Well hay!!! Labuan Bajo was once a Fishing Village before it turned into a famous port city in Flores,East Nusa Tenggara. The city has become one of the most famous place on Instagram, not because its beauty, but because the unspoiled nature near the city. Many tourists come to Labuan Bajo to set their base before doing their outdoor activities like Diving, Snorkeling, and Hiking on the next day after they arrive. Yap those three things are the common things that the tourist will do over there. So what do they have near the city? Well, I can say that they have lots of things, start from: the world class diving and snorkeling spot, one of the most dazzling view in the world from the top of Padar Island, and an official UNESCO world heritage site the Komodo Island, don’t forget crystal blue water and stunning white sandy beaches are also included on that list. Usually tourists will spend most of their time outside Labuan Bajo for one day or three days on a sailing trip to see surrounded islands which are really beautiful, but in the city itself there are several exciting stuff to do, so you can chose whether you will spend your days outside the city, or spend your days wandering around Labuan Bajo, it’s all up to you. So here’s everything you need to know about Labuan Bajo, a Paradise in East Nusa Tenggara:
Labuan Bajo is located on the edge of Western Part of the Flores Island, East Nusa Tenggara,Indonesia. Well, Flores is one of the biggest island in East Nusa Tenggara Province, though most islands in this province are dry because they have only 4 months rainy season a year, Flores is a bit different compare to the other islands in East Nusa Tenggara. Flores Island is more humid, so that is why the island looks greener than Timor, Alor, and Sumba, these are the surrounded islands that I said before.
Are you in Bali? If yes, then it should be easier for you to go to Labuan Bajo. Bali is the best starting point for you to begin the journey, because Ngurah Rai International Airport in Bali has some direct flights to Labuan Bajo every day. It will be harder for you if you start your journey from smaller airport outside Bali because you won’t have a direct flight. There are quite a lot of airlines that have direct flights to Labuan Bajo from Denpasar, for example like Nam Air, Wings Air, and Garuda Indonesia, you can chose one from those three airlines.
The flight itself will take about one hour and fifteen minutes or maybe less depends on the weather and the air traffic. As you arrive at the airport in Labuan Bajo which is also well known as Komodo Airport, you can find Ojek or Taxibike as the cheapest transportation on the island or you can just find taxi if you bring more stuff with you. Komodo Airport is not so far from the city, it only takes about 40 minutes to go there and after that you can find your perfect base at the city.
Since the tourism in Labuan Bajo has growing so quickly, now this city has been preparing to build up accommodations so that the tourists who come here will not sleep on the road. But today the city still need more hotels, because during the high season which is will be last from July to September, the hotels at Labuan Bajo will be fully booked and tourists got to face their fate to sleep at the hotels which are further away from the city, so make sure you don’t come to Labuan Bajo during the high season and also consider the rainy season which will be last from January to April.
During my visit in Labuan Bajo, I stayed at Luansa Hotel, one of the best 4 star hotel at the city. My Deluxe King Room was simply amazing because it has good set up and really comfy. I said it was amazing because my room was at the second floor, so I could see their beach view directly from my room, a perfect spot to enjoy your morning coffee. I would recommend you to stay at this resort because they have perfect sunset view that will pamper your visual sense at the Komodo Bar, besides that you can also choose whether you will swim at the pool or you’ll do it at the beach, which is located just a cross the pool. A perfect place for your inner peace that will last a lifetime.
Gua Batu Cermin also referred as Mirror Stone Cave is one of the natural wonder in Labuan Bajo. The location of this cave is not so far from the city, it is about 4km from the central of Labuan Bajo, you can go there by taxibike, and it will takes about 25 minutes for you to get there.
This cave was found by Theodore Verhoven, a priest and an archeologist from Holland. It was found in 1951, he believed that thousands years ago, Flores Island was in the depth of the sea floor until it was raised to the surface because of tectonic activity. That is why when you are inside Mirror Stone Cave you will got to see the fossils of sea turtle and many kinds of fish. What’s makes this cave named Mirror Stone Cave is because there is a small whole up on the roof of the cave as the source of light, usually the light will come in to the cave from outside and touch the wall of the cave so that it will reflects as smaller lights around the inner cave just like a mirror that can reflects light. That’s it. Since the location of this cave is not so far, Gua Batu Cermin can be your first destination in your first day at Labuan Bajo before having a sailing trip on the next day.
