The Maluku Islands, also known as the Spice Islands, are situated in the heart of the Indonesian archipelago and are home to the country’s highest mountain range. Their stunning beauty, with lush green forests, pristine white-sand beaches, and crystal-clear waters teeming with marine life, and the intrigue of their history make them a compelling destination for any visitor. 

Once the exclusive source of nutmeg and clove, the location of these islands remained a secret to Arab traders, who held a monopoly over the trade of these spices. Portuguese eventually arrived and staked a claim in 1512, followed by the Dutch and, latterly, the French, English and Spanish. The Dutch and Portuguese fought bitter battles known as the ‘Spice Wars’ for control over the islands and trade. The wars lasted for more than 100 years, with the Dutch emerging victorious, but only destroying most of the trees, save those they could control! They continued their stronghold until 1949, a few years after Indonesia’s independence. Any visit here will transport you back to an era when these exotic and aromatic treasures commanded the world’s attention. Immerse yourself in the cobbled streets and age-old alleys of Banda Neira, where the colonial remnants of Dutch and Portuguese influences stand as testaments to a bygone era as you explore old forts.

Beyond the history, the coral reefs of the Maluku islands are a veritable paradise for snorkelers, untouched and waiting to be discovered. It is worth staying for the rich cultural heritage of the local communities, whose traditional way of life, and in particular their festivals remained unchanged despite the hundreds of years of occupation.

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With the Summer almost upon us, now is the time to begin planning your next summer adventures in Asia. Our Travel Specialists are ready to take your call and discuss the adventure you have been dreaming of.

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