Maumere, the capital city of the Sikka district, is a main entry point for visiting Flores. In contrast to Labuan Bajo, there are still few tourists in Maumere and has kept its charming atmosphere – a mix of a dusty, busy town and a coastal paradise.
From Maumere you can explore plenty of exciting places in just a one-day trip. The surrounding areas are full of natural attractions and cultural highlights, hidden in either nearby or remote villages.
There are plenty of small islands that are easily reachable from Maumere. The Pemana Islands, a chain of islands, are located about 7km from Port Sadangbui, Maumere. Island hopping combined with snorkeling on a beautiful coral reef, as well as relaxing on fine, sandy beaches are perfect things to do there.
Maumere’s Port Sadangbui is one of the biggest harbors in Flores and therefore a central trading point. Boats from all over Indonesia, especially from Java, anchor here and turn the harbor into a busy coming-and-going of people and goods that is exciting to watch.
If this is not bustling enough for you yet, make a visit to the traditional Alok Market. Pasar Alok (pasar means ‘market’ in Indonesian) is open every day. Tuesdays are special, though, because the market transforms from a place of transactions into a hub for social gatherings – crowded with sellers and buyers from throughout Sikka, and with products ranging from everyday items to unusual goods that are not on display on regular days. The market usually lasts for only a few hours, starting from the break of dawn to midday at the latest. If you are keen on seeing traditional bartering make sure that you are at the market no later than 7am. Please do not expect a hustle bustle on a Sunday there, because this is the day when the majority of the people go to church.
[credit and thanks for the info: http://www.florestourism.com]
Maumere and Suroundings