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“Worth the hassle getting there”

Komodo National Park
Certificate of Excellence
More attraction details
Attraction details
Recommended length of visit: More than 3 hours
Reviewed June 29, 2013 via mobile

We booked through Jeffrey buana which I had read good things about. We only had enough time to stay one night but wanted to go to both rinca and Komodo islands as well as snorkel a bit. We flew from California to spend a few days in Singapore before flying into Bali. We had not been contacted by Jeffrey about our plane tickets as we'd been told they we would be waiting for us at our hotel when we arrived. I contacted the concierge at our hotel from Singapore to see if the tix had arrived which they hadn't. Luckily in an old post on trip advisor someone had posted his phone number which I sent to the concierge to contact Jeffrey about the place tix. Finally we found out that someone would meet us at the airport at 6:30 am (flight wasn't until 8:30am) and we got the the tix(only Bali to lubuan bajo). Transnusa was the airline by the way. We arrived in lubuan bajo about 10:00am and were picked up by the driver. We had them stop for beer and sodas as we heard only water was provided on the ship. We finally got to the ship and the crew put our luggage on board. I then had to go rent snorkel gear for my wife and I so a short 5 min drive and $8.00 later for rental and we had fins/ masks etc for two. Made it back to the boat and took off around 11am. It was a nice big boat and there were three crew members and my wife and I and that it. For $150 us per person it was a wonderful deal. We had our own stateroom with big bed and a lounge area on the deck in the shade that had a lounge chair to lay on, a coffee table to eat meals on and a little couch and two chairs. The cooler was in this area so you could have a refreshing drink while enjoying the beautiful water and islands. The boat was admittedly slow as at first I thought it was just going slow until we got away from the marina but no, it went that speed the whole way. First stop was the pink beach on the island of Komodo. We got about 35 minutes of snorkeling in which was decent. We got back on board and 15 minutes later were docked at Komodo island. It took 4 hours all together so it was late afternoon. We paid our fees at the ranger station (I believe about $60.00 all together including camera, video camera island fees and guide ) that would cover rinca for the next day too except for the guide fees. We chose a combo between the short and medium trek since we didn't have a whole lot of time before the sun would set (6pm). We started off to the forest and our guide told us that earlier in the day they saw a spitting cobra and Russell's viper. It was pretty hot walking but every little sound was making the guide very jumpy (rightly so) which was making us very jumpy. The trek took an hour and we saw lots of deer and a cockatiel parrot but no dragons. When we got to the beach area there was one huge dragon that was walking do we got some great pictures of its forked tongue etc. we got back on the boat and dropped anchor for the night by Komodo village. The boat had a regular toilet (which you had to dump water from a bucket next to it to flush. If they ran the generator there was a freshwater shower in front of the toilet that was nice to wash off the salt water. We ate (wonderful food fish or chicken, rice, potatoes sometimes and fruit) and then had a beer or two and went to sleep. It was very warm in our stateroom so after the generator was shut off (about 10:15 pm) the fan in our stateroom shutoff. I went to sleep on the deck as there was at least a little breeze up there. Around 2 am it was too hard for my back and went back down below deck. Around 4 am they fired up the motor and headed to rinca island about 2 hours away. We woke up about 6:30 and they cooked us breakfast. While we were eating a curious monkey came right to the boat on the dock. The crew members threw it an old fruit rind and it called over its buddy and was kind of begging like a kitten for food. One of the crew members finally walked us to the rangers station (about a 15 minute walk) and we paid the $3.00 guide fee. We saw a dragon sitting right up on the porch of one if the ranger buildings. We decided again to go a combo of short and medium trek as we only had about an hour. We saw 3 dragons sitting under a house apparently where they cook breakfast. We saw tons of monkeys and from time to time they would try and steal things off of the porch of one if the house and someone would run the monkeys off. I can tell they're probably very annoying when you live there but funny for tourists. We started the trek and saw a couple if dragons on the path out if town. We didn't see any dragons on the way up to the high point looking over the mangrove forest and inlet where the boats dock. It was very beautiful at the top and we could see buffalo in the distance. On the way down on the edge of town we saw done huge dragons basking in the sun. Got lots of pictures and saw a few more in the village. We bought a few knock knacks at the gift shop and tipped the driver and went back to the ship. By this time there were lots of boats anchored and we were glad that we got there so early as it was nice and cool. By the ship my wife pointed out a banded sea snake in the water by the mangrove trees. The boat stopped at bindiari island or angel island some call it so we could snorkel. It was better snorkeling here and saw quite a few clown fish and different schools of tropical fish. We got about an hot of snorkeling and then headed back to lubuan bajo (2 hours or so) we docked and tipped the crew $40 us for their great service and meals. Jeffrey picked us up and my wife wanted to shop a bit so we went to a gift shop by the airport. We were supposed to fly out at 3 pm but apparently they cancelled the flight cause it wasn't full enough? We were freaking out because we had a flight in the morning to take us from Bali to Yogyakarta and this would mess up everything by getting stuck overnight in lubuan bajo. Jeffrey told us we were on the wait list for the 5 pm flight but it didn't sound promising. After sitting in a restaurant for an hour while we snacked , we went to the airport to see of he could get is on a flight. He came back out with good news that the crew was going to sell us two seats that was reserved for them but would cost is roughly $60.00 additional. I was happy that we were getting the last two seats of the flight. We boarded and noticd that there were at least 15 seats empty when the plane took off. My wife was pissed and went and asked the crew about us having paid extra for "crew seats" and they laughed and said that's not possible and that it wasn't a full flight. We did confirm that the earlier flight was indeed canceled. We think what happened was the later flight cost more and Jeffrey concocted this story so he could make up the lost money for the tickets. All he really had to do is tell us the honest truth that we had to pay more money and we would've been fine with it but instead he worried us to death whether we would be able to get back to Bali or not which is not right at all. We had a wonderful time and trip and would highly recommend it but the end put a very bad taste in my mouth about Jeffrey buana.

11  Thank booking8d
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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377 - 381 of 669 reviews

Reviewed June 10, 2013

There are 2 main islands in this park that preserve Komodo the most. At Rinca island is where most of them lives rather than in Komodo's. However the topographic in Rinca is mostly savanna with an open area and in daylight it could be very hot and exhausting. In Komodo is a lot cooler with big trees and forest like.

6  Thank Ardiansyah M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed June 3, 2013

We did our open water with Kanawa Dive Centre, they were all amazing divers and dive masters. We felt so looked after the whole time! The boat was well kit out and we went to the best dive sites in the national park, value for money.

Every dive site in the national park is completely different and brilliant in it's own way, well worth the travel to get here and the money for the dining fee.

We will be coming back to this amazing dive paradise!

2  Thank Emily L
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed May 30, 2013

Little dragon are still living in Indonesia, yes its about Komodo. Find great adventur here, enjoy your day..... Good to recommend as great place to visit

Thank malangbromosemeru
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Reviewed May 30, 2013

It was a lucky day that i see 4 Komodos at the island. Sometimes people can't see even one. The trail is nice with dragon nests, bird nests and a lot of deers.

Thank Vincent T
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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