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Komodo National Park

Komodo National Park

An amazingly remote and ruggedly beautiful part of East Indonesia, Komodo National Park can be accessed from Flores. It is well worth immersing yourself in this natural and mystical place for a few days and go in search of the mythical Komodo Dragon.

Komodo National Park is home to the Komodo Dragon, the largest lizard in the world and marine reserves. It was designated as a National Park in 1980 and then in 1992 as a World Heritage Site. It encompasses and area of 239,000 hectares, including 75,000 hectares of land over numerous islands. Park Fees go towards conservation and can be paid in Labuan Bajo, Flores or upon entrance and are valid for three days.

 

Sleep – Komodo Resort

This is a sustainable little retreat on the island of Sebayur in the middle of the Komodo National Park, enveloped by nature and blending into the natural surroundings. The fourteen bungalows are made from recycled teak or from wood from controlled plantations. Comfortable and light, they are the perfect beach huts on white sand leading straight into azure waters teeming with tropical fish.

Komodo-001

There is an element of sustainable castaway chic to this remote resort. It is really tucked away from it all in an area of natural outstanding beauty and is the perfect base for all the park has to offer and a great place to explore the flora and fauna both above and below the surrounding sparkling seas. With trekking guides and a fully operational dive base and boats, any kind of adventure can be arranged.

The restaurant and bar are housed in a large bamboo structure on sand from where to relax and unwind after a day of adventure at sea, trekking or chasing dragons. This is the perfect base to enjoy everything these wonderous islands have to offer. A fully equipped dive base caters to every level of diver and offers courses and boats to explore the exquisite underwater gardens.

A short boat ride away is Rinca, home of Komodo Dragons, the pink beach, Komodo beach and lots of hiking trails to experience flying foxes in the forests. This gorgeous barefoot chic resort is a great place to escape into nature and experience all the natural marvels this area has to offer.

www.komodoresort.com

 

Scuba

Komodo-002Being one of the most species rich underwater areas of the world with the Coral Triangle, this area is a scuba divers dream. A plethora of species inhabit these waters and some famous and spectacular dive sites such as Crystal Rock, Batu Bulong and Castle Rock where dolphins often frequent. Manta Point is an amazing spectacle where up to a hundred Manta Rays can gather at one time. The reefs are always teeming with tropical fish, such as Parrot and Angel Fish bringing colour and beauty to every dive.

The coral reefs of this area are protected and are an excellent insight into Indonesia’s incredible underwater biodiversity. This archipelago is a fantasy for underwater enthusiasts due to the amazing visibility and amount of marine life. Also being on migration routes mean whale shark and other mammals can be viewed at certain times of year. There are dives of every level here from challenging deep current dives to easier gentle drift or wall dives.

For those who do not scuba dive there is also excellent snorkelling spots throughout the area. It is a great place for beginners or children in the shallow lagoons that hug the shores of the many hidden bays and reefs. Many companies in Labuan Bajo or the Komodo Resort offer fantastic diving and snorkelling tours.

 

Sand

Komodo is home to one of the few pink sand beaches in the world. Stunningly pretty the sand is formed when the red shells of small marine creatures and red corals get broken down and mix with the normal sand.

Komodo-003

The beach is in a remoter area of the national park and must be reached by boat, so it is worth taking a day trip over to laze about, have a picnic and swim or snorkel in the crystal clear turquoise sea. The bay is incredibly calm and is a great place to explore the natural underwater beauty of this area for those who are not scuba divers. The unique colour of the sand brings magical colours to the house reef.

It is definitely one of the must see phenomenon within the Komodo National Park.

 

Scales

Komodo-004The main attraction in the park is obviously the Komodo Dragon. Long the myths have surrounded these magnificent creatures that are the largest living species of monitor lizard and can grow up to three meters long. These are an endangered and vulnerable species and are on the ICUN Red List as an endangered species. Human activities have actually caused the size of the Komodo National Park to shrink and this has led to a shrinking of the land designated as their natural savannah habitat.

Discovered by the West in 1910, the mystique of these huge lizards has attracted droves of visitors for the past century. They are people shy especially when young or old and can be aggressive if provoked, therefore it is always important to go with a guide. Loss of habitat through natural means, such as volcanic eruption and earthquakes, coupled with man interference such as poaching and increasing tourism, mean that they are now an endangered species.

It is important to join a sustainable tour that supports and helps with the efforts of the Indonesian Government to preserve these primeval animals for many centuries to come.

Komodo National Park World Heritage Site – http://whc.unesco.org/en/list/609

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Photos Courtesy of Komodo Resort, Alila Purnama & Komodo Divers

 
 
© 2014 The Eco Gypsy - Ethical Exploration.
   


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