If you’re planning a trip to Indonesia, you should really look at putting a trip out to Komodo Island on your ‘to do’ list. It’s a part of Indonesia that feels a bit forgotten, away from the party-fueled streets of Kuta and the resorts dotting the coastline of Bali. Steeped in myth and legend, as well as rugged scenery, Komodo Island is one of three main islands in Komodo National Park that is home to over 5000 of the great Komodo Dragons. It is located in the middle of the Indonesian archipelago of islands and is in between Sumbawa and the increasingly-popular Flores. In 1986 the Park was named as a World Heritage Site and a Man and Biosphere Reserve by UNESCO due to its biological status. On Komodo Island, Komodo dragons are obviously the main attraction. Usually visitors will walk around the island (always with a guide) to find the best places from which to observe and photograph the animals in their natural habitat. Snorkeling is also one of the best here in the waters of Komodo Island. There is a little bit for everyone, here on Komodo Island Indonesia.
Weather (When to Go)
The climate on Komodo Island is tropical, and is based on an alternating wet and dry season. During the months of January, February, March, and the beginning of April, is the rainy season. The Komodo weather during these months typically see about 31 – 39 inches of rain. The rest of the year is tropically dry and arid. The temperatures of the island during the summer months gets up to 110°F and the cooler months will dip down to about 62°F.
The overall best time to go to Komodo Island is between June and August. It is an ideal time to visit the dragons as it is mating season, temperatures are the coolest they will get all year (minimums of 22C/ 75F and maximums of 33C/ 90F and it is dry season. Visiting around this time will ensure that you also get 8-9 hours of sunshine a day and it rains on average one day per month during their time period
Getting to Komodo Island
Komodo Island is just one of the 17,508 islands that form Indonesia and is also part of the Komodo National Park. One way to get there is to fly from a major airport, like Bali, Jakarta or Denpasar, to Labuan Bajo. The flight is very scenic so be sure to get a window seat to get a glimpse of the spectacular views. From Labuan Bajo, you can jump on a boat and set sail for Komodo Island. The flight is very scenic so be sure to get a window seat to get a glimpse of the spectacular views! A boat is the only way to navigate these islands unless you’re uber-rich and have access to a helicopter. Trust me, the boat ride is fantastic! It takes around 2 hours or so to get from Labuan Bajo to Komodo Island so you can do it as a day-trip, but I’d recommend you spend a few days sailing the area if you can, as there’s so much to see and do.
Travelers Tip: Small planes are often full so it is better to book your seat in advance. Otherwise, for the more adventurous and the ones who are travelling on a tight budget, you can take the public ferry from Bali to Labuan Bajo. It will take about 3 days and the journey is an adventure in itself.
Komodo Island Attractions
One of the best things to do on Komodo Island is to visit Komodo Island National Park. Not only is it a UNESCO World Heritage Site, but also a New 7 World Wonders of Nature too. Komodo Island gets its name because it’s home to the super rare Komodo Dragons, and the only place where they live in nature. On Komodo where the hiking is superb, treks range from flat 3 km strolls to steep 10 km hikes over peaks and into deep valleys. All guides speak some English and are very knowledgeable about the islands’ flora and fauna. You should be glad of the guide’s company when you spot ora(dragons can be dangerous, and have attacked and killed people).
Pink Beach, or Pantai Merah, as it is aptly named, is one of seven pink beaches on the planet, and is just one of the many amazing features of Komodo Island that make it truly a Natural Wonder of Nature. This exceptional beach gets its striking color from microscopic animals called Foraminifera, which produces a red pigment on the coral reefs. For this reason, it is called Red Beach in the local tongue. When the tiny fragments of red coral combine with the white sands, this produces the soft pink color that is visible along the shoreline. Aside from Pink Beach itself, a few small segments along Komodo’s eastern bay also have a pinkish tint.
The impressive Cunca Rami waterfall, with its many pretty pools that offer a refreshing, natural swimming experience, makes a fantastic day trip from Labuan Bajo. Starting from Werang, which is located 35km southeast of Labuan Bajo, it takes you about a 1½ hour scenic walk through an area which seems to be relatively untouched by modern civilization.
Batu Bolong is a world class dive site. At the surface, you can just see a small rock with hole in it, but underwater it is a giant rock going deep into the blue to 70 meters. This rock is full of all kinds of marine life with an amazing hard and soft coral cover and many cracks.
Manta Point Komodo is a divesite rich with bottom based plankton making it an alluring spot – attracting dozens of Manta Ray for feeding and cleaning. Accessible by chartered liveaboard, the dive site sits between the islands of Komodo and Rinca within the Komodo National Park. Geographically the site is directly on the channel connecting the Indian and the South West Pacific oceans, each hosting distinct underwater climates that come together to create an ideal environment for Manta Ray.
