[Flobamorata] #9 The Koka Beach: a Complete Package

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Koka Beach (1)

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Koka Beach (2)

Maumere has lots of beautiful beaches with white sand and sparkling water. Koka is one of the best. You can climb the hill nearby and see the panorama from there.

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The View Captured from a Hill Nearby (1)

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a View from the Hill (2)

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Another View from the Same Hill

To get there, you only need about 30 minutes from the city of Maumere. Car or motorcycle could perfectly take you there. The roads are quite good, but they still have some turnings and upp-down route. Make sure you are not a beginner in driving or riding.

Similar with other tourism spot in this regency, it still have no enough supporting facilities. There are only some huts (you need to pay 10,000 IDR to use one of them), parking lots, and toilets. Some locals are also selling some food and drinks there.

Oiya, it is also important to notice that swimming in this beach is not recommended. You can play around the narrow beach, but please do not go too further from the beach. It is very dangerous, many visitors swimming there have lost. Usually, local visitors would warn you about this.
Although we cant swim as we want, you still can do other activities to enjoy, such as building castles with the white sand, playing along the beach, and going up to the hill enjoying remarkable view. I bet your camera would be the best thing to use. This is a perfect place for photo hunting!
You also can go to the caves like my friends and me in this picture. It is breathtaking coming near the water and being sprinkled by the waves. But don’t forget to be careful ya!

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The Waves

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My Collegues

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What were they looking at?

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see you:)

 

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[Flobamorata] #8 Morosobe Twin Waterfalls: the Hidden Paradise

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Murusobe Waterfalls in a Dry Season

These waterfalls are located in Poma Village, Mego sub-distric, Sikka Regency. Perharps it would be hard to find it on googlemap, hehehe. It is quite a remote area though. For most tourists, this place – maybe – would not be in their list to visit because of the remoteness. It will cost you quite a lot and spend a long time to get there.

So, why did I lost there? A good question. A friend of mine’s working area – working in a same project with me – was there. She was a strong and diligent staff working in a such remote area and travelling there almost every day. I cant imagine if it were me. hehehe. I accompanied and helped her doing her duties in the community there, just when I had a time to allocate or I had finished my own responsibilities.

Okay, back to the topic.

To reach this site, the first thing you need is a courage! And time as well. The route is quite extreme.

Actually, there are two routes to follow, from Wolodhesa Village or Loke Village. In my experience, I only have tried the Loke route. So, I will tell you this, ya.

From Maumere you can go by a motorcycle – I did – or a car. But if it is a car, you need to make sure that the car is high enough, you know the one like an adventure car. Don’t drive an Avanza or others that are similar or even lower that it. Actually the driver that will drop you there – if you rent a car with a local driver – is absolutely know this information, though.

This journey will be around 4 hours. So it is better to have other activities to avoid being bored along the way. The roads are quite – and sometimes extremely – challenging. However, don’t be afraid ya… the drivers are skilful and get used to it. Everything will be okay.

Normally, you will be dropped in the way before you have to walk through a forest for about 30 minutes – you can be faster than that. Because the site has not developed by the government, you only need to report your attendance to the local leader there. But don’t worry, you don’t have to go to his place on your own. The people you meet nearby will help you. this is needed because they want to make sure you will be fine during your visit. They also will send you some kids as your guide. If I am not wrong, there is no fee for this. However, I think you need to give something like snacks, sweets or something that those kids would like.

Why will you need a local as a guide?

There is no single sign to help you get the site. I guess you will get lost with no help. here is my documentation along the way of my first visit. It was in the end of 2014.

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An Area of Loke, the Waterfalls are behind the hills

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A Quite Narrow Road, but it is far better than others you’ll come across 🙂

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You only need to walk through the ‘forest’ and park your vehicles after come across this sign 🙂

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Sometimes you need to walk through the river, watch your steps! hehe,,

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Going Over the Bridge with Our Little Guide 🙂

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A bit more to see the full view 😀

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Here We Go! The Waterfalls 😀

Actually, you can also swim in the pool below the waterfalls. We just forgot to take some pictures of the pool and people that were swimming at that time. The water is quite clear, but one thing to remember, probably you’ll come across some leeches. I did too, even more than one! I just felt kinda annoyed 😦 But, don’t worry, it won’t kill you 😀 wkwkwk.

