Supreme Luxury Raja Ampat Peak Season Liveaboard 2025


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Supreme Luxury Raja Ampat Peak Season Liveaboard

Join us from February 16 - 27, 2025 for some of the most amazing diving in the world on one of Indonesia's most luxurious liveaboards with a maximum of only 12 divers! 


Why Join This Trip?

  • Discover why our Raja trips are the pinnacle of diving with insane biodiversity
  • Raja is considered by many to be their #1 top bucket list dive destination in the world
  • 11-night route dives the absolute best of Raja, including top north & south dive sites
  • With only 12 guests, the Damai II delivers the top luxury liveaboard experience in the world
  • Manta rays, wobbegong sharks, mind-blowing corals and schooling fish, highest marine diversity in the world
  • Includes FREE optional photo workshop


February 16 - 27, 2025

Trip Leader: Mark Strickland

11 Nights for:

Double Cabin: $7,645

Master Cabin 5: $8,195

Master Cabin 6: $8,965

Single Cabin: $9,995

Cabin 7: $6,880

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Prices are per person and include dive gear, massages, and laundry. Read the package details here


Trip Overview

The jewel-like islands of Raja Ampat are caressed by a convergence of swift nutrient-rich currents. Here the pulse of marine life thrives from the sea floor to the surface where the kaleidoscope of corals can start in less than a meter of water.

There are sites that are so pristine and packed with growth, that a photographer is hard-pressed to find a spot to place a steadying finger. Exotic sea life and macro critters abound, of course, and photo opportunities border on overwhelming. But at the end of the day, the most memorable moments for us are what can rarely be captured in digital format: the incredible experience of drifting along miles of exquisite reef brimming with a rainbow of hues and activity, the likes of which few have ever experienced.

Read all about the BWT trip to Raja Ampat in December 2022 here. 

Dive Damai Dive Damai 

The Damai II has been specifically designed for cruising and diving in the tropical waters of Indonesia, with passenger well-being always the top priority. Equipped with the latest navigation, communication and safety equipment, the DIVE DAMAI fleet sets a new standard for safety as well as comfort, service and passenger amenities.

Of course, even the best ship is only as good as her crew, and this is another area where DIVE DAMAI shines. Every trip is managed by a highly qualified and experienced western cruise director, complimented by an ever-helpful Indonesian crew, all of whom are dedicated to making your diving holiday the trip of a lifetime.

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Marine Life To Photograph

Raja Ampat has one of the highest numbers of fish species of anywhere on the planet. Here are just a few examples of marine life you're likely to see: wobbegong sharks, jacks, barracuda, Napoleon wrasse, trevally, bumphead parrotfish, pygmy seahorses, batfish, angelfish, butterflyfish, barramundi cod, and a good variety of nudibranchs.

If you look a little deeper when the current picks up, you can see reef sharks at most sites, especially at places like Blue Magic and Sardines. These are also prime locations for schooling fish, which tend to gather when the current is running. At such times, it’s not unusual to be surrounded by clouds of fusiliers and surgeonfish in mid-water, while legions of sweetlips completely obscure large coral heads below. 

See also: Raja Ampat Dive Travel Guide


Weather Conditions

Average Raja water temperatures in Raja Ampat are in the low to mid-80s. A full 3mm wetsuit is recommended. 


Read the reviews on diving Raja Ampat here

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  • Return transfers to/from the vessel to/from the airport or hotel on the day of embarkation or disembarkation, within a distance of 20km.
  • Accommodation with A/C in twin or double bed cabin with en-suite showers and toilet.
  • All meals and drinks while on board (excluding wine and Spirits). One glass of wine per person each night will be complimentary.
  • Air Tanks, weight belt, and weights.
  • Unlimited daytime diving and night dives (as per request and schedule permitting).
  • Land tours and group activities organized by Dive Damai.
  • First spa treatment of each person on board.
  • All other inclusions stipulated within your invoice / payment receipt. 


Special Inclusions For The Workshop

  • Nitrox
  • Gear rental
  • Massages
  • Laundry 



  • All vessel port and harbour fees ($440 per person, subject to change)
  • National Park/maritime areas entrances fee. ($150 per person, subject to change)
  • Travel insurance: MANDATORY. In the event of cancellation, Damai's Cancellation & Refunds policy will prevail.
  • Crew gratuities.
  • International and domestic air, land, sea transportation, and excess baggage.
  • Visa, hotels and food ashore before and after the cruise. 
  • Dive insurance is MANDATORY. Customer without a valid dive insurance will not be allowed to dive.


Trip Type

This trip is a PHOTOGRAPHY WORKSHOP. It will be led by one of our photo instructors and will include daily underwater photography tutorials, in-water photography support, and one-to-one advice and guidance as required.

