Komodo National Park is located in the center of the Indonesian archipelago, between the islands of Sumbawa and Flores. It is composed of three major islands (Rinca, Komodo, and Padar) and numerous smaller ones. The famous inhabitants of the park the largest lizards on earth, the Komodo Dragons, which you can not find anywhere else in the world.
To go to Komodo National Park, you have to go from Labuan Bajo. Labuan Bajo is a town located on the western tip of Flores, East Nusa Tenggara. It is the main stopping point to visit Komodo National Park. One the best ways to go is by joining a phinisi liveaboard, an Indonesian traditional style wooden boat. Nowdays, phinisi liveaboards are equipped with modern state of the art facilities. You will feel like you are cruising on floating luxury hotels.
Facilities like luxury bedrooms, restaurant, movies/karaoke, jacuzzi, bar and lounge room are common in modern phinisi liveaboards. You can enjoy various types of activities such as, snorkeling, kayaking, scuba diving, and guided land tours. Do not worry about food, everyday you will be spoiled with selections of meals and snacks.
Opening to go on holidays by staying on a liveaboard during a pandemic might be a better choice. Boat capacities are limited from 8 to 24 people. For a private trip, you get to charter the whole boat for you and your familiy only, limiting interaction with other people. Most, if not all, livebaoard crews these days are fully vaccinated and there are strict health protocols for guests and crews.
Once you’re on board, there are plenty of destinations that you can visit in Komodo National Park. Some of the most famous destinations that you often hear includes:
1. Padar Island
The Island has a very unique shape and topography making it a perfect spot for trekking. From the top, you will see four crescent beaches devided by chains of elevated peaks. It could be quite a hike but the view is breathtaking. It’s one of the most instagramable spots in the country. Be prepared to climb 870 steps to the top for the view.
2. Kalong Island
The exotic trees on the island are home to thousands of bats. When sunset comes, thousands of bats flying out looking for food and will return back at dawn. Surely it is a mesmerizing sight. Often the liveaboard will spend the night here because of its location in the bay where the water is calm.
3. Kanawa Island
Located just 15 km away from Labuan Bajo, it is located in the border of the park. Everyone’s favorite things to do here is definitely snorkeling. Kanawa is known for its white sandy beaches, crystal clear water where you can see the fish and coral reefs from the surface. For scuba diving enthusiasts, mantas, wobbegongs, whale sharks, or the pigmy seahorse are often found in the diving spots around the island.
4. Gili Lawa
Gili Lawa is located in the northern part of the Komodo National Park. The island is a savannah that changes color from green to yellow depending on the season. Preferred activity is trekking as the view is spectacular. You can view the sunrise or sunset from the scenic viewpoints.
5. Komodo Island
Komodo Island is one of the main islands in Komodo National Park. It’s the habitat of the Komodo Dragon. You can explore this island with several choices of trekking routes. Komodo dragons live freely on the island, therefore, when trekking there will be a ranger to accompany you so you can explore safely.
6. Rinca Island
Rinca island is smaller than Komodo island, less-visited, and has more diverse terrains. It is also where you can find komodo dragons. If you decided to cool down in the water, always observe your surroundings as the komodo dragon enjoys sunbathing and you don’t want to disturb them ever.
7. Pink Beach
It’s probably one of the most popular site on the park. The beach well known for its beautiful pink sand. This pink color comes from a mixture of white sand on the beach with coral flakes, shells, and red invertebrates from the sea.
There are many other destinations you could visit, depending on your trip duration you could arrange to visit some other sites. One of the advantages of booking a private trip is that you can decide your own itinerary.
Flight options vary from Jakarta or Bali with airlines like Lion Air, Wings Air, Citilink, Batik Air, Air Asia or Garuda Indonesia. The price ranges from Rp. 1.364.000 to Rp. 4.235.000. It takes 2,5 hours from Jakarta and just 1 hour from Bali. During this time, you need a negative result of the RT-PCR test within a maximum period of 2 x 24 hours from the time the sample was taken before departure and also required to bring a vaccination card (at least the first vaccination) as a travel requirement.
Additionally, it’s mandatory to register on the online portal for registration of tourist visits to Labuan Bajo here.
If you plan to explore Komodo National Park using a liveaboard, at least spend a minimum of 3 days and 2 nights for a better experience. If you need any help, just send us a chat and we will be happy to assist you. Stay safe!