGK ), Ngurah Rai - Bali (DPS), Kualanamu, Medan (KNO), Juanda - Surabaya (SUB), Hang Nadim - Batam (BTH).
You won’t be able to extend your stay beyond 30 days if you enter under this visa waiver scheme. Entry via Manado and certain other entry points is still subject to a visa on arrival at a cost of $35 (30 day visa) and $15 (7 day visa). Please note that visitors must purchase a visa if their ultimate destination is not one of those listed above e.g. guests going to Manado.
For further information about entry requirements, visit the website of the Indonesian Embassy in London or your nearest Indonesian embassy.
There are no compulsory vaccinations for travel to Indonesia, but we recommend protection against typhoid, tetanus, hepatitis A and polio. Vaccination requirements are subject to change and should be confirmed before departure with your GP or local travel clinic. Advice on Malaria should be sought. Further information regarding vaccinations for travel to this country can be found at www.fitfortravel.nhs.uk and from your local healthcare provider.
Nabucco's Cape Paperu Resort
Amazing Trip: 77 days, 3 island groups and 133 dives!
"As this was to be my first visit to Indonesia, I was a little unsure as to what to expect. I had read about how good the diving can be, but thought that I should keep an open mind and just enjoy the adventure. As it happens I enjoyed every single dive that I made (133). There was always something different to see, from mantas and fast drift diving at Derawan Island to wall diving at Manado, muck diving at Lembeh to unspoilt coral gardens and fish life at Cape Paperu resort on Saparua Island.
The transfers and ground arrangements were excellent, though at first I thought them to be rather ambitious; 77 days; 3 island groups; 3 overnight hotels; 4 resorts; 6 ground transfers; 4 water transfers and 11 flights, something was bound to go wrong. In the end, apart from a 20 minute wait for a vehicle at Berau Airport, all transfers and ground arrangements went according to plan.
The accommodation varied from fairly basic to luxury (In my eyes); every room that I stayed in had a ceiling fan and air-conditioning, which after a day’s diving, was really appreciated. For me, making the best of what was available at each of the resorts was all part of the ‘experience’.
Not being the sort of person who expects high cuisine, I found all of the meals that I was offered more than adequate, sheets and towels were all changed on a regular basis, and the rooms were clean and tidy.
I like diving; just being in the water is a pleasure for me, and I can always find something of interest to look at. Because of the amount of time I spent at each resort it was inevitable that I would visit a dive site more than once, which in some ways was good because I knew where to spend time looking for things of interest.
I found all of the dive centre staff, and in fact all of the Indonesian people that I met and talked to, to be very helpful, cheerful, and it was a pleasure to be amongst them.
I have so many wonderful memories of my trip, but a particular highlight was one of the first drift dives that I made while staying on Derawan Island. At the dive site, after hooking on to the reef and floating off the bottom in the current, I was slowly engulfed in a huge school of Barracuda, so close I could have reached out and touched them. I was completely surrounded by them on either side, below and above me. The school was so dense that it was as though the sun had gone in and clouds had darkened the sky.
I was extremely happy with Regaldive; you answered all of my queries promptly and were most helpful in every way. I will certainly book with you again."