Some years ago rare visitors to Nunang hamlet on lake Sano Nggoang used to sleep in the former living quarters of the expat catholic priest. But the last one left long ago and the buildings where he lived have been neglected.
So now the villagers have taken over. With approval of the village head some locals now receive guests in their modest homes. These are real homestays, one gets a private bedroom, but apart from that one mixes with the family and uses the common outdoor bathroom. Bring a torchlight for finding the bathroom at night. Nunang is not connected to the electricity grid. A couple of years ago solar panels were installed on the more important houses, but the batteries need replacement; they ran out halfway the night. Do come with fully charged batteries for your camera and/or laptop.
We stayed at Mrs Ana's who enthusiastically doubled as a guide. Flores people will call her Mama Ana. She showed us around the village and to the lookout on the nearby hill. We had to greet the village head and make a courtesy call at several households as well as the priest (now not an expat any more). That way we saw some of the local customs and home-industry. One of the customs is that a chicken will be slaughtered for the benefit of guests. So before the evening meal we were ceremoniously offered the still-alive chicken.
We payed Rp 100,000 for the room, another Rp 100,000 for full board, and a tip for guide services.
Apart from the new development on Pede Beach, there is also some recent addition to accommodation in "upper Labuan Bajo", that is on the cliff hemming in Labuan Bajo on the east. Cosier than the highrise hotels on Pede Beach, and with a magnificent view over the town towards the Flores Sea.
We checked out German-owned Villa Seirama Alam and found it attractive, but just a bit above our budget. You might try it out if you have no problem with the steep access. There are several units, all different.
As Labuan Bajo is gearing up for mass tourism, several hotels have recently been built along Pantai Pede (Pede beach), at 1 to 5 km distance south of town. There is simply no room for bigger hotels in Labuan Bajo itself.
Being dissatisfied with the more modest accommodation at Labuan Bajo proper, we stayed at the cheapest hotel on Pantai Pade, the New Bajo Beach Hotel. Contrary to its name it is the oldest one and losing out on the newer hotels. But it is closest to town, just 1 km, and we got a discount. Publish rate Rp 400,000 for spacious room with AC, but rather poor breakfast (2011). Phone 0385.41069.
Going farther south you find successively:
Hotel Bintang Flores (http://www.bintangfloreshotel.com/)
Rates from Rp 800,000.
Puri Sari Hotel (http://labuanbajo-flores.com/puri-sari-hotel-labuan-bajo.htm)
Rates from Rp 600,000.
Bajokomodo Ecolodges (http://www.ecolodgesindonesia.com/bajo/).
Rates from Rp 750,000.
Hotel Jayakarta (http://www.jayakartahotelsresorts.com/).
High season Rp 1,500,000; low season Rp 1,000,000; introduction rate Rp 750,000 (2011).
A comprehensive list of Labuan Bajo accommodation you find here:
The Bintang Flores Hotel is a five-storey hotel set in a spacious tropical garden. Drawing on Indonesian architectural influences, The Bintang Flores Hotel combines local style and charm with modern conveniences and international standards of service. With a large swimming pool and private white-sand beach, the hotel offers complete water-sports facilities in a protected environment suitable for families.
Located amid spacious grounds fronting a private beach, The Bintang Flores Hotel is both a destination in its own right and a convenient staging area for visits to nearby Komodo Island and world-class dive sites along the coast of Flores.
The Bajo Beach Hotel is number one for backpackers, a well-tended place with friendly people where we had a pleasant stay. The rooms are clean, small but cheap (about 45.000 to 50.000 Rp), Western toilet, fan, and the hotel has some great useful services (trips, info etc.).
The food is basic however very traditional, and there is a very nice dining-place where the backpackers tell their experiences ...
As we would stay at Waicicu Bungalows which were full up! we went for the Bajo Beach Hotel. Good choise afterwards because the Waicicu area had been suffered form a malaria plague. I liked the view from the hotel, watching the people walking along the only path along the beach ...
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