Komodo Island–Feb 23, 2013

Komodo Island is a repeat destination for us but it had lots of surprises for us. The plan today is a guided walking tour (the only kind available, no wandering about here) and then snorkelling at a nearby beach. Interestingly the inhabitants are descended from exiled convicts, a theme that we see often in our travels. The draw is of course the Komodo dragons. TheseIMGP7149

lizards are typically 2-3m long and can weigh up to 70kg. While they look peaceful and slow, they can reach speeds up to 18km/h when chasing prey. Occasionally they attack humans, usually local fishermen or guides. They kill by infecting you with more than 10 types of bacteria including listeria. They then wait a few days while you weaken and then go in for the kill. Sometimes 10 or more feed at one time. Our walk finds a group of the lizards at the watering hole but also in the encampment/building area along with deer. One injured deer is on the beach, it probably won’t be alive the next morning.

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We then boarded our boat via dinghy transfer. The 30 minute ride passed quickly while we discussed whether to eat lunch before or after snorkelling. The prevailing wisdom was to swim first. Gerrit went overboard at the anchor site, the others ferried to the beach on the dinghy. This was the first time using our new Pentax WG2 waterproof camera. It was weird taking the camera into the water, something always avoided in the past. The results are wonderful though as we can share what we saw underwater.

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This tour was organized by fapsbb from Cruise Critic, the company is Komodo Eko Wisata, contact Jeffrey Buana. The tours they organize are eco friendly, well staffed, good English and unlike another private tour, they provide a dinghy to ferry between the boat and shore.  Of course, the lunch served was truly amazing!

On Komodo you have 3 choices, no tour, ships tour and private tour. No unescorted visitors are allowed and in fact when you wander too far from your group someone magically shows up to herd you back.

Dinner tonight is a special event in the Pinnacle. The younger chefs were asked to come up with a menu combining Dutch and Indonesian flavours. This was an assignment for Jan, the assistant dining room manger for his work toward becoming a Pinnacle manager. The idea was floated with Mike the Culinary manager to enhance the Pinnacle experience. Jan designed the concept, Tournant Chef Mathijs and Chef Bram created the menu (and cooked the food) and the Pinnacle staff Intan, Adji, David,, Lelik, Restia and Ria provided graceful and smooth service. Sorry that the flavours don’t come through on the blog but you can see the care taken with presentation that it typical of the Pinnacle. An amazing menu. The lamb was slow cooked at 70C and was very tender as a result. The meal paired perfectly with a Rioja chosen by Cellar Master Polic.

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Jan, Bram,Mathijs

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Comments

Komodo Island–Feb 23, 2013 — 1 Comment

  1. Yuck! I remember those “things” from your previous visit. Not on the “list of places to visit” for EDDie.

    The swimming looks great as long as the Dragons don’t swim?
    Your camera is brilliant, is it difficult to get a clean focus underwater?