Indonesia is still closed to overseas visitors and vaccination rates are still very low leaving much of the population susceptible to Covid infections. At this stage we are not planning to run expeditions to Indonesia in 2022. However, travel advisories and conditions on the ground change rapidly, and if by early 2022 it is looking as though Indonesia is possible, we will be bringing forward the 2023 options and running them in 2022. Our partners and the local communities with which we work are desperate for the Opwall teams to return so we would like to run in 2022 if at all possible. However, if you want to be sure of joining an expedition in 2022 then it would be best to look at one of the other countries.
The Hoga Island Marine Centre is based on a car and bike free island which is in the heart of the Wakatobi Marine National Park and is one of our most heavily published research sites. You will begin with some training, starting with the opportunity to complete a PADI Open Water dive training course if you would like to learn and aren’t already qualified, followed by a compulsory Indo-Pacific reef ecology course with practicals by diving or snorkelling. Once the Indo-Pacific reef ecology course has been completed you will then join the research teams and help them to collect data from the coral reefs around the island. This will include the opportunity to learn survey techniques including stereo-video surveys of reef fish, video surveys of benthic transects, behavioural studies on cleaner fish and seagrass ecology.
There is a triangle of reefs in Eastern Indonesia that have the highest diversity of hard coral genera, the proxy commonly used to assess overall diversity of coral reefs, anywhere in the world. The Hoga Island Marine Station is located in the heart of the Wakatobi Marine National Park. Over the last 20 years, a series of scientists have been based at this site during the Opwall survey seasons and as a result, this is now the most published site in the Coral Triangle. For the last 15 years a series of constant monitoring sites around Hoga and eastern Kaledupa have been monitored for macroinvertebrates, fish communities, coral cover and community structure. The 2021 season will complete this monitoring plus some additional projects.
Most of our volunteers fundraise for their expedition costs. Find out more.
At the marine sites during the day, the weather is normally sunny and warm (around 30 degrees Celsius), and the night temperatures drop to around 20-25 degrees Celsius. Being on the coast means there is often a pleasant breeze so it does not always feel this hot. It rains rarely, but when it does it tends to be very heavy for short periods of time.
Fitness level required
Low-Moderate. Some fitness is required for in water activities, but conditions are relatively easy.
Facilities at Pantai Nirwana are very comfortable; shared dorm rooms have beds with a mattress, stand-up showers, and Western style toilets.
The Hoga Island Marine Station is an established facility that lies within the Wakatobi Marine Park of eastern Indonesia. The station was rebuilt in 2016 and supports a dive centre, lecture theatre, wet-lab as well as a large dining room and kitchen facility. Simple huts owned by members of the local fishing community surround the station and serve as guest accommodation. The island supports reliable phone signal that allows limited internet access.
Find out all about how you could fundraise for an expedition.Learn more