Things to do on Komodo Island
Scuba Republics newest addition Epica Liveaboard is simple but comfortable vessel designed completely around backpacker budget. They have 8 twin cabins with bunk beds, and a spacious upper deck for relaxing in bean bags or in a hammock while enjoying the breathtaking scenery! Their crew is professional and fully trained for any possible emergencies. For more information visit them on the web at Scuba Republic Komodo Island.
Wisata Pulau Komod is local tour organizer based in Labuan bajo. Their tour packages offers tours to Komodo National Park. They also offer Komodo Island land tours, park tours and marine park tours. The land park tours take you to the natural habitat of the Komodo dragon. For more information call +62 821-4733-5779, or visit them on the web at Wisata Pulau Komodo.
Adventure tours in West Flores and Komodo National park. activities includes: Komodo Tours, Diving, Camping, Snorkelling, Trekking, 4×4 land tours, island hopping, boat tour. For more information call +62 811-3985-344, or visit them on the web at Flores XP Adventure Tours.
Panorama Destination specializes in inbound travel, with offices in key locations providing a standardized service nationwide. Products include luxury travel, diving and snorkeling, wellness and spa packages, beaches, cruises, golfing holidays, family vacations, wedding and honeymoon packages, trekking, cycling and culinary experiences. Panorama Destination brings the world to Indonesia. For more information call +62 21-8082 0600, or visit them on the web at Panarama Destination.
Indonesia is awash with cultural and natural wonders, all of which continues to motivate Tour East – for more than 27 years, to create and deliver exceptional and awe-inspiring travel experience. They ensure that their guests are always at front of mind. For more information call +62 361 237 782, or visit them on the web at Tour East Indonesia.
Best Labuan Bajo Restaurants
$-Inexpensive $$-Moderate $$$-Pricey $$$$-Ultra High End
$$ – $$$ Le Pirate
Officially part of the hotel of the same name, this restaurant offers a range of western and Indonesian food that would satisfy even the fussiest of eaters. Add in a rooftop terrace complete with swimming pool and you’ve got a great spot for sunset, dinner and drinks. For more information call +62 361 845 2780, or visit Le Pirate.
$$ – $$$ Mediterraneo
One of the best restaurants in Indonesia. Incredible pizza, pasta, salads and more that are straight out of a 5* Mediterranean restaurant. Beautiful presented and reasonably priced, make sure you eat here at least once during your stay. For more information call +62 8214 6161 663, or visit them on the web at Mediterraneo.
$$ – $$$ Happy Banana
Japanese fusion restaurant that are renowned for their sashimi and sushi. Slightly on the pricier side, but well worth a visit. For more information call +62 812 3849 5329, or visit them on the web at Happy Banana.
$ Warung Mama
Set above Bajo’s main drag, this wooden restaurant is ideal for those who wish to dip their toe into local food. Vegetables are cheap, but paying by piece for the rest adds up. Portion sizes are smaller than more authentic warung and you’ll rub shoulders with travelers, not locals, at communal tables. Daging rendang (dry beef curry) is the signature. For more information call +62 822 3926 4747, or visit them on TripAdvisor at Warung Mama.
$$ – $$$ MadeInItaly
Bajo’s best Italian is known for thin-crust pizza and fresh pasta. Sit in a stylish, semi-open dining room or air-conditioned cellar with river-stone walls. Ingredients are imported from Italy and grown on restaurant-owned organic farms, plus there’s a a bottle shop on-site and produce store on the way. For a luxury experience, inquire about the Culinary Journey island boat trip. For more information call +62 385-244 0222, or visit them on the web at MadeInItaly.
Best Labuan Bajo Nightlife & Coffee
De’Flo Cafe & Ole-Ole
Owned and operated by enthusiastic university graduates from Jakarta, this tranquil coffee shop a level down from Tree Top is the best place in Bajo for a caffeine fix. De’Flo serves local Manggarai and limited-edition, single-origin coffee any way you like it, along with traditional cakes, snacks and ethical handicrafts, packaged for all your souvenir needs. For more information call +62 822 8888 9118, or visit them on the web at De’Flo Cafe & Ole-Ole.
Catur’z Kopi Club
Unwind over a couple of hours at this rustic, double-story coffee house in Bajo’s backstreets. Try Indonesian spiced coffee while challenging staff to a game of chess. This is the town’s only dedicated vegetarian and vegan cafe. For breakfast you can scramble eggs or tofu, and peruse the veggie bar later on. For more information call +62 812 4620 9890, or visit them on TripAdvisor at Catur’z Kopi Club.
