8 March 2011
The Island of Flores
A fascinating, mountainous and remarkable beautiful island, flores has a volcanic topography that has longed shaped its destiny. A chain of cones stretches the length of this verdant island, provoking a complicated relief of V-shaped valeys and knife-edge ridges-terrain that was near- impenatrable until recent years and that has separated the island into many distinct ethnic groups. Flores is Portuguese for "flowers", located in east of Sumbawa and Komodo and in west of Lembata and the Alor Archipelago. Flores is a home of the unique culture, nature beauties, traditional villages and more.
Flores has the most remarkable sight in Nusa Tenggara, the sublime multihued crater lakes of kalimutu, terrific beaches around Labuan Bajo and east of Maumere, and idyllic offshore islands with fine snorkelling. Flores’s sea has a rich and amazing underwater sea biotica. Divers claim that Komodo waters are one of the best diving sites in the world. It has fascinating underwater scenery.
Flores island is also the home to some of the most traditional ceremonies and rituals of both Catholic and Animalistic backgrounds. The breath taking ritual whip fighting dance of Manggari called Caci, the solemn Catholic Easter festival in Larantuka and Penti ceremony are some traditional ceremonies we can enjoy here. Traditional boxing bouts called "sagi" or "etu" still take place on a regular basis in Bajawa inviting all to witness this age old sport which is again based on their traditional belief of survival of the fittest! In addition, relics and artifacts are to be found throughout the length and breadth of Flores Island, like the prehistoric bronze boat from the Dongsong era, called Dobo or Baobatung in a village near Maumere, where it is carefully kept by the people as an ancestral heirloom.
And the most popular thing we can see in Flores is The Komodo Dragon (Varanus komodoensis) which is an endangered species that can only be found in the Komodo National Park (KNP) in East Nusa Tenggara (NTT). Because of the unique and rare nature of this animal, KNP was declared a World Heritage Site by UNESCO in 1986.
Enjoy the Pics :)
Pictures number 1-5 by Setiadi Darmawan.The rest of the pictures by Swisscontact WISATA Team - flores-komodo.com
Gigantic, the lizard-like Komodo creatures are about two or three meters in length. They can easily weigh about 165 kilograms. Despite their sheer size and appearance, they are not active hunters.
The Komodo Dragon (Varanus komodoensis) is an endangered species which in the entire world can only be found in the Komodo National Park (KNP) in East Nusa Tenggara (NTT). Because of the unique and rare nature of this animal, KNP was declared a World Heritage Site by UNESCO in 1986.
KNP has a rich and amazing underwater sea biota. Divers claim that the Komodo waters are one of the best diving sites in the world. It has fascinating underwater scenery.
Travel time from Labuan Bajo to Komodo Island is 4 hours by boat, or 2 hours from Labuan Bajo to Rinca Island, another island habitat of the Komodo dragons.
In the wild, they stalk their victim, usually a weak or injured animal. One bite and that's what it usually takes. After following the victim for a while, sometimes up to several days' time, the komodos will devour the dying prey.
Mantas are beautiful, gentle and harmless creatures although they are also known as Devil Rays due to their sheer size. They actually do not have teeth and use their flaps on their head to help direct zooplankton, tiny crustaceans and small schooling fish into their large mouth.
There are unique moments in all of our lives. One of those moments for sure is your first encounter with a Manta Ray! Get in the boat and cruise the waters to dive and witness Mantas.
In order not to disturb or distress manta rays in their natural habitat it is strongly advised that you stay on or near the bottom of the sea if you are a diver and on the surface if you are snorkeling, as Mantas need an open water column to give them ample space to maneuver.
Nga’dhu, a tall wooden trunk with carvings topped by a conical thatched-roof representing the first male ancestor, and Bhaga, a miniature traditional house representing the first female ancestor, are at the center of rituals.
Two men, a whip, a shield, the vibrating sounds of drums and gongs, a sharp hit, blood. Caci, a traditional ritual whip fighting dance, is a major element of Manggarai cultural identity. Being a unique and an aesthetic delight for the spectators, Caci performances are an attraction to foreign as well as domestic visitors to Manggarai.
December is an important month for the community of Bena who hold annual celebrations called Reba. Reba is a festival similar to Thanksgiving, when people pay respect to and thank the Almighty for the blessings of a great harvest and the people’s welfare.
As part of the Tado cultural conservation program, villagers often share ancestral songs, stories and dances that have been handed down over generations.
The Penti ceremony begins when the village elders place offerings in the Langkar. In Penti, the Manggaraians celebrate the annual event which usually falls on 15th November for one full day and night, filled with series of ancient traditional rituals.
The unvegetated summit has a 350 m wide and 200 m deep crater, which contains a lake.
The actual trek to the summit takes between 3 – 4 hours and is well worth the effort considering the view from the crater rim over the island.
This is the yellow sulfur dried out caldera lake of the crater. Get your camera ready and capture the unique shapes.
Cunca Rami Waterfall and its natural swimming pool basin is waiting for you, so make sure you have your swimsuit and towel handy to enjoy a cooling down swim. It is very popular also among local children, so it provides ample opportunity for conversations and interaction.
Werang and the surroundings of Cunca Rami Waterfall provide amazing views that you can’t find else where.
Tengkulese waterfall, which by the locals is also referred to as Cunca Lega (cunca means waterfall), is named after the village where it lies. The waterfall is indeed very inviting to jump in. It is strongly advised not to do so, unless you are an experienced adventurer.
A black sandy beach forms a curving bay with large rocks, named by the surrounding residents "Watu Ndoang"—meaning twin rocks.
The Murusobe waterfalls stand tall, gallantly looking upon us swimming about in their cool refreshing waters, lazily lying on its sun-warmed rocks or going admiring the flora and fauna found there.
These kids definitely know how to enjoy their life. Jumping into the water and screaming are their two favorite pastimes while playing around the Tengkulese waterfall.
The trekking season at Mount Mbeliling, located in the district of West Manggarai, West Flores, starts in July up to September. Roe is located at an altitude of 600 meters above sea level along the TransFlores main road, only 27 km away from the Labuan Bajo city centre.
A series of cascading waterfalls through a stone-faced canyon nestled in a tropical rainforest represents one of Flores’ most striking outdoor adventures.
The Snake Valley is located near Lembor, some 60 kilometers out of Labuan Bajo, an idyllic hiking destination with panoramic views and unique topography.
Mount Egon volcano sits astride the narrow waist of eastern Flores . Its exact position is 8.67°S 122.45°E.