[Flobamorata] #4 Bena Traditional Village

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Bena Traditional Village’s Panorama

Actually, in Flores Island – and other islands in East Nusa Tenggara Province – there are some traditional village developed for tourism. It is a kind of small neighbourhoods with theirs traditional houses and also other activities, like traditional ceremonies, and daily activities.

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Bena Village with the Mount of Inerie blocked by the thick fog

Visitors can spend some nights there, in the houses, engage in activities there, and also buy some souvenirs. In some of those, you have to pay for this in a particular amount, but in my experience spending a night at Bena, I only gave the house owners 50,000 IDR.

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The Family

From this village, you can clearly see the peak of Inerie Mountain (if the weather is friendly). My travel mate went to the peak a year before my visit. Honestly, I wanted to go there too, but I did not have enough time for it. My day off was quite limited, hehehe.

Unlike in ‘another’ traditional village, here you are allowed to take pictures as many as you want for free! So, it was very important to bring your camera during your visit 🙂 One thing to remember, you are not allowed to take pictures inside the house. The house owner said that to me. but the did allow me to do so. However, I won’t upload it here though. Just for my collection. Hehe.

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the long stones in front of the houses

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the stones as one of the most important part of this village

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the traditional scarfs as one of the locals’ source of living

If you want to reach there, the best option is renting a motorcycle, or probably if you are in a group, you can take a car. However, as far as I remember, the roads were quite narrow, so it would be difficult unless you ride a motorcycle. An important note to take is,, you need to acquire a more than basic skill of riding, the landscape, road, and route are quite challenging! It is also difficult to seek for a help if you have a crash because the route is a kind of forest, not all the way is near from people houses or farms. You could be the only people there.

So, do you want to visit there?

[Flobamorata] #3 Wonderful Islands at Riung Offering Various Natural Attractions

Located in the north beach of Bajawa Regency, this tourism place has been quite popular among locals and international visitors. Although, it is not as well-known as Kelimutu or Komodo National Park. However, don’t worry! Riung has some gorgeous islands that definetely make your visit worth!

Unfortunately, I have not been in all islands (17 islands in total) so I cannot tell you completely. In fact, I only landed on Rutong Island (I think it is the most lovely one) and saw the Bath Island (Pulau Kelelawar). However, I think the pictures I am showing you in this post would be quite an explanation about this gorgeous site.

In the terms of accommodation, Riung is quite better than Pangabatang. There are some hostel with various prices. Most of them are reasonable, or even cheap. I am not quite sure how you can get there from the nearest city, Bajawa, I guess there are buses as the public transportation, but I think renting a car would be better. At that time, I went there by motorcycle with a friend, we were in a tour started from Maumere – Nagekeo – Bajawa – Ende – Maumere. That was the most unforgettable long motorcycle trip I have ever attempted!

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The Rutong Island

You can explore the islands and visit a bat island by taking a canoe. It will cost you about 400,000 IDR. However, if you want to save your money, it would be better to have some friends who want go together. At that time, I only visited Rutong Island and the Bat Island. Although the weather was not quite sunny, I still got some gorgeous pictures… here they are!

 

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The Beach of Rutong Island

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Other Islands captured from Rutong

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An Island captured from Rutong

In Rutong Island, you can easily swim in that clear-clean-sparkling water. If you are quite an explorer, climbing the hill of the island would be a good choice to make. You can see the surroundings from the top and of course your camera would be quite a help.

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In the top of Rutong Island 

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A Landscape Captured from the Hill of Rutong

If you like collecting lovely stones or stuff like the sea creatures’ fossil, the island can give you more… just take it for free 🙂

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A Starfish

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Flying bats after getting disturb

In the Bat Island, you will find hundreds of bat that are sleeping. If you throw a stone to wake them up, you can see there are lots of those who will get up and fly over the island. It is not a good thing to do, but some people really do that.

