The best way to experience the iconic Komodo Islands is on a multi-day sailing trip with one of the best companies to travel with – Travass Life. The 3 day/2 night trip takes you aboard one of their boats across several amazing islands and is hosted by the loveliest crew! Started up by sisters Adel and Erli, they are now working with Sail with Papiton to build brand new boats for their trips with trendy interiors and ready for their on-board photographer, Gio, to snap the perfect shots of you.
Day 1: Kelor Island – Rinca Island – Pulau Kalong
After pick up from Labuan Bajo, you board and meet your new friends for the next three days. No time is wasted as you set sail for a tiny but dreamy island called Kelor. Once ashore, you can start a rocky, uphill climb (approx 15 mins) to the top of the island where you’ll be welcomed with views across crystal clear waters and luscious landscapes. You’ll get an incredible vantage across the island and a chance to swim in the cooling shallow waters after.
The next stop is Rinca Island, which is one of the better places to spot Komodo Dragons. We took a short guided tour around the island and saw a few dragons around. Finally, you’ll end your day by docking in the waters surrounding Pulau Kalong. An island area famous for the thousands of bats that cross the sky during sunset. You anchor here for the night, grab a bintang and enjoy the evening under the stars.
Day 2: Padar Island – Pink Beach – Taka Makassar – Manta Point
The next day you have an early start to begin your hike to the top of Padar Island. It’s better to get up as early as possible as it’s significantly cooler and you’ll have slightly less crowds. We began our hike at around 5am and should take approx 30 minutes to get to the top depending on fitness level. It starts out as actual steps and gradually becomes natural rocky steps to the top. The viewpoint up here is unlike anything else. You’ll get to see 3 beaches that lay back to back – white sand, black sand and pink sand.
It’s a beautiful way to start the day before heading back to the boat and sailing to a pink beach. This surreal sand colour is caused by red coral leaving behind sediments in the sand giving it a pink hue – enjoy a morning swimming around and getting the ultimate drone shots from above.
Next stop is Taka Makassar, a small sandbank in the middle of the sea. There’s not much to it but it’s beautiful. Surrounded by clear blue water, if you manage to get there when it’s emptier, it feels like your own private island. The last stop of the afternoon is to Manta Point. Here, you get the chance to jump into the ocean and swim with giant manta rays! This is really one of the most incredible experiences – the size and speed of these things is mindblowing. You’ll need to be a fairly experienced swimmer for this, as the currents can be strong and they swim insanely fast and you want to keep up to get a good chance at seeing them.
Day 3: Sebayur Island – Kanawa Island – Labuan Bajo
The final morning begins with a hike to the top of Sebayur Island. This is a chance to watch sunrise together on the last day (although we had a pretty cloudy start to the day) and bask in the beauty of the Komodo Islands. Personally, this was one of my least favourite hikes, as there was no real path and climbing up grassy hills terrifies me but once we were at the top, I was so glad I went for it. Before being taken back to Labuan Bajo, you get one more chance to snorkel. Hop off at Kanawa Island where you can either enjoy the beachfront or get your masks on and get underwater. This was some of the most vibrant underwater life I’ve ever experienced. We were swimming around for ages as we just enjoyed all of the coral reefs and colourful fish, so get off the beach and head underwater.
All meals are included whilst you’re on board. We were welcomed with fresh juices/smoothies on our first day and then lunch and dinner would consist of some sort of seafood – as you can see below there was crab stir fry, tofu, fritters and veggie stir fry with rice. There was always enough food but can be quite an acquired taste so if you feel like it, bring a couple of snacks with you. The fridge was always full with beer to buy and bring a reusable water bottle as they have filtered water on board.
This is one of the more pricey options for a Komodo sailing trip. The price is IDR3,950,000 (approx £200) or if you book your spot a month prior to departure you’ll get the early bird price of IDR3,650,000 and save yourself around £15. Whilst the cost is higher than others, you may be wondering why choose this over the others? For us, it was having an on board photographer to get the shots you want as well as having access to a drone. We also got in touch with the guys who run the trip (who are super active on social media) and were able to help out so much with photos of the boat beforehand and helping us choose the best options for us. I think it’s absolutely worth it and as of 2019, they have recently upgraded their boats so you can expect bright, spacious rooms with loads of social space to enjoy up on deck.
If you have any more questions about this trip, feel free to get in touch. Or, check out the Travass website to book and their Instagram where you’ll find loads more information and amazing photos from passengers.