PRACTICAL FLORES

 

Here you will find the ABC about climate, money, visa etc. (the most important ones come first and in yellow)


 

EMERGENCY

Telephone number 112

 

HEALTH & SICKNESS

Ambulance telephonenumber 118 and 119

 

Hospitals

Siloam Hospital in Labuan Bajo (opened in December 2015) is the most modern hospital on the island, English is spoken. Second best is the Catholic St. Elisabeth hospital in Lela, 10 km south of Maumere. In Larantuka, Ende, Bajawa, Mbay, Borong and Ruteng are hospitals as well. If you have a choice then go for a Catholic hospital which are often better than the general hospitals ( RSDU = rumah sakit umum daerah).

 

Pharmacies (apotik) are plentiful in the towns. Doctors have their businesshours usually in the evening.

 

Handy

Buy a small bottle of minyak kayu putih (teatree oil) available in supermarkets. Cap Lang is an often sold brand. Minyak kayu putih can be used for many purposes like headache, nausea, mosquito bites, muscle pains etc.

cajeputoil (English)

kayu putih olie (Dutch)

 

Mosquito borne diseases > Malaria, dengue, cikungunya

 

Malaria

Malaria occurs in Indonesia, occurs in Flores. That's for sure. Malaria is a serious disease with fluelike syptoms as fever, severe headaches and everything you eat has a bitter taste. There are many theories about malaria, many preventive medicines are sold to avoid malaria such as paludrine nevaquine, Lariam and Malarone. Considering to take them or not is not that easy as sideeffects can be serious. Keep in mind that there is no resident in Indonesia who takes preventive malariapills. The real problem in malaria areas is lack of money. I took malariapills for years and had to deal with the side effects of Lariam. In 2008 I got malaria (tertiana) and was sick for a few weeks but I was in good hands on Sumba and later on Jawa.

The best prevention is to avoid being bitten as preventive medication is not covered for 100%.

To keep mosquitos away you should use:

- Aircon

- Mosquito repellent Sofell Sereh (available in supermarkets)

- Vitamine B1

- No perfumes

- Light coloured clothes which cover arms and legs

Dengue

This is another serious disease, similar to malaria with pains behind the eyes. There is no cure for dengue so rest is the solution and avoiding being bitten. See above at the malaria chapter.

 

Cikungunya

On Flores the Cikungunya virus is active. The virus, locally known as a malaria variety (which is not) is spread by mosquitos. Symptons resemble those of malaria with high fever, headaches, joint pain. There is no prevention drug. 

 

A natural prevention used by locals is tea made from papaya leaves which is awfull bitter but it helps.

 

Sun(burn)

Be careful as the sun in the tropics is very strong. Solution: clothes that cover most of your body and/or use of sunscreen. Take your own favourite brand from home as sunscreen in Indonesia is more expensive and there is less choice.

 

Travelsickness

Not uncommon on Flores. Take a slice of ginger (jahe), which you can buy at the local market to chew on during the trip.

 

Water

Do not drink tapwater! Water from the tap is not always safe so stick to bottles of mineralwater (brands on Flores are Ruteng and Aqua) and also drink a bit more than you use to do at home.

 

What to take from your homecountry?

Although the pharmacies (apotik) are well stocked you might take some of your own specific needs and/or brands like:

· Condoms

· Contactlens liquid

· Herpescream (sometimes difficult to find)

· Medication with prescription

· Mosquito repellent (only if you are addicted to your own brand)

· Painkillers (ibuprofen, paracetamol)

· Sunscreen (small choice and expensive in Indonesia)

· Thermometer

 

INTERNET/WIFI

Since many hotels offer WiFi tourists hardly bother to find a warnet (warung internet = internet café). If you have a smartphone you can buy credits (pulsa) for your Indonesian telephonenumber (see news and the chapter telephone here below) which you can use for an internet package. For one month you pay Rp 50.000 (Telkomsel € 3,50). You need to upload with Rp 100.000 first, then choose which package you want. De remaining pulsa you can use for sms and/or telephonecalls. For most travellers this will do during their stay in Indonesia.

 

MONEY

The Indonesian currency is Rupiah. Except for your visa outside the airports or seaports where you enter the country it is not common to pay in other currencies.

