Maluku:: The Aru Islands

Maluku, South East Maluku, Aru. The Aru islands are low and covered with thick forests and swamps. This is one of the eastern islands (from helicopter) (Photo Bjorn Grotting)

Maluku, South East Maluku, Aru. The Aru islands are low and covered with thick forests and swamps. This is one of the eastern islands (from helicopter) (Photo Bjorn Grotting)

The group of islands called Aru are located just west of West Papua in the Arafura Sea, which stretches all the way to West Papua to the east and Australia to the south. Aru is the easternmost group of islands in Maluku, they consists of about 85 islands totaling an area of 8.563 sq. km. The largest island, Tanabesar (also called Wokam), is in reality six different islands, only separated by five narrow channels. Tanabesar is 177 km long and 77 km wide.

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