Banda Islands Indonesia – Forgotten Islands

It’s hard to imagine that an area of such memorable natural beauty could ever be “forgotten”.  The Banda Islands Indonesia, are an impressive series of volcanic islands that rise up abruptly from the oceanic depths and offer white sand beaches, incredible landscapes, and they are completely off the beaten track. The surrounding crystal clear water is bursting with vibrant coral reefs and a staggering array of marine life.

The Banda Sea & the Forgotten Banda Islands Indonesia

On land, the islands range from being completely uninhabited to supporting small local communities – who are always happy to welcome visitors. The Forgotten Banda Islands Indonesia (also referred to as the Barat Daya Islands) are one of the most remote regions on the planet so if you are hoping to escape the hustle and bustle of day to day life and really get away from it all, a Banda Sea cruise checks all of the boxes.

Scuba Diving and Snorkeling the Forgotten Islands

The Banda Islands Indonesia, are a world-class cruising destination for experienced scuba divers – you’ll find no shortage of pristine reefs, schooling fish, sharks, rays, and for those who prefer macro-life there is an impressive range of rare and unusual critters too.

The Forgotten Islands are located in the Banda Sea, Indonesia, in the heart of the Coral Triangle which is the richest marine environment on earth. While only covering 1.6% of the planet’s oceanic area, the region has 76% of all known coral species in the world. As a habitat for 52% of Indo-Pacific reef fishes and 37% of the world’s reef fishes, it encompasses the highest diversity of coral reef fishes.

During the month of October, and early November, migrating schools of hammerhead sharks are a frequent sighting. For the intrepid divers and explorers who visit here, it’s possible to witness hundreds of huge, graceful scalloped hammerhead sharks swimming slowly along in a migration that is still largely uncharted. This is an unforgettable experience and one which is seen by only a few.


Hammerheads Banda Islands Indonesia
The migrating schools of hammerheads are a highlight of the Forgotten Banda Islands Indonesia


The shallow water reefs around the islands also make for phenomenal snorkeling, once you take a look underwater you’ll be mesmerised by the brightly coloured reef fish on display. El Aleph also carries paddle boards and sea kayaks for those who would prefer to stay on top of the water. There are also water skis, a donut ring, and our tender (speedboat) is always available to take you ashore whenever you wish to do so).


Banda Sea Cruise
The Banda Sea is located in the heart of the Coral Triangle and is bursting with marine life


The Forgotten Banda Islands Indonesia are within proximity of the Spice Islands, the Alor Archipelago, Raja Ampat and Komodo so for those wanting a longer cruise and to see more of this stunning Indo-Pacific region we can tailor make itineraries, visiting multiple locations, according to your needs.

The Forgotten Islands on Land

Within the Forgotten Banda Islands there are both inhabited and uninhabited islands. Visiting a remote uninhabited island in such a stunning region is thrilling and exciting – an explorer’s dream come true! There are pristine white sand beaches, secluded coves that are perfect for taking a cooling dip in, and dense jungle that is teeming with wildlife and stunning birdlife.

When visiting the inhabited Banda Islands Indonesia, it is us, not the locals who provide the entertainment. The local school children, with beaming smiles, are intrigued to see foreigners who have gone to such extreme lengths to visit their ‘forgotten lands’. They are mesmerized by modern technology and love to have their photos taken with the visitors – only to be shown it on the phone screen and never again!

There is a vast amount of culture and heritage to absorb on land, from the local villages and observing local life to the ceremonies and traditional practices that are carried out on a daily basis.

The people of the Forgotten Islands have a strong bond with the Banda Sea that not only serves as a source of food by providing daily fresh fish, a means of transport via dugout canoe, and that is embedded in their traditional stories of battles of good against evil!

Cruise the Forgotten Islands: Banda Islands Indonesia

If you have a taste for adventure and don’t want to compromise on the finer things in life, then a bespoke cruise through the Forgotten Islands (Banda Islands Indonesia) onboard el Aleph guarantees exemplary service, luxurious and spacious cabins, privacy, and of course – an incredible adventure from start to finish.

For reservations or enquiries, please contact us using our contact form –  or email us at; and we will promptly reply.

Please note that we are not a yacht agency — your enquiries will be addressed directly by el Aleph’s owner. All of our charters are custom designed to suit your tastes, interests and needs. For your comfort and privacy, we accept bookings for full boat charters only — not by the cabin.