26 September 2009


Medana Bay on the NW corner of Lombok Island is an 'official' stop in the Sail Indonesia Rally. There is good and easy anchoring in the bay, there is a fantastic dinghy dock and under the palms is a pleasant meeting place where you also find the very helpful staff of Medana marina with info about tours and interesting sights in the area. The village next to the marina is well involved with the activities of the Rally: there is help with getting fresh water and diesel on board, there is a laundry service, there are meals cooked every day and there are small shops with local souvenirs.

An other project of the village is the replant of a reef in the bay. Everyone can plant a small piece of coral on a block of concrete and write on it the name of your boat (or wife or grandchild) and bring the block to the designated area so that in 2, 5 or 10 years there will be a healthy reef in the bay again that also will attract fish and other sea creatures. There is a lot of interest from the sailors in the Rally to participate is this initiative.

During the welcoming ceremony we are well surprised by the many beautiful costumes and traditional music. The performance is very professional and a fascinating show. The dinner for the participants and the local representatives and guests is vegetarian with fresh cooked fish and fantastic fish-sate's. Also the various vegetables are tastefully prepared. A real moslim band with head covered moslima dancers give a good swing with every now and then some Arabic accents.

Slideshow Lombok

16 September 2009

Rinca and Komodo

Rinca and Komodo are hilly and at the moment very dry islands, but also beautiful and sandwiched between Flores and Sumbawa. Both islands are part of the 'Komodo National Park' and famous for the very big reptiles who live there, the 'Komodo dragons'. These are world's biggest lizards that can grow over 3 meter and can weigh over 100 kg. They feed on animals as big as deer and water buffalo.

On both islands you can make a walk or longer hike under guidance of a parkranger. He knows where the big lizards mostly stay and to find the 'waterholes' are where the deer and buffalo's come to drink. We make two walks at the end of the day and beside the 'dragons' we get a good impression of the vegetation and the other animals that live in the park.

Slideshow Komodo

13 September 2009

Northwest Flores

Linggeh is a fishing village where we are welcomed very heartily. During the day some of the fishermen come along with their canoes to have a chat and to see if there is something interesting to get from the foreign yachties. Later also the children want to see the tourists on the big sailing boats. Late afternoon we go with the crew of two oher yachts to the shore and for both parties it's an interesting and pleasant happening.

Something different is the bit bigger town of Labuanbajo where we are surprised by the colourfull traditional boats that are moored in the harbour. Most yachts are anchored just outiside the harbour and we make use of the services of some local young guys that bring the tourists to town with their 'adjusted' fishingboats. On the way we are offered several souvenirs like necklaces and wooden masks.

Slideshow Flores

7 September 2009

Traditional boatbuilders

South of Sulawesi is situated the atol and island of BoneRate. The inhabitants of 'Pulau Bonerate' have a reputation for the traditional wooden boats that are build here. On the beach next to the village are about 50 small and big crafts under construction. Everywhere you hear men sawing and hammering, but of course there is always time for social talk or explanation about the art of boatbuilding. Orders both for newly build or repairs, a new bow for example, are taken and carried out in the traditional way.

Slideshow Bonerate

5 September 2009

Hoga Harbour

August 30th we pick up a mooring in the quiet bay of Hoga island. There is a nice white beach where we meet the other yachties in the evenings around a bonfire. We celebrate a 40 year wedding anniversary with a sunset dinner on the beach. And it's great snorkeling and diving on the the reef just a few hundred meters from the anchorage.

A visit to the steltvillage of ex seanomads is an experience! In former days the families lived on their boats and formed 'floating villages'. With the houses on stelts there still is a close relation between the people and the sea. Most men still go in the day or in the night to the sea to catch fish. Next evening we meet Geertje, a Dutch lady who runs a small diving enterprise, but who also already for 14 year is helping the ex seanomads with schools, teachers and a few small (commercial) projects. A difficult but interesting initiative.

Slideshow Hoga Harbour