Banknotes:
Rp 1000 - Rp 2000 - Rp 5000 - Rp 10.000 - Rp 20.000 - Rp 50.000 - Rp 100.000

Coins:
Rp 100 - Rp 200 - Rp 500 - Rp 1000

If possible try to pay in the exact amount, especially on angkot, buses and taxi’s.

Below new money since December 2016

 

Every town has several atm’s (automatic teller machine) with most choice in Ende and Maumere. Before departure make sure your card is activated for international withdrawing money. Be careful: at most atm's money comes out first, then your card. Atm’s give Rp 50.000 and Rp 100.000 banknotes. Most atm's give a maximum of Rp 1.000.000 to Rp 3.000.000 with an average of Rp 2.000.000 and Rp 2.500.000 at one time. However, you can repeat this several times with a maximum up to Rp 8.000.000 depending on your bank, the Indonesian bank and the place where you are. Sometimes you have to insert your pin for every transaction even the machine still holds your debitcard.

 

Banks & atm's on Flores

· BCA (Bank Central Asia)

· BNI (Bank Negara Indonesia)

· BRI (Bank Republik Indonesia)

· Danamon

· Mandiri                      

moneyconverter Rupiah <> euro

Indonesian Rupiah

___________________________________________________________________

 

POLICE

Telephonenumber 110

 

TELEPHONE

Don’t use your provider/telephonenumber from home. It is cheaper to buy an Indonesian simcard (Simpati, Telkomsel)

Starting 1 March 2018 every simcard has to be registered, also for tourists. See also:  tourists required to register prepaid simcards

Sms is Rp 600 to your relatives abroad, and around   Rp 200 within the country. Telkomsel has a complicated tarif system. Telefphonecalls within Indonesia are cheap. For calling outside Indonesia use the special number 0017 or ask your relatives to call you with a budget number. Even better is making telephonecalls via the internet like What’s App, Line, Messenger or BBM. See also “Internet”.

 

For making telephonecalls from Indonesia add + as the international code, followed by landnumber and telephonenumber without the 0.

Example: +31623456789

 

VISA

For a 30 day visit you don’t need a visa. You will get stamp on the international airport, seaport or landborder.  For the total list check this website: https://wikitravel.org/en/Indonesia and scroll down to "Get in". This  free visa stamp cannot be extended.

http://www.indonesia.travel/en/travel-guidance/visa-and-immigration

If you want an extendable visa you can buy a VOA (visa on arrival) for 35 US$ or the equivalent in euro or Rupiah (no other currency).

See also

A 60 day visa is available at one of the embassies or consulates abroad.

Visa Den Haag (The Netherlands)

Important:

Your passport must be valid at least 6 months upon arrival in Indonesia!

If you overstay your visa then the official penalty is Rp 300,000 per day you have overstayed. The maximum allowed time you can overstay is 60 days.

If you have overstayed your Indonesia visa for more than 60 days then you are in the country without valid visa (...). The punishment for not having a valid visa is a maximum 5 years sentence or maximum Rp 500,000,000 penalty. (article #119 of UU 6/2011).


 

FOOD & DRINKS

 

Food

Indonesia has a huge diversity of food. Every island, town or area has its own speciality. Common dishes like nasi goreng, soto ayam, gado2 or nasi padang are widely available and almost always in many varieties. In Labuan Bajo you will find some western restaurants in particular Italian eateries and also some bakeries.

 

See also the language list.

 

Here the favourites and widely avaible dishes

  • ayam bakar
    barbecued chicken comes with plain rice and salad
  • bakso
    meatballsoup with mihoon and seasoning
  • gado2
    salad of vegetables, tahu, tempe egg and peanutsauce. served with sticky rice or plain rice
  • ikan bakar
    grilled fish
  • mie goreng
    fried noodles
  • nasi goreng
    fried rice with fried egg on top
  • nasi padang
    originally from Padang (Sumatera); you can choose from the (spicy) dishes displayed in front of the eatery. Some favourites are: rendang padang (meat in spicy coconutsauce), perkedel (fried mashed potatoes) and gulai kambing (goatmeat in coconutsauce)
  • soto ayam
    tasty chickensoup with mihoon and served with plain rice

 

Flores has its own specialities like ikan kuah asam (fish in sweet-hot-sour sauce) but unfortunately hard to find in warung.

 

Drinks
There is a lot of choice in drinks. Softdrinks in many varieties are available in supermarkets, minimarkets and small shops along the road. Juices like mango, pineapple, orange, melon etc are sold in eateries.

