Taka Makassar Island is a tiny treasure that lies within Komodo National Park in Flores, Indonesia.
Also known as the ‘Maldives of Indonesia’ or the ‘emerged land’, this island is smaller than a football field. The crescent-shaped pinkish sandbar is surrounded by shallow turquoise waters that looks too good to be true!
It’s an absolute diving haven especially because it’s the longest reef in the national park and the location attracts large numbers of manta rays. The island’s size and shape make it a unique spot to explore and a popular tourist destination for encountering the royal sea creatures.
Below, I’ve put together the most important information so you’ll get the most out of your visit to this enchanting island.
WHERE IS TAKA MAKASSAR?
Taka Makassar lies in the middle of the sea near Labuan Bajo in Flores, Indonesia.
You’ll find the location northeast of Komodo Island and close to Manta Point. Due to its unusual crescent shape and size, you’re guaranteed to be blown away by the sheer beauty of it upon arrival.
HOW TO GET HERE
To get to the Taka Makassar, you’ll first need to get to Labuan Bajo as your point of departure. Labuan Bajo is a small tourist town on Flores Island, south of Sulawesi.
There are multiple flights from all the bigger airports around Indonesia including Bali, Lombok, Jakarta, Surabaya, Makassar, and Kupang airports.
This town is the starting point for all the liveaboards and day trips to and from the island.
SEARCH ALL → FLIGHTS TO LABUAN BAJO
As a tiny island just above the surface, the shallow waters don’t allow big boats to get near. If you want to get close, you’re able to take a smaller boat to the sandbar.
Please keep in mind that, as of 2020, some new rules apply when visiting Komodo National Park.
Every tourist and boat is obliged to register and obtain an entry slot before visiting Taka Makassar Island. Only a maximum of 30 boats per day is permitted.
If you plan to experience this unique place, I’d advise you to book in advance as it’s quite a popular location.
DAY TRIP FROM LABUAN BAJO
If your time is limited, you can simply book a day trip from Labuan Bajo.
Depending on your preferences and budget, you can opt for a group tour or a private boat tour.
There is one tour that I can highly recommend that covers all the highlights on a full-day trip from Labuan Bajo.
The Komodo Full-Day Boat Tour is the most top-rated tour with great reviews and hundreds of bookings.
It also includes a hassle-free pick-up and drop-off from your hotel in Labuan Bajo, return boat transfers, and an English-speaking guide.
Book Now → Komodo Full-Day Boat Tour
MULTI-DAY SAILING TRIP TO TAKA MAKASSAR
Another option to see all the sights in Komodo National Park is a multi-day sailing adventure.
I personally booked my tour with Travass Life which offers amazing tours around Komodo Island, and I can’t recommend them enough!
Their most popular 3-day tour includes visits to Komodo Island, Pulau Kelor, Rinca Island, Kalong Island, Padar Island, Pink Beach, Taka Makassar Komodo, Manta Point, Sebayur Island, Kanawa Island, and Labuan Bajo.
The tour also includes pick-up and drop-offs in Labuan Bajo, a private or shared room with a bathroom onboard the boat, all meals and drinking water, snorkeling equipment, towels, and a tour guide.
BEST TIME OF YEAR TO VISIT
The best time to visit the island is anywhere between April and September. These months definitely show the best weather conditions.
The months of July and August are the hottest and most crowded months so if you want to have a peaceful time without lots of tourists, try to avoid these months.
Furthermore, you’ll get the best experience when you visit the island during low tides. It submerges underwater during high tides, so the sandbar is only accessible when the seawater is receding.
Excellent for snorkeling and enjoying the natural beauty!
WHAT TO EXPECT
Takamakassar boasts the longest reef in the Komodo National Park and is a true gem when it comes to relaxing and diving.
The shallow, crystal clear water is perfect for a dive and similar to swimming in a pool – except you have such an insane and majestic view!
