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Hunting Komodo by Camera

Our epic 5 day voyage at sea

sunny 31 °C
View Great Escape to the East! on Tam-Jo's travel map.

We have spent the most amazing five days living on a boat, sailing from Lombok to Flores, stopping off at places along the way to snorkle, hike and of course, try to spot the famous Komodo Dragon!

This is the link to the tour we did in case in anyone fancies following in our footsteps: http://www.peramatour.com/48-Sea%20Adventure-Hunting-Komodo-by-Camera-0102-4N-5D.html



All aboard the minibus in Lombok to drive to the port where we'll board our home for the next five days. First stop...a shopping mall in Mataram. Jo and I were super excited to find that there was a SUPERMARKET in this mall!! We have not seen one of these in a while and needless to say, we stocked up on essentials while we had the chance. Toiletry overload!! There was even time for a quick iced Milo (delicious by the way!) at McDonalds before getting back on the minibus to head to our next stop of Mas Bagik. In this small village we saw a pottery demonstration and also had to dodge a seriously deranged turkey that was on the loose!! It was also in this village that the rain started. Not just rain...heavy chunky rain!! And it continued all the way to our next port of call, the Perama Docking port, where thankfully it stopped! We learnt a bit about how the boats for the Perama tour company are built, enjoyed a cup of tea and a banana fritter and then boarded our home for the next five days...boat 117! Whilst enjoying a tasty buffet lunch on board, we sail to Perama Resort; a small island where we snorkeled and sunbathed. There was also a chance to help with some coral replanation but the three of us were so engrossed by the snorkeling that we missed it. Oops!! The evening was spent enjoying a delicious fish barbeque (the tuna was particularly good), a few beers and a dance lesson by our crew. The steps were hard to follow but we all mastered the "shake your ass" move no problem! Great fun! Our first night on board was a bad night's sleep for the three of us...one little cabin with one little fan with three people was like a sauna. So, we decided to sleep on deck for the rest of our tour!



Early breakfast (as we will come to learn 6:30am is breakfast time every day) followed by a hike up a pretty steep hill on the island of Satonda. Despite being very early in the morning, it was hot! So the walk up the steep hill was a little challenging but completely worth it. The views were beautiful. On the right, the sea and other islands in the distance, on the left, the saltwater lake in the middle of Satonda. Of course we were straight into the lake after the hike to cool down. And apart from the presence of some slimy green stuff where we got in, it was most pleasant! Jo and Adam headed into the sea for a snorkle after this. I happily sat in a cabana on the beach chatting to some fellow tour members...there were a load of nasty looking stones to walk over to get into the sea so I gave it a miss...my feet are still ruined from the rocks on Meno! Most of the rest of the day was spent sailing east so we sunned ourselves on the boat whilst enjoying a few Bintangs!


We had one more stop that day...a little rocky beach. It was here that Patch practiced his dance moves from last night (video coming soon)! He sure has got some moves!! A chilled out evening on board the boat followed where a few of us learnt a new drinking game "Scottle of Botch" (get it?) from fellow tour member Stephen. And so we spent our first night sleeping on deck. It was so much better than the cabin...breezy, spacious and we could watch the sunrise in the morning (albeit half asleep)!



Komodo Island day! After a briefing from our chief guide Gerry, we were all very nervous about our expedition on Komodo Island. These reptiles can weigh over 90kg and run at 20km/hour. And all we have to protect us on our hike through their territory are a few rangers with sticks. Not rifles or even knives...sticks! We were in hope that the komodos would still be sleepy at that time in the morning and that they had eaten well last night! The hike lasted about an hour and a half. Within the first twenty minutes we saw two komodo dragons. They were massive! I think we were all quite shocked at how close we got to them (see the pictures above). Incredible! We saw a load more komodo dragons at the end of our hike near the rangers' huts and the canteen where we stopped for a cold drink. Also on our walk we saw nests of the Komodo Dragon, deer, some pretty birds and a unicorn (in reality just a deer with just one horn but we think it was lucky to see nonetheless)!


Next stop for the day was Pink Beach which was so so beautiful. The sand was so white and so soft. And the snorkeling was amazing! Bright coral, loads of fish and someone even saw a turtle (not us unfortunately)! After a bit of jumping off the boat into the sea (Adam was extra brave and went from a pretty high up platform) we had another tasty lunch and then set sail to the port town of Labuan Bajo.


After walking the length of Labuan Bajo (which did not take long as it's very small) we ascertained that there wasn't all that much to do there. So we went to an Italian restaurant and enjoyed some pizza before going back to the boat to relax before the party onboard the boat in the evening. It was a farewell party for those leaving the tour in Labuan Bajo and a welcome party for those joining from Labuan Bajo. Patch had an early night this particular evening so unfortunately we cannot blame him for our antics! We played some "Scottle of Botch", watched the crew perform a frankly amazing dance routine, consumed some locally brewed spirit (still not sure what this was) and danced a lot!!



More komodos! Our early morning hike on day four of our tour was on Rinca Island. Rinca Island itself is just stunning. It looks like it could be the setting of some Jurassic Park type film! We saw a lot more wildlife today than on Komodo Island; a water buffalo, deer, wild pigs, monkeys and more komodos!


It was soooo unbelievably hot though...we were all grateful that the snorkeling spot from Rinca Island was only a fifteen minute boat trip! Unfortunately, the sea there was riddled with jellyfish so most of us just sat in the water long enough to cool down before making a getaway! Adam tried to brave it and ended up being stung in the most sensitive of areas; face and groin! Ouch!

The rest of the day was spent on the boat sailing west. That evening on board we witnessed some amazing lightening storms in the distance whilst enjoying some Aspalls cider which Adam had very kindly bought over from the UK for us! I haven't drunk cider in years but this was super tasty and I'll certainly be trying it again when I get back home in 2013! Thanks Adam :-)



We awoke this morning moored up near Moyo Island. After breakfast we hiked half an hour inland to a waterfall. It was so pretty! Adam was the super brave one and swung out on the rope swing into the lagoon below...I merely jumped off the edge...Jo couldn't quite be persuaded to do either! Sitting in the lagoon was very refreshing and we even managed to swim under the waterfall into the little cavern underneath. A lovely morning!! The last stop on our tour was Keramat Island; a teeny tiny island with just one house on it. Apparently the couple there had been living in this secluded paradise for over 30 years! We spent some time snorkeling here and making friends with the local cat before heading back to our boat.

Then the long sail back to Lombok. We managed to keep ourselves entertained by reading, dozing and playing cards. We'd all had so much sun exposure by then that no-one really fancied sitting on deck sunbathing!


On arriving at our port in Lombok we had a three hour minibus ride back to Senggigi. On the way we saw some awesome lorries...pimped out with a ridiculous number of neon lights! During this journey we also had to work out which hotel we'd booked to stay in in Senggigi! Luckily Adam managed to get some internet on his phone for this. We are definitely getting less and less organised as time goes on...we like to think this is us becoming more laid back as a result of our travels!

When we got to our hotel we were greeted by friendly staff and a turtle in the pond who continually tried to make his escape whilst we had a couple of drinks and some potato wedges! Despite his efforts, Mr. Turtle did not make it out of the pond...perhaps Patch will give him a helping hand tomorrow ;-)

Tam xx

Posted by Tam-Jo 06:14 Archived in Indonesia Tagged perama

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What a fantastic trip! Sounds like you were all very relaxed!

by Mum and Dad (Ven)

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