komodo national park
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KOMODO: Through the lens

Komodo National Park is located on the Lesser Sunda Islands, on the border between the provinces of West Nusatenggara and East Nusatenggara, east of Sumbawa and west of Flores Island (Indonesia). It was declared a World Heritage Site by Unesco in 1991. I arrived to Labuan Bajo in a boat trip from Lombok. The landscape is a mix of true short grass mountains and crystal clear turquoise waters teeming with wildlife like nowhere else in the world.

diving map in komodo
padar island panoramic view komodo
padar rinca island

Komodo National Park is a nature reserve made up of three large volcanic islands in the Indonesian archipelago: Komodo, Rinca and Padar (in the picture), as well as other smaller islets that accompany them.

The entire park covers an area of ​​1,817 square kilometers, of which only 603 are land. In the region there is an important sample of biodiversity, especially underwater, much of which is internationally protected.

sebayur kecil diving
tiny beautiful house in the flores shore
green lands in flores

The topography of the Komodo National Park offers great contrasts, between white sand beaches, arid savannahs and rugged rocky mountains, coral reefs and thorny and evergreen vegetation. 

padar national park komodo

Once in Bali, you can take another local flight to Labuan Bajo, the main transportation hub of the entire island of Komodo. From Labuan Bajo many boats organize trips to the park, wether to dive, snorkel or simply to trek the islands. 


The park was created in 1980 and in 1991 it was declared a World Heritage Site by Unesco. Despite being a biologically valuable area, it was created to protect Komodo dragons.

pulau padar green

In 2011 this park was proclaimed as one of the Seven Natural Wonders of the World, along with Table Mountain (South Africa), Iguazú Falls (Argentina / Brazil), the Amazon Rainforest (South America), Ha-Long Bay ( Vietnam), Jeju Island (South Korea) and the Puerto Princesa Subterranean River (Philippines).

small town in komodo national park
padar black and pink beaches

In addition to the famous Komodo dragons, the national park is an important reservoir of endemic species, although it is not lushly populated. Many of them are species that migrated to the region from Oceania or from neighboring territories, remaining isolated for centuries and undertaking their own evolutionary paths.

close up of komodo dragon
sebayur kecil diving

These are large lizards, which are endemic to these islands. They are in extinction, since there were around 5,700 specimens four decades ago, currently no more than 3,000.


They are on the IUCN Red List of Threatened Species classified as «vulnerable species«, as it is estimated that the number of breeding females does not exceed 500.

going to sebayur island
underwater in komodo

But what attracts big amount of crowds is certainly the underwater world

diving in komodo
turtles diving
dolphins in flores
sebayur kecil diving mawan diving point
Manta point in komodo

I was lucky to be able to witness an incredible underwater scene. At the Mawan diving site I lived an incredible experience surrounded by Mantas. There was a large group of mantas of about 15 that were dancing and swimming in circles. It was a beautiful experience that I will always remember.

Mawan in Komodo manta point

The sunsets and sunrises in the park were something incredible to experience, this one was specially beautiful. We were staying on the island of Sebayur Besar in the hostel named Xpirates Dive Camp, a place I totally recommend.

sebayur island sunset
sunset over sebayur kecil

They are on the IUCN Red List of Threatened Species classified as «vulnerable species«, as it is estimated that the number of breeding females does not exceed 500.

komodo dragons huge
pink beach in the pulau padar

In the picture appears long beach, a beautiful pinkish colour sand and incredible turquoise water in contrast with the green mountains.

One of the best ways to explore the park is by a tour in a boat. What I did was start from the island of Lombok and sail during 4 days with other 35 backpackers while exploring the surrounding islands up to Komodo. 

pink beach

To sum up, exploring Komodo National Park was an amazing experience, whether entering the park in day trips from Labuan Bajo or a couple of days tours. The unique landscape, fauna, flora and underwater life will make you fall in love with this special corner of Indonesia.

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komodo dragons in the island
black and pink beach in padar island
pink beach in komodo
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