Growing up as a kid, it’s almost a rite of passage to have at least a small fascination with dinosaurs. You learn about the long-necked brachiosaurus, the strong triceratops, the speedy velociraptors and the terrifying T-rex.
We watch movies. We have toys.
There’s a fascination with these long extinct creatures that overtakes us as children.
Understandably then, when I was about to step off the boat and onto Rinca Island in Indonesia, I was getting pretty excited to see the “modern dinosaur” – the Komodo Dragon. And I wasn’t alone in feeling that way.
As a group of seven, we walked through the early heat of the morning into the main office. It was located within a small village set up for tourism purposes, consisting of a number of ramshackle buildings. Our guide paid the fee, with the tourist officer reeling off what each of the various costs were for. After a good few minutes of explanation, covering several different fees (where this money goes is anyones guess), we were done. Two guides were assigned to our group, and we ventured off.
Very quickly, we saw our first dragons.
Excitement levels spiked as we saw the huge reptiles lying in the shade of one of the nearby buildings. As it turned out, this was the kitchen – a favourite hangout for the animals given the possibility of an easy meal.
Eventually, we pulled ourselves away, with the promise of returning again at the end of the tour.
We ventured out into a forested area, where our guides filled us with information about the Dragons. Most memorably, female dragons bury their eggs with a number of decoy holes surrounding them. They leave for some time, and when they return around the time the eggs would hatch, they eat their young. Consequently, any baby dragons that survive head into the trees to grow somewhat before roaming with the rest of them. Fascinating.
We walked around the island for about an hour, up a hill (with the hot sun beating strongly down) for an amazing view of the bay below, and back down to the entrance. We didn’t see much along this part of the tour, aside from a lone Komodo Dragon wandering through the trees.
As it turned out, the majority of the Dragons really do stick by the kitchen.
When we returned, we found them all continuing their congregation beneath it.
So, while seeing the dragons was amazing and worth the short trip, that one time was enough. I’d rather spend my time diving at nearby Wainilu now.
Read More at: Indonesia Travel
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