Blogs from Labuanbajo, Flores, Indonesia, Asia

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Asia » Indonesia » Flores » Labuanbajo July 18th 2015

With thanks to my travel partner Yusuf Degri, here's a selection of videos of life underwater in Komodo National Park: https://www.dropbox.com/sh/wmx3lhh8ovd36f9/AACLfy1fwZAUu0FivBrARuGHa?dl=0 My personal favourites are: GOPRO332 - a cheeky batfish trying to steal lunch from a turtle (Batu Bolong) GOPRO363 - the shallows of Batu Bolong GOPRO375 - manta ray exhilaration GOPRO435 - see if you can spot the perfectly camouflaged little critter... read more

Asia » Indonesia » Flores » Labuanbajo July 14th 2015

Flores stole a piece of my heart. This gem of natural beauty and human warmth is a joy to experience and a sonnet for the eyes. Coral rich waters peppered with tropical islands border interknitted wooded hills. As tropical and temperate meet, volcanic peaks rise into the clouds. Lowlands nuture rice, trees stand heavy with bananas, coconuts and papaya and flowers decorate the green. It is an island to explore; winding bends of never straight roads lead the venturer past breathtaking views before snaking down through valley villages and up and over again to new horizons. The beauty of Flores lives and breathes in its people. Catholic and Muslim residing side by side, their peaceful nature, warm hearts and genuine character shines through. Every man, woman and child I pass wishes me 'good morning miss', 'hello ... read more
Posing as usual
Turtle spotting
Turtle posing

Asia » Indonesia » Flores » Labuanbajo July 11th 2014

Well, I’m sitting here on my last night in Flores, as a huge blood-red sun slowly dips behind a distant volcano that billows clouds of smoke and scores of gorgeous tropical islands slowly disappear into the night. Admittedly it’s been a rather short holiday, but a truly wonderful one none the less… After a brief stopover in Bali (which literally consisted of a plate of mee goreng, a couple of cold beers, a few hours of sleep and a rather bleary-eyed watching of the World Cup with an Estonian deckhand and a chain-smoking Balinese security guard) I boarded a small plane for the trip to Flores. Named Capa de Flores, or Cape of Flowers, by Portuguese explorers in the 16th century, Flores is a gorgeously verdant little strip of land, a few islands to the east ... read more
The World Cup - Flores-style
Like a plate of mee - screenshot of the Transflores Highway on Googlemaps
Two of the three lakes at Kelimutu

Asia » Indonesia » Flores » Labuanbajo May 10th 2014

Having been addicted to Animal Planet and Nat Geo as a child, I was very excited to visit some of the amazing wildlife Indonesia has got to offer, particularly the Komodo Dragons. I must have seen dozens of shows about them growing up, and there was no way I was going to come to Indonesia without visiting Flores, Komodo and Rinca – three of the islands that are inhabited by Komodo Dragons. I went there a little over a month ago; I just didn’t get around too writing my blog until now. So I’ll see what I can remember – here goes! I flew to Labuan Bajo, West Flores, and I arrived there in the afternoon. I got an ojek (motorcycle taxi) from the airport to my hotel. I stayed at a hotel called the CF ... read more
Labuan Bajo at night
Leaving Flores
This guy was pissed!

Asia » Indonesia » Flores » Labuanbajo July 30th 2013

After spending the first leg of my journey on the brash, glitzy and flamboyant island of Bali, I made my way east to the neighbouring island of Lombok. Though separated only by an hour long boat ride away (or if you're cheap like me and instead opted for the 5 hour slow boat), Lombok has a distinctly different feel, culture and attitude in comparison to Bali. Yes, it is also a Mecca for surfers, but if Bali is Veronica, Lombok would be Betty. Cute, quiet and unnecessarily overlooked in the shadow of Bali which in my opinion is more style than substance. My travel buddy Patrick and I made our way to the town of Kuta (not to be confused with the party town in Bali) which consists largely of one main street lined with small ... read more
My glamorous cruise ship for the next 4 nights
Overlooking the bay from our morning hike.
Fun with waterfalls

