Maldives of Indonesia

~ Everyone has its beauty, but not everyone sees it ~

Confucius 

My jaw literally dropped when i saw the perfect shades of blue right in front of my eyes. Never in my life i saw such an extended beauty in the land i called my home, Indonesia. I did google all the destinations before i left for Flores trip. but Trust me, this land called Taka Makasar is far more beautiful to see in person than in google image or Instagram.

This little Maldives of Indonesia located in Labuan Bajo, Flores, Nusa Tenggara Timur. Probably it takes about 30 minutes of boat-ride from the Manta Point. This little island is very unique, because you dont get to see it anytime you want. It will only appears when the tide is low. Some people call it ‘The Emerge Land’.

Since It is a very shallow island, our big boat cannot go near to it. As for me, the view was far more fantastic from the boat, you can see the vastness of the sea, the perfect shades of the blue sky and the ocean, and the small tiny island right in the middle of nowhere. More over if you have your cocktail, with a jazz music in the background and the ocean breeze blowing gently over your sun kissed skin. Oh, such a perfect moment from up there.

Nevertheless, i will suggest you to go down as well. Enjoy the waves that coming from your left and right sides of the ocean, enjoy the snorkelling and free diving, enjoy the beach-walking, and of course enjoy your self to have a great pictures to be taken. Haha.

Do not worry on how you’ll get there, every big boat that you ride already comes with a smaller boat to go to the small islands. Just dont forget to bring your own cute swim wear, snorkelling gears, and put a lot of sun-blocks if you dont want to get sun-burnt like me (since there’s no shelter at all),  or tanning lotion if you want to come back with a hot tanned skin.

DCIM100MEDIADJI_0172.JPG

Drone footage of Taka Makasar from our Tour guide : Salam Ransel

img_0221

Taka Makasar View from our Boat

taka6

img_0252

*I got my sun-burnt already from my previous tank top while hiking. huftt*

img_0254

img_0274

taka4

taka2

taka3

Pretty, isnt it? Ohh, i think i need more of this now, and a whole lot of girlstalk with this bunch.

~ There is nothing more beautiful than the way the ocean never stop kissing the shore line, no matter how many times it is sent away ~

Flores : Gili Lawa (VLOG)

I cant stop sharing about Flores. Seems like it was the best destination that i went to this year. Breathtaking views, enjoyable sea-swims, challenging tracks, life-on-board experience, and a bunch of crazy friends as a company. Indeed the most memorable trip of year.

Besides Padar island, one of the best sunset spot in Flores, Gili Lawa also offers a great place to enjoy the setting of the sun. The hike up is not as hard as Padar island, but the track is longer than Padar. We took about 45-50 mins to go up since our stamina was not as fit as the other trekkers. Haha.

Our tour guide, Mas Ovela lead us to less common hill for us to enjoy the sunset. Apparently there’s many spots or many hills to hike in Gili Lawa. You can choose which hill you want to hike, depends on your preference and your skills (of course).

Gili Lawa has different topography *speaking like im an expert. HAHA* than Padar island. Why? Because these hills has a lot of plain / flat areas for us to rest or just sit there and watch the view from above, where in Padar island, i cant barely remember if they have any flat areas during our hike to the top.

Gili Lawa is super recommended if you wanna stay on top of the hill and sip your beer while enjoying the sunset. If you’re lucky like us, you can whale-watching from above as well! Yessss, WHALEEEE.. you read it right! We were so lucky that time, that we can watch 2-3 whales spraying its water out from their blowholes. How awesome is thatt! And we also watched how people on their speedboat were chasing after them to get a closer look of the mighty creature of the sea.

Since we went during the dry season, most of the grass were already turned brownish. The colour just like the savannah in Bromo, Java area. The locals said, the hills will all turn green during the rainy season. Cant decide which on is better, i think i will love both. haha.

Gili Lawa separated two islands and two seas. Gili Lawa itself also consist of Gili Lawa Darat and Gili Lawa Laut. This hill is just so unique, every part of the hill uncovered different views, and you just have to visit this beautiful hill of Indonesia. ❤

img_3255img_3261img_3263img_3264img_3265img_0256img_0257img_0259img_0260img_0270img_0273

DCIM100GOPROGOPR4934.

Most photos are taken by Salam Ransel.

Komodo ‘Hunting’ in Rinca Island (VLOG)

‘Oh No! My monthly period came early’ said one of the girl with frustation on her face

‘Sighhh.. Then How??’ replied the other girl

‘Guess we must ask Mas Ovel (the tour leader) whether you can come or not to Rinca Island?’

Since The Last Dragon of history can smell blood from 5km distance, of course it was kinda frightening for any girls who happen to have their monthly period on the trip to Rinca or Komodo Island.

‘Hey, Mas Ovel said i can still go to Rinca Island, just stay close with the Ranger’

Finally we got off the boat. The sun was at it’s highest on that day, it was scorching hot and we walked our way to the Last Jurassic Park. The land is super dry, the grasses and leaves turned brown-ish, a sign that Autumn is already approaching.

‘Shall we pray first?’ I asked

Well, since we just listened to the ranger stories that one of the Komodo just recently ate a human (the locals), so i guess a prayer is necessary.

After the short prayer session was over, we proceed to take the shortest route (1 hour) for Komodo ‘hunting’.. The Ranger said from the month of May to August is mating season and August to September is the season of laying their eggs.

