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Raja Ampat’s Award-Winning Resort, Misool and Misool Foundation

Misool Marine Reserve ended 2017 on a justifiable high with being named as a Mission Blue Hope Spot! The co-founders of Misool and Misool Foundation, Marit and Andrew Miners, brought their passion for the ocean to bear and have shown how everyday people can affect real change.

At the beginning…

Misool lagoon, image courtesy of Shawn Heinrichs

Misool lagoon, image courtesy of Shawn Heinrichs

Misool lagoon, image courtesy of Shawn Heinrichs[/caption]Back in 2005, early in the Miners’ courtship, they spent their extended 3rd date diving Raja Ampat’s undiscovered reefs off the remote island Batbitim, Misool. During a surface interval, they inadvertently discovered a recently abandoned shark finning camp. Itinerant camps such as these contribute to the decimation of shark populations (approximately 100 million sharks are slaughtered each year for their fins).

During this time, Raja Ampat was yet to be ‘discovered’ and it was certainly an off the beaten track destination only visited by a handful of adventurous divers. Horrified by their discovery, Andrew sought permission from the local clans to build a conservation centre on Batbitim Island. With the elders’ blessing, Andrew and Marit began the daunting task of protecting the marine environment in this remote location. Only armed with their determination to effect change, they poured all their energy and enthusiasm into their passion project. The Miners’ have shown that despite not having a background in education conservation, architecture, construction or small island politics and little capital great things can be accomplished.

Misool and Misool Foundation today

Aerial view of Misool dive resort, image courtesy of Kevin Korpics

Aerial view of Misool, image courtesy of Kevin Korpics

To fund their conservation projects, Misool was developed in 2008 and within 10 years the resort has been recognised by the travel industry. In 2017 Misool was awarded the World Travel & Tourist Council’s most prestigious prize, the Tourism for Tomorrow Award. Their strategy of marrying a for-profit organisation, Misool, and the non-profit Misool Foundation is working. The reserve now covers 300,000 acres and is patrolled by 15 local rangers using a 5-boat fleet kitted with radar surveillance to assist in preventing illegal fishing. 13 years since Marit and Andrew first committed to protecting Batbitim, they continue to successfully contribute to the environment, local communities and Indonesian tourism.

If resort diving in the heart of the Coral Triangle, an area considered to have the highest concentration of marine biodiversity on earth, is appealing then look no further than Misool. Contact us today and book your next diving holiday at an award-winning resort with a conscience now!

If you are interested in diving with Misool let us know and we will make it happen! send us an email.

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