Labuan Bajo, The Gateway To Komodo
Labuan Bajo is a small town on the western most tip of Flores. Visitors to this town are usually here for one thing only and that is adventure. Labuan Bajo is a great jumping off spot for the islands of Komodo and Rinca where you will be greeted by these huge dragons roaming freely around the islands. Other options just off the coast are the idyllic islands of Kanawa and Seraya. Kanawa has been voted as one of the most beautiful islands in South East Asia.
There are two ways to arrive in Labuan Bajo, those being by air and of course by sea. The latter option is usually the most popular with travelers sailing from Lombok across the northern coast of Sumbawa for 5 days before reaching the flowery island of Flores. There is an airport in Labuan Bajo however flights are sometimes cancelled at the last minute due to low passenger numbers. It is always best to check the day before you fly to make sure the flight is still scheduled.
There are many travel agencies operate a very reputable tour from Lombok that will get you to Labuan Bajo in around 5 days. There are numerous packages where you can opt for a deluxe cabin or just a regular one. The trip to Labuan Bajo itself is delightful and you will be able to stop at numerous locations along the way. Of course the main goal is to see the Komodo dragon and you will be guaranteed a day there before ending your journey in Labuan Bajo.
The town of Labuan Bajo itself is very traveler friendly with numerous guest houses all offering spectacular views of the Sumba Strait. The views are best at sunset where you will be stunned at the colors bouncing off the waters; a definite photo opportunity! Most of the guest houses double up as restaurants so there won’t be any worry in finding some homemade food. There are several travel agents in Labuan Bajo all offering tours to the outlying islands and trips to Komodo and Rinca. As well as the surrounding areas of this town you can very well organize your trip futher east across Flores. Most travelers hire a car and driver to take them to the magical Kelimutu Lake near Ende.
If you are just intent on staying in Labuan Bajo there is so much on offer. With the crystal clear waters Labuan Bajo is a mecca for Scuba divers. Scuba diving within the national park is probably one of the best in the world and this is due to the fact that there is such a higher biodiversity here than anywhere else in the world. We are recommends three very reputable dive operations based here.
1. Bajo Dive Club
2. Dive Komodo
3. Reef Seekers
If you are seeking some beach time then this is the place for you. Just off the coast lies a very beautiful island that will have you dreaming of Robinson Crusoe adventures. This remote and well kept secret is Kanawa. The real beauty of this place lies in its coral reef surrounding the small island. You will undoubtedly come across thousands of species of fish, turtles and reef sharks while snorkeling. If you are lucky you may even spot Manta Rays. For the sun worshipper there is over 1 kilometer of pristine white sands to lay down your beach towel and enjoy the tropical sun. The island has 14 bungalows and a restaurant. You can organize accommodation on Kanawa through the numerous travel agents in Labuan Bajo. The trip to the island will take approximately 1 hour by small boat. An average price for transport and accommodation is usually Rp 200, 000.
There aren’t many ATMs in Labuan Bajo and the ones that do exist will only give you a maximum deposit of Rp 1,250,000 so it is advised to take some cash with you.
If you arrive by boat from Lombok you will have already experienced some of the most memorable parts of an Indonesian Adventure. With that being said Labuan Bajo really is the starting line of discovery.
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