More and more people are opting for ecotourism when planning their trips. Being in contact with nature, going on long journeys to reach new destinations and seeing unimaginable things is the motivation transmitted to us by some places on the planet. This is what happens with Komodo National Park. Located in Indonesia, this National Park has been declared a protected area by UNESCO because it is the natural habitat of the famous Komodo Dragon. But there is more reason to go deep into the heart of this Eden and discover the charms it offers its visitors. If you are a true explorer this trip is going to please you. From here we will provide you with relevant information so that you do not miss anything you will see in Komodo, the island of dragons.
Where is Komodo?
Komodo National Park is located in Indonesia on the smaller islands of La Sonda. It is part of a group of volcanic islands to the west of Flores Island. In total there are 29 islands that form the park of which the best known are Komodo, Padar and Rinca. The park covers a terrestrial and aquatic area of 1817 km2.
How do we get to Komodo National Park?
This is a really interesting point. A trip like this requires long advance planning. The first thing you should know is that being an area of islands where we will travel the only accesses we can have are by sea and air.
Regardless of where you are traveling from, you will most likely have to make several connections. The most direct way is to take a flight to Jakarta, the capital of Indonesia. Once you are there we will make an aerial connection to Bali Island or also to Labuan Bajo in Flores Island. Labuan Bajo is really the gateway to Komodo National Park.
We recommend that you travel to this village. Most of the excursions to Komodo National Park depart from here. The businesses in Labuan Bajo are dedicated to activities of exploration, diving and sale of souvenirs on the Park so it will not be any problem to find the ideal excursion for our trip.
History of this Park
Komodo has been a National Park since 1980. This is because the area is the natural habitat of one of the strangest species of reptiles in the animal kingdom: The Komodo Dragon, the closest current relative to the dinosaurs. The National Park is then created to give protection not only to the dragon but to a rich variety of flora and fauna considered of great importance and value for the biodiversity of the planet.
Komodo National Park has a total population of 4,000 permanent inhabitants. Its locals come from other islands and dedicate themselves to activities related to the park’s sustainability.
The island of Dragons
The Komodo Dragon is considered the greatest lizard in the world. This reptile belongs to the Varanidae family, which means that its head is small, but has a huge body and a long tail. An adult animal of this species can measure up to 3 meters long and reach a weight of 100 kilos.
They live freely in the park. It is not always possible to be lucky to see a specimen of great proportions, but it is always possible to see some of them prowling near the paths assigned for exploration.
The Komodo Dragon is a predator. By nature it has a highly developed sense of smell that allows it to track its prey from long distances. His bite is deadly. Once he bites an animal he contaminates it with a poisonous liquid that produces his saliva causing the agony and subsequent death of his prey. Most of the animals in the ecosystem where he lives are threatened by their strength and voracity.
What to see and do in Komodo Park?
Komodo National Park is a real adventure. There are many species of flora and fauna both terrestrial and aquatic that we can contemplate only in this geographical area. There are a total of 227 animal species of which 25 are protected. Here you will find more than 90 types of birds such as the Yellow Crested Cockatoo. There are also 32 species of mammals and reptiles. A great variety of monkeys (crab macaque), rodents (Komodo Rat), deer (Timor Deer), wild boar and other reptile species live on the island.
The waters surrounding Komodo National Park are a wildlife reserve with more than 1000 species of fish, 260 species of corals and various types of whales, manta rays and sharks. It is for this reason that the practice of scuba diving and snorkeling is in addition to dragons, another of the reasons that most attract visitors and amateurs. If you ever thought of swimming among manta rays, dolphins and turtles here at Komodo National Park you can make that wish come true.
Komodo National Park: World Heritage and Natural Wonder
In 1990 UNESCO listed Komodo National Park as a World Heritage Site and Man and Biosphere Reserves.
The exuberant beauty of Komodo National Park has made this place chosen in 2011 as one of the 7 Natural Wonders of the World.
What should we keep in mind before traveling to Komodo National Park?
A trip to these latitudes of the planet requires a previous planning to take into account all the necessary aspects that are required when we travel to an area of islands.
● Prices on the islands are higher than on land especially food and hydration.
● We have to pay to enter Komodo National Park. This is done when we arrive in Komodo or Rinca which is where the park offices are located (this is not included in excursions departing from Labuan Bajo).
● It is mandatory the presence of a guide or “Rangers” to enter the island. It is not allowed to enter the park without an expert.
● The activity of exploration and hiking is done through places already indicated because the Komodo Dragon is a predatory animal and you never know what reaction may present to some tourists who may break the rules. However, animals are no danger to hikers.
● The price of the guide or “Rangers” is not high because it is paid between all the group of excursion. It must be done at the moment before entering Komodo or Rinca.
● The temperature in the area is very high and depending on the time of year can reach 40 degrees. We recommend that you wear appropriate clothing, sun protection and plenty of hydration.
● Make provisions against pests and undesirable and annoying flying insects. Take mosquito repellent with you.