What to expect from our Photo Workshops

  • Daily photo workshops - Your photo instructor will schedule seminars each day on topics including, but not limited to, equipment type and selection, the concept of underwater photography, lighting and composition techniques, and post-processing. They will also include additional topics relevant to the location and your experience.
  • In-water support - Where possible, each dive group will spend time underwater with the photo instructor, receiving in-water support and guidance on their shooting techniques.  Participants can also request in-water assistance during the workshop and the photo instructor will do his or her best to accommodate all requests. 
  • Consecutive days of practice & review - Each day you will have the opportunity to practice the techniques and skills learned in the previous day’s tutorials. If you are new to underwater photography you will likely see a vast improvement in just a few days.
  • Daily photo image reviews - You are strongly encouraged to bring your laptop, a thumb drive, edit your photos, and submit your shots for review from both the instructor and your peers. These are fun and interactive sessions encouraging you to improve throughout the trip.
  • Quality time with fellow photographers - Both new and experienced photographers from past workshops have expressed the advantages of joining a trip with like-minded divers with a passion for underwater photography.
  • Suitable for everyone - New and experienced photographers are welcome on all our trips. Gain the necessary skills to start shooting great photos, increase your confidence in finding the best underwater shots, or hone specific skills. We also encourage non-photographers to join, as many of them really enjoy the daily photo reviews, learning about underwater photography, and some have even returned to a photo workshop with an underwater camera setup!

Enjoy free, unlimited access to a wealth of knowledge and advice from your photo instructor.

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Trip Syllabus

Whether you have years of experience shooting underwater or are a complete beginner, there’s always something else to learn, and I know of no better way to quickly ramp up your knowledge and skills than joining one of our Underwater Photo Workshops.  Having a chance to dive and shoot on many consecutive days while reviewing the various aspects of underwater photography provides an ideal opportunity for learning.  Reinforcing lessons covered in our daily classroom sessions, we’ll be doing several dives each day, followed on some days by a review of the previous day’s images.  This combination of day-in, day-out shooting, and evaluating and discussing images is an unbeatable way to quickly improve your results, learn new techniques, gain inspiration, and come home with images you are proud of.  It’s also a lot of fun!   

Subjects Covered

Our time in Raja Ampat will undoubtedly fly by, and even with daily classes, it’s unrealistic to think that we can do justice to every aspect of underwater photography in a single workshop.  So the goal will be to provide you with as much quality instruction as possible on a variety of topics, while maintaining a balance of activities that also includes 3-4 dives a day, snacks, meals, camera setup and maintenance, and maybe a bit of relax time as well.  

Workshop topics will include special considerations for shooting underwater, exposure, reciprocity, choosing appropriate settings, histograms, lighting, composition, subject selection, lens perspectives, shooting angles, marine life behavior, working with models, over/under “splits”, equipment configuration and maintenance, environmental considerations, photo etiquette, and digital editing techniques and considerations.  Since Raja Ampat offers a vast range of subjects both large and small, we’ll be dividing our classroom time and shooting efforts between macro and wide angle.  

Typical Daily Routine

  • While we’ll probably do a bit of fine-tuning the schedule as the trip unfolds, this sample should give you an idea of what to expect in terms of daily organized class activities.  This is in addition to any individualized, hands-on help you may need or desire, which I am happy to provide as time permits… just ask!  
  • Day 1: Equipment preparation, checkout dive
  • Day 2: Presentation: Introduction to U/W Photography - How light behaves underwater, special challenges of shooting u/w, equipment considerations, choosing appropriate exposure settings, using histograms, secondary effects of exposure settings and lens perspectives.   
  • Day 3: Mini-session between dives 1 & 2: Demonstration on strobe positioning and edge lighting.  
  • Presentation: Maximizing Your Macro – Adjusting your diving style, learning about intended subjects, equipment considerations, choosing appropriate settings, lighting, using snoots, depth of field, blackwater diving, and photo etiquette.
  • Choose a couple images for next day’s image review.
  • Day 4: Presentation: Wide-angle Underwater Photography, including a review of appropriate camera, lens and strobe settings, exposure strategy and equipment considerations.
  • After dinner:  Image Review - Friendly critique and discussion about participants’ images from previous day.  
  • Day 5: Presentation: Composition for Underwater Photography I, including elements that attract the viewer’s eye, depth of field, eye contact, working with models, visual storytelling.
  • Choose a couple images for next day’s image review.
  • Day 6: Presentation: Composition for Underwater Photography II, including anticipation / preparation for special moments, shooting angles & perspectives, subject placement, nose room, rule of thirds, natural framing, leading lines, geometric patterns, reflections, direction of travel.
  • After dinner:  Image Review - Friendly critique and discussion about participants’ images from previous day.  
  • Day 7: Presentation: Introduction to Digital Workflow – General principles and best practices + individual help as needed
  • Day 8: Presentation: Introduction to Adobe Lightroom – General principles, strategies and best practices, plus examples of typical workflow and basic editing techniques + individual help as needed
  • Day 9: Presentation: Introduction to Adobe Lightroom, part 2
  • Day 10:  Choose 2 images for photo contest and maximum 10 images for guest slide show.  Individual help with Lightroom.  If time allows, presentation on Tips for Approaching Shy Marine Life. 
  • Day 11:  Guest slide show - This is always a very popular aspect of the trip, and showcases how much each participant’s images have improved over the course of the workshop.  In addition, we’ll also have a little photo contest, where everyone is welcome to submit a favorite photo or two to share with the group.  Winners will not only be recognized, but may even be rewarded with a cool prize! 
  • Day 12: Disembark