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What is the thing I came across? wkwkwk

[Flobamorata] #2 Pangabatang Island: Your Private Island

The first time I saw the pictures of this island was on my friend’s Facebook account. Masya Allah, it was like Maldives! I meant the natural landscape, not the accommodation and other state-of-the-art facilities. I had to be there one day! That was what I set in my mind. Finally, the day was coming, although it had been almost a year since my arrival. Better late than never 🙂

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Let’s go!

This island is located in Sikka Regency, but quite near from Larantuka Regency. The good news is, the access from Maumere is fairly easy and comfortable, you can sleep along the way if you want to J Your vehicles can be parked at the parking lot near the beach where you will see lots of fishermen’s boat docked from there. If you want to get the island, I recommend you don not go alone because it will cost you more for the boat taking you to the site. But if you are quite rich, of course it is absolutely fine. The fee is around IDR 300,000 at that time, I guess now it would be more than that, 350 to 400 probably. However, it is worth enough because the boat owner will drop you off and pick you up too, or perharps he would be waiting for you till the afternoon, evening, as you want, but I am afraid evening may be the latest time you get.

Oiya, do not forget to bring the equipments you need, it is unoccupied island, there is no person living there and any other activities, except visitors/ tourists. Do not be surprised if you are the only person there! As I said, it looks like your private island 🙂

I got there with my colleagues by a car. I was not asleep along the way, we stopped at a local market and got out of the car for some fish and corns. We were having a barbeque in the island, yeay! In about 3 hours, finally we got to a village where we parked the car. After that, we headed to the beach and then got into the boat. I was not the person who seek and made a deal for the boat though, as usual, I was only the youngest in this group and my colleague who was familiar with the locals here made an arrangement for the boat. So, we did not spend much time waiting after arriving here.

Oiya, before getting to the boat, I had a little time wandering the surrounding, the people, the children, and

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Traditional Salt Production

their activities. Most of them are, of course, fishermen, boat constructors, and salt farmers. This is a location of salf production.

And here is the place where boats are built. Quite impressive! These boat are made only by traditional methode, how skillful they are!

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Boats Manufacture Location

 

This took about 30 minutes, and along the way you can whatever you want like eating quick snacks (or breakfast/ brunch, maybe), taking photos, make some videos, and sleeping. I did all of those, wkwkwk. the closer we got to the island, the more gorgeous the landscape we saw! It was the picture I took before getting off from the boat.

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The view before getting off from the boat

Of course the boat could not take us to the land, and there was no place to dock it. So that, we should get into the beach (the trousers got wet), then finally, I was in this island!

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Pangabatang Island

The first thing I did after arriving was preparing the barbeque! A friend of mine and I get the fish done, and the ‘boys’ (actually, they were the uncles) had a job to toast the corns and fish as well. They were far better to do this than me, and other girls as well.

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We’re quite hungry people

After finishing my ‘job’, I walked around the island with my camera. my friend asking me to follow her, she led me to the most gorgeous spot ever! It was kind of another island, with white sand, sparkling water, and just we were there! I am sorry, I could not describe it precisely. Perharps, these photos can tell you more.

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Go catch me!

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Swimming

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The white sand

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Getting on the boat, we’re leaving 😦

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A bonus; we got a sunset

 

Don’t belive what I said, come and prove, ya!

[Flobamorata] #1 Kelimutu Lake: World Heritage Site in Indonesia

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The Gate

Talking about East Nusa Tenggara area or Flores Island particularly, the first thing coming into you mind probably is the most famous world heritage site located in Ende Regency: three colour Lake of Kelimutu. The rest of you might guess Komodo, may be. Then, it is also equally remarkable internationally, but I have not wanted to tell you about the latter yet. The thing is, I have not been there, sadly.

I have visited Kelimutu two times; in the last 2015 and in the middle of 2016, not quite long ya? This site, administratively, is located in Ende Regency. However, in fact, it is in the middle of Ende and Sikka Regency, so you can set out your exploration either from Maumere (a city in Sikka) or Ende. It is based on your trip plan, but one thing to note, both areas have many more tourism attractions. Just to be frank with you, in my personal opinion, Sikka is more appealing in terms of the natural attractions!

