Flores is currently one of the hottest destinations on the planet, proving once again that the Indonesian archipelago has so many amazing places to explore. Getting to Flores from Bali is a breeze, and once you’ve arrived in the dusty town of Labuan Bajo, the adventures begin. From prehistoric giant lizards to the amazing underwater world, a string of jewel-like islands and spectacular white sand beaches, Flores deserves to be on your bucket list.
By Bianca Black Zara. A Bondi-based former flight attendant, Bianca now resides in Bali travelling to the best and most beautiful spots that the Islands have to offer.
Flores is only a short 1-hour flight from the domestic airport in Denpasar to the main town of Labuan Bajo. The flight itself is magnificent, with a bird’s eye view of all the tropical islands and deserted beaches that surround Flores. Be sure to grab yourself a window seat! Once there, you will find an information desk with flat rate taxi fares to all of the hotels on the island.
Surrounded by natural beauty Flores has so much to offer, from diving to mountain climbing, so you’ll never be at a loss for things to explore. Take a day trip to the island of Burung where its crystal clear waters and white sand will have you mesmerised. Filled with thriving marine life it’s perfect for snorkelling.
Another day trip not to be missed is the Komodo Island National Park, where you will meet the largest prehistoric lizard, the Komodo Dragon. It’s one of the most popular attractions and activities to do whilst staying in Flores.
If you are up for a challenge take a hike up to the Mount Kelimutu Volcano. Close to the small town of Moni, it is here that you will see the magic of the Tri-Lakes that change colour due to the volcanic activity beneath them. This stunning natural phenomenon is the most famous attraction that Flores has to offer and one that is well worth the journey.
Staying on water
Only a short distance by boat from the town of Labuan Bajo is a little floating haven called the Le Pirate Boatel. It’s the perfect escape when choosing to get away from the mainland and have a night at sea. Its unique concept of boat-meets-hotel has all of the necessary luxuries to make you feel that you really are staying in a lush hotel.
Consisting of 10 cabins with a fresh modern décor, each private room opens up right onto the ocean. With complimentary snorkel gear included it will make you feel as though the ocean is your own personal playground!
Included in your stay is a complimentary breakfast, as well as food and drinks to purchase from the on board restaurant. Day trips can be arranged through the Boats Manager with the option of having lunch and beverages included with your tour. If life at sea is not for you then Le Pirate also has land accommodation right in the heart of Labuan Bajo.
Staying on land
Tucked away 20 minutes from the hustle and bustle of the main town Labuan Bajo, you will find the Waecicu Resort Hotel. Located on Eden Beach, its charming bamboo bungalows make you feel as if you are away on a jungle retreat. You can sit nestled amongst the treetops looking down onto the breathtaking views of crystal clear water and the islands that surround Flores. The deluxe room is equipped with all the basic necessities to make you feel comfortable during your stay.
Flores is perfect for an extended weekend but spending longer there, booking a cabin on one of the fabulous Phinisi boats and even exploring the mainland are all great options. My little taste of Flores has definitely left me wanting more.
- Be prepared to have some delays when catching your domestic flights to Flores. The airlines can be somewhat unpredictable and not on schedule. Lion Air is the most commonly used airline for this destination.
- When looking for places to stay on the island I would suggest looking at hotels located just on the outskirts of the main town. The main town itself is more of a port town and is quiet congested with no beaches for swimming in.
- Tours are best booked the day before you wish to go. This way the tour guides provided by the hotel/boatel can organise your food and beverages for the day as well as giving you an early morning start!
- If you plan to stay longer, there are some great pinisi boats you can book from budget to deluxe, do some homework to get the best deals.