Alcoholic drinks include local beer (Bir Bintang), moke (arrack) produced by local farmers and tuak (fresh palmwine). Moke (Arrack) from Flores is safe to drink and tastes far much better than the one from Bali. Unlike the western part of Indonesia in Flores it is still easy to buy alcoholic drinks due to local rules and tradition. The best moke is from  Adonara (Flores Timur) but widely sold in Larantuka, Aimere and Boba(Ngada).

 

Imported drinks like whisky, gin, wodka, liquors and wines (especially from Bali and Australia) are available in Labuan Bajo (there are special wineshops but prices are better in the supermarkets like Roxy) and Maumere (Winehop, Jalan J. Sudirman 1) and in Mbay. Probably also in Ende and Ruteng but I didn’t met them yet.

Note that imported drinks are (far more) expensive (than in Europe). For a Johnny Walker Red Label expect to pay anything between Rp 500.000 and Rp. 1.000.000 (...) for a 750 ml bottle (between € 30,00 and € 60,00). A bottle of Australian red wine is around Rp 325.000 (where in Europe € 6,00) for the cheapest one. A good alternative is Two Islands, a Bali/Australian production for around Rp 225.000  (€ 14,00) but only available in Labuan Bajo.

 

A choice of drinks:

  • air kelapa muda
    young coconutwater, fresh from the tree or from the supermarket
  • Aqua
    bottled mineralwater; on Flores Ruteng is more common and available
  • bir Bintang
    Indonesian beer
  • bir Bintang Radler
    Indonesian radler lemon and grapefruit
  • Coca Cola
    In bottles and cans and sometimes the diet versions
  • es/jus jeruk (nipis)
    Orange or lemon with crushed ice or as a juice
  • es teh
    Icetea (fresh or bottled/packed from the supermarket)
  • Fanta green, red
    Available in supermarkets and small warungs
  • kopi Flores
    Arabica coffee from Flores
  • moke
    Arrack, a liquor made from lontarpalm, a little sweet, a bit ginlike. The alcohol content is various and can be fierce. The cheapest one contents 20% alcohol, but the 40% arrack tastes better. The triple fired BM Super (bm = bakar menyala) contents 50% alcohol. Drink it pure together with your (new) friends or mix it with lemon and honey or fresh orange juice. No headaches, no hangovers.

    Read further
    See also moke in this chapter

 

LANGUAGE

The official language is Indonesian (Bahasa Indonesia) with Malay language as a base. However there are some 750 dialects and languages all over the country. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Languages_of_Indonesia

See also

 

It's a little unclear how many languages exactly are spoken on Flores. One is talking about 19 languages including Komodo, Manggarai (West Flores), Ngada, Nage, Keo, Ende (Central Flores) Lamaholot, Lio, Nagi, Palue (East Flores). Fact is that they are languages, not just dialects or tongues. Most people speak Bahasa Indonesia. To learn Bahasa Indonesia is not too difficult since you can choose between simple “pasar Malay” without bothering with grammar and the official “read a paper” version. At least try to learn some simple words and you will make friends.

 

Molo

A typical an universal word on Flores not to be translated. People on Flores use the word when they meet each other, when they agree, when the ask permission to go.

Een typisch woord op Flores, dat niet te vertalen is. Mensen gebruiken het als ze elkaar groeten, als ze ergens mee instemmen, toestemming vragen om te gaan. te gebruiken op gevoel dus.

 

Selamat pagi  - good morning (from dawn till 10.00 am 

Selamat siang  - good day (10.00 am - 15:00 pm)

Selamat sore  - good afternoon (15:00 pm -dusk)

Selamat malam  - good evening

Selamat tidur  - good night

Selamat makan  - enjoy your meal

Selamat jalan - have a good trip

 

Selamat can be literally translated into “be safe or safely” and is multi useful.

 

Terima kasih  - thank you

Sama sama  - you’re welcome

Sampai ketemu lagi  - see you again, untill we meet again

 

Forms of address in Indonesia are quite complicated for foreigners as there are dozens of them depending on the island, the situation, manners and local customs. These are the most common ones.

 

Ibu  - misses (literally mother)

Nona  - miss (in the east only, eg Flores, Maluku etc)

adik/dik  - for a boy/kid which is (much) younger than yourself

Bapak/om - mister *(literally father/uncle)

The other way around: almost everyone on Flores will call you mister, even if you are a woman...

