TRAVEL ADVICE

We hope the notes below will give you some guidance on what to expect for traveling within Indonesia and accessing the vessel for your cruise. If you are looking for answers to non travel related issues, we also have additional information at our FAQ webpage.

If any of the details you require are not listed below, or you need further clarification, please contact us directly on info@thearenui.com

Overview of Travel to Indonesia

Our cruises start and end in a few different ports within Indonesia, so you may need more details on how to reach a specific city and how to connect with your international flights. Or perhaps you are considering a longer holiday to include a visit elsewhere in the country, or the region.

Whatever you need, our office in Bali would be happy to help with your domestic travel arrangements by advising on flights, hotels and even tours ad then booking these for you ahead of time.

Please bear in mind that most Indonesian airlines change their timetables and pricing quite frequently, so we recommend waiting until 2-3 months before the flight date to make final bookings. For this reason, we usually contact our guests around 3-6 months before their cruise departure, to liaise on booking flights or hotels etc.

Also, please note that any extras booked through our office (flights, hotels or tours) can simply be added to the cruise invoice and then paid together with the cruise balance (due date: 3 month prior the cruise departure date). Alternatively, we can also add any of these extra costs to your ''onboard bill'' (used for onboard purchases such as nitrox, alcohol, boutique gifts, massages), which guests settle at the end of the cruise on the boat, via cash or credit card.

NB: Luggage allowance for most domestic airlines is 15 KG per person and excess luggage is usually around USD 1.5 per KG. Many guests choose to bring a lot of their own dive gear which can easily exceed the 15 KG limit, so it is advisable to expect to pay in additional fee for any domestic flights. For example, for a dive gear bag weighing 30 KG we would expect to pay around USD 25 per domestic flight taken.

MAIN PORTS FOR EMBARKATION / DISEMBARKATION

Bali / Labuanbajo / Bima / Maumere / Ambon / Sorong / Saumlaki

In general, when assessing these flights for meeting the vessel, please assume that you will need to be landing by mid-morning or lunchtime at the latest. If arriving the night before and staying at a hotel, we will confirm the exact pick-up time close to the date of embarkation (see the "TRANSFERS FROM/TO THE VESSEL" section).

Our embarkation and disembarkation times vary slightly for all cruises, partly depending on the plans for the first and last days of the cruise, but also depending on guests'' arrival and departure requirements.

Generally we aim for all guests to be onboard on the first day of the cruise, by around midday for the initial welcome briefing. (For Komodo cruises, late mid to late morning is better, so we can begin the initial ocean crossing earlier. For Raja Ampat cruises, we often have flights arriving in the early afternoon, so we don''t usually aim to leave port until late afternoon). Then we spend some time getting everyone''s equipment ready so we are all set for the first dive the next morning. This means you can expect to start diving on the 2nd day of the cruise (usually 3-4 dives) and then 4 dives per day for the rest of the trip.

At the end of the cruise, on the penultimate day, we usually have 2 (sometimes 3) early dives, so that we finish diving by around lunchtime. This gives our crew time to wash and dry everyone''s dive gear so it is ready pack up later that evening or first thing on the last day. We sail towards port during the last night on the boat, so that we wake up already at our final destination. We can transfer guests to the airport either early in the morning if catching a flight, or guests are welcome to relax for the morning on the boat.

NB: In general, we recommend booking international flights for at least one day after disembarkation, just in case there are any unforeseen delays on our return leg of the cruise (more commonly due to the domestic airlines).

If you are concerned about a specific cruise's expected departure time, or arrival time back in port, please contact us to confirm

Bali (for cruises to/from Komodo)

Airport Code DPS (Denpasar).

Bali is located approximately two and a half hours (flight time) east of Singapore, below Borneo and Sulawesi, in the archipelago that reaches across Indonesia from west (Sumatra and Java) to east (Komodo, Flores, Maluku).

Bali is a hub for domestic and some international flights. It is known as the ''island of the gods'' and well worth a visit before or after your cruise. If you plan to spend time elsewhere in Indonesia before or after your cruise, and need advice reaching Bali, please let us know so we can help with specific flights and recommend hotels etc. You can also read more about Bali, as a tourist destination, further down this page in the "OPTIONS FOR FURTHER TRAVEL" section.

