Kupang is where we first checked into Indonesia in November 2017. We arrived at 3.30am in the dark to the sights of many fishing boats filled with several lights so much so they looked like party boats especially as we could here music coming from the land. We were greeted with the smells of Asia and confused of what the place looked like as it was dark. Navigating our way to where we assumed the anchorage was.
The next morning we were not approached by anyone so Lee went a shore with all our paperwork that we had learned we needed from noonsite. We had already got our 60 day visas in Darwin before we left Australia.
Lee landed the tender in front of what they call Teddys bar and was quickly helped ashore by a group of guys offering to help with being a sponsor and driving Lee to all the offices he needed to visit. Lee declined the sponsor offer as we read we didn’t need one and opted for a driver to take him to Imigration, customs, Quarrantine and the Harbour Master. It isn’t a quick process and can be a long day but it took Lee around 4 hours to complete check in.
Helpful things to know or have….
A boat stamp - name of boat, registration number of vessel, home port, Country
A printer on board makes life easier Indonesian paperwork is insane they want several copies of everything
Dress nicely for checking in and out helps things go smoothly wear shoes long pants and decent shirt
To extend visas you will need a sponsor
Smiling and patience are key things here can take time
Best place for fruit and veggies are the local markets but learn your numbers in Indonesian its very helpful
Learn enough bahasa Indonesian to get by outside of tourist places very little english is spoken
After checking into Kupang we sail to the island Rote. First anchorage in a river that was very still and quiet well protected from all weather but we felt like there would have been crocodiles here and we were right.
Second anchorage was Baa which is a quiet town used to a few visitors but not a lot of english here. We went for a walk and managed to get some internet from some really nice guys and girls in the local Telcomcell shop with the help from google translate they understood what we were after. There are markets here too and quite a few shops if you need things its worth a look.
We only stayed the night here don’t swim there are apparently crocodiles according to locals and a sign on the shore. Anchorage was fine a bit rolly but good holding in sand and no other boats so plenty of room.
Next anchorage was Nambrela where there is surf, resorts, markets cafes internet, shops like seven elevens and beer.
We really liked Nambrela this place it had a rad vibe great waves and because it was the end of season not many tourists. This is different in peak season though. There are quite a few expats from Australia living here and mostly everyone speaks english.
We also anchored at Doas about 5 nm away from Nambrela there is a great wave there too and less crowded pretty much no one around when we were there only a guys we met that lives on Rote that owns a catamaran and a charter boat of some really nice guys that gave us some wahoo. Stoked….
Another anchorage we anchored in was on the other side of the island because the winds had changed it was more protected there. It was an incredible spot until we got hit by a storm cell that saw boats dragging to the reef, stitches and damage to Catalpas bow after this we left here and headed for the first anchorage on Rote for shelter and repairs.
After extending our visas in Kupang we headed north to Alor as it was cyclone season and we needed to get higher away from any potensial cyclones. Alor is renowned for its world class diving so we were super excited to get here. It was Christmas Eve and it wasn’t quite what we expected the 2 anchorages we had ended up being right near town in not clear waters. We did get super cheap fuel here and drove our tender straight to the petrol station with our jerry cans.
Christmas day we went in search for somewhere to dive but because of really deep waters and extremely strong currents we opted not to dive on our own. As it was christmas all the dive resorts and operators were closed. After a beautiful snorkel in some clear waters we found we decide to move Catalpa in search for a prettier place to anchor.
We anchored in front of a little village but anchoring was really tricky even though it was beautiful and the village was friendly we moved on the next day as we were keen to dive. Found a atoll on our satellite navigation and headed towards Suluwesi.