 

LINKS (which could be useful)

 

Education/child protection

http://www.ecoflores.org/en/top/home/

 

Flores

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Flores (English)

https://id.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pulau_Flores (Bahasa Indonesia)

 

Hotels

http://bkpm-nttprov.web.id/hotel-di-provinsi-nusa-tenggara-timur/

www.booking.com

 

Indonesia

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Indonesia

 

Languages 

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Languages_of_Indonesia

 

Music

https://www.facembook.com/Official.Ivan.Nestorman.Page

http://videomanggarai.blogspot.nl/2014/11/nuk-naca-ge-ivan-nestorman.html

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=USfOV5gQz5c

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0kHvczKmgUg

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ngj3rmrZoqE

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BIzkQWHkaqc

http://sharelagu.wapka.cc/

http://sharelagu.wapka.cc/track/lele-lele.html

http://sharelagu.wapka.cc/track/ivan-nestorman.html

 

Tourism

http://florestoday.com/ekonomi (although it suggests to be about economy the link is about traveling)

http://www.florestourism.com/ (Swiss Contact)

 

Tradition

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Moke_(beverage)

 

 

NATIONAL PARKS ENTRANCE FEES

Indonesia, and Flores also has a complicated system for entrance fees and you need at least a calculator. Don’t shoot the messenger… Here below actual fees for the national parks. They are due to change frequently. These fees apply to non-Indonesian citizens. Indonesian citizens pay only a very small fraction of it.

 

Komodo National Park

Prices below are for foreigners, eg non residences from Indonesia *

Entrance ticket Rp 175,000 per person working days

Entrance ticket Rp 275,000 per person Sundays and National Holidays

Tourism Tax Rp 50,000 per person

Ranger fee Rinca Rp 80,000 per group up to 5 people

Ranger fee Komodo Rp 80,00 per group up to 5 people

Entrance ticket Boat Rp 100,000 per boat

Fishing fee Rp 25,000 per person

Toilet fee not yet known

Hiking fee Rp 5,000 per person

Wildlife observation fee Rp 10,000 per person

Canoeing fee Rp 25,000 per person

Diving fee Rp 25,000 per person

Snorkeling fee Rp 15,000 per person

 

*Indonesian Citizen

Entrance ticket Komodo National Park 5.000 rp (7.500 rp) per person

 

Seventeen Islands National Park (Riung)

Entrance ticket Rp 100,000 per person

Entrance ticket Rp 150,000 per person Sundays and National Holidays

Car Parking Rp 10,000 per car

 

Kelimutu National Park

Entrance ticket Rp 175,000 per person workingdays

Entrance ticket Rp 275,000 per person Sundays and National Holidays

Car Parking Rp 10,000 per car

Bus Parking Rp 50,000 per bus

 

All tickets are valid for 1 day. No discount for children. Note that prices are due to change often.

 

NEWS

Indonesian

http://florestoday.com/pariwisata (tourism)

http://www.sergapntt.com/

http://www.florespost.com/

https://www.florespost.co/

 

RAMADAN

Ramadan is the holy month of Islam and muslims are considered 30 days fasting. It is one of the five obligations according to the Qur'an (the holy book of Islam). The other four are the shahada (creed), pray five times a day, zakat (alms for the poor at the end of Ramadan) and a visit to Mecca at least once in their lifetime. The fasting lasts from dawn until dusk (in Indonesia depending on the place somewhere between 3.30 and 4.30 in the morning until somewhere between 17:30 and 18:30 in the afternoon). During the day/daylight muslims are not allowed to eat, drink, or smoke and they are not allowed to have sex.

The thought behind this is to cleanse and renew the body and mind and to empathize with the poor.

 

After a month of fasting Idul Fitri is celebrated for 2 days followed by a (short) holiday. Ramadan moves each year (because of the Islamic calendar) about 10 days forward on. During the fastingmonth it can be difficult in Indonesia  to find a place to eat during the day because many warung and restaurants are closed. Also, transport can be a problem. Because the majority of Flores is Roman Catholic travelers will have not much trouble to find food during the day.

 

However, keep in mind that many muslims turn home shortly before Idul Fitri to visit their family (pulang kampung) and flights can be more expensive or sold out.

