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South Maluku: Hidden paradise

Post on 2016-09-21 | Indonesia

By S. Kramer and W. Wang

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Hidden under the protection of rocky cliffs and Mt. Binaya, Ora is a quiet, secluded beach with crystal-clear water, colorful schools of fish and coral inviting you to explore. The beach can only be reached by a small boat from the village of Saka. Its remote location has kept its natural beauty from being spoiled by human activities from the outside world. There are some basic resorts on the beach that provide an all- inclusive and comfortable bungalows on stilts with coral reefs underfoot. In the evening you can listen to the sounds of sea creatures in the water while enjoying the starlit skies. Both Ora and Sawai are places where you can relax, reconnect with nature and recharge your body, mind, and soul in a holistic natural way. Activities include exploring the Sawai river, hiking to visit waterfalls and snorkeling.

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You can also enjoy the local cuisine ranging from barbecued fresh fish and colo-colo salsa to simply a freshly picked coconut.

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For nature lovers or avid birdwatchers, an overnight stay at the treetop platform is an extraordinary experience that should not be missed. On a platform 45 m high above the ground, you can see the tropical cockatoos, parrots, and other exotic bird species chasing one another roaming free above the tree canopy. Seram is one of the places that attracted ornithologists and naturalists, like Alfred Wallace and Sir David Attenborough, to observe and document the various species of wildlife in Maluku. The Salmon-crested cockatoo, the endangered purple-naped lory and Moluccan scrubfowl are some vulnerable endemic species under protection of the national park and from poaching and trading. Other endemic non-bird species include the Asian musk shrew, wahai tree frogs, and mosaic tailed rat. Cuscus often appears along the Tebing Batu beach area during the night. Manusela National Park covers 189,000 hectares containing 28 restricted-range species under monitoring and conservation. If you have several days to spend, a well-planned couple of days visit to the national park with a guide is worth the time and effort. When you return to Amahai through the forest, you can observe typical famous vegetation of Maluku. Before reaching Ambon, your final stop before leaving Maluku, you might want to visit Waai to see the sacred moray eels. In Ambon, you can visit old relics of a Dutch fort and WWII common wealth memorial park where heroes of WWII were laid to rest. If you have more time, you can also visit traditional village of Soya to discover Ambonese royal family manor.

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