Asia » Indonesia » Flores » Labuanbajo March 22nd 2013

After having booked for three dives the previous days, I woke up early in the morning and headed out to the "Divine Diving" shop. There I met the two Indonesians who would be our guides that day – Juffens and Hila. The other divers that day were Bruno and Josette, a Swiss couple in their mid-sixties and Nick and Sofie, a Dutch couple about my age. The first thing to do was go to an office in the harbor and pay the 95.000 IDR entrance to the Komodo National Park (valid for 3 days) and then get on a small boat that would take us to the dive boat. We had a full Indonesian crew that day: the guides and the 4 people that worked on the boat. The boat was very similar to the one ... read more
Leaving Labuan Bajo
Divers
On the way to dive

Asia » Indonesia » Flores » Labuanbajo May 18th 2012

Having been on the road for almost 7 months I feel contentment in just stopping. Whilst enjoying the cycling adventure it is nice not to have the pressure of needing to reach the next destination using pedal power! Sorry the blog has been neglected. We had written up daily until our arrival in Laos but just lacked internet access to post it as we went. I will post the entries but please don't feel any obligation to read the numerous back entries. We rose to the challenge of cycling through the hills and mountains in northern Vietnam and Laos and were glad we did. It turned out to be one of our favourite parts of the journey with stunning scenery and quiet roads. We made a last minute decision to fill an empty 10 days before ... read more
Arriving in Flores
View out from Flores
An Indonesian salad- Gado Gado

Asia » Indonesia » Flores » Labuanbajo May 17th 2012

I. I'm not lost...I'm...discovering! A few months ago, something de-magnetized the strip in my passport, which now annoyingly ceases to scan. Now imagine that the same thing happened to me, still in the womb...I'm convinced that somehow, the polarity got switched. So it's not that I don't have a sense of direction, it's just that it's completely and utterly wrong, every time. But really, you always find stuff when you get lost. Don't believe me? Look at the "great" explorers of history...Columbus...Magellan...Vespuccio...think these idiots had a clue where they were going? Hell no they didn't! Maybe women are bad drivers, but we all know men never ask directions! For one girl on a rented motorbike with a dwindling amount of fuel, the result of getting lost during a mission to find the secluded spots of Bali...was, ... read more
Cycling Gili Trawangan
THe moon
Sunrise on the boat

Asia » Indonesia » Flores » Labuanbajo April 18th 2012

Nestled between the islands of Sumbawa and Timor are the islands of Flores, Komodo and Rinca with their jagged hills carpeted in savannah and fringed with mangroves. This pristine paradise is only a 1.5 hour flight from Bali, but a world away. These islands are isolated and unique. The convergence of cold and warm water currents attracts dolphins, sharks, mantas and blue whales. The coral is pristine and there are numerous empty white sand beaches. Tourism is developing in the western part of Flores Island, but we feel fortunate to be able to be here before the “big boom” hits. This blog entry is mainly going to consist of photos as words can’t do justice to the stunning beauty of this part of the world. We started our adventure with a live-aboard boat trip visiting the ... read more
"The kids"
many pristine beaches
swimming with giant mantas

Asia » Indonesia » Flores » Labuanbajo March 3rd 2012

Surviving the Komodo Adventure. I flew to Labuan Bajo with the notoriously precarious Maparti Airline. While the staff were pleasant and the flight mostly smooth I couldn’t help feeling faintly anxious throughout much of the journey. This was until my attention was snatched away from their tainted flight record and onto the captivating sight below. As the plane neared its destination I was presented with one of the most glorious views I have ever seen from an aircraft window. Hundreds of lush, volcanic atolls girt by the most magnificent turquoise water. The visibility was so obviously clear I could make out the shapes of coral below, weaving its way around the islands. Like almost all tourists visiting the area I was here to trek around the nearby islands of Komodo and Rinca. Both famous for being ... read more




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