Flores & Komodo holiday, Indonesia
Description of Flores & Komodo holiday, Indonesia
Discover the beautiful landscapes, volcanoes, rice terraces and traditional villages of the Lesser Sunda Islands on this Flores and Komodo holiday in Indonesia. Flores and the islands that lie within the Komodo National Park – also known as the Komodo Islands – sit east of Bali, which is just over an hour’s flight away. They are fascinating to explore, and this 12 day trip reveals the immense variety of sights, wildlife and activities that you can enjoy here.
See the huge crater at Lake Kelimutu, hike to volcanoes, see beautiful rice paddies cut into the hills and visit remote, traditional villages where you can enjoy a meal and stay overnight with a family. The wildlife of this region is spectacular, too, including impressive komodo dragons, deer, wild buffalo, macaques and numerous birds. Spend two nights on a liveaboard boat exploring the small islands of the Komodo Archipelago, see how captive komodo dragons are released to the wild and, at Manta Point, go snorkelling with manta rays. You’ll enjoy gorgeous beaches, lush jungle and cool mountains on this holiday, but also gain an understanding of how local people and traditional tribes live.
1 Reviews of Flores & Komodo holiday, Indonesia
Reviewed on 12 Nov 2017 by Mariam Conway
1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your holiday?
Seeing Komodo dragons, manta rays and turtles in the wild, visiting local villages in Flores, particularly Wae Rebo which is only accessible after a 10k hike.
2. What tips would you give other travellers booking this holiday?
1. Going out of season isn't a bad idea. We went in late October/early November and it was great as there were less tourists around. Although it's the start of rainy season, it didn't impede our trip at all. I imagine some places (such as Komodo/Rinca islands) are crazy in peak season.
2. Check the best times of the years to see the Komodo Dragons. For instance, apparently they're not easy to see during mating season.
3. It's helpful to have loo roll with you as some of the accommodation (for instance in Wae Rebo village) does not supply it, neither do any public loos.
3. Did you feel that your holiday benefited local people, reduced environmental impacts or supported conservation?
Yes. We visited various local villages to gain an understanding of their way of life and help support it. The trip also helped support the animals (such as Komodo Dragons) which we saw in the wild.
4. Finally, how would you rate your holiday overall?
Amazing. It was full of variety - from seeing animals in the wild to visiting local villages; from gorgeous beaches to lush jungle and cool mountain areas. Flores is a beautiful place; well worth seeing before it becomes too well known!
We know our wildlife, are committed to conserving it and encourage guests to follow our lead.
In a huge country like Indonesia there is plenty of wildlife, with deforestation for commercial reasons being the biggest threat to it. Having assessed this, in March 2011 we carried out a Greening Act by donating 3,500 tree seedling and fruit plants in Selumbung Village, Karangasem, Bali in an area where illegal logging had been rampant. Since then, we sponsor the village council to provide the financial means needed to take care of the trees growth.
We free the land, sea and waterways from rubbish and pollution.
In some areas of Indonesia, and especially in the tourist destination of Bali, waste management is still not perceived as a priority, and we believe that it is our responsibility, as industry leader, to help building awareness.
Recently (on Saturday Dec 13 to be exact), we initiated a social activity by collecting rubbish of approximately 2 kilometers long of a trekking route we use often for our clients, and placing rubbish bins along the way. Reaching the end of the route we visited the temple of Besikalung Pura in Penebel village where we also donated rubbish bins.
This small village is already very environment conscious (no tree cutting, hunting and fishing within 5 km of the temple is allowed by the community); helping them, and consequently getting exposure on local press, is hopefully going to raise awareness at government level.
We donated also rubbish bins to the Kertagosa, Bali's ancient Palace of Justice, visited by at least a million tourists a year, considering it also an ideal location to raise awareness for both local and tourists.
We show we understand why water is too precious to waste and, when it rains, we savour every drop.
Currently, water conservation programs are virtually unknown in Indonesia. However, with a few hotels starting to desalinize sea water for their use, we tend to favor and suggest these properties for clients wishing to stay in the only area in Bali where this is happening, Nusa Dua in South Bali.
We reduce our energy and find local renewable energy sources for our energy.
Unfortunately the use of renewable energy in Indonesia is still challenging; being solar panel the only possible alternative, we face the issue of generating problematic waste (accumulators) if we choose this solution. We do lobby in favor of a program of purchasing electricity generated by solar panel by the State provider, as it is happening in Europe currently, so to allow use for solar panel without the unnecessary problematic waste. Hopefully, these will be achieved within the next two years.
