Mar 25 2013

Meet Flores

Published by at 10:52 am under Flores


We’re exploring the Indonesian islands of Flores, Komodo, Rinca and a few others over the next two weeks and our initial reaction was along the lines of, “Why didn’t we get off our bums and come here earlier?” And we’ve only been on Flores for a night…

First stop. Rather lovely.

First stop. Rather lovely.

The waters surrounding the western end of Flores proper, where it abuts Komodo National Park, are littered with islands, some of which are home to small-scale bungalow operations. We decided, after a recommendation on Twitter, to stick to the mainland for the first night — it wasn’t a bad idea and we extended to a second night within a few hours.

Samantha researching coral and fish populations.

Samantha researching coral and fish populations.

We spent the first afternoon canoeing (yes, canoeing) across the waters to a supposedly good snorkelling spot, but, well, it was either very mediocre or we were too exhausted from the paddle to appreciate it. While this wasn’t what we had hoped for, the sunset compensated.

No need to ever canoe again

No need to ever canoe again.

The next morning I took a stroll out to the western tip of the peninsula we’re staying on. It was about 1.5 hours each way and the views were simply magnificent. With a landscape dotted with sugar palms, it was eerily reminiscent of a hilly Cambodia.

Indonesia meets Cambodia

Indonesia meets Cambodia.

But the beaches, well, they’re pretty good.

That orange roof? That is the only building for as far as you can see.

That orange roof? That is the only building for as far as you can see.

Around the back of the peninsula was a large hotel, which appeared to be closed for low season (if not closed, business was very, very, very slow) but they had a ridiculously long wooden pier from where you could view schools of fish dancing underneath.

No I didn't walk all the way to the end.

No I didn’t walk all the way to the end.

The afternoon we filled out with a snorkelling trip to Bidadari Island, 20 minutes from where we were staying. Sharing it with just a couple of other boats, perhaps eight people in all, we enjoyed drifting along the drop-off — Lyla was thrilled to see Nemo and a sea snake — I was less impressed with the latter.

No Komodo dragons thankfully

No Komodo dragons thankfully.

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4 responses so far

4 Responses to “Meet Flores”

  1. Monicoon 26 Mar 2013 at 12:29 pm

    Wow this looks wonderful. More travelers to Bali are also heading to the eastern islands. Hope to explore them soon too. But for now, waiting for your next posts ;-)

  2. Donon 27 Mar 2013 at 9:32 pm

    Komodo and Rinca islands are well worth the visit. Also, an overnight on a boat in the park to snorkel is great. I would also recommend going out with one of the diving outfits at Labuan Bajo and check out the manta rays at Manta Point and other fantastic dive sites.

  3. Rachelon 29 Apr 2013 at 6:07 pm

    Hi Stuart –

    I’ll be in Flores in a couple of weeks…We are doing a 2N/3D dive boat from Labuan Bajo and also want to do a half day trek on either Rinca or Komodo? Do you like one island for trekking over the other? I know that you can see more Komodos on Rinca but is the scenery on Komodo significantly better and are there less people on Komodo?

    Thanks!

  4. adminon 01 May 2013 at 12:00 am

    Hi Rachel,

    Difficult to say — we went to Komodo and another writer went to Rinca… I talked to two other travellers who went to both and they preferred Komodo, but that is a sample size of just two!

    The advantage of Rinca is that it is closer to Labuan Bajo, but if you’re doing an overnight trip, that is less of an issue.

    I found the scenery at Komodo to be just stunning. You may also find this post interesting as it covers the trip we did from Kanawa. http://www.travelfish.org/blogs/indonesia/2013/04/28/exploring-komodo-national-park/

    Cheers!

    Stuart

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