Raja Ampat Homestay | Pulau Birie
The video below was taken snorkelling on our house reef. Video courtesy of our guest Hervé from France in November 2016.
You also find find small shops (toko) here where you can buy soft drinks, snacks, cigarettes etc.
Main road of Arefi village
Prostant church in Arefi village
Homestays are the cheapest way to stay in Raja Ampat. This makes them very popular among travellers but sometimes guests come with expectations we cannot meet. We want all our guests to be happy. Therefore we encourage you to read the following section before booking with us.
For now we only have one big bungalow which is shared by all guests. At times you can be the only guest in the homestay but we cannot guarantee for that. The rooms are quite close together, the walls of each room inside the bungalow are quite thin, and there is no sound isolation which means that privacy might be limited. If you like to hang out with other people and do not mind noise caused by other guests, then you are good to book with us. If you prefer absolute privacy (e.g. on a romantic couple holiday) we would recommend you to book somewhere else.
Our kitchen serves a large variety of Indonesian dishes. For our delicious meals we rely on what is available on the food market in Waisai or in the local villages. The meals mostly consist of rice, vegetables and small pieces of meat (mostly fish). Buying fish and chicken in Raja Ampat is quite expensive which is why we prefer to go fishing ourselves. We always aim to make our guests happy with the dishes we provide every day and this works pretty well. We would like you to understand though that you cannot order any meals á la carte. Also please do not expect large portions of fish or meat for every meal.
We have one toilet and one shower (see at the end of page Accommodation) available for all guests. We intentionally separated the lavatory from the main bungalow but it’s still one small hut shared by all guests. The water for shower and toilet comes from a well 250 metres away from the homestay which we transport by hand. Long and hot showers are therefore not possible as water is a limited resource. Both shower and toilet have one big water bucket for all your needs which we refill regularly.
We have electricity in the evening provided by a fuel generator. Fuel is expensive in Raja Ampat which is why we run the generator only between 6.00 PM and midnight. At this time we have light in the resort and you can charge your devices. Every room inside the bungalow has one power outlet in two-pin European style.
At our homestay there is absolutely no phone signal. Hence phone calls and mobile internet are not possible. There are no internet hot spots close by that you could use. There is a resort 10 minutes away from our homestay but they do not provide internet to non-guests (other guests have already tried). We would rather recommend you to book at a resort if you cannot live without internet during your stay in Raja Ampat.
The amazing wildlife is one of the reason why people love Raja Ampat so much. Most people love the sounds of the jungle that we have with tropical birds and crickets. Like everywhere in Indonesia we cannot avoid having mosquitoes and sometimes sandflies. At night the mosquito net inside your room should protect you and we recommend you to bring insect repellent as well.
We are one of a handful of homestays in Batanta area who offer scuba diving to their guests. With Efraim you have an excellent dive guide at your hand who knows the dive sites and tries to find whatever you want to see. However, we do not have a fully equipped dive center and we are not a dive school that offers diver training. We have 5 tanks available filled at a reputable filling station and we can rent equipment pieces for you like BCD, regulator, weights and masks. Unfortunately we do not have any fins, wetsuits, SMBs or dive computers available for rental. To be sure you have everything needed for scuba diving, we recommend you to bring as much of your own scuba equipment as you can. If you fly to Sorong with Garuda Indonesia you can benefit from 23 kg free diving equipment per person (as of February 2017).