As of today, are no large shopping malls in Labuan Bajo or other towns in Flores; instead, there are plenty of shops run by locals selling essential items for daily use. Do bear in mind that product range may be limited to a number of local brands. Imported cheese, meat and milk are not available except for the local variety. Each town is also host to a local hypermarket called “Barata”, an air-conditioned building resembling malls selling everything from clothing, toys, groceries, electronics and books. The more nationally known Indomaret convenience stores are available in Ende and Maumere.
If you’re looking for gifts for the loved ones back home, worry not. There are no shortages of souvenir stores selling the typical tourists essentials including T-shirts, wood carvings, keychains, other knick-knacks and the traditional cloth of Flores – “ikat”, a handwoven fabric with ornate patterns that denote its region of origin.
While you’re there, do not miss visiting the local markets to experience local living and purchase seasonal fresh fruits, vegetables, meat and ocean produce. The local markets are vibrant and colourful, and you’ll be able to observe how people travel from surrounding villages to sell their own farming products and vegetable produce. Visiting the local markets is really a unique experience!