Flores Travel: The Top Best Things To Do in Kupang

  1. Tablolong Beach

Just 25 km away from the centre of Kupang City, Tablolong Beach is a famous tourists’ attraction. It was named after a nearby fishing village and is a gorgeous stretch of beach with powdery white sands, clear turquoise waters and a mesmerizing landscape. Locals and visitors love to visit here to swim, snorkel or enjoy a relaxing day out with friends and family. It’s one of Kupang’s favourite beaches with plenty of activities like fishing competitions, swimming and wind surfing.

During low tide, little critters will come out from underneath the sand – small crab and the like while fish, seaweed shells can be found in the little pools, which the locals will collect to either eat or sell. If you like snorkelling, then you’re in for a treat because the underwater world just steps away from Tablolong Beach is teeming with colourful marine life and healthy corals. When the heat gets high, you can always rest underneath one of the many traditional bales located along the shoreline, made entirely out of lontar leaves. This beach is a great sunset spot too, and you could even enjoy a BBQ here if you bring your own firewood and seafood!

To visit Tablolong Beach, drive or rent a car/motorbike at Kupang City. From Kupang to Tablolong, drive for 1 hour until you see the ocean. Along the way, you can enjoy panoramic views of Kupang city. (Photo by Indonesia Kaya)

  1. Crystal Cave

Kupang is the site to some of nature’s most extraordinary natural beauty. A great example is Goa Kristal or Crystal Cave, an awe-inspiring natural beauty located approximately 30 minutes from the center of Kupang by car in the Bolok area. It was first discovered during the Japanese occupation era and used by the Japanese soldiers as storage for weapons.

Located within the cave itself is a pond which you can swim in. Walk for about 20 metres from the mouth of the cave and you’ll find it. You might need to climb down a little to reach the water. Be aware, the path is quite rocky so be careful. If you’re planning for an excursion to Goa Kristal, it is advised to engage the services of a local tour guide so that you won’t get lost or get hurt while exploring.

The pond holds cool, clear and salty water. Before diving in, check with your guide first. Goa Kristal is also known as Goa Cermin or Mirror Cave as the walls of the cave holds millions of crystals which reflects light everywhere when the sun is high. (Photo by @marschkaprue via Instagram)

  1. Lasiana Beach

As the capital of Nusa Tenggara Timur (NTT), the province in which Flores is located, Kupang is a thriving city, well-connected to the rest of the country in a bustling network of domestic and international routes. It is also the administrative centre for the government, businesses, trade and education.

If you ever find yourself in Kupang, perhaps during a transit to one of the other exotic islands of Nusa Tenggara Timur, be sure to visit one of the more popular beaches known to international tourists since the 1970s – Lasiana Beach is located only 12km away from Kupang and since the 1980s, it has attracted even more international tourists thanks to a number of new facilities.

Here you’ll find beautiful, dramatic landscapes of coral white sands and clear sea. Unlike many other popular beaches around the world, Lasiana Beach still retains its natural charm and beauty as it isn’t too crowded. Coconut trees line the coastline and on Sundays, the locals head to Lasiana to spend time relaxing with family and friends.

Lasiana is also a good spot from which to dive from. There is a Japan Warship from 1942 that sank nearby that is a great spot for diving. The underwater world here is also amazing. (Photo by Indonesia Kaya)

  1. Sunsets at Pasir Panjang Beach

Pasir Panjang beach is another ideal spot to view the sunset in Kupang. Located in Kota Lama city, Kupang, East Nusa Tenggara, the beach can easily be reached by local public transportation called Bemo. Take the number 10 bemo and ask the driver to stop at the Hotel On The Rock. Then, walk for about 100 metres on the small road next to the hotel to reach Pasir Panjang Beach.

Pasir Panjang beach or Long Sand beach is named after its long sandy coast which is wide and stretches from west to east. Here, visitors can enjoy a nice walk at the beach and swim in the sparkling blue turquoise water or take the time to catch the beautiful sunset at dusk. Local boys are often seen playing along the coast, and you will find a fish market at night which sells many freshly-caught seafood by the local fishermen. (Photo by Detik.com)

  1. Kupang’s Panmuti Beach

Panmuti beach is located in Kuannoah village, Noelbaki district, Kupang. This beach is very unique and different from any other beach in the area as it has a small sandy area that is completely separate from the main beach by the sea – this area is only accessible to all when the tide is low.

There’s a hill nearby the beach. You could hike up here to enjoy breathtaking views of Panmuti Beach and see for miles around. Many visitors head here to take awesome photos for their Instagram feeds and to just to relax in the calming sea breeze. This is where you’ll find the very best sunset views in Kupang; you’ll see the sky changing colours as the sun sets and the water starts to sparkle.

Panmuti beach is still undeveloped so there are no facilities here, which might be a good thing, especially for nature lovers. You can bring your own drinks and snacks while hereach but please remember to never litter and always take your trash back with you. Do your part to keep Indonesia clean!

