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The Best Dive Sites in Raja Ampat

Sweetlips Cape Kri Raja Ampat Scuba Diving
Sweetlips in Cape Kri Tim Noack @timbocean

How we plan our dives in Soul scuba divers

We plan the dives every evening with our dive guides, we will make plan based on peoples level of handling currents, certification, looking carefully tide charts and peoples wishes. Look from our previous blog post how the weather and mother nature effects our dive plans.


Tell us what kind of diving you like, which creatures you wish to see. We collect the info and add this to your wishlist. Wishlist is similar that you might of done when you were kid to Santa Claus. We try our best to make all of your wishes to come true. See from our previous post how long you should stay in Kri island to have the good idea what we have to offer, Blog post

7 dive sites Soul scuba divers recommends

Picking our favorite dive sites in Raja Ampat is difficult. But if we chose these dive sites by determining which ones we would tell our best friend to dive if they visited Raja Ampat based on how beautiful and fun they were, here would be the verdict.

Cape Kri

There's a reason why this dive site is so famous. Scientists have seen more reef fish on this dive site than any other in the world--more than 450 species. The abundance and variety of fish, coral and other marine plants and animals on this dive site is truly astounding. Ideally, you start the dive of Cape Kri along the reef looking for macro life. Then, if the dive is planned in alignment with the current, you reach the huge gathering of schools of fish like barracuda, giant sweetlips, big-eyed trivially, surgeon fish and bumphead parrotfish. You have a high chance of seeing grey reef sharks and whitetip reef sharks at this site also--which is a nice changeup from the blacktip reef sharks you see literally everywhere around Raja Ampat (blacktips are gorgeous too, though!). The elegant eagle ray can also be spotted here frequently.

Dive this site with an experienced guide because timing is everything if you want an amazing Cape Kri experience--which can be so spectacular that sometimes the insane amount of schools of fish actually block out the sun's rays. And because it's only five minutes away from our homestay, we can never complain about having access to amazing diving.

Rufas Wall

Ok, guys. If you get all the way to Raja Ampat, feel totally accomplished only if you check this dive site off your list. It's the most interesting and epic dive site we've found in Raja Ampat. It's mostly a sheer drop-off that goes down into an abyss that hosts all sorts of macro life like nudibranchs and flatworms. But the best part of the dive happens at the end, when you enter the majestic, shallow, coral garden with soft and hard coral of every color, shape and size one could think of. Last time we dived there we saw a huge school of 10+ blacktip reef sharks. We have yet to experience it, but we've heard that when the current is right you can spot lots of grey reef sharks too.

After the dive, take a hike on Rufas Island and see the most Instagram-worthy views possible or take a nap on the pier. Snorkel with baby reef sharks in the shallow coral garden or swim in the calm, emerald green lagoon that makes up the inner part of the island.

Melissa’s Garden

If you want to see pygmy seahorses, this is where we will take you. When you think Melissa's Garden, think creatures. Interesting creatures. There are so many nudibranchs and other macro life that wants to be seen in this dive site it's frustrating! We see plenty of moray eels, cuttlefish, blacktip reef sharks and other interesting large and small fish here.

Mostly, however, it's one of our favorites because when you dive this site and glance up at the coral you're diving along, you see how it slopes upward and think: dang, this reef is SO healthy and diverse. You can hope and dream about various types of soft and hard coral reef, or you can just dive Melissa's Garden. Time it right and get essentially no current, making it an entirely easy and enjoyable diving experience.

Blue Magic

Manta rays that are 8 meters (24 feet) wide are no big deal, right? Wrong! Dive Blue Magic and you can see a famous cleaning station of Oceanic Manta Rays in Raja Ampat. Blue Magic is an underwater seamount that starts around 7 meters and goes down to about 30 meters where you can spot huge schools of fish like barracuda and unique creatures like the Wobbegong Shark.

You'll be amazed the captain can even find this site. It's out in the middle of the open water--where, as long as the sea is calm, captains rely on spotting fish like fusilier and big-eyed trivially moving in the shallow part of the reef. If the surface is a bit choppy we use GPS to find the site. In time period of October - May this dive site becomes super busy with liveaboards and we call this dive site bubble tragic. During the Manta season we choose to go other dive sites near by like LaoLao or Miouskun. If you wish to still go Blue magic during the busy season you can except the dive be like in the jaquise (hot tab).

Manta Sandy/Ridge

Who doesn't want to meet the graceful manta ray?! You'll never forget the first time you meet these gentle giants. The majestic manta ray can be observed year-round at Manta Sandy--and it's quite common to see 10 or more of them during a dive. We always stop here on our way to Piaynemo, just in case we spot them, but manta season is October-April. So if you're a manta lover, come during those months because you can spot an insane amount of mantas at once!

Every single dive site in Raja Ampat is amazing. When it comes to pristine, healthy coral reefs along with sheer abundance of amazing creatures like turtles, sharks and rays, think Raja Ampat. This place is the Utopia of diving destinations. Contact us about planning your dive trip in Raja Ampat! Manta ridge is more busy with manta rays during the season October - April/May. Advanced dive sites that most of the time includes reef hooks. If you aren't familiar with reef hooks, our guides will assist you.


Sardines Reef and it was magical! What we love about this dive site it is that you have no break. You have of course schools of fishes everywhere: barracudas, sweetlips and jackfishes amongst others. At the bottom you have a small cave where there is often a sleeping shark. You can also find wobbegong shark, moray eels, turtles and almost every time black and white tip sharks. On many dive sites, the fishes gather at the tip of the reef. Here it never stops, it is full all along the dive. If you try to have your mind rest from this firework and you look at the reef, you’ll find amazing corals, a hole with an octopus or lobster inside. There is also a lot of macro from nudibranches to pipefishes, crabs and shrimps. At Sardines Reef there is always something happening, so you better be ready!

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