We got to Bali and made it to the hotel in time to get some room service and pass out. I had some plans to see temples and explore in the morning, but we ended up sleeping in, lying around, and eating all day. Which was probably a better idea, anyway.
They next day we left Bali for Komodo National Park. For whatever reason, I’ve always thought Komodo dragons were really cool animals. Alligators and Crocodiles, don’t really do it for me, but those oversized iguanas always seemed extra exotic.
Our flight was a ridiculously small puddle-jumper that took us from Bali to the island of Labuan Bajo, about an hour away by plane. Our guide met us immediately after we landed and drove us to the harbor. There, we boarded a boat to the small, remote island of Flores, in Komodo National Park. We got a welcome drink that tasted like honeydew melon and milk (which turns out to be awesome), and set off on the 2-hour journey to Flores. Lunchtime hit on the journey and the guide stepped out of the back kitchen with a platter of fish, a platter of calamari, and a platter of salad. It was fresh, delicious, and probably the best meal of the trip.
I took a short nap on board and woke up as we were approaching the tiny dock at Flores. There, we disembarked and walked around the island. Right at the end of the guide the guide nudged me. We had already spotted our first Komodo dragon. We continued on, met up with a guide who works only for the national park, and did a 45-minute hike through the jungle. We saw komodo dragons, a monkey, and a water buffalo. It was really hot and for some reason I’d chosen to wear a sweatshirt, but the hike was beautiful and worth the trip.
I slept most of the way on the boat-ride back. As the sun set, we got back to the harbor in Labuan Bajo and checked into our hotel to eat and sleep before returning to Bali the next morning.