If you ask me for one of my favorite trips in Indonesia: come on board the handmade wooden boats of Perama and cruise three days and nights to Flores. That’s Indonesia! See the carpenters shape the boats in their docking on a stop by, feel the wood under your feet, watch the dolphins following the boat close to Komodo island.
How does it come this tour opportunity is pretty unknown & a secret travel trip? Perama has chosen a promotion, I would have never gone for: they call the tour package “Komodo Hunting Trip”. Well, a stop-by at Komodo island is included, but the beauty of the trip goes far beyond that !
Coming from Bali, you have to take the ferry to Sengigi in Lombok, where the Perama tour to Flores starts. The first day the Perama bus crosses Lombok in direction of their dockings, with stops on the road giving insight to local culture & traditions of ethnic groups on Lombok. But the jaw-dropping part for me was arriving at Peramas traditional docking, where they produce their Bugis Phinisi style boats and see the barefooted carpenters at work.
The boats in the dock look like strange pieces of furniture. Forget all plans – its all in the head & hands of the experienced carpenters.
Your ship crew lights a bonfire after sunset, the boat leaves direction of Sumbawa, the island east of Lombok. You sleep on the boat – it feels like a adventure of the Seventies. Thank god I escaped the comfort zone. And nowadays -that’s a rare experience! The captain is an Indonesian, who knows the sea since decades – never felt so safe on a boat.
Arriving at Sumbawa coast in the morning,the ship stops at a small Satonda island for some snorkeling & island visit. After that, the boat continues East, with a stop at Kilo beach, Sumbawa.
After another night the ship reaches the archipelago around Komodo Islands. For me, the beauty of the archipelago itself here around the national park was the most stunning . This was the area where the dolphins were following our boat. Komodo island was ok, we saw the dragons – but for me personally it was not the main goal of my trip.
Afters stops at Komodo & Pink Beach , the boat continues East.
Getting close to Flores, the archipelago gets more and more beautiful.
The West coast harbor city in Flores is called Labuan Bajo.
If you have a chance to hire a bike and discover the island, its the best way the to discover Flores. But be careful on the winding mountain roads of Flores and cold nights on the bike in the mountain.
More about soon in the next chapter.
Perama Tour link here