Travel

What it’s really like to live on a boat in Indonesia for a week

Travel has changed a lot in the last two years!
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International travel is back in a big way and Australian tourists are once again flocking to Indonesia, one of the nation’s favourite overseas holiday spots.

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But after two years in lockdown most travellers aren’t content with the stock-standard beach holiday anymore.

They want excitement and unique experiences and many of them have the cash to afford something a little different, which is exactly what Liveaboard The Seven Seas offers.

Operating as a dedicated dive cruise and yacht charter around some of Indonesia’s most beautiful and untouched islands, the boat is a traditionally built Indonesian sailing schooner that offers everything a traveller could want – and then some.

So what’s it really like to live on a boat in Indonesia for a week? I gave it a try, so keep reading to find out.

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Luxury liveaboard boat The Seven Seas offers unique travel around Indonesia’s best hidden gems. (Credit: Instagram/The Seven Seas)

The most Instagram-worthy beaches in the world

Forget the Greek islands and the Amalfi coast, Indonesia is the real home of the most Instagram-worthy beaches on the planet.

Hopping from one untouched island to the next, The Seven Seas took us to pink sand shores surrounded by the most crystal clear blue water I’ve ever seen in my life.

Not only are the beaches beautiful to look at, most of them are completely empty of tourists, meaning you have the whole place to yourself. No battling other tourists for a patch of sand on a packed beach here!

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This hasn’t been retouched at all – that’s really how blue the water is! (Credit: Supplied)

Pack your snorkel

Most Aussies hear the word “cruise” and picture a mid-60s couple on a massive ship full of tiny cabins who spend their days wandering around port cities.

The Seven Seas is nothing like that. Serving primarily as a dive boat, guests are encouraged to dive, snorkel or swim around remote reefs and untouched beaches.

You can swim with Manta Rays at Komodo Island or see Whale Sharks feeding near Sumbawa, which is a hell of a lot cooler than packing onto a commercial cruise ship with a bunch of oldies.

Just know that all the salt water will leave your hair feeling worse than straw, especially if you’re a bottle blonde, but the coral reefs and colourful fish are so worth it.

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Snorkel with manta rays in their natural habitat. (Credit: Instagram/The Seven Seas)

Don’t count on reception

Unlike most massive cruise liners, The Seven Seas has no wifi onboard and you can’t count on mobile reception while you’re sailing around islands like Komodo.

While some travellers will embrace the opportunity for a social media detox, others – especially those who can’t go five minutes without checking their phone – will seriously struggle.

Unless you’re willing to climb up the rigging to get a few bars of reception (as one 18-year-old did on my trip), log out of Instagram and just enjoy the break.

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Detox from social media while you visit Komodo dragons in the wild. (Credit: Supplied)

Slip, slop, slap then do it again

Indonesia is stunning, as are its oceans, but the sun is almost as harsh there as it is in Australia.

One of my fellow passengers learned that the hard way when she came down with a bout of heat stroke after getting super sunburnt on the very first day on board. We’ve all been there.

Cue 24 hours of vomiting, dizziness and a week of peeling skin. Learn from her mistakes and pack plenty of sunscreen, whack on a hat and keep up your fluids.

Of course, for those who are sun-safe and remember to reapply, the boat is the perfect place to get the best tan of your life. Mine is all anyone has been commenting on since my trip.

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You don’t have to go to the Maldives for waters this blue. (Credit: Supplied)

It’s not a budget Bali holiday

After decades of schoolies trips and budget holidays, most Aussies are bored of the stereotypical Bali trips spent drunk at overpriced beach clubs.

That’s why something like a cruise on The Seven Seas is so alluring, especially after two years of lockdowns – but don’t expect it to be a budget option.

A cabin on one of the boat’s charters can set you back thousands of dollars, less if you split it with your partner or a friend, and is a serious investment.

But with trips to Europe hitting five-figure price tags in recent months, wouldn’t it be nice to get a taste of luxury closer to home?

The Seven Seas offers a range of liveaboard cruise trips to hidden gem locations throughout Indonesia. Learn more about its offerings here.

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