Here there be dragons

Trip Start Nov 07, 2010
Trip End Jan 22, 2011

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On the Boat

Flag of Indonesia  , East Nusa Tenggara,
Saturday, November 20, 2010

Another day another internal Indonesian flight but only 1 hour late & pretty chaotic with late gate changes but we made to Labuan Bojo on Flores. The Komodo dragons are only on 2 islands (Komodo & Rinca) & both are only accessible by boat so that's the route & we are 2 days on a boat. it's just us 4 with 3 crew and a guide but its a bit basic - sleep on top deck on mattresses & first night was quite hot. Sail over reminded us of Halong Bay & we did see Dolphins. Arrived at Komodo about 5pm & did the village visit - lots more 'photo please' & a pied piper effect. All very basic but with satellite dishes. Fishing from boat was not overly successful so it was as well we had a cook but we are back in the land of bananas here.
Early next morning on to the National Park which really does have the sign 'here there be dragons'. And we see them - pictures to follow. Liz did the short trek & actually saw more of them. There were also deer & wild boar plus cockatoos & other exotic birds. In the afternoon we sailed to Rinca & repeated the show (after a nice snorkeling break) this time with water buffalo too. there are around 2400 Komodos across the 2 islands. As its boat access only & then from Flores the tourist numbers are really low - this is quite a challenging trip.
Final morning spent snorkelling & swimming before the sail back to Labuan Bojo (& the side trip to a local cave). We then found via the guide the local (catholic) school for orphans/disabled etc & did the visit after buying provisions at the supermarket & donating the first bunch of clothes. We were in the local hotel that night overlooking the bay.
Its fly back to Bali on Tuesday morning & flight only 30 mins late but all scanners broken so the most cursory security you can imagine. Flight gave great views over Lombok & the Gili's & down into Denpassar.
ExploreKomodo did a really good trip for us well worth the effort.
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