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Cruising the Historic Maluku Islands

Uncover the fascinating history of Indonesia with this amazing 10-day cruise. Leave from Ambon and set sail to the island of Buru, where you’ll tour the Benteng Wantrouw, a Dutch fortress built in the 17th century. Head to the river and enjoy a boat ride through the lush jungles of Buru and catch glimpses a variety of rare wildlife. From there, travel to the town of Sanana and explore a historic Portuguese fortress that still stands today. Continue on to Bacan Island, where you’ll snorkel and see gorgeous coral reefs and tropical schools of fish. Finish the tour discovering more ancient forts on the island of Tidore and visit a nearby museum where priceless royal items are on display.

Highlights   Pricing
  • Take an exciting river cruise through the wild jungles of Buru and see exotic wildlife
  • Visit a Bajau village and admire the unique stilt houses which sit above the sea
  • Snorkel in Bacan and come face-to-face with gorgeous coral reefs and tropical fish
  • Trek through the ruins of ancient Portuguese fortresses on the island of Tidore
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Day by Day Itinerary

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Day 1
Manipa Island

Start the tour by boarding a luxurious schooner in Ambon, from where you’ll set sail towards Manipa Island. Arrive at its shore and visit the lovely village of Tumalehu. Here, you’ll witness sago processing, a powdery substance derived from the heart of a sago palm. Sago is considered a staple food in the country and is used for baking and cooking sweet sago pudding.

Day 2
Buru Island

In the morning, take a tour of the Benteng Wantrouw, an ancient Dutch fortress used to regulate the production of clove trees. Next, visit a traditional fishing village along the coast. Here, you’ll experience local life and see fishermen busy at work. Head back to the cruise and sail to the beautiful island of Buru, where you’ll anchor overnight.

Day 3
Sula Islands

Begin the day by taking a river cruise through the rich jungles of Buru. Here, you’ll spot a plethora of tropical birds including the Pitta, Sunbird and Kingfisher. Also, keep your eyes open for the rare Babirusa, a unique creature that looks like a cross between a pig and a deer. In the late afternoon, depart from Buru and head to the Sula Islands overnight.

Day 4

After breakfast, make your way to shore and explore the island of Sulabesi. Trek to the fascinating town of Sanana and walk through an ancient Portuguese fortress that still stands today. Continue past the town and stop at a village, home to Bajau “Sea Gypsies”. Here, you’ll lose yourself in a maze of wooden footbridges that connect stilt houses above the sea together. In the late afternoon, return to the boat and start our journey to the Obi Islands.

Day 5
Obi Islands

Spend the day on the island of Obilatu and choose between visiting a traditional village on the north coast or bask under the sun on smooth white sand in one of the gorgeous bays. Next, discover the area between Obilatu and the island of Obi Mayor and take a dip in the clear turquoise sea. End the day with a stunning sunset from the deck of the ship and sail overnight to Bacan Island.

Day 6
Bacan Island

Arrive in Bacan Island and visit the tiny town of Labuha. Here, you’ll take a stroll through the bustling market and see fresh fruits and vegetables bursting with color. Next, continue your journey to the north coast of the island, where you’ll enjoy an exciting afternoon of snorkeling. This part of Bacan is carpeted with spectacular coral reefs and is full of tropical fish. After, retreat to the boat and rest onboard in the evening.

Day 7
Bacan Island

Return to the shores of Bacan and spoil yourself with a day of hiking through lush rainforest. Start in the traditional village of Geti and make your way into the vast green jungle. Be on the lookout for exotic wildlife such as parrots, cockatoos, Macaque monkeys and much more.

Day 8

Depart from Bacan and cruise to the island of Kayoa. Enjoy a day at sea and marvel at the endless isles that pass you by. In the evening, anchor off the coast of Kayoa and gaze at the millions of shimmering stars above you from the deck.

Day 9

In the morning, step on the island of Tidore and take a stroll through the ruins of ancient Portuguese fortresses. Continue to scenic clove and coconut plantations and admire the endless view of towering palm trees. Next, walk to the small coastal town of Soa Siu and visit the local museum where the sultan’s crown and other royal items are on display.

Day 10

On your final day, arrive in Ternate in the morning and depart the schooner. Here, we say farewell and are more than happy to assist you with your next travel plans. For the remainder of the day, we recommend hiking to the Gamalama volcano where you’ll come across two beautiful volcanic lakes.


Suggested Accommodations

Private Schooner

Private Schooner

Navigate the waterways and explore the islands in luxurious style and comfort on your private schooner. Remote Lands offers a range of vessels for your stay, with air-conditioned cabins, en-suite bathrooms and spacious decks on which to relax and admire the views. With your own private boat, you will have the freedom to explore this amazing territory at your leisure, stopping off for diving, island-hopping, snorkeling, swimming and trekking. Schooners are equipped with a full crew, in order to make your stay as comfortable and special as possible.

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