Raja Ampat is known for its legendary coral islands, one of them being Pianemo. It is here where coral islands with different sizes can be seen covering a wide area. The scenery is breathtaking with crisp, clear blue waters. The communities that surround Pianemo call this island the ‘small Wayag.’ This is because if you view this area from above, you will notice that this island grouping resembles a miniature-sized Wayag.
Reaching Pianemo from Raja Ampat is quite easy. So even if your chosen accommodation is located in Raja Ampat, don’t worry as you will only need to take a speed boat from Waisai to reach this island 2 hours away. The boat ride itself is enjoyable, too. You’ll see endless crystal clear blue waters while occasionally catching glimpses of virgin forests, swooping birds on a hunt, as well as green hilly islands.
Upon arriving in Pianemo, you’ll see hills above cliffs with overgrown trees. Some of these cliffs are still alive and continue to grow higher every year. There are three commonly used Hill pathways on Pianemo—Tanjung Bintang which is 15m high, Bald Hill which is double that at 30m high, and a final hill that stands at its highest at 40m.
There are no designated tracks for you to climb as you go on this trek across the hills. So as you leave your Raja Ampat Resort, remember to carry only a small bottle of water and a smartphone or camera. It is also recommended that you wear rubber boots or special trekking shoes to avoid injuries, slipping or getting scratched up from razor-sharp corals. It is also important that you take your time when climbing and descending. Once you get to the top of Mount Halak, you can enjoy the view, as well as see for yourself how Pianemo acquired the name ‘small Wayag.
It is from the top of the hill located in Cape Star that you will see surrounding islands forming a star shape. From there, you will also see the base of a turquoise lagoon. It is recommended that you begin your trek at 8 am to avoid getting too hot. After your trek, you can take a break at the lodge in Pianemo. Pianemo is one of the protected areas, thus explaining its pristine beauty. As your guide happily takes you from one lagoon to the next, you can stop in between to stop for a swim or snorkel, fully enjoying the warm green waters.
When availing of these tours, your Raja Ampat Resort may ask for a fee. While this may seem high for locals, it is quite reasonable for most tourists. This fee is used by the local government and communities in Raja Ampat to preserve the natural resources. As an individual, you should do your part in helping and supporting the local community with the preservation and maintenance of these islands by simply not littering and not taking souvenirs that could harm the environment. Take your memories and pictures back with you instead. Raja Ampat is Paradise on Earth. In order to see and experience this for yourself, contact Papua Paradise Eco Resort.