jakarta post

Home to the endangered Komodo dragon, Komodo National Park in East Nusa Tenggara offers plenty of exciting activities for tourists who enjoy the outdoors. For those interested in navigating the waters surrounding the park, here are some things we recommend.

Watch the flying bats in Kalong Rinca

Ask your captain to stop at a spot called Kalong Rinca before sunset to watch the bats fly out to hunt. Aside from the mesmerizing scene, the soft-toned velvet sky is another thing you should not miss.

Enjoy a stay on in luxury yacht

There are a lot of yachts sailing around the waters of the national park. Among them are Expedition Yacht MV Salila and the luxury phinisi Alila Purnama. The former is a 56-meter privately chartered luxury yacht that boasts a large outdoor Jacuzzi, a sky lounge, swimming platform and water sport equipment.

Meanwhile, the latter focuses on combining style and sustainability, featuring furniture made from locally sourced materials from Indonesia. Alila Purnama also features 180-degree views, a private fully licensed PADI dive center, spa therapist and plenty of space for activities such as dining, relaxing or just enjoying the magnificent views.

(Read also: 16 fun facts about Komodo National Park you probably don’t know)

Exterior view of the Alila Purnama. Consisting of three decks, the ship is handcrafted in the traditional style of a phinisi, the traditional vessel used by seafarers from South Sulawesi.(Alila Hotels/-)

Watch the sunset from the bay of Gili Lawa Darat

Not many people know about Gili Lawa Darat, an island in the north east of the Komodo National Park, and those who sail and stay there will be given the privilege of exploring the vast savanna that exposes different colors in every season. After finishing a trek there, stay afloat in the protected bay area to wait for dusk to approach.

Gili Lawa Darat is famed for its sunset at the park, so taking a sunset trek is most recommended. The surrounding water itself is calm with no current. No wonder many diving tourists choose to stop here for a night dive.

Expedition Yacht MV Salila sails in waters of the Komodo National Park.(Courtesy of MV Salila/-)

Snorkeling at the Twin Atoll

Another famous area to anchor is the Twin Atoll. Its coral reefs are very beautiful, and those who snorkel can expect to play with manta rays.

Relaxing in Seraya Kecil

This exotic resort on a tiny island can be reached by a short cross from Labuan Bajo. It’s worth a visit, especially for those who want to step on land before continuing their sea voyage. Don’t forget to snorkel around the island too!

(Read also: Komodo park favored among cruise ships)

The master cabin of the luxurious Expedition Yacht MV Salila. This cabin features a king-size bed, a bathroom with a bathtub and facilities such as a flat-screen TV, a DVD player, a working desk and a large viewing port.(Courtesy of MV Salila/-)

Explore the mangrove in Ginggo Bay Rinca

Aside from komodo dragons, those who come to Rinca Island can also spot crocodiles. Ride a small boat and enter the bay to get a closer look at the reptile. Take a stroll to the mangrove forest, but do not swim here, because the place is full of crocodiles.

Watch dolphins jump in the Papagarang strait

Most boats will likely pass Papagarang strait during the sail out to the Komodo National Park from Labuan Bajo. If so, ask the captain to slow down, since this is a playground for young dolphins. They will jump around the boat stream and follow the boat until a certain point. (kes)