This colorful 1st-floor bar is a popular space for a drink after a day on the water. There’s live music (8pm to 10pm Tuesday, Thursday and Saturday) and film nights (Monday and Wednesday). There’s also a decent restaurant, rooftop bar and stylish but poky accommodations. For more information call +62 361 845 2780, or visit Le Pirate.
“Come to Paradise” is a common phrase in Bajo, referring to a bar-slash-nightclub famed for sea and sunset views. It’s a preposterously lovely place for an arak cocktail, but come nightfall live music provides a party vibe. Saturdays demand a 65,000Rp cover charge, including a drink. Paradise is a 10-minute stroll uphill from central Labuan Bajo. For more information call +62 812 1341 5306, or visit them on TripAdvisor at Paradise Bar.
Cafe In Hit
Labuan Bajo’s answer to Starbucks, this casual coffee house serves ice-cold frappes alongside strong wi-fi. People-watch from above the street or browse shelves of local beans and second-hand books. Order from the giant blackboard. For more information call +62 , or visit them on the web at Cafe In Hit.
Best Hotels Near Komodo Island
Set in Labuan Bajo, Sea Dream Horizon – Viehmont provides a private pool and free WiFi. The boat is in an area where guests can engage in activities such as snorkeling and canoeing. The boat has 2 bedrooms, a living room, and a kitchen with a dining area and a fridge. Breakfast is available every morning, and includes continental, buffet and Asian options. The boat offers a year-round outdoor pool. Sea Dream Horizon – Viehmont has BBQ facilities, along with a water sports facilities. The nearest airport is Komodo Labuan Bajo Airport, 45 km from the accommodation. For more information, pricing, or to reserve your cabin visit Sea Dream Horizon.
The Alila Purnama is a beautiful 46m traditional Indonesian Phinisi luxury liveaboard, offering year round dive trips to the Komodo National Park and to Raja Ampat. The Alila Purnama caters for up to 10 guests in 5 ultra-modern cabins. Aboard the Alila Purnama guests can relax in comfort in the spacious lounge and bar area, or enjoy the spectacular Indonesian views on the main outdoor deck which has large oversized daybeds and umbrellas for shade, or why not enjoy a signature Alila massage from the on-board spa therapist. Guests aboard the Alila Purnama will be able to dine in style in either the spacious indoor dining area, or whilst taking in the breath-taking scenery on the outdoor deck. For more information, pricing, or to reserve your cabin visit Alika Purnama.
Plataran Phinisi Felicia is the largest in the fleet with two master cabins, two double cabins, and two bunk bed cabins, offering unsurpassed luxury and space to laze while touring the islands and bays of Indonesia’s hottest destination, including Komodo islands and the areas surrounding Flores. For more information, pricing, or to reserve your cabin visit Plataran Phinisi Felicia.
Inspired by Flores Island’s rich cultural heritage and rustic beauty, 205 guest rooms and suites welcome you home to exquisite ocean vistas, stylish open spaces, and modern-day comforts. From family adventures to romantic honeymoons and unforgettable MICE events, upgrade your daily intake of the AYANA lifestyle with Labuan Bajo daily activities such as: stand up paddle yoga, SUP, sunset tours, kayaking, glass bottom boat rides, night diving, and much more…AYANA Komodo’s distinctive menu of 5-star services caters to each guest’s personal preferences from the time a booking is made to the final departure and beyond. For more information , pricing or to reserve your room visit Komodo Resort.
At Puri Sari Beach Hotel, the excellent service and superior facilities make for an unforgettable stay. Free Wi-Fi in all rooms, 24-hour security, daily housekeeping, postal service, 24-hour front desk are just a few of the facilities that set Puri Sari Beach Hotel apart from other hotels in the city. The hotel offers fantastic facilities, including canoe, private beach, outdoor pool, diving, fishing, to help you unwind after an action-packed day in the city. Enjoy unparalleled services and a truly prestigious address at the Puri Sari Beach Hotel. For more information, pricing or to reserve your room visit Puri Sari Beach Hotel.
Wae Molas Hotel features free WiFi and views of mountain in Labuan Bajo. The property features a bar, as well as a restaurant serving Asian cuisine. Guests can chill out in the outdoor swimming pool. All guest rooms at the hotel are fitted with a seating area. Complete with a private bathroom fitted with a bidet and free toiletries, all rooms at Wae Molas Hotel have a flat-screen TV and air conditioning, and certain rooms have a terrace. Guest rooms feature a desk. A continental, American or Asian breakfast can be enjoyed at the property. For more information, pricing, or to reserve your room visit Wae Molas Hotel.