Larantuka


Larantuka is a neat clean seaport with a beautiful view. Everything is within walking distance except for the pier where the boats leave for Timor (4-5 km from town). Even that is a pleasant walk if we do it early enough before it gets too hot. A little port nestled at the base of a tall hill at the eastern end of Flores, from where Solor, Adonara, and Lembata islands (the small islands near by) are visible across the narrow strait. An Old Portuguese cultural heritage like the Easter Procession is held in this town, and worth seeing. Flores people are very outgoing and friendly. Their bemos are brightly painted with murals on the sides and their radios are blasting the latest tunes. Lots of Catholic churches line the roads with a few mosques sprinkled in. Larantuka is a pleasant little town on the Far East end of Flores. There is a harbor in town and another one a few kilometers away where the ferryboat leaves to Kupang and Rote in West Timor. The boats going to Alor leave from the one in town. There are a number of tuna boats at the docks. They have a big square platform on the bow where fishermen line up with bamboo poles line up flipping hooked tunas.

There are 6 to 8 water jets that spray a steady stream of water on the surface to attract the tunas and then baitfish are tossed in driving the tunas into a feeding frenzy. These are not the big yellow or bluefin tunas but the smaller ones about 2 feet in length. They are often seen for sale by roadside vendors along the road from Maumere. There are some New Orleans style cemetaries along the beach on the way. They are well maintained and very colorful. These people put a lot of work into them.


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