[Flobamorata] #6 Let’s Get Lost in Larantuka

The most famous thing about the city located in the tip of Flores Island is the religious event called Semana Santa that is a kind of tradition heritaged by Portuguese (Catholic) that combined with the local culture. It happens every at Easter only. At the moment, the city always gets crowded. Because my visit was not at the moment, of course I did not have any story about it.

Hmmm, actually  was only answering my curiosity about the city. My adventurous friend could happily being asked to accompany me there.

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on my way

The city is in the east way from Maumere, the roads are not challenging as those toward Ende. Still, sometimes you will meet some turnings and up/ down roads. But this journey was interesting! I stopped at some sites just to take photos, wkwkwk. and in the area near the city, you will pass the road where along the way is a forest where lots of monkeys are living. I beat you come across with some of them in front of your way!

I did not take lots of photos there, only a few; in the way, in the city, and in its harbour. Yes, larantuka, like Maumere also has a harbour. Oiya, one fact about this city, in comparison with Maumere, the percentage of moslem is quite larger. You also can see that the main mosque there is far bigger than one in Maumere.

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The Statue of Mater Dolorosa

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The Church

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I’m not sure what it is, just randomly captured 🙂

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a statue in the city park

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the market

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the harbour

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the people

Have the pictures attracted you already to go there? Don’t worry, actually the real landscape is far more lovely… Also, I still save the pictures taken along the way of my journey in Flores, I’ll show you in another post. Bye!

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[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] #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!