We have just returned from a fabulous group safari to Alor and Komodo.
A small group of 7 met in Bali for a welcome dinner before departing early the following morning to Alor, via Kupang. We knew straight away that the trip was going to be great, with everyone getting along famously from the get-go!
Upon arrival in Alor, the drivers from Alami Alor resort met us at the airport and we took a scenic 1 hr drive to the secluded resort. Upon arrival we were shown to our seaside bungalows where we could unpack, shower and put our diving equipment into provided crates. We then met in the gorgeous lounge area for a resort late lunch and resort briefing before going for an afternoon dive on the house reef.
We were all excited to get wet, and used the house reef dive as an opportunity to check our equipment and get our weighting comfortable. This meant we were ready for some boat dives the following morning.
The dive sites we went to explore were varied and beautiful, full or fish, healthy coral and amazing macro life. Some of the highlights for us included: fields of spectacularly colourful and lively coral, rhinopia, harlequin shrimps, bobtail squid, grey reef sharks, juvenile ornate ghost pipefish and all sorts of crazy nudibranchs including the Malibe. We were also lucky enough to see huge schools of dolphins playing nearby the boat several times.
The food at this resort is also a highlight, family style authentic Indonesian cuisine, including fish cooked in pandan leaves, tempe prepared in various ways, pumpkin curry, tuna steaks and aubagine prepared with soya and seseme. Much time was spent exchanging recipes!
One the last diving day we went in search of the schooling hammerheads often seen here at certain times of the moon cycle. While only two guests saw them, we did all catch a few glimpses of a blue whale on the surface as it swam by!
After a fantastic week we were ready to move onto the second part of the trip, a week at the lovely Komodo Resort, on Sebayur island on the outskirts of Komodo National Park. After a couple of short flights, and an hour in the “VIP Lounge” in Kupang airport, we were loaded onto speed boats and whisked to the resort where we were met with cold facecloths and tamarind juice. We did three dices a day for four consecutive days and had some fabulous experiences including two dives spent with manta rays playing with our bubbles and coming incredibly close to us. We also saw several black and white tip sharks, countless turtles, and dived in some exceptionally fishy sites like the famous Batu Balong and Castle Rock! The sunsets from the beach bar are exceptional.
On our final afternoon at the resort, we went to Rinca Island in search of Komodo dragons in the wild. We were rewarded with the rare sighting of large dragons (almost 2m in length) eating a freshly killed dear. It was wonderful to see them eating, something they do only once a month, and usually hidden in the brush on this vast island.
Our final morning together was spent making out way back to Bali for heartfelt goodbyes and long trips home.