The best option to see Komodo dragons
Rinca is one of the 3 biggest islands of the Komodo National Park with Komodo Island and Padar Island. Located right next to Flores and separated only by a narrow straight, Rinca is stretching over 198 km2. Despite being smaller and less known than Komodo, Rinca has a bigger Komodo dragon population with more around 1300 individuals living on the island. Komodo dragons are not the only animal living on the island. Wild pigs, water buffalos, Sumba deers, monkeys, wild horses and many snake species are present on the island. Rinca is composed of 3 different types of vegetation with savannah all around the coastline covering 70% of the island, monsoon forest with a dry tropical forest located between sea level and an altitude of 500 meters and the quasi-cloud forest above 500 meters. The highest summit of Rinca is Mt Ora with 670 meters high.
Kalong, the bat island
Kalong in Indonesia means “big bats” or flying foxes. Kalong is a small island located close to Rinca Island and Flores at the border of the Komodo National Park. The entire island is covered by mangrove forest hosting thousands of flying foxes living in the trees during daytime to protect them for the the heat and Komodo’s sun. But around 6 pm in the afternoon you will hear them waking up and communicating and at precisely 6:17 pm of every single day they will all take off and fly in direction of Flores in an endless black line stretching over the sunset sky of Komodo National Park. The flying foxes are flying to Flores to get food in fruit plantations grown by Flores inhabitants, pineapple, mango, orange… Captains will try to place their boats under the path used by the bats so that passengers can be as close as possible to these wonderful animals to take videos and photos of this very unique mother nature show.
Meet the giant Mantas in paradise
Karang Makassar better known as Manta point is the longest reef in the Komodo National Park. With over 3 km long, this shallow dive site, 2 to 8 m deep, is famous for the presence of the magnificent Manta rays all year round. This giant is the most graceful underwater creature you will find in the Komodo National Park swimming like it s flying in the ocean with long and effortless moves. Growing up to 6 m wide and 1,5 ton, snorkeling or diving with manta rays is one the best experience you can do inside the Komodo National Park. They often come in group of 3 to 6 but it is not unusual to see them in much wider group with 30 or more individuals in this area of the park.
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