Back to Kelimutu! As fas as I knew, there is no single public transport which can take you there right at the spot or the nearest location before you have to walk. If you are in a group, the best option could be renting a car (of course including the driver, hehe) or if you are a single traveller and quite adventurous, I challenge you to ride a motorcycle! You can rent one from anyone in the city, best to asking the hotel’s staff where you are staying. If the latter is your choice, asking for a direction is absolutely needed, although the rute is merely to follow the main road and looking the traffic signs if available. The simple route does not mean it would be an easy journey, it only means that there is only a single road, but the landscape is really a challenge! Sometimes there are some falling rocks, there are many sharp turning, and there are up and down. I do not recommend you this way if you have never been a rider in this kind of situation.

The most wanted moment is early morning, you can take gorgeous sunrise pictures! If you are lucky, occasionally, you can see a rainbow J apart from the landscape and the lakes, you can also meet little monkeys there in the main viewing spot (mostly) and along your steps or walking time from the parking lot. Because of that, it would be better you be more careful with your cameras or other things with you.

In some spots

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A Local Selling Drinks

, including at the viewing gate, there are some locals selling traditional scarfs, coffee, or quick snacks. My suggestion is, if you bring enough money, please buy some J it would be their only income at that day.

At the first time I went there, it was by riding motorcycle. Three friends of mine and I were heading to Kelimutu from Maumere after exploring Koka Beach of Maumere (I am telling you about this gorgeous beach in the next part of Flobamora ya). It was the first time I was in such a challenging motorcycle journey, I had never imagined the route would be like that. We had 2 motorcycles, and I was always behind another motorcycle riding by the uncle (one of my colleague, but he was as old as my uncle, I also called him by that). My principle in dealing with this situation was, I would never be tempted by others’ speed if I knew I could not as fast as them. The safety is always number one!

We arrived at the Kelimutu National Park’s gate in the night. Of course we would not go the lake, we went there in the coming morning with a hope of meeting the sunset. So we needed a place to stay at that night. In the name economical consideration, we did not check in in a home stay or hotel, we chose the army base, next the gate. The uncle knew quite well with the guard, probably, I have never known about it. And I tell you what? The officers were not there, so the girls could sleep in a nice bedroom, wkwkwk.

However, in my second visit, we were quite a large group, so renting two cars was the best option. Heading there (from Maumere too) at about 2 am, yes 2 am! Bathing was out of my thought, even it was hard to open my eyes, I just continued my sleep in the car. Really? Not quite, because it was not a comfortable journey, the road, up and down, lots of turning, etc. it was just about closing your eyes, though. We arrived at the gate just in time Subuh prayer, so as a good moslem to be, I took a prayer in an open hut right in front of the gate. Wewhh, such a breath-taking air being there in that time and moment.

I had almost never skipped my meal time, so I grabbed a light meal after that, considering the journey would need my physical strength, walking. Just kidding, it was only a ten minute walking, if you can walk fast, because for me it took about 20-30 minutes! Yes, I am not good at walking or any other physical things (sports, etc.). But I was not the only cause, I preferred to enjoy this by taking some pictures and the nature as well, it was worth, rather than only passing by and aiming only the lakes.

These are our – my friends and I – photo hunting!

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Kelimutu Lakes when in a same colour

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The same lakes – see the picture above -captured in my second visit

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A lake in another side

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The Team – 2015

Flobamorata

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Flobamorata (circled in red)

In Flobamorata series, I would like to tell you about my journeys in these islands. Oh wait, do you know what does the abbreviation stand for? It is Flores, Sumba, Timor, Alor, Lembata.

To be honest, I have not been in Sumba till now (I wish I have been there when I was working in Flores, but I could not manage the time, hiks). And also Alor, I only stopped in its small harbour when I was on my way to Lembata. So, I am going to write about the places that I have ever visited, particularly the tourism sites.

Before starting, I would like to apologize, as a traveller, I think I have not been quite a photographer. Having a DSLR does not guarantee you can shoot well. Do not believe that the pictures I am going to give you would represent the beauty of the locations, they are far far more stunning! So, grab your backpack and prove my words!! Happy travelling 🙂

 

Okay, welcome to Flobamorata!