We were so lucky when we went there, we saw so many Komodos, when we often heard some groups only saw one Komodo for the whole walking journey. We saw them sleeping, walking, drinking, watching over their eggs, saw a panting Komodo which just finished digging trap holes, and saw a Komodo who tried to fooled us by pretending to sleep.

Normally they use this tactic to fool their prey. They usually close one of it’s eye and open the other one, so their prey will feel secured being around the Komodo, and when the time is right it will snatch their prey with their powerful claws.

The ecosystem in Rinca island is still running well. Komodo has never been fed by the Rangers or anyone. In order to keep the ecosystem keep going, the rangers or anyone there never killed anything, including insects like centipedes, except mosquito. haha.

Btw we need to salute those Rangers who make themselves available to be in danger everyday in every 10 weeks (if im not wrong – so they rotate every 2 months). They stayed in a Ranger house whereby some Komodo can just sleep peacefully beneath it. And OH, for tourist, you need to be careful too when you go to the toilet. Must Inform the Ranger if you need to use the bathroom (well, actually you cant separate yourself from the group – everyone must stay together). Since Komodo hate the sun and loves to be in a cooler place, some Komodo can just decide to rest in front of the toilet, because they found it cooling to lay in the ceramic floor. But these scene normally only happened in the early morning.

During ‘laying-egg’ season, normally the Komodo moms will protect their eggs by digging trap holes. So the probability of other animals stealing and eating their eggs will be lesser. And once the egg popped, they will automatically release to the jungle. so survival of the fittest is so real in Rinca.

Talking about Komodo’s eating behaviour, they eat all kind of meats. Normally they will bite their prey (the bigger one like pig), leave it until it dies, and consume it when it turns to carcass.

I always thought that Komodo is already poisonous itself, to my surprise, they only become poisonous when they consume the dead animals that contains bacteria. Our Ranger, Mas Primus said if the new born dragon is taken to the zoo and well-feed with the good meat, it will be a non-venomous Komodo.

As for those dragon which ate human being as their prey, they will be exiled to Padar island, because they have less food over there. So, maybe that’s one of the reason why you cannot stay over in Padar island eventhough they offer you a great beauty up there.

Overall, visiting Rinca island is a must, a place where you can learn a lot about new things about our environment and Indonesia, and the only place in the world where they have the most Komodo dragon.. Another proud moment of being Indonesian. hahaha.

img_4970img_0268

**Ohh. this photo session was kinda unnerving. We couldnt make any sudden move and talk to loud when we are near them. So, everyone of us, including me have to slink / move quietly to capture this picture. Have to salute the Ranger who bravely squad near him just to take this picture. **

img_3000img_3028img_0310img_3022dsc02643dsc02639dsc02623dsc02629dsc02648dsc02653dsc02634img_3076img_3118img_3058img_5030

All photos taken by Me and Salam Ransel, unedited.

 

 

 

 

Kelor Island – The Steepest Hill of Labuan Bajo (VLOG)

dsc02607

‘You can do it, Jenita!’ screamed the girls who already reached the ‘pit stop’ faster than me.

‘Aaaaa..! I’m confused now.. which way to go?!’ I panicly replied

‘You see the rock bigger rock on your right? Step on it and move forward!’

‘You sure?? I’m afraid i’d fall’ – I felt that the steepness of the hill is already more than 50 degrees, that i would fall anytime if i move wrongly.

‘Bend down more. Try to hold on to the rocks’

Finally after collecting all my courage, i can reach the ‘pit stop’ and the Top of the steepest hill of Labuan Bajo.

I thought it was only me who struggle my way up to Kelor hill, since i didnt see how the other girls went up because im too busy setting up my camera for vlogging (even though the vlog result still has a lot room of improvements. hahaha). But it turns out that all the girls faced the same problem with the hill. Indeed it’s a challenging one.

Our Guide, Mas Ovel already told us before we went down from the boat that this hill the most challenging of all hills in Labuan Bajo area. The smallest hill yet the steepest of all. And Mas Ovel hiked Kelor like it’s nothing. We are all so amazed that he and his partner Mas Ian can just hiked it without any struggle. Guess practices do make your moves perfect.

Kelor Island is reachable with one-hour of sailing with normal boat from Labuan Bajo, and 30 minutes of Speed boat. Apparently it’s also one of favorite place for the locals to spend their weekend too. Cause when we went down, we talked a bit with the locals and they said it’s a nice place to just hang out and relax, and for the kids to swim and snorkle.

Ohh, talking about how to go down from that hill is another interesting story. After we enjoyed the pretty sceneries and the hues of blue, we literally slide down the hill (using our butt) in order to go down. hahaha.. It was such an effort, such an experience and such a funny story to tell now (even though it was not that funny when we did it back then) haha.

But hey, we did it! and my suggestion is, do go there with a bunch of your good friends who will always tell you that you can do it, and who will spend the happiness together when you are all up there. Or i assure you it will be the most miserable 20 minutes of your hike. Unless you are a pro already, then maybe the cheer is not needed anymore.

Hope you enjoy the VLOG and the pictures displayed below! ❤

kelorpickelorpic3kelorpic2kelorpic4kelorpic5kelorpic10

** The ‘Pit-Stop’ whereby all of us hold tightly to the only tree there. Thank you Tree for you’ve been a great ‘Pit-Stop’ for us to catch our breath**

kelorpic9kelorpic6DCIM101GOPROGOPR6906.

kelorpic11kelorpic14kelorpic1kelorpic13kelorpic12

** The two pictures that sums up of how we went down the hill. My black pants turns dark brown after that. haha.  **

kelorpic7

Most photos are taken by Salam Ransel, edited by me.