Labuanbajo (for cruises in Komodo)

Airport Code LBJ.

This is the main city to access Komodo and situated on the west side of Flores Island (east of Bali and west of Maumere).

The most popular route to access Labuanbajo is via Bali (one hour flight time). See the following "RECOMMENDED FLIGHTS FOR VARIOUS CRUISES" section for more details on how to reach Labuanbajo. We can also recommend hotels if you decide to spend time here before or after your cruise.

Bima (for cruises in Komodo)

Airport Code BMU.

This is also a key port city for accessing Komodo. Bima is on the eastern coast of the island Sumbawa (further west than Labuanbajo).

The most popular route to access Bima is also via Bali (one and a half hour flight time). See the following "RECOMMENDED FLIGHTS FOR VARIOUS CRUISES" section for more details on how to reach Bima. We can also recommend hotels if you decide to spend time here before or after your cruise.

Maumere (for cruises including Alor & Flores)

Airport Code MOF.

This port is a key city for visiting the Alor and Flores area. Maumere is on the northern coast of east Flores, in the East Nusa Tenggara province, in the Lesser Sunda Islands, 430 miles east from Bali (so further east than the other ''Komodo'' access cities of Bima and Labuanbajo).

The most popular route to access Maumere is also via Bali (two hour flight time). See the following "RECOMMENDED FLIGHTS FOR VARIOUS CRUISES" section for more details on how to reach Maumere. We can also recommend hotels if you decide to spend time here before or after your cruise.

Ambon (for cruises including Maluku - Banda Sea & Spice Islands)

Airport Code AMQ

This is the capital of the Maluku region. Ambon is roughly 830 nautical miles north-east of Bali, or roughly 450 miles south-west of Sorong, situated within the Maluku Islands archipelago (sometimes seen labeled as the Moluccas or the Spice Islands). Ambon Island lies off the south-west coast of the much larger Seram Island and consists of 2 territories - Maluku Tengah and the main city and port of Ambon, which is also the capital of Maluku province.

The most popular route to access Ambon is via Makassar (UPG, aka Ujung Pandang, in south Sulawesi). Makassar can be reached via Bali and some other domestic cities. See the following "RECOMMENDED FLIGHTS FOR VARIOUS CRUISES" section for more details on how to reach Ambon via Makassar. We can also recommend hotels if you decide to spend time here before or after your cruise.

Sorong (for cruises to/from Raja Ampat)

Airport Code SOQ.

This port city is at the western edge of West Papua (previously known as Irian Jaya). Sorong is almost equidistantly located between Indonesia''s famous ''island of the gods'' - Bali - and the capital of neighboring Papua New Guinea - Port Moresby (roughly 1,060 nautical miles east of Bali, versus 1,080 west of Port Moresby).

The most popular route to access Sorong is also via Makassar (UPG, aka Ujung Pandang, in south Sulawesi). Makassar can be reached via Bali and some other domestic cities. See the following "RECOMMENDED FLIGHTS FOR VARIOUS CRUISES" section for more details on how to reach Sorong via Makassar. We can also recommend hotels if you decide to spend time here before or after your cruise.

Saumlaki (for cruises to/from Forgotten Islands)

Airport Code SXK.

This city is the capital of Tanimbar Island, in the south-east corner of the Moluccas (Maluku Tenggara), roughly 600 kilometers south east of Ambon and further east than East Timor (roughly 630 kilometers east of the capital Dili).

The most popular route to access Saumlaki is via Ambon - which is a connection via Makassar (UPG, aka Ujung Pandang, in south Sulawesi). Ambon (via Makassar) can be reached via Bali and some other domestic cities. See the following "RECOMMENDED FLIGHTS FOR VARIOUS CRUISES" section for more details on how to reach Saumlaki via Ambon, but please note that the flight times and routes may change significantly by the time this cruise takes place in 2014, so we will be able to advise again nearer the time.

RECOMMENDED FLIGHTS FOR VARIOUS CRUISES

Flight Routes (by cruise) / Flight Schedules (by city) / Pricing Guide

Please find below for a guide to the popular routes to and from the Indonesian cities we use for our cruises.

