Aru Islands, Indonesia
The Aru islands are a group of about ninety-five low-lying islands in the Maluku province of eastern Indonesia. The islands are the easternmost in Maluku province, and are located in the Arafura Sea southwest of New Guinea and north of Australia. The largest island is Tanahbesar (also called Wokam); Dobo, the chief port of the islands, is on Wamar, just off Tanahbesar. Other main islands are Kola, Kobroor, Maikoor, and Trangan.
No group of islands exemplifies this extreme isolation than the unusual Arus. Located in the middle of the Banda Sea, the islands are composed of low-lying limestone formations, the islands share a similar topography to the neighboring Kais. Most of the Aru's 21 islands are flat and swampy, their extensive marshes broken by narrow marine channels and low hills. Lying about 640 kilometers southeast of Ambon and only 240 kilometers from the western coast of New Guinea, the Arus probably once formed part of that giant island.
Things to See & Do
* Snorkeling & diving
Cruise Season - Jan - Dec
Currency - Rupiah (IDR)
Language - Indonesian
Population - 82,000 approx
Land Area - 8,563 km2
Electricity - 2 round pins European style
Time - GMT plus hours seven hours
International Country Telephone Code - +62
Port Location - The chief port of the Aru islands is Dobo, located on Wamar island.
Travel Links - There's only one airstrip on the Arus, in a small village south of Dobo called Bendjina, where a Merpati plane lands twice a week from Ambon via Langgur on Kai Kecil. Another way to reach the Arus is by the Pelni ships the Bukit Siguntang and the Tatamailau out of Ambon and Tual (Kai Islands), the latter continuing on to Pupua.
The regular port of call for ships in the Arus is Dobo on Pulau Wamar.