Dragons? I am mother of Turtles!
(Bali, Komodo, Indonesia)
In a Nutshell
What is it about sea turtles that make them irresistible to caretakers? Is it the vast difference in size from the time of their birth as tiny hatchlings to the enormity of maturity? Their slow nature?? Is it the fact that they can live on both land and sea that stirs our imagination? Or is it the ability to witness the full circle, from birth to motherhood, of this amazing 200-million-year-old animal, in a super hands-on way?Or, is it simply because this endangered species is directly at risk because of human behavior- our plastic, our fish nets, our oil in the oceans – that makes us want to remedy what we have wrongfully done?
This project is already very popular with young budget travelers, and we have made it suitable for seniors and families too. We will do so by upgrading its comfort level, and by adding many activities on Nusa Penida Island and a cultural layer in magnificent Ubud; a cornucopia of culture, art and tradition, and yes- the dragons of the breathtaking and mysterious Komodo Island!
This program is created for those who wish to experience a close connection with nature in Indonesia (see the “itinerary” and “contributional work” sections that elaborate on the sea turtle and dragon conservation activities*) and engage positively with the community, with a splash of culture and a bit of island hopping. This allows for interaction with locals and a chance to engage in Balinese culture, including activities such as traditional Batik painting and visits to temples and traditional markets.
We will be visiting three islands within a single country, and each island offers a unique twist of Indonesian culture and tradition.
*This program does not require any prior qualifications or experience. Your attention and care are all that is needed.
Day 1, Sunday: Arrive at Ngurah Rai International Airport (DPS). We will be picked up by the local team and transferred to the island of Nusa Penida. The evening is for relaxation after a long journey.
Day 2, Monday: We will start our adventure with an early morning breakfast and then attend a local language class and an introduction to the traditions and culture of Bali. Next we will visit one of the most scenic beaches on Nusa Penida, called Cristal Beach, where we’ll contribute by cleaning the beach of plastic, trash, etc., and rest for the remainder of the evening.
Day 3, Tuesday: Hello Sea Turtles! We will start with an introduction to marine biodiversity and the importance of the Turtle Program and dive in (so to speak…) to the activities such as cleaning their tanks and measuring and feeding the turtles. After the contributional part of this day (and some rest), we will attend a Balinese flower offering class in the evening, where we will learn to make a typical flower offering for the Gods.
Day 4, Wednesday: Full engines ahead in the turtle conservation program. The evening will be dedicated to relaxation and some “me time” 🙂 You will need it for tomorrow.
Day 5, Thursday: Energetic day ahead! In the morning we will continue with our sea turtle conservation efforts. In the afternoon, we will enjoy a dancing class. In the evening , we will get a chance to play beach volleyball with the group members and the locals. A good night’s sleep is guaranteed…
Day 6, Friday: After breakfast we will visit Kelingking viewpoint. Next, we will be taking a dip in the crystal clear water at Angel’s Billabong and take in the beautiful view at Pasih Uug (“Broken Beach”). After a beach cleaning hike, we will bid farewell to Nusa Penida with a fun filled bonfire.
Day 7, Saturday: Goodbye Nusa, Hello Ubud! Today, we will be transferred to Ubud by ferry. After a short break you will have time to enjoy a relaxing, Balinese spa treatment, to revive our souls after the boat ride.
Day 8, Sunday: City exploration day! We will start by visiting the Monkey Forest. After soaking up the Balinese culture at Ubud’s market, we will enjoy the architecture of the King’s Palace. Up next is the beauty of Tegenungan Waterfall. Come afternoon, we will witness a traditional Balinese dance show and explore Sanur’s vibrant nightlife with a fun pub crawl.
Day 9, Monday: After a lazy morning, we will be giving priority to culture: we will visit the famous “Pura Tirta Empul”- the holy water temple – and will enjoy a purifying shower in its holy water. Then we will enjoy the view of Tegalalang Rice Terrace and attend a class to learn the local art of batik . At the end of the class, we will have self-made souvenirs to take back home with us. This will be our final night in Ubud.