It is not an extensive list as there are so many possibilities, but it gives you a rough guide to the most common routes and times of flights, to help you plan connections with international flights. (Please make sure to also read the start of this webpage for specific details on standard embarkation and disembarkation times for cruises).

Below the flight routes and schedules, we have also compiled a list of rough Prices For Flights (one-way, per person) between the major cities we use to reach the vessel, but we advise only using this as a guide (especially for the flights for later dates).

Please note that these sample flight times/days (and prices) are all subject to change.

Flight Routes (BY CRUISE)

Although there are numerous options, depending on where you arrive in Indonesia and if you plan to travel elsewhere before/after your cruise, here are some overviews of the most popular and common routes to reach a port for the cruise (listed in order of cruise name).

For detailed info on flights, please continue to the "Flight Schedules (BY CITY)" section below.

Grand Komodo (Bali-Bali)

This cruise starts and ends in Bali (DPS). This is probably the easiest cruise in terms of access, as Bali is such a popular hub for regional flights. Some international flights will come directly to Bali airport; otherwise many international flights stop at another large Asian city that has a direct connection to Bali (such as Singapore, Hong Kong, Kuala Lumpur, Perth etc). Let us know if you need advice on the most popular airlines that fly into and out of Bali but you can also check some sample flights at the Bali Airport website (HERE).

Komodo (Labuanbajo-Bali or Bali-Labuanbajo)

This cruise starts or ends in either Labuanbajo (LBJ) or Bali (DPS). See the ''Grand Komodo'' section for notes on reaching and leaving Bali. For reaching/leaving Labuanbajo, we recommend using Bali as the hub as there are regular direct flights between Bali and Labuanbajo, using the airline Transnusa (1 hour flight time). You can also use Bali as the connection city if you need to come from or go to other domestic cities such as Jakarta or Manado, or even for regional and international flights.

Komodo Focus (Labuanbajo-Labuanbajo or Labuanbajo-Bima or Bima-Labuanbajo)

This cruise starts or ends in either Labuanbajo (LBJ) or Bima (BMU). See the ''Komodo'' section above for notes on reaching and leaving Labuanbajo (recommended via Bali). For reaching/leaving Bima, we recommend the direct flight via Bali with Wings Air (aka Lion Air, 1.5 hour flight time) but this flight only runs on certain days, so please check with us for the latest schedule.

Alor-Komodo (Labuanbajo-Maumere or Maumere-Labuanbajo)

This cruise starts or ends in either Labuanbajo (LBJ) or Maumere (MOF). See the ''Komodo'' section above for notes on reaching and leaving Labuanbajo (recommended via Bali). For reaching/leaving Maumere, we recommend the direct flight from Bali with Wings Air (aka Lion Air, 2 hour flight time) and the same for the return. There is also an indirect flight from/to Bali via Kupang on Batavia Air, if the times suit better. If you wish to fly via Jakarta, Manado or other cities please check with us for details, but you will probably still need to go via Bali as this is the connecting airport.

Alor Focus (Maumere-Maumere)

This cruise starts and ends in Maumere (MOF). See the ''Alor-Komodo'' section above for notes on reaching and leaving Maumere (recommended via Bali).

Transnusa (Maumere-Bali)

This cruise starts or ends in either Bali (DPS) or Maumere (MOF). See the ''Grand Komodo'' section for notes on reaching and leaving Bali, plus the ''Alor-Komodo'' section for notes on reaching and leaving Maumere (recommended via Bali).

Kaleidoscope (Labuanbajo-Ambon or Maumere-Ambon)

This cruise starts in either Labuanbajo (LBJ) or Maumere (MOF) and ends in Ambon (AMQ). See the ''Komodo'' section for notes on reaching and leaving Labuanbajo (recommended via Bali), or the ''Alor-Komodo'' section for notes on reaching and leaving Maumere (also via Bali). For leaving Ambon, you need to fly via Makassar (UPG, aka Ujung Pandang, in south Sulawesi). There are connections via Makassar to most popular cities such as Bali, Jakarta and Manado but contact us if you need details on another domestic route.

Spice Islands (Ambon-Ambon)

This cruise starts and ends in Ambon (AMQ). See the ''Kaleidoscope'' section above for notes on reaching and leaving Ambon (via Makassar).

