padar island flores indonesia

Padar Island: This hike will give you views for days!

East Nusa Tenggara, Indonesia – In Padar Island, the climb may be a bit tough, but the view from the top is definitely worth it! The third largest island in the Komodo National Park was our first stop for our third day in Flores.

The mountain is waiting

Taking a speedboat from Labuan Bajo port, we stopped by a few meters from one of Padar Island’s beaches. The rugged brown peaks loomed before us, intimidating in the harsh heat of the midday sun.

We were promised a short hike, one that will give us the best vantage point for photographing Padar’s beauty. After transferring to a smaller boat, that is when I finally realized how steep the climb would be.

docking in padar island flores indonesia

Muttering motivational words to myself, I steeled my resolve and followed the others. The start of the trail was really tricky, making us slip from the loose soil. Soon enough, we were covered in dust, trying to make our way to the first flat area by holding on to thorny green bushes along the way.

Huffing and puffing, we took our time to enjoy the flattish area by hydrating and taking lots of pictures and videos. Thankfully, the hike became a bit easier from here on. The sun was still our biggest enemy even when the trail is clear and the slope easy.

hiking padar island

Uphill battle

Glancing at the peak, I saw that some of our friends were already far ahead, looking like ants near the top. I gotta hustle but already I can feel my legs burning.

Halfway through was another flat area facing the cove we came from. Even the view from here is already magical which resulted in another photography break. From the edge, one could clearly see how clear the turquoise waters are, a contrast to the dry savannah of Padar Island.

view from padar island coral beach

Padar Island views

We trudged on until we got to the first viewpoint. A rocky outcrop shaded by a lone tree. The view from here stunned me for a few seconds before I remembered that I have to take a hundred photos of its every angle. I knew that no photo or drone video will compare to the panorama before me, but still, it is a good way to remember this moment, forever etched in my travel memories.

Although no longer inhabited by the Komodo dragons, Padar Island‘s main draw is its breathtaking views. Each cove hiding a different colored beach (white, black, and pink). The rise and fall of its brown peaks. Different shades of blue blending with each other.


It was beauty as far as the eye can see. Perfection. It was the stuff that our travel dreams are made of. I can wax poetic, but I’m sure you get the drift. Hopefully, the images will give you an inkling.

I haven’t climbed a lot of mountains, but surely this is one of the most scenic views I have seen so far. Views that you will remember for days.

Suggested Reading: I’ve Found God in Padar by Celineism

It’s not easier going down

After taking turns having our picture taken by the outcrop, I looked up to see if I can still make it farther. The ascent to the summit reminds me of the one in Pico de Loro, albeit a little shorter. I tried my best to reach the top but after a few slips and dirty knees, I gave up.


Although some would say that going down a mountain or hill is easier than going up, that has not been the case for me. I always dread the going down part. Thankfully, Vindhya was there to help me along with the rangers who helped us survive the slippery slope to get to the coral beach.

Riding the small boat back to our speedboats, I looked back at Padar Island with a mixture of relief and longing. It was hard to say goodbye to such beauty, but Rinca Island is calling!

Here is a video from Places and Foods with drone footage from Wahyu Mahendra (@iwwm):

Quick Guide to Padar Island

Best months to visit: April – November

Best time to go: Sunset/Sunrise

Nearest airport: Komodo Airport (Labuan Bajo/LBJ)

Flights: Garuda Indonesia, Kalstar Aviation

What to pack: sunscreen, lots of water, photography gear, small backpack

What to wear: hiking footwear, light colored and breathable top (long sleeves if you’re going in midday)

Other notes: there are no man-made facilities in Padar Island

How to get a boat tour: there are many boat/tour operators along the main street of Labuan Bajo to choose from

Here’s a video from our last day in Komodo National Park:

Disclosure: This is part of the Trip of Wonders 2016 to Wonderful Indonesia sponsored by the Ministry of Tourism of Indonesia. However, all biases, comments, and opinions are still my own. 

For more of Indonesia check out this link:



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What do you think of the views from Padar Island? Will you go? 




Darlene is currently on the road again and traveling full-time after being an expat/overseas Filipino worker in Qatar. She's rediscovering what it means to travel solo and in her 30s while working on her blogs.


  • This island seems so picturesque! How come I never heard about it. I am adding it to my bucket list!

  • Teesh

    This looks like such a nice place but I would have to reconsider until I get to be fit!! Your retelling of the hike already made me tired!

  • Wowww so stunning!!! I actually have an Indonesian friend who just went here and keeps raving about it. Really convincing me to book a ticket for the end of the year! Wow. Love your photos btw

  • This hike looks great, even if it was challenging. Wonderful rewarding views at the top too!

  • Sandy N Vyjay

    The hike did have its difficulties, I can see. However, the views from the top are really stunning. Well worth all the trouble I would say. The turquoise water looks so heavenly and surreal. I am sure you had a wonderful experience.

  • Indrani

    I think it is worth the effort to climb. You get rewarded with such gorgeous views!
    A scenic location so perfect for a holiday.

  • Christina

    Good for you for making it the top. The views definitely look like they are worth it! And I completely agree with you- the way is not always easier hahahah.

  • Hiking the mountain seems quite an adventure but the views ar worth every effort you put in reaching the top. The view of the emerald blue waters is breathtaking.

  • I love hiking and this island would be a perfect destination for me if I’ll end up visiting Indonesia. The views from the top are so worth the difficult climb up.

  • celine

    The beaches! Are you allowed to swim in the ocean?


    The mountain is waiting! 🙂 I think the mountain is calling me! I really love to hike and your pictures are really something, I want to pack my bags and then go right away.

  • Breathtaking views and shots! I didn’t know there’s a place like this in Indonesia. That deep blue water just struck me. nice post!

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