8 Reasons Why You Should Visit Kei Islands of Maluku, Indonesia

This article is part 5 of 6 in the series Exploring Maluku

Beautiful Beaches

Matwaer Beach
Matwaer Beach

Everyone knows about Bali’s beautiful beaches, but who wants to be in such a crowded and not-so-blue beach when you can go somewhere else? The Kei Islands are home to the most beautiful, pristine, untouched beaches in the world. I have been to Lombok and South Sulawesi, as well as the remote Ora Beach and I never saw anything like the beaches in Kei! There are kilometres after kilometres of white sandy beaches here and they are very much pristine! There are no trash, loud music, or people who are trying to sell you anything. There is just you, the white sand, blue sea, and clear sky.

You will have the beach to yourself

There are not many tourists in Kei. It’s located almost at the edge of Indonesia so you can imagine who would want to go there. No tourists mean that you will have the beach to yourself and enjoy the serenity and peacefulness of your surroundings. Locals may come and say hi because they are curious why you are there. Children may want to play with you. No one asks you for money or trying to trick you in tourist traps. Everything is still original.

Ngursarnadan Beach Matwaer Beach

Ngursarnadan Beach Nearby Ngaf Island

Crystal clear sea

Try to explore the islands in the morning, during the low tide and you will see how beautiful the underwater world is without being in it. The corals may not be as beautiful as the ones in Pulau Tujuh, but they are paradise for some people who have never seen this before…

Er Island (Pulau Er)
Er Island (Pulau Er)

Spot pelicans and dolphins

Yep, that’s right. Due to Kei Islands’ close proximity to Australia, you can actually check out some pelicans in Ngurtafur Beach during their migration season from Australia (around March-April)! Unfortunately, during our visit to Kei, we didn’t get to go to Ngurtafur because the whole island was closed by the village leader. But we managed to see some dolphins and pelicans in other islands.


Mini Raja Ampat is here

If you think Raja Ampat is too expensive, then this would be an alternative! It is much smaller than Raja Ampat, with no other boats and tourists roaming around. It is the most peaceful place you can find! The water is amazingly clear and you can spend hours swimming here!

Bair Island (Pulau Bair)
Bair Island (Pulau Bair)

dscf3364aSwim in the fresh water caves

Gua Hawang is a beautiful cave of Kei Kecil island. During the day, it has a beautiful reflection of sunlight entering the cave. The water is crystal blue that you can see through it! Locals would swim here and enjoy the cooling fresh water.

It is at the end of the world!

Well, sort of. It’s located between Indonesia’s Papua and Australia, so imagine how remote it is.  The location gives an extra advantage: the development of the islands is quite slow, so you don’t expect any resorts with private beach here. The locals are very much friendly and are willing to help you in the case of needs. There are no big metropolitan cities nearby, which guarantee the beaches to stay pristine for the years to come!

Good connections

Despite the islands’ remote location, there are still mobile signals in some areas. The signals in some beaches may come and go, but if you are totally concerned on being connected, then you don’t need to worry!

Not to mention that there are 4 flights from Kei (Tual) to Ambon daily, which provide you with a good connection to other parts of Eastern Indonesia or Jakarta. Ambon is only 1.5 hours distance away by plane.

View from the plane on the way to Ambon
View from the plane on the way to Ambon

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3 Responses

  • It’s actually common sense but just so you know: tidal times shift slightly everyday. there is no place on earth where low tide is consistently in the morning.

  • Love this! I recently went to Kei Island as well and I fell in love with the pristine beaches and friendly Kei dwellers. Here’s my experience 🙂 http://thinkspacerides.com/2017/09/20/things-to-do-on-kei-island-getting-there-and-what-to-bring/

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