Raja Ampat (Sorong-Sorong, also for Greater Raja Ampat, North Raja Ampat etc)

This cruise starts and ends in Sorong (SOQ). For reaching/leaving Sorong you will need to fly via Makassar (UPG, aka Ujung Pandang, in south Sulawesi). There are connections via Makassar to most popular cities such as Bali, Jakarta and Manado but contact us if you need details on another domestic route. Please bear in mind that, due to the time of the current flight schedule, there is a possibility that you will need to spend one night in Makassar on the way out to Sorong, but on the return journey most domestic routes are possible without a stopover in Makassar.

Maluku-Banda-Raja Ampat (Ambon-Sorong or Sorong-Ambon)

This cruise starts or ends in either Ambon (AMQ) or Sorong (SOQ). See the ''Kaleidoscope'' section for notes on reaching and leaving Ambon (via Makassar) and also the ''Raja Ampat'' section above for notes on reaching and leaving Sorong (also via Makassar).

Banda Sea (Saumlaki-Ambon)

This cruise starts in Saumlaki (SXK) and ends in Ambon (AMQ). For reaching Saumlaki, you will need to fly via Ambon (AMQ). See the ''Kaleidoscope'' section for notes on reaching and leaving Ambon (via Makassar). Please note that the flight times and routes may change significantly by the time this cruise takes place in 2015, so we will be able to advise again nearer the time.

Forgotten Islands (Saumlaki-Maumere or Maumere-Saumlaki)

This cruise starts or ends in either Saumlaki (SXK) or Maumere (MOF). For reaching Saumlaki, you will need to fly via Ambon (AMQ). See the ''Kaleidoscope'' section for notes on reaching and leaving Ambon (via Makassar). Please note that the flight times and routes may change significantly by the time this cruise takes place in 2014, so we will be able to advise again nearer the time. See the ''Alor-Komodo'' section above for notes on reaching and leaving Maumere (recommended via Bali).

Flight Schedules (BY CITY)

Please use these details as a guide only, as most Indonesian airlines change their timetables and pricing quite frequently, so we recommend waiting until 2-3 months before the flight date to make final bookings.

Labuanbajo (for cruises in Komodo) Bima (for cruises in Komodo) Maumere (for cruises including Alor & Flores) Ambon (for cruises including Maluku - Banda Sea & Spice Islands) Sorong (for cruises to/from Raja Ampat) Saumlaki (for cruises to/from Forgotten Islands)

*See previous notes on getting to Ambon

Pricing Guide

Please use these details as a guide only, as most Indonesian airlines change their timetables and pricing quite frequently, so we recommend waiting until 2-3 months before the flight date to make final bookings.

Labuanbajo (for cruises in Komodo) Bima (for cruises in Komodo) Maumere (for cruises including Alor & Flores) Ambon (for cruises including Maluku - Banda Sea & Spice Islands) Sorong (for cruises to/from Raja Ampat) Saumlaki (for cruises to/from Forgotten Islands)

NB: please note that any extras booked through our office (flights, hotels or tours) can simply be added to the cruise invoice and then paid together with the cruise balance (due date: 3 month prior the cruise departure date). Alternatively, we can also add any of these extra costs to your ''onboard bill'' (used for onboard purchases such as nitrox, alcohol, boutique gifts, massages), which guests settle at the end of the cruise on the boat, via cash or credit card.

TRANSFERS TO / FROM THE VESSEL

We provide free transfers for our guests from the hotel/airport to the boat and also from the boat at the end of the cruise, for most destinations. This applies to transfers in Labuanbajo, Bima, Maumere, Ambon, Sorong and Saumlaki.

