Barbara’s Visit to Komodo Island

Our next port of call is Komodo Island. I have decided to remain on board, while Barbara ventures forth with a Cruise Critic group to walk the wild, dangerous, possibly hot, possibly rainy, island trail, in search of the largest lizard on earth – the Komodo Dragon.

Good Morning Maasdam, at anchor in Slawi Bay, off Komodo, Island.

Going ashore in Slawi Bay is restricted to those who are participating in a HAL EXC tour, or a privately booked GROUP tour. No tender tickets will be issued for individuals, due to the danger posed by wildlife – Dragons!

Notice the black disc (anchor ball) as a notice to other mariners.

Around 8 AM, Barbara and her “shore party” boarded an early tender for their adventure ashore. She has promised to take lots of pictures (now that’s a surprise) and share some for our blog.

In the first picture, my breakfast/coffee partner, Ruth, is just visible in the short skirt! (She always has to look fashionable, even when hunting dragons!)

As our expensive Zodiacs formed up at the docking platform, several local outrigger boats, with young boys, shouting something that sounded like “Hello, Money” apparently enticing guests to toss them coins! Shortly after writing this, the Cruise Director came on the ships PA system to remind guests that NOTHING was permitted to be tossed over the side of the ship. Standard rules for every HAL ship, emphatically emphasized at the beginning of ever sailing.

These two adults had cleverly modified their outrigger to accommodate a motor, attached to a long drive shaft that extended into the water..As I watched the young boys in their paddle powered boats, I noticed that the one with their only paddle was using a “J” stroke as though it was genetically gifted.

Whether it be on a ship in a home, town or state for any length of time, pride of ownership becomes strong int folks who care. So when someone disparages a ship that I have made my home, my feathers get ruffled. Such was the case last evening at dinner when a lady at our table referred to the Maasdam as being tacky or threadbare. I had to bit my tongue, as I have roamed this ship and been served by its staff and crew and it has a heart that is missing in a lot of situations I have experienced. As I have stated before, for a vessel that is 25 years old, and has traveled the million or more miles that this Grand Dame has, she still looks and serves her best. She looks like a queen of the seas, not a floating hotel as some of the newer ships do.

Today I walked through the Casino on my way home from lunch and it smelled as sweet as any other part of the ship, and the sign above tells why. Normally this area stinks so bad that the smell pollutes nearby areas. How refreshing a change! The key words in the sign are “while playing only”. On previous ships, smokers would “hang out” and not play.

As the day progressed, the changing light and clouds presented this dramatic view of the sparse trees on the hills.

Barbara just returned from and a haunting day ashore. Here are some photos she said I could share

Please give Barbara credit for the following pictures:

The select group of Dragon hunters

Barbara one, Dragon zero.


I have a few more, however the bandwidth is getting crowded. Enjoy.

Next: Flank speed toward tomorrow mornings port.

3 thoughts on “Barbara’s Visit to Komodo Island

  1. Love the Dragon photos. Barbara quite brave as they are fast for size.
    Looking forward to more.
    The Maasdam is older ship with the old art work, isn’t it???? I was on Volendam and it’s more modern with clear Red and Crystal bead looking chandeliers in dining room and what looks like giant whale ribs for decorations. Can’t say I was impressed with any of the ships art work.

  2. Gorgeous sunrise. Wonder how they got that dragon to just lay there getting its picture taken and Barbara petting it !? Good photo.
    Thank you both.

  3. Wonderful photos and text. I always wanted to go to Komodo Island, some of our ships were close, but we never got quite that far east so it was a delight to finally get to visit . Vicariously works well for me. Thank you both so much for your excellent tour.

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