Labuan Bajo

The gate to the Komodo National Park

Labuan Bajo is the western point of Flores, one of the bigger southern islands of Indonesia. Next to it, in the west lies the famous Komodo National Park which is known as one of the world´s best diving spots. Once upon a time the village lived from fishing, but nowadays the main source for money is tourism. Since this place is mainly known for diving, every second house on main road is a dive shop. In between you´ll find restaurants, little shops and some hotels and homestays. Most hotels are a little outside of town at the hill, which is good, since the city center is neither beautiful nor nice. People, are not really nice, but used to tourists spending only one or two nights here and mainly want to make money. The view over the bay of Labuan Bajo over the sea and to the national Park is really beautiful though and invites for taking many, many pictures.

We arrived in Labuan Bajo, Flores by plane from Denpasar, Bali (60 – 100 Euro/Pax). It´s a 15 minutes taxi ride from the airport to the center of the village and we had a pick-up from our homestay, but heard that it is around 50.000 IDR to pay for the ride. You`ll find the typical “Taxi-Taxi”-guys outside the airport, than in most other Asian cities…

We spend four nights in Labuan Bajo, before making a motorbike trip to Ruteng for extending our Visa, otherwise we wouldn´t have stayed longer than one night. It´s really not a nice place.

Berhapa? How much?

Large water: between 5.000 – 15.000 IDR

Large beer: between 35.000 – 50.000 IDR (we also saw it for 21.000 IDR in a shop, but not cold)

Nasi Goreng/ Nasi Campur: 20.000 – 50.000 IDR

Bakso: 15.000 IDR

Motorbike: 60.000 IDR/day

 

Accommodation

  • 150.000 IDR at Homestay Palulu, really basic rooms, up the hill – a helpful and nice owner
  • 220.000 IDR at Pesona Bali – ok standard room, good breakfast and very nice owners
  • 400.000 – 650.000 IDR Matahari Hotel, seafront
  • 300.000/400.000 IDR – Centro Bajo Hotel & Resto – ok rooms, nice terrace and super friendly staff

 

Eat&Drink

  • La Cucina, Italian Restaurant desent Pizza..:-)
  • Blue Marlins for food and drinks, nice place to be, everybody goeas ther on Weekends.
  • Bajo Bakery and Mexican place.
  • Warungs on the left side of the oneway street, right before the Bank! Great Nasi Kampur and Bakso, nice and cheap!

Around Labuan Bajo

To explore the area around Labuan Bajo we rented a motorbike and drove to Pede Beach, where most of the Resorts outside of town are situated and to Waicucu Beach, which is in the other direction alongside the sea. In direction of the airport lies the rest of Labuan Bajo, besides the main road. That´s where the locals live.

Pede Beach is not worth the trip. It´s really, really dirty! The resorts cleans only the parts of the beach that are next to their property, the rest looks like a mountain of waste. It´s actually really sad to see that!

Waicucu Beach is more difficult to reach, because the road stops being a road at one point and you have to cross a working ground to get there. There are also a few resorts that look really nice. Their collect their guests from the harbor in Labuan Bajo and bring them with the boat. We only reached the beach by passing through the resorts. Beaches in Indonesia are always public, so they have to let you pass. Some like it, some don´t… If you want to hang out at the beach for a day or at least some hours, that´s the best option around Labuan Bajo.

The village around the airport is a typical Indonesian small town. You can find many Warungs and a few homestays in this area, as well as the immigration building. We enjoyed driving through, but didn´t spend too much time there.

 

Tips

  • Rent a motorbike, if you want to see something else then the city center
  • Divers meet at the Blue Marlin Bar
  • Pesona Bali restaurant – we especially liked the fish
  • The little eateries in town have really good Nasi Camur
  • From the main road up the hill, you have a great view over the bay and see a beautiful sunset – not a nice place to be, but amazing view
  • Mexican Place for Sunset, best view plus drinks and food

 

 

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