We build, restore and equip using carefully sourced local materials and in a style that tells the cultural or geological story of the landscape.
Both our offices in Bali are built in Balinese style and until now we still preserve the distinguished artistic uniqueness complete in both exterior and interior. All religious rituals according to Hindu tradition are being performed in our office temples. All our clients are welcome to join rituals and/or visit the office where they will receive an explanation on Hindu religion and tradition.
We recommend low carbon transport and make the journey as stimulating and sustainable as the stay.
TIP. Describe how this holiday uses local transport, biodiesel or other more sustainable transport methods.
Having managed the 2007 UN Climate Change Convention in Bali, a very challenging 14,000 persons gathering about a major environmental concern, we have developed a unique understanding of the problem. We had to face the reality of creating huge carbon emission in order to discuss how to fight it.
The experience we made was, in a way, fascinating.
From training our drivers to keep the engines on only when necessary to having our travel consultants designing tours with plenty of walking and cycling to a strict monitoring of conditions and aging of vehicles to the use of biofuel, we are constantly monitoring our activities and how to make them more environments friendly.
We use suppliers that match our environmental values.
While in Bali there is a good understanding in general of the need to protect the environment, the situation is more challenging once you move towards the less touristic and more remote areas of Indonesia. Since we do regularly organize inspection in these areas, we make a point of training the local suppliers to the standards we expect in this occasion. Indeed, their environmental practices are considered one of the factors to choose them, within the limits of the complex reality of a huge developing country with a population of 250 million.
People1. Friends & neighbours
We know where to find all things local and we support/ recommend our neighbours, spreading the tourism income to those most in need.
Guides conducting our tour and transfer are of local people whom we dress them in local traditional uniform.
2.Campaigning for change
We recognise local issues and actively campaign to address them.
Mostly, the hotel chains, especially the international ones, are heavily involved in CSR programs. On the other end, DMCs involvement is still quite low. Our constant involvement in CSR programs, and the consequent exposure on local press, is the way we have found most effective. This basically means "lead by example, let people know about what you are doing, and ask your competitors to join in in these activities for a better common future".
3. Volunteering & charity
We support local projects & people through volunteering, fundraising or charity.
Charity and fundraising has always been a major concern for us, and volunteering is the natural extension. We regularly sponsor prizes at charity-aimed golf tournaments regularly to help fundraising, with our team actively involved in the organization.
We suggest to all our MICE clients to sponsor a local school, with giveaway in form of school goods to be distributed directly to the children; this program has proven extremely successful, showing that it is our responsibility to lead the clients towards the right initiative.
We do systematically support elementary schools and orphanages in under developed areas, both directly and in cooperation with foundations.
In November 2012, in occasion of our 45th anniversary, we decided to celebrate by having all our branch offices in Indonesia (Jakarta, Bali, Surabaya, Bandung, Medan and Jogjakarta) choosing a school to clean and paint, so to have team building joining social work. It has been indeed a unique initiative, and a unique experience for our team.
4. A fair deal
We offer local people good working conditions, a fair wage, and empower them with training opportunities.
We have in total 300 employees in 8 different offices. In total we employ only 3 expats, offering plenty of opportunity to the local workforce.
70% of our managers have been with the company for over 8 years, with the remaining 30% above 5 years. This is because we focus on growing managers within the company, as opposed to bringing them in from outside. Every year we conduct at least three trainings for the employee covering operation, marketing and leadership training and language skills.
We go well above what established by the local law in terms on salaries and insurances and we pride ourselves in a deeply established culture of helping the employees in need.
5. Local crafts and culture
We sustain jobs and cultural diversity by supporting local craft makers and artisans, and promoting cultural attractions
A visit to Indonesia that does not reflect the many different culture of its people is pointless. This is the philosophy behind our programs, which aim to give the tourist a great perception of the "unity in diversity" that we have here. From experiencing food to visit to places of cult of the different religions to not only see but learn how to plant rice or choose food at a local market, our clients can enjoy an immersion in the local culture. And yes, even our uniforms are locally designed and created, using local materials!
6. Travelling with respect
We work to create good relationships between tourists and the local community
Knowledge. All our guides are well prepared and put extreme attention in explaining to clients the do and don’t that are certainly different of what they are at home.
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