For Bali (with a greater potential distance to journey from the port) we are able to provide free transfers from/to the list of cities below, but should you require a transfer from another area there may be an additional charge:


OPTIONS FOR FURTHER TRAVEL (within Indonesia and the region)

There are so many interesting places to visit in Indonesia. Are you looking for a different dive destination for before or after your cruise? Or do you want to take in some land-based sights like local temples? What about exploring some of Indonesia's rainforests and volcanic scenery? Or booking a unique cultural experience? Or how about a trip to meet some of the land-based wildlife? Here's a website where you can get started by reading up on some popular tourism spots: www.indonesia.travel

Bali

This destination is not only famous for its diving (such as the incredibly vibrant and fish-packed wreck of the US Liberty at Tulamben) but it is also a popular island for pre/post-cruise relaxation and cultural activities. If you''re looking for adventure, then why not visit the world-class Bali surfing beaches or even try a bungee jump? Or take a tour into the picturesque rice fields and visit some villages near the volcano, or pop to the arty city of Ubud where you can also hang out with some friendly monkeys? Another highlight is a traditional ''Barong'' show which tells the stories of Indonesian folklore and don''t miss the ''bat cave temple'' (Goa Lawah) which is not only a peaceful temple site, but also a fascinating spot to photograph hundreds of bats (and a few snakes) nestled into a cave. If you want some time to chill out in paradise, then Bali is well known for its high quality spa retreats and luxurious villas, so just ask us for suggestions on where to go to continue your relaxing holiday in Indonesia.

Sulawesi

This destination is another great option for more diving. It's particularly famous for having the muck-diving mecca of Lembeh Straits as well as the stunning wall dives of Bunaken. There are also lots of other activities to enjoy here, such as white water rafting and forest walks, so if you have time pre/post-cruise then consider popping up to Manado and taking some time to explore North Sulawesi.

Java

This destination offers some great opportunities to explore Indonesian culture and local village life, but you may also want to consider a visit to Yogyakarta where you can then access the UNESCO World Heritage Site of Borobudur - a stunning Buddhist temple complex, in the shadows of the volcano, thought to be built in the 8th or 9th century and "hailed as the largest and most complete ensemble of Buddhist reliefs in the world, unsurpassed in artistic merit, each scene an individual masterpiece".

Malaysia & Thailand

These destinations are also very easy to access from Indonesia, so definitely an option for a pre/post-cruise extension. There are great dive sites from Pulau Tioman and Pulau Redang on Malaysia's east coast, to Ko Tao or Ko Phi Phi (on Thailand''s east/west coasts respectively), but there are also plenty of other exciting towns and cities to explore. Melaka (also spelt Malacca) is on Malaysia's west coast, south of the capital Kuala Lumpur (KL), and is a really nice place to see what happens to a Malay town when you mix both Portuguese and Dutch influences with ''straits Chinese'' culture. Or another nice urban visit is the town of Penang, up near the Thai border. Or you could counter all the underwater exploration with a few days inland at the quaint tea plantations of the Cameron Highlands, or visiting the Taman Negara national park (as tourist guides say; "... in the middle of the Malaysian peninsula lies a rainforest so old it makes the entire Amazon jungle seem like new growth").

Singapore

This destination is not only a useful hub for international flights but also a tourist stop in its own right, with plenty to offer different visitors whether you prefer eating, shopping or activities. The zoo here is a good example of how to combine tourism with an educational centre, making the enclosures as natural as possible (including free-ranging orangutans, lemurs and monkeys who thrive in the local rainforest environment). Or why not head to Sentosa island for the luge or wave centre, or even visit the Resorts World theme park? Plus remember Singapore is known as "a beginner's guide to Asia" since it really does try to offer a taster of the whole region, so take time to visit Chinatown and Little India but also Kampong Glam (the Arab quarter) and tick of Christian churches, Islamic mosques, Chinese temples, Hindu temples and Buddhist shrines all in one day!

MAJOR AIRPORTS IN INDONESIA


Indonesian City (Airport Name)   Code   More Info  
Ambon (Pattimura)   AMQ   click here  
Bali (Ngurah Rai International)   DPS   click here  
Bima (Muhammad-salahuddin)   BMU   click here  
Jakarta (Soekarno-Hatta Int''l)   CGK   click here  
Labuanbajo (Mutiara)   LBJ   click here  
Makassar / Ujung Pandang (Hasanudin)   UPG   click here  
Manado (Samratulangi)   MDC   click here  
Maumere (Waioti / Fransiskus Xaverius Seda)   MOF   click here  
Saumlaki   SXK   click here  
Sorong (Jefman / Dominique Edward Osok)   SOQ   click here