The crescent-shaped island with a pristine beach makes it an incredibly unique spot to visit.
RELATED ARTICLE → PADAR ISLAND VISITOR’S GUIDE
If you are thrilled about the location and want to extend your explorations, the island is one of the best places in Indonesia to spot manta rays in great quantities year-round. Your trip will not be complete without encountering these phenomenal creatures.
The Reef Manta is the most common one to discover. For true adventurers, I’d suggest diving around ten meters to reach the sandy bottom. You’ll probably find many manta rays hovering over the ground, feeding themselves with plankton.
Give the creatures some time to adjust to your presence and they’ll soon swim closer. Besides, you’ll not be disappointed in the hope to spot other cool sea creatures. You might encounter eagle rays, sharks, cuttlefish, big clams, various sponges, and some cute turtles.
The shallow water area has a strong current so be cautious while diving or snorkeling.
Have you got travel insurance for Flores? We all know accidents can happen and having World Nomads Insurance will save you thousands of dollars if something goes wrong.
It’s no wonder Taka Makassar Island is the most sought-after destination for diving and snorkeling. If you’re a real manta enthusiast or seeking a diving paradise, this place will definitely be the highlight of your travels.
I hope you enjoyed reading this guide and if you have any questions about this tropical paradise, please leave me a comment below and I will get back to you as soon as I can.
WHERE TO STAY IN LABUAN BAJO
Labuan Bajo is the main town in the region and the best place to stay before and after visiting the Komodo Islands.
There are dozens of accommodations to choose from so I have narrowed it down to a few of my personal favorite places to stay to suit the needs of luxury travelers, budget backpackers, and everyone in between.
See the list of accommodations in Labuan Bajo below that I personally recommend:
LUXURY: SUDAMALA RESORT
MID RANGE: SUNSET HILL HOTEL
BUDGET: SEAESTA KOMODO HOSTEL
FOR ALL OTHER PLACES TO STAY IN LABUAN BAJO, SEARCH ON AGODA OR SEARCH ON BOOKING.COM
WHAT TO PACK FOR FLORES
When visiting Flores, here is a list of items I highly recommend bringing with you;
- Sunscreen – the Indonesian sun is very strong, so make sure to pack some high-quality sunscreen.
- Quick-dry travel towel – the most compact and lightweight towel for traveling.
- Reusable water bottle – stay hydrated by bringing along a reusable water bottle.
- Backpack – The Nomatic 30L Travel Pack is the ultimate backpack for everyday adventures.
If you’re interested in taking awesome photos and videos on your travels, this is the camera gear that I use and recommend;
- GoPro HERO10 – the most popular camera on the planet for action-packed adventures.
- Canon EOS R – perfect for traveling, this is the most affordable, compact camera on the market.
- DJI Mini 3 Pro – take your photos and videos to new heights with this user-friendly drone camera.
TRAVEL RESOURCES FOR YOUR NEXT TRIP
Whether you’re a seasoned traveler or it’s your first trip overseas, here are some useful travel resources to help you kick-start your next adventure!
- BOOKING.COM – search and book accommodation worldwide
- SKYSCANNER – compare and book cheap flights to anywhere
- VIATOR – find tickets, tours, and experiences around the world
- BOOKAWAY – book buses, trains, and transfers online in advance
- RENTAL CARS – search all rental cars in your next destination
- GROUP TRIPS – join one of my epic small group trips
- TRAVEL INSURANCE – purchase World Nomads travel insurance
- TRAVEL MONEY CARD – get a Wise card today for free
Looking for more? Check out my Travel Resources page for further help with your trip planning!
I hope you enjoyed reading this article and if you have any questions, please leave me a comment below this post and I will get back to you as soon as I can.
For a quicker response, be sure to join Jonny Melon’s Travel Tribe on Facebook and post your questions or recommendations to our awesome community.
THANKS FOR READING
Hey friend, thanks for reading this guide!
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