Districts & Places to Visit

Flores Plus - - DISTRICTS & PLACES TO VISIT -

You can travel to Flo­res by air, by sea, or over­land com­bin­ing both bus and ferry, de­pend­ing on your avail­able time and bud­get.

BY AIR

Fly­ing is the fastest way to reach Flo­res. Many air­lines fly di­rectly to Flo­res from Bali, and also from other main cities in South East Asia in­clud­ing Jakarta, Kuala Lumpur and Sin­ga­pore. With the gate­way to Ko­modo Na­tional Park be­ing Labuan Bajo, be sure to book flights to Labuan Bajo Ko­modo Air­port to avoid con­fu­sion as there sev­eral other air­ports in Flo­res in­clud­ing the fol­low­ing:

Maumere : Fran­siskus Xaverius Seda Air­port

Ende : Haji Hasan Aroboes­man Air­port

Ruteng : Frans Sales Lega Air­port

Ba­jawa : Soa Air­port

Laran­tuka : Ge­wayan­tana Air­port

Lem­bata : Wuno­pito Le­woleba Air­port

If you’re fly­ing from Bali, you can choose one of the fol­low­ing air­lines: Garuda Air, Wings Air, NAM Air, Lion Air, Transnusa, Kal­star Avi­a­tion and Sri­wi­jaya Air. In this day and age, it is easy to find flights to suit your needs via the many travel web­sites and ap­pli­ca­tions avail­able for con­sid­er­a­tion at just a few clicks. Flights may take 50-90 min­utes from Bali de­pend­ing on the air­line. Do check with your cho­sen air­line for prices, ex­tra charges, de­lays and sched­ules.

BY SEA

Trav­el­ling to Labuan Bajo by boat may be a fun and cheaper al­ter­na­tive – there are big pas­sen­ger cruise ships that con­nect Bali with Labuan Bajo; Ti­longk­a­bila by PT Pelni be­ing one of the more prom­i­nent oper­a­tors of­fer­ing pas­sage with ships de­part­ing from Benoa Har­bour in Bali to Labuan Bajo twice ev­ery month. From Labuan Bajo, you could travel to other parts of Flo­res with a rented trans­porta­tion or by pub­lic bus.

In pre­vi­ous years, you could choose from tick­ets in three price classes; a first class ticket, sec­ond class and econ­omy, which would cost you less than one mil­lion ru­piah per per­son. First class pas­sen­gers would en­joy their own pri­vate room that comes with an at­tached pri­vate bath­room and two beds. Sec­ond class had two bunk beds and a pri­vate bath­room. But to­day, the PT Pelni has abol­ished all first and sec­ond classes and main­tains only the econ­omy class tick­ets which mean ev­ery­one would have to re­main within the mass hall with other pas­sen­gers and sleep on open in­di­vid­ual beds and use shared bath­rooms. The ship can carry a max­i­mum of 970 pas­sen­gers over du­ra­tion of 24-hours. There is a res­tau­rant on board, where you can or­der sim­ple meals.

For more in­for­ma­tion on sched­ules and price, please visit PT Pelni’s web­site at https://www.pelni.co.id/prod­uct or do visit their of­fice in Bali lo­cated on Jl. Raya Tuban in Kuta, Bali.

An­other op­tion is to go with a tour com­pany who will also ar­range your daily itin­er­ary through­out the du­ra­tion pro­gramme. In this way, you can sit back and re­lax

with­out hav­ing to worry about what to do and where to go next. There are many com­pa­nies of­fer­ing three to five day trips be­tween Bali’s three sis­ter is­lands (Nusa Penida, Nusa Ceningan and Nusa Lem­bon­gan), the Gili Is­lands (Lom­bok) and Labuan Bajo, which in­clude a snorkelling or div­ing pro­gram and a visit to ei­ther Ko­modo or Rinca is­lands to see the Ko­modo drag­ons. For those feel­ing more ad­ven­tur­ous, you can even choose 10-days pack­ages that in­clude ex­cur­sions to Sumba and the Sum­bawa is­lands.

To avoid any un­pleas­ant sur­prises, be sure to agree ex­actly on what is in­cluded in your price, in­clud­ing food, drinks and Na­tional Park en­try tick­ets. Also, do be ad­vised that the seas can be­come very rough dur­ing the rainy sea­sons (De­cem­ber–fe­bru­ary).

Over­land and Ferry

If you are feel­ing ad­ven­tur­ous or have plenty of ex­tra time to travel across th­ese parts of In­done­sia, do take ad­van­tage of this op­tion to travel over land and ferry from Bali to Ko­modo. This way, you’ll get to ex­plore the breath­tak­ing sights of Lom­bok, Sum­bawa, Bima and Sape be­fore ar­riv­ing to Ko­modo in Labuan Bajo. From Den­pasar, travel to Padang Bai har­bour and board a ferry to Lem­bar in Lom­bok.

You’ll reach Lem­bar in about 4 hours, and an­other 5 hours to travel across Lom­bok by bus to the port of Labuan Lom­bok. Here, board an­other ferry for an­other 1.5 hour jour­ney to Alas in Sum­bawa Is­land. From here, con­tinue your jour­ney to Bima via pub­lic bus, which will take an­other 12-16 hours de­pend­ing on the con­di­tion of the road and the bus. From the bussta­tion in Bima takes a small pub­lic bus or rent a car to Sape, a fur­ther two hours down the road. A car and pas­sen­ger ferry ser­vice op­er­ates daily be­tween Sape and Labuan Bajo in Flo­res, tak­ing about eight hours. Def­i­nitely not for the faint hearted!

While you’re trav­el­ling across Flo­res, you may come across a unique look­ing ve­hi­cle that the lo­cals call “Bis Kayu” or “Oto Col”. This mass tran­sit buses are not ac­tual buses, but were once tim­ber trucks con­verted into a ve­hi­cle for the pur­pose of trans­port­ing peo­ple, cargo and even farm an­i­mals across vil­lages. Th­ese buses play im­por­tant roles in con­nect­ing ur­ban ar­eas with ru­ral vil­lages as many peo­ple do not have their own trans­porta­tion to travel such long dis­tances, es­pe­cially across Flo­res’ un­pre­dictable and some­times, rough ter­rain.

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