Another holiday, another beach!
We visited Labuan Bajo a month ago and already can’t wait to go back. The journey was easy, a 2h30 direct flight on Garuda + 10min by car to get to town, but we had chosen to stay in an airbnb on Seraya Island, which added another 45min by boat (a rather large and comfortable traditional wooden boat).
The island is gorgeous, and our bungalow was located on the hillside (total of 4 bungalows at the time, but +4 beach bungalows in August). The rooms were as nice as advertised, and perhaps bigger. There was enough space for all of us to fit together, as the kids had their own double bed on the floor next to us. The food was good (Indonesian) and meals were served at fixed times, which was a great opportunity to meet other travelers.
The weather was glorious and we spent most days between the pool and the beach: picking up shells, hunting for crabs, kayaking or paddle boarding (so much fun!). Snorkeling just off the beach was amazing and the water was always calm so we felt safe to take the kids as well. We saw squids, all sorts of tropical fish, small tiger sharks… and dolphins from the boat!
We only left the lodge once to take a one-day trip which we booked directly with the staff. We splurged by choosing to go with a speedboat rather than a traditional wooden boat but feel it was really worth it. The Komodo park is quite far from Seraya Island (and Labuan Bajo), and it took us about 2 hours to reach it with the speedboat. We stopped at 4 sites:
- Padar Island for a hike to the viewpoint (stairs are built all the way so doable with kids who are willing to walk, 1h to go up and down)
- Komodo national park: we saw quite a few dragons without having to go deep into the park (1h30)
- picnic at pink beach: the lodge had packed some great lunches for all of us
- Manta point: unfortunately there were no mantas on that day but friends who were there a few weeks earlier saw plenty of them
It was the perfect holiday: remote and connected to nature, but easy to get to and very comfortable (AC, hot water, pool and just enough internet to check emails once in a while…).
What to pack:
- Some serious sun protection
- Walking shoes if you plan to go hiking (but Padar Island can be done with regular sandals)
- Snorkeling gear if you are specific, and if you travel with children (the lodge has gear for adults)
- Binoculars (to spot tiger sharks from the restaurant)
- Snacks for kids
I can’t recommend Will’s airbnb highly enough but if it is fully booked, try Seraya Resort which is located next door.