Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Tuesday's With Indonesia

Oops - I'm late!

But I was doing Indonesian related things yesterday, I went to the travel clinic and got an injection for Typhoid. Luckily I've had about a million vaccinations in my life, so thats basically the only one I need (unless you count the shot that costs 165$ x 3 - which is both ridiculous and impossible).
So other than getting shot up, I've been reading about the Nusa Tenggara region in Indonesia. On my never ending quest for finding the perfect deserted island - I've been looking up the tiny Gili islands, and Flores.
The Gili Islands are just west of Lombok (one of the islands east of Bali) and are advertised under things like "No Cars, No Motorbikes, No Problems" - exactly what I thought. They also aparently have a large Irish bar and an authentic sushi restaurant. Excellent things to add to a deserted atoll right?
If I was a diver/surfer these islands would be even better - maybe I'll learn to surf! Mostly I'll be looking forward to eating, relaxing and biking around this island... I can picture myself here:
Next on this list is Flores - one of the larger but less visited islands. The tourist focus is mainly wandering around the traditional villages, sunsets and a volcano named Kelimutu. Although I still have really mixed feelings about traditional villages as 'tourist destinations' I do believe that these villages may be better off then what has happened (and what I avoided) in thailand. I don't plan on actually making this the reason I visit Flores though.

The volcano(s) on Flores tend to have strange colour changing pools that remain a mystery to science. Some older pictures show Kelimutu with a black, a white and a red lake but now they are white, green and blue.

The best part for me about this island is the need to hire a guide to basically see anything. I'd like this. One on one tourism. I'm assuming the guy in the photo above is a guide. I hired a moto and driver in Cambodia and it was great because your guide knows a million interesting places, has crazy stories and there is no set agenda. You get to wander around with someone who speaks the language, is usually super funny and actually wants to get to know you.
There also isn't an agency/corportation taking money - just the guide so hopefully the tourism actually benefits the people more then it does in exploited areas.
I want to go here!

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