Day 10, Tuesday: Today we’ll fly to Flores for the last anchor of our adventure and new experiences ahead! After settling in, we will learn how to make traditional “Ketupat” dumplings and at the end the day we will enjoy a traditional dinner in Labuan Bajo.
Day 11, Wednesday: It’s Dragon Day! We’ll travel by boat to Komodo Island to visit the Komodo National Park and work with the park rangers. Noon time is beach time: we will enjoy the beautiful Pink Beach and the good vibes of Padar Beach.
Day 12, Thursday: Today is your day. After you explore Flores, a complimentary and unique spa treatment will ensure body and soul revival, and allow for reflection and contemplation of our adventure (and life :-)) thus far**.
Day 13, Friday: Let’s finish with a bang! In the morning we will get lost in the mirror cave! Then we will visit Cunca Wulang Waterfall and finally, we’ll say goodbye to these wonderful islands with a farewell ceremony and a festive dinner!
Day 14, Friday: Departure to Bali and from there – home sweet home!
**Further activities and excursions are available upon request, for an additional fee.
- Location of the Project: Bali, Nusa Penida , Flores, Indonesia (multiple locations)
- Project length: 14 days
- Arrival and departure Airport: Ngurah Rai International Airport (DPS)
- Number of Participants: This adventure requires a minimum of four participants.
- Family Option: This project accepts families with children as young as 5 years old.
Contributional Work: Turtle Conservation: The Turtle Conservation project is located on the charming island of Nusa Penida. You will contribute to turtles conservation by working at the turtle conservation center there. As turtles do not nest all year round, depending on the season, you may be identifying turtle species, collecting eggs, monitoring nests or watching over hatchlings who are on their way into the sea.
Daily tasks will include scrubbing the tanks, gently cleaning the turtles, preparing food and feeding the turtles, collecting crabs, cleaning the beach and village area, making conservation awareness signs, making turtle toys and monitoring the progress of the turtles currently in the center.
Nesting season (May-October)
In addition to the daily tasks, participants will collect turtle eggs which have been brought to the center by fishermen who have rescued them from being eaten or taken illegally as pets.
Hatching Season (45-75 days after nesting)
In addition to the daily tasks, volunteers will feed and care for the hatchlings until they are strong enough to be released (8-12 months).
Komodo Dragon Conservation: Komodo National Park was established to protect Komodo dragons and their habitat. The park also focuses on the importance of conserving the marine ecosystems and various other endangered species who live there. The park promotes sustainability of natural resources for tourism, fisheries and research. Your one-day-program at the Komodo National Park will involve working alongside park rangers to help conserve the flora and fauna of this unique ecosystem.
Beach Cleaning: Sea turtles are known for finding the most pristine beaches. Unfortunately, some of Indonesia’s amazing beaches have been contaminated by our man-made pollution. We will invest several hours in returning these beaches back to how nature intended.
- Accommodation: A comfortable, en-suite room with A/C and onsite swimming pool in all locations
Food: Three meals a day are included.
- Transportation: All inland travel is included: airport transfers on arrival and departure days, internal flights and inter-island ferry transport.
- Orientation: Participants will receive an orientation of the region upon arrival and an introduction to their chosen adventure in the second day.
- Support: Comprehensive and professional pre-departure travel guidance, 24/7 emergency hotline, experienced local field team.
What’s Not Included
Flights, visas (required- see below!), travel health insurance, personal expenses.
All participants must apply in advance for a B-211 Social visa.
Adventure Departure Dates
- May 5th, 2019
- June 10th, 2019
- July 20th, 2019
- August 19th, 2019
- September 1st, 2019
- October 6th, 2019
- November 3rd, 2019
- December 1st, 2019
- January 5th, 2020
Adventure Cost : $2,550 USD