Day 417 Moni – Larantuka, Flores (Indonesia) / motorbike GS Dakar RTW overland adventure traveller

  • Left – 6.45
  • 26th May 2015
  • Miles rode – 175 (280km)

Why do so many people feel the need to visit places at dawn? Nobody at home says ‘I love getting up at 4am to see sunrise’ but when people travel they feel a compulsion to do whatever the Lonely Planet tells them and in many cases ‘must be seen as the sun rises’ – what a load of rubbish!

There were a few travellers in the restaurant the previous evening talking about what time to get up to ensure they get to  Mount Kelimutu in time for sunrise, they left the restaurant at 8pm to get up at 4am and I stayed up and drank another beer. I had a relatively early night and woke naturally at 6am, I loaded the bike, had a coffee and got going at 6.45

At 7.30 I arrived at Mount Kelimutu and hiked for 30 minutes to the summit at 1,650 metres. Kelimutu is a volcano and at the summit are three craters each with a different coloured lake. The colours change and today they were blue, green and an amazing milky blue / grey colour with gold streaks.

As I arrived at the lakes there were about 10 sleepy travellers who had been there for hours and were honest enough to say that there was little point in getting up early as you only see the amazing coloured lakes when the sun is high enough to illuminate them. I was lucky that I arrived just as this occurred. Kelimutu is a beautiful place early in the morning (not too early though) as the mist lays in the valleys below and the sun illuminates the mountain peaks and eventually the beautiful lakes in the craters.

It was still early in the day when I got back at my bike and started riding the 250km to Larankuta. I arrived at 2.30 pm and everyone told me the ferry to Timor goes on Friday, that was 3 DAYS AWAY! I kept looking for a solution and found Vonny who suggested what seemed like a crazy idea so I was interested. Get a small boat to the island of Lembata and the weekly ferry from there on Thursday to Timor. As everything I had previously been told about ferry scheduals was incorrect I had no reason to believe Vonnys idea would work but I was up for an adventure and going to Lembeta would give me the chance to visit the ‘Whale Hunters of Lamalera’ which I wanted to do but didn’t think I had time to.

Would I be able to get my bike on the small boat, would it go to Lembata and would there be a ferry to Timor the following day?