Taking the cargo boats to Batanta and Fam Islands can save you quite a bit of money. It’s a great option if you have plenty of time and want to keep your budget as low as possible.
First, though, let us warn you: Do not rely on these boats if your schedule is not flexible! These are island supply boats, not passenger ferries. You will need to be ok with taking a long time to get there. You will also need to be OK with either not sleeping, or with sleeping on decks. You should probably take something to shelter yourself and your luggage from rain.
If you do take the cargo boats to Batanta and Fam, you will need to contact your hosts to arrange a pickup at your destination. For some homestays you will need to be able to make yourself understood in Bahasa Indonesia. If you’re going to Batanta, be aware that you will arrive in the middle of the night. You might need to wait in Arefi until morning for your homestay pickup.
Still keen? Details are below, and were correct in August 2022. We update this information as soon as we are aware of permanent changes.
Batanta and Fam boat schedule
Boat name: Terebuk
Departs Sorong: Weekly on Fridays. Departs from Pertamina harbour at Sorong sometime between 1800 and 2100. Best to be there before 6pm, because the boat leaves as soon as it’s loaded.
Arrives in Arefi, Batanta: Depends on departure time, but usually around 2400 (midnight). Departs as soon as cargo transfer is complete.
Arrives in Fam Village, Fambemuk: Depends on departure time, varies from 0900 to 1200 (midday) on Saturday.
Departs Fam Village on Saturdays as soon as cargo transfer is complete, and returns to Sorong via Arefi, usually arriving back in Sorong sometime after 1730 on Saturday evening.
Sorong to Arefi – IDR 70,000
Arefi to Pam – IDR 50,000
Sorong to Pam – IDR 120,000
Fam Islands boat schedule
Boat Name: Sabuk Nusantara
Departs Sorong: Weekly on Wednesdays. Departs from the public harbour, usually around 1800. Best to get there early, because the boat leaves as soon as it’s loaded.
Arrives in Fam Village, Fambemuk: Usually around 0900 on Thursdays
Returns to Sorong as soon as cargo transfer is complete.
Cost: IDR 50,000