Tuesday, October 31, 2017


Labuhan Bajo or also spell as Labuan Bajo will be the first port of call for most first-time visitors to Flores, whether arriving by boat or plane. While we want to love it, like many port towns in the world, it just isn’t very lovable. It’s a small but quickly growing place, with plenty of construction thanks to so many new hotels and restaurants going up, and plenty of dust to match
The area of most interest to travellers is the port and its immediate surrounds, where you’ll find all your boating needs, a wet market and plenty of travel agents, shops -- even a wine outlet -- and a growing number of chic cafes and restaurants. It’s really your one-stop-shop for all your travelling needs in Flores, so stock up here! Western-style food, toiletries and other modern conveniences all become rather thin on the ground after you head for the Flores interior or out to the islands.

The port is the jumping off point for Rinca and Komodo islands along with a handful of other islands in the Bay of Bajo such as Knawa and Bidadari. Any diving or liveaboard operation with a presence in Komodo will have an office in Labuan Bajo, and there are plenty of dive operators to choose from. It also marks the completion (or starting) point of the popular Lombok-Sumbawa-Komodo-Flores boat trips. You’ll regularly see the bay with a good number of liveaboard boats at anchor, clearly illustrating the old adage that, "You get what you pay for!" when it comes to boats.
The view on wooden cottages with thatched roofs camouflaged by shrubberies and towering trees up in the sloping township, overlooking an idyllic harbour, make an evening conversation with traveling partners an unforgettable experience. For some adventurers, Labuan Bajo can be an ideal getaway
Komodo National Park
Located in East Nusa Tenggara, Komodo National park is the home of the unique and rare Komodo Dragon (Varanus komodoensis). Because of the unique and rare nature of this animal, KNP was declared a World Heritage Site by UNESCO in 1986.
The park includes three major islands, Komodo, Rinca and Padar, and numerous smaller islands together totaling 603 square km of land. At least 2,500 komodos live in this area. Large dragons are usually three meters long and weigh up to 90 kg. Their habitat has beautiful panoramic views of savannas, rain forests, white beaches, beautiful corals, and clean blue seas. In this area, you can also find horses, wild buffalo, deer, wild boar, snakes, monkeys, and various types of birds.

On Rinca Island, you can see komodos lying down outside the homes of national park rangers, or "parking" near the officials' homes. If you don't see a dragon, Rinca and Komodo have beautiful sceneries with white beaches, mangroves, savannas and blue waters. During the dry season, these savannas and hills have dried grasses.

You can also engage in other activities such as diving and snorkeling. You can take a cruise ship or fishermen's boat in the persuit of these activities. There are diving points highly recommended to visit which include Merah Beach, and Batu Bolong and Tatawa islands.
This place has a rich and amazing underwater sea biotica. Divers claim that Komodo waters are one of the best diving sites in the world. It has fascinating underwater scenery. You can find 385 species of beautiful corals, mangrove forests, and seaweeds as a home for thousands of fish species, 70 types of sponges, 10 types of dolphins, 6 types of whales, green turtles and various types of sharks and stingrays. The waters that surround the island are turbulent and teeming with unparalled marine life. A marine reserve has recently been established and this reserve is largely undocumented and remains unexplored.
Wae Rebo Village
The remarkable Manggarai village of Wae Rebo, some 108 kilometres from Labuan bajo is nestled in the cloud forests of western Flores and centres around seven cone-shaped traditional houses, which are built from bamboo, wood and grass and function as a remarkable piece of Flores’ living history. 

Thanks to grants from a Jakarta benefactor and the government, one house was built new in 2009, and another guesthouse in the same style was constructed in 2011. A visit here is a unique chance to witness traditional Manggarai village life, and to check out the interesting fauna and flora that has fostered life here for generations.

The friendly locals are happy to chat about their lives (with the aid of a guide) and will show you their homes and farms if you ask. This is 
the heart of Manggarai culture in many respects, and even hip Labuan Bajo natives admit to feeling touched by a visit here.

A few hundred tourists, largely from Indonesia and Europe, make the trek here every year -- but odds are good you’ll have the place to yourself, especially in the low season, which is really everything but June through August.

Wae Rebo is generally done over the course of three days: one day for the steep car ride to the town of Denge, which serves as the trailhead, one day to trek up and spend the day and night with the locals at the village of Wae Rebo, and one half day to have breakfast in Wae Rebo and make the much easier walk down. Discuss with your guide if you’d like to take more time in Wae Rebo. Less time isn’t really advisable.

The trek to Wae Rebo is about seven kilometres long and is very decidedly uphill, meaning that this is an endeavour best left to the physically fit. Think twice about bringing kids along, as the trail is steep and a bit hard to follow, and often quite slippery when rain falls. And try not to be discouraged as friendly Wae Rebo natives in their late 70s sprint past you on the trail, barefoot, and carrying huge loads on their heads.

You’ll be rewarded with amazing views of the sea below and perfectly triangular Gunung Inerie, as well as diverse jungle foliage and frequent sightings of tropical butterflies, birds and monkeys. Nearer to Wae Rebo, you can see forest plantings of cassava, taro, coffee, and cacao beans in the misty cloud forest surrounding the village.

Be sure to use sunscreen, and bring plenty of water and rain gear -- it’s often damp here. Remember not to take photos of Wae Rebo before you approach. All visitors need to undergo a welcoming ceremony at the main drumhouse to placate the spirits before they can start snapping away. 
It’s a basic politeness.
Get There
Labuan Bajo is accessible by air, land, and sea. Its favorable location on the Island of Flores and entry port to the Komodo islands make Labuan Bajo a potential growing destination, aside to its rich agricultural potentials.
By Air 
Flying to Labuan Bajo is possible for the Komodo Airport is open for operation. Major local airlines such as Garuda, Lion and Batik has flight shedule to Labuan Bajo either from Denpasar, Jakarta and other major cities.
An overland trip across the Island of Flores is possible but costly, connecting Labuan Bajo in the westernmost part to the renowned destinations in the eastern part. A bus from Denpasar, Bali, would probably go to Mataram in Lombok. From there you are set to take a long overland adventure in the bus to Bima, Sumbawa. In Bima, you will resume the exhausting trip to Sape. As you kiss the land in Sape, you can take a ferry to  Labuan Bajo.
By Sea

It is very convenient if you join one of the liveaboards serving Komodo and Flores. Many travelers come home satisfied after a week or longer on one of these around eastern Indonesia, as they get wise enough to choose the package, perfect timing, and best spots. Make sure the time of visit and weather condition fit one another. Never speculate on one aspect that will put you hapless.

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