I must admit I was a bit wary about taking a boat tour to Komodo National Park in Indonesia. Island hopping El Nido and Coron in the Philippines was great, but the karst peak scenery was similar to Southern Thailand and Vietnam.

But Komodo was different. I’d be spending the night on the boat, so it would be longer than the day trips I did in the Philippines. We’d be visiting a village. We’d look for wildlife, including the star-attraction Komodo dragons.

And the scenery was different. Instead of karst peaks, we were surrounded by strange, craggy hills, covered in moss-like green.

On the way to Komodo Island.
On the way to Komodo Island.

My tour was a little different, because I was on a Catholic island, and today was Good Friday. The park would be closed, so we would spend the day snorkeling at various beaches instead.

We also had a lot of water to cover. We’d hit Komodo Island tomorrow morning, which was five hours from Labuan Bajo.

Tours like this depend on the group. As a solo traveler I am always nervous about committing to spending a day or more with people I never met before. But I was lucky and had a great group of folks on the boat. Two were Indonesian medical students, and one was a British medical student. So I would be well-covered in case of an emergency.

The captain.
The captain.

Tours like this always cook surprisingly good food right on the boat. We ate well. When we anchored for the night to watch the sunset, some guide went to harass a bush full of flying foxes. These big bats flew across the sky, making the sunset especially dramatic.

Tomorrow we would look for Komodo dragons.

A good place to snorkel.
A good place to snorkel.
We weren't the only boat, but it wasn't too crowded.
We weren’t the only boat, but it wasn’t too crowded.
A nice beach to stop at.
A nice beach to stop at.
Me on the boat.
Me on the boat.
Trifecta of boat, bats, and sunset!
Trifecta of boat, bats, and sunset!
It was hard to pick a tour. I liked this guy, so I picked his.
It was hard to pick a tour. I liked this guy, so I picked his.
boats on a beach.
boats on a beach.
Terry
I'm Terry, former cubicle-dweller, and now traveler, photographer, writer, and entrepreneur. I quit my job in 2014 to travel to US national parks, then to South East Asia. I write about independent, flexible, long-term, budget travel. Sign up to my newsletter to get the latest news on what I'm up to. I hope you join me on my trek around the world.

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