This is a must see place when you are in Labuan Bajo. Bukit Cinta also referred as The Hill of Love, is located not so far from the airport, it only takes about 10 – 20 minutes to get here by riding a motorcycle or driving a car. Why did they named it Bukit Cinta? Well, it’s because usually there will be couples who come here to hang out and enjoy the beautiful sunset view from the hill, so that is why native people named this hill, The Hill of Love.
Well, actually there are more than one hills which are lined up along the way, and each hill has different viewpoints, so you can choose which hill that can be your favorite. After you arrive at the entrance, soon you can chose which hill that you want to climb up, every hills on this spot has pretty easy trek, so don’t worry about getting tired when you try to go up to the hill. You only need about 10 minutes to climb it up and after that you can enjoy the dazzling view from the hill, I suggest you to come here around 04.30 – 05.00 PM, so you will not miss the sunset. Enjoying sunset is the best thing to do in here, grab your bintang and head to the hill so that you can enjoy the chilling vibes.
If you want to go to Padar Island as well as any other islands near Labuan Bajo, It’s better if you book a day sailing trip one day before. There are many shops in Labuan Bajo that over this kind of trip, you can just simply go to Soekarno Hatta Street to find these shops. This street is where cafes, dive center, clothing line, Travel Agents, Tattoo Studios and restaurants are gathered up.
The beauty of Padar Island is something that is not to be missed, prepare your hiking shoes and head to Padar Island as your first destination, usually the sailing trip will start in the early morning around 04.00 – 05.30 am, and it will takes about 3 hours to reach Padar Island from the City Harbor. Don’t forget your hat because it is going to be a hot and sunny adventure. Every corners of this island are perfect spots to take some great shots, and if you climb up the hill up to the top, you will see a stunning view that you will never forget. Usually it will takes around 20 to 30 minutes to reach the top of the hill, it depends on your speed and the trek, you can choose 3 kinds of trek from the shortest till the longest, based on your physical ability.
Rinca Island is a home for more than 1.200 Komodo Dragons, the only real dragon alive in this world. This island is one of the most visited island in Komodo National Park besides Komodo Island itself, thousands of tourists will come to this island every year only to see the dragons.
For those who love nature and wild life, this is the place that fits in you, because in here you can see how the Komodo Dragons live on their natural habitat. As you arrive at this island you’ll be escorted by the guide that is often called a ranger and he will explain all about the Komodo Dragons to you, make sure you hear the explanation carefully because he has a lot of interesting fun facts about the dragons.
Considered as the biggest lizard in the world, Komodo Dragons can grow up to 2 – 3 meters long, and can take down an adult Water Buffalos in a single bite. Do they have venom inside their mouth? Well, actually this animal doesn’t have venom, but they have thousands of dangerous bacteria in their mouth and can cause serious bleeding at the wounds which has been bitten by the dragons. Since this animal can only be found on the Islands in Komodo National Park, the New7Wonders Organization has decided to give the title to Komodo Island as the New 7 Wonders of the world. UNESCO also has decided to make Komodo Island as the UNESCO World Heritage Site, wew what a remarkable place isn’t it? What are you waiting for, go grab your backpack and head to Komodo National Park to see the Top Predators.
The other beautiful island near Labuan Bajo is Pulau Kelor or Kelor Island. This is one of the closest island to Labuan Bajo, so after having a long one day trip, as the last destination you might want to visit this amazing small island.
You can do several interesting activities on this island, like camping, snorkeling, diving, and even doing water sport. The wave around the island is so calm, that is why this island is suitable for you who want to enjoy the crystal blue water that this island has. Since Kelor Island is uninhabited you won’t find any facilities in here, so make sure you bring your own stuff to take care your own problem when you decide to set a camp in here, uwehehehe. Photography is the other interesting activity that can be done in here, since it has fascinating view. The best spot to take good photo in Kelor Island is at the top of the hill, but poor me I didn’t get that chance because I was too busy with my snorkeling stuff, so all I got is the photos from the seashore. Great…….but I think these photos are enough to feed my isntagram, uwehehe.
Yap!!! That’s everything you need to know about this region. Labuan Bajo is totally amazing, it is not excessive if I call this region a Paradise in East Nusa Tenggara.Indonesia has more beautiful regions to explore, so if you are in this country right now, take a chance to explore the Wonderful Indonesia.
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