 

2017

Ramadan 27 May-24 June*

Idul Fitri 25 and 26 June, followed by Lebaran until the end of June*

 

2018

Ramadan 16 May-14 June*

Idul Fitri 15 and 16 June, followed by Lebaran until around 24 June*

 

2019

Ramadan 5 May-4 June*

Idul Fitri 5 and 6 June, followed by Lebaran until around 13 June*

*dates can vary one day later or earlier.

 

TIME

Indonesia is divided in three timezones

WIB Waktu Indonesia Barat = West Indonesian Time GMT + 7

WITA Waktu Indonesia Tenggara = Central Indonesian Time GMT + 8

WIT Waktu Indonesia Timur = East Indonesian Time GMT + 9

Flores is in WITA and 6/7 hours (summer/winter) ahead from European Central Time (Amsterdam, Madrid, Paris, Rome) and GMT +8.

 

TRAVELGUIDES & MAPS

Worldwide many travelguides are offered in well stocked bookshops as well on the intenet. Most writings about Flores are part of an Indonesian guide. However on the island itself you can purchase yourself wonderful guides and a map published by Swiss Contact.

 

  • Flores Travel Map

ISBN 978-3-9523834-4-5

The most complete map of Flores (2012) with maps of the small towns and some trekkingareas.

 

  • Flores. A glimpse of the people & culture (2011)

ISBN 978-3-9523834-0-7

The first edition is full of information with practical info and small maps of the most important touristcentres.

 

  • Flores. Diving Around Komodo (2011)

ISBN 978-3-9523834-1-4

This is a diving special with detailed descriptions of divingspots between Labuan Bajo and Sumbawa. A must have for divers.

 

  •  Flores. Adventrue Trails (2012)

ISBN 978-3-9523834-3-8

The third one is for naturelovers, trekkings and mounteneers.

 

Sometimes there are maps and brochures available of the seperate regencies. I found them of Sikka, Manggarai Barat and Manggarai Timur.

 

VISITING KOMODO NP AND RIUNG 17 ISLANDS

Komodo NP

Labuan Bajo has dozens of agents, small offices and people on the road offering trips to Komodo NP. 

  • Daytrip to Padar Island (yessss... the one with the awesome views on Komodo Island), Komodo Island (including Pink Beach) and Manta Point is the most populair one. Departure is early morning around 5.30 am and you will be bacjk late afternoon around 16:00 or 17:00 or so,.
  • Daytrip to Rinca island with a snorkling stop on the way back.
  • Daytrip as you like (private boat only)
  • Trip 2 or 3 days with overnight on the boat .
  • Trips as you like, 1 day, 2 days, 3 days or more. Up to you but of course orivate boat only. There are also possiblities to overnight on several islands in Komodo NP including Rinca Island or Komodo Island. And, yes the dragons sleep there as well.  

What expect to pay?

To be honest,  I really don' t know. 

Every time I come to Labuan Bajo (which is at least once a year) I am suprised about prices which have increased the last decade. For a daytrip the prices are between

Rp 350.000 and Rp 500.000 per person. For a private boat prices can be anything between Rp 1.500.000 (1,5 million) and Rp 4.000.000 (4 million) for exact the same type of boat. Nobody can explain why these prices are that high. Back in 2012 I paid   

Rp 550.000 for a private boat for a trip Rinca and a "snorkling" Island on the way back but in January 2016 I had to bargain hard to pay 1,7 million instead of the asked 2,3 million for a trip Padar and Komodo. The lowest price I have heard two month ago was 1,5 millon (Rp 1.500.000) for a full day, starting at 5.30 am untill late afternoon.

These days there also speedboats for rent starting around 5 million a day.  So the message is: shop around and bargain hard.

A few things to keep in mind:

  • do not book in advance from your home country!
  • check weather forecast the day before
  • choose a boat with at least two engines
  • make sure that the boat has decent (radio) communications
  • if you intend to dive also check the expected currents
  • prices of daytrips on seat in base should be between Rp 350.000 and             Rp 500.000 per person on a regular boat
  • prices of 2-daytrips on seat in base on a regular boat should be between Rp 700.000 and Rp 1.000.000 per person
  • a private boat hired from 5.30 - 17:00 should be no more than Rp 2.000.000
  • a private boat hired from 8:00 - 16:00 should be no more than Rp 1.500.000
  • check what is included and what is not
  • except the prices her above there are many other boats in shapes and sizes