The cluster of the ten Banda islands is only 44 kmē in size and located 132 km south of Ambon. The marine environment
around these islands is undoubtedly wonderful. The islands are surrounded by wonderful sea gardens, rich in decorative corals
and fish, which make it one of the best diving sites in Asia. Facilities for sightseeing, snorkeling and skin diving are
available, as well as clean and comfortable cottages.
The Banda group of islands is perched on the rim of Indonesia's deepest sea, the Banda Sea. Near Manuk Island, the waters reach a depth of more than 6,500 meters
Things to do at the Banda Islands
The foremost sensation of the Banda islands is the great diving opportunity. The coral gardens of Pulau Hatta, eastern Banda Besar and Run are the best choice. All of these places can be reached on a daily basis by little public boats.
Alternatively, you can hire a boat with captain. Make sure that your lunch time is planned and something to eat available, as you will not find a warung everywhere.
Bandaneira offers several historic houses, old villas, ruins, and even a Dutch fortress, which are all leftovers from old colonial times. Rumah Budaya at Jl Gereja Tua hosts Bandaneiras main museum. Ask at your homestay house for opening hours.
Every island invites you for wonderful and lonely island walks. If you should have the idea to climb Gunung Api, which is the highest peak of the Bandas (667m above sea level) you should not forget to bring enough water with you, as the path takes 2 hours and should not be underestimated. The peak rewards you with great views and some volcanic insight.
Travel to Banda Islands
The nice thing about the Banda islands is that they are not yet overrun by tourism. But this is mainly due to the fact that the Banda islands are extremely hard to reach.
One possibility is by air, via the airport of Ambon. From Ambon there should be a connection to the very tiny airport of Bandaneira twice a week, operated by Nusantara Buana Airways (NBA). The plane is an 18 seater and the one way ticket costs Rp. 320,000.
Alternatively the Pelni cruise ship leaves from Ambon towards Banda islands every two weeks, costs around Rp. 70,000 and needs about 8 hours for that trip. You also might check the Virtual Tourist website for the latest information.