My first but definitely not last trip to Java. 2 days of jet lag recovery in Jogjakarta, before heading 100km or so off Java's North coast to explore the Karimunjawa Archipelago. Then, by train to the Eastern edge of Java for an amazing overnight trek into the volcanic sulphur mines of Kawah Ijen. Finally, a few days relaxing on Nusa Lembongan off Bali's South east coast.
A surreal night spent watching men hack molten sulphur out of a volcano by hand.
A "State of Play" on Karimunjawa tourism, as at September 2013 - sleeping and eating.
There's a holy trinity of activities on Karimunjawa - lazing on the beach, diving/snorkelling tours or exploring the island(s) by scooter.
An intentionally DULL "practicalities" post for a Jogjakarta–Semarang–Jepara–Karimunjawa journey.
INDONESIA may 2010
Labuan Bajo – Komodo National Park diving – Flores to Lombok boat trip – Gili Meno
Bangsal beach deserves it’s reputation as one of the planet’s premier armpits. You’re not paranoid – everyone IS out to scam you.
After Rinca the captain turned us Northwest to cross the Lombok strait, after which we would hug the thinly populated coast of Sumbawa on our way to Lombok.
Leaving the mirror smooth open sea, an appropriately mysterious-looking inlet took our boat heart-of-darkness-lite-style up to a mooring point just a short dinghy ride away from landfall on Rinca.
For the next two nights and two days I'd be on the Perama boat, heading west from Labuan Bajo to Lombok, via stops on Rinca, Gili Moyo, the village of Labuan Haji and Gili Laba.
Labuan Bajo is a warm, shabby little place - fishing port, dive centre and transit hub for budget travellers heading East into Flores.
Remember the golden age of air travel - elusive sophistication out of reach of all but the chosen few, jetting off from art deco lounges? Well, I can't believe that ever applied to Birmingham Airport.