Trip Schedule

The itinerary can be variable and will be planned according to the direction of the trip leader and cruise director on board. They will have a good idea at that time of the conditions at the various locations. A typical December itinerary would include the following locations:

  • Days 1 - 3: Dampier Strait, Arborek, Waigeo, Aljui Bay (all considered to be Northern Raja Ampat)
  • Days 4 - 7: Move to "Southern Raja Ampat" - Bo'o, Fiabacet, Daram, Balbulol
  • Days 8 - 10: Slowly move north back to Sorong - Batanta, Yanggefo, Kri, etc.

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About The Damai II

The below deck accommodation has been designed to accommodate single or twin occupants in a level of luxury not seen on another vessel in Indonesia. Each cabin boasts a private shower and head with a queen-size bed and a separate day bed. The cabins measure approximately 20sq.mts (225 sq.ft) each and have been finished with the highest quality furnishings. The stern staterooms are over 400 sq.ft each and boast their own private deck with loungers, a super-king size bed, day beds, two desks and ensuite shower and separate head.

Dive Damai Liveboard Dive Damai Liveboard

Read the reviews of the Damai II here. 

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About The Trip Leader

Mark Strickland

Mark Strickland’s life-long interest in the sea has included over 10,000 dives and careers as a lifeguard, boat captain, and scuba instructor. His passion for underwater photography has led him to many top dive locales, including the Virgin Islands, Australia, and Thailand, where he spent 17 years as Cruise Director on a series of liveaboards. Mark now resides in Ventura County, California.

An avid marine naturalist, Mark has discovered several nudibranch species. He is co-author and principal photographer for Lonely Planet’s award-winning book, “Diving and Snorkeling Thailand”, and his work appears in many magazines, books, and displays around the world. Currently, Mark leads several dive trips each year to his favorite destinations, while working on a career-spanning large-format pictorial book.

 Mark's photos and articles have appeared in magazines and books around the world, including Action Asia, BBC Wildlife, National Geographic World, Natural History, Scuba Diving, Skin Diver, Sport Diver, Sportdiving, Unterwasser, and many others.

Read more about Mark here.


Flight Information

The trip will begin and end in Sorong. The recommended route is to fly internationally to Jakarta and then take a domestic transfer to Sorong. We recommend arriving into Sorong at least 1 day before embarkation to allow time to rest and for delayed flights/baggage. We are happy to assist you with flight suggestions and hotel bookings if required.

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Payment Schedule

  • Deposit to confirm trip: $1,200
  • $1,200 due January 1, 2024
  • $1,200 due August 1, 2024
  • Balance due: November 1, 2024

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We can help with that! See more of Indonesia before or after your trip with Bluewater. Flying all that way merits a multi-facceted vacation! Here are some examples of packages we can add on to your trip reservation:

*Rates are subject to change at any time; please contact us for the most updated pricing. 


Price: $499 per person (double occupancy), $579 per person (single occupancy)

We have created the following Meridian Dive Adventures arrival package to make your stay in Sorong more pleasant and allow you time to adjust and carry out a check-dive before joining the Damai. As an added bonus, the Damai will pick you up from the resort jetty on embarkation day to avoid the transfer back to Sorong.


  • 2 nights accommodation 
  • Daily breakfast
  • Pick up from Sorong Airport on Day 1 and transfer to the resort
  • 2-tank morning dive on Day 2
  • Pick up from the resort jetty on Day 3 by the Damai 
  • Full equipment rental (excluding computer and torch)
  • Beach Towels, Tea, Coffee, Fresh Fruit and Drinking Water on all Dives


  • Meals not included above
  • Dive computer and torch
  • Raja Ampat Park Permit (approx $83USD, payable onsite in cash IDR only - IDR1,000,000)

Meridian Adventure Waisai Meridian Adventure Waisai



See Also:

Raja Ampat Dive Travel Guide 

Damai II Liveaboard: Amenities, Cabins, Reviews & More... 

Got Questions? Ready to Book?

Call us today at +1-310-915-6677 email us at

Or stop by our office at 3961 Sepulveda Blvd, Suite 206 Culver City, CA 90230 

And let us book your dream vacation!

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Photo Gallery 

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Raja Ampat Underwater Photos from Previous Trips






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