Laguna Trip Blog Edition

Indonesia

Backpacking in Flores

I’ve always wanted to go backpacking in Flores before leaving Indonesia. It’s famous for Kelimutu Lake, the tri-colored lake, and Komodo dragons. So after quitting my job on Feb 25th 2014, i bought a one way flight to Lombok from Jakarta. On Feb 27th, i arrived in Lombok for the 3rd time.
You probably asking why Lombok island? Because I’ve set up a plan to meet up with my travelmate in Lombok and it is also the cheapest way to go to Labuan Bajo (Flores Island).

Left: Komodo dragon, Right: Kelimutu Lake, Bottom: Pink Beach

So how did my trip go? A few days ago i’ve shared it on my twitter account. If you missed it, you can read it here: http://chirpstory.com/li/203755. You can also see the photos here.

Some of you have questions about #visitflores on Twitter and here are the answers!
@Dumb_are: How much you did you spend?
@iamMariza: For the 4 days liveaboard trip i spent Rp1650k all included (originally price Rp 1750k, about $175), if you want you can book it thru me or Laguna Trip to get the same discount.

@FransMahzuz: Start from where?
@iamMariza: the liveaboard starts from Labuan Bajo, ends in Lombok (Kayangan Harbor) with a free drop off from the Kayangan to the Mataram city.

@dinug: what’s the name of the cave?
@iamMariza: it’s a secret cave, and it will remains that way (at least in the internet). hahaha. But if you need to know how to get there, when you are in Labuan Bajo, you can meet my friend, Matheus, at @treetopbajo. He will be gladly to share travel tips to you about the cool places in Labuan Bajo and around.

@dinug: did you use any guide?
@iamMariza: the only guide we hired was the one at Cunca (waterfalls) Wulang. We paid Rp50k to him. It is necessary to hire one there, because 99% you will get lost trying to get to the waterfall from the “entrance” in the village. Other than that, you don’t need any guide. Just ask the locals when you have no idea where you are. You’ll be okay, people in Flores might look not friendly, but they are really kind. From city to city, the road signs are very easy to understand.

@tererambi: how did you go to Flores? any direct flight?
@iamMariza: We reached Labuan Bajo (flores island) via land(bus) and sea(ferry); from Lombok island to Sumbawa island then to Flores Island. Other cheap option you can take is by taking the Pelni ship (KM. Awu) from Bali (Benoa) to Flores (Ende) or flying from Bali/Lombok to Labuan Bajo, but flying will be an expensive option. There are no direct flight from Jakarta to Labuan Bajo.

Anyway guys, below is the detail of my trip.
Itinerary:
27 Feb arrive in Lombok from Jakarta, flying.
28 Feb depart to Flores Island via Sumbawa island by land & ferry.
01 Mar arrive in Labuan Bajo (Flores island)
03-08 Mar roadtrip from LB Bajo – Ruteng – Ende – Bajawa – Ruteng – LB Bajo (with a 125cc motorbike)
10 Mar Liveaboard trip starts.
10-13 Mar island hopping from Lb Bajo to Lombok using a phinisi boat (4 Days liveaboard trip).
Islands visited during the 4 Days liveaboard trip: Kelor island, Rinca island, Komodo island, Pink beach, Satonda island and Moyo island.

Transportation:
Mataram to Pelabuhan Kayangan Rp 20k (2h – mini bus/elf);
Pelabuhan Kayangan to Pelabuhan Pototanto Rp 19k (1,5h – ferry)
Pelabuhan Pototanto to Bima Rp 0 (9h – hitchhike a truck)
Bima to Sape Rp 25k (1,5h – mini bus/elf)
Sape to Labuan Bajo Rp 54k (7h – ferry)
Labuan Bajo – Ende – Labuan Bajo Rp 65k x 6 days = Rp390k (Rp195k/p – motorbike 125cc)
Gasoline for 1030km Rp 189k (Rp94.500/p)
Liveboard from Flores (Labuan Bajo) to Lombok 4 days = Rp 1.650k (transportation, food, entrance fees included)
Total Rp 2.057.500

Accomodation:
Lombok Rp0 (friend’s place)
Sumbawa Rp0 (in the bus)
Labuan Bajo Rp0 (friend’s place)
Ruteng: Hotel Ranaka Rp 37.500/p x 2 nights
Ende Rp0 (friend’s place)
Jerebu’u Village Rp0 (friend’s place) + donation

Other things you might want to know about:
During our motorbike trip, we drove many hills and hairpin turns. So be careful, no need to rush. Most of the time we drive around 40km-60km/h. and yeah, if you are planning to take a bus/rent a car, don’t forget to take anti motion sickness pills, YOU WILL NEED THEM!
Motorbike is a great option to explore because some of the place are accessible by motorbike only.
Always fill up your gas tank every morning at Pertamina gas station. They usually sold out around afternoon. You can find them in the city or outskirt of each city. If you ran out of gas, the locals usually sell them on the side of the road around 40%-70% more expensive than Pertamina’s price .

If you have any further questions, just ask via comments below.

Cheers,
@iamMariza – who will definitely explore Flores again in the future!

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About IamMariza

Born in Surabaya and raised in Jakarta in a multicultural family, her parents introduced to her the world of traveling at a young age and has been addicted to backpacking since 2008, dumping her tourist status quo. She is the founder of lagunatrip.com. Follow her rants and ramblings about her life as a traveler on her Twitter: @iamMariza

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