From Kupang city to Panmuti beach, it’s only a 1-hour drive. You could ask the locals in Kuannoah village for the exact route to the beach. We recommend that you rent a motorbike or car to get here as there is no public transportation heading this way. (Photo by @nttadventure on Instagram)

  1. Oenesu Waterfall

Nestled amidst lush jungle vegetation is Oenesu Waterfall, a beautiful and unique three-tiered waterfall just 17km south of Kupang. This waterfall is already quite popular with the locals and it can get very crowded on the weekends. It’s a well-known recreation area so you can expect changing rooms, tables and toilets. The best time to visit is during dry season, when the water is clear and cool. Wet season is good too, just be careful when you’re in the water. The highest point of the waterfall reaches up 10 metres high. Along the waterfall are natural pools that you can explore and swim in.

Oenesu Waterfall is located within the same direction with Tablolong beach or around 10 miles south the main road by public transportation such as bus or taxi. You can even rent a private car for only IDR 500k per day to reach this beautiful destination. As it is already a popular destination, you will unfortunately see some rubbish and plastics strewn about the area. Please do your part in taking your rubbish with you, and keep Indonesia clean. (Photo by Indonesia Kaya)

  1. Mount Fatuleu, Kupang

Gunung Fatuleu or Fatuleu Mountain is a definite don’t miss when you’re in Kupang. Located 60km away from Kupang City, in the village of Nunsaen in East Nusa Tenggara, Fatuleu in the local language means Sacred Stone, a name given by the local tribes who often hold ceremonies and prayers at the mountain’s peak.

At the peak is a cluster of giant and sacred rocks, one of which is called Nunle’u. Fatuleu was not always a tourists’ destination; previously the mountain was only accessible to religious figures, head of ceremonies and the tribes that live around Fatuleu for the purpose of praying and placing special offerings.

Today, Fatuleu is open to the public and is one of the most popular tourists’ attractions in Kupang. Once at the peak, you might glimpse Oelamasi City in the plains below and carpets of green from the surrounding forests. Mount Fatuleu is great for any time of the day but for the most scenic views, it is recommended to reach the peak during sunrise or sunset. (Photo by @okiekristyawan on Instagram)

  1. Kupang’s Monkey Island

Flores is part of East Nusa Tenggara and its capital city is Kupang, a bustling town centre located on West Timor. For those who have not been to Kupang or spend any time there, you’d be surprised to know that Kupang is so much more than just an administrative centre for the government, business, trade and education.

Nearby Kupang, you can find a plethora of beautiful white sandy beaches which are all peaceful, clean and pristine. One such surprising find is Pulau Kera, or when translated, Monkey Island. This small and tranquil island can be seen from Kupang city itself and to get there, you can simply rent a boat, which will come with a driver. The beautiful white coral sands of Monkey Island can be seen from afar. The island is surrounded by crystal clear blue waters filled with beautiful marine life and calm, relaxing waves. The residents of Monkey Island are extremely welcoming and kind, and they love to receive visitors on their little island.

While you’re there, you could enjoy a picnic on the beach, swim, snorkel, sunbathe and of course, take as many photos and videos as you like! You could also get to know the locals who will be more than happy to accompany you on your little excursion. A good tip we received is to bring plenty of snacks and light meals with you on your trip there to share with the locals. As the villagers here live a very simple life, they will truly appreciate your kindness and generosity.

Monkey Island is part of a Marine Park known as the Taman Wisata Alam Laut, in Kupang Bay. It is about one to two hours away from Kupang City by boat. (Photo by www.indonesia-tourism.com)

  1. Ketapang Satu Beach

This is yet another favourite sunset spot nearby Kupang city. In actual fact, Kupang has tons of amazing sunset spots because the town is built to directly face Kupang Bay. But what makes this beach different is its shady surroundings. The beach has groves of trees growing along its shoreline. The local administration has placed charming little seating areas throughout so anyone would feel inclined to have a picnic in such a delightful place. Ketapang Beach got its name from an old almond tree, also known as Ketapang, which is still standing tall and proud on the beach. Local children like to gather underneath the tree’s wide branches to shade themselves from the sun. Ketapang Satu means “the lonely tree” but there are trees of similar species growing nearby.

To enter this beach, visitors are only charged with small entrance fee of IDR 1,000. Aside form its beautiful sandy shores, crystal-clear waters, and perfect sunset view, Ketapang Satu beach lends one the breathtaking views of Monkey Island or Pulau Kera from the beach.

Ketapang Satu beach can be easily be accessed from Kota Lama or Old Town by public transportation like bemo. Many homestays and hotels are located nearby the beach so you don’t have to worry about a place to stay. (Photo by @mincurina on Instagram)

  1. Camplong Forest Tourism Park

Nature lovers and those yearning for the wild can go on an excursion to the Camplong Forest Tourism Park. This 600 hectares of natural wonder is located at the foot of Mount Fatuleu, just 1.5 hours or 46 km away from Kupang City. You can head there with a public bus, which will cost you only IDR 10,000 per person per way.

Don’t forget to tell the bus driver to drop you off at the tourism park! The park is surrounded by lush vegetation and towering trees. Visitors can stretch their legs here and take a relaxing stroll about or take a cooling dip in the bathing pools, which are fed by two natural springs. There’s also a crocodile farm in the park and those feeling brave can explore an artificial cave which was built by the Japanese troops during World War II.

Rock climbers and mountain climbers who want a bit of challenge can take the 7km trek to Mount Fatuleu, a 1,111 metre-high mountain that towers over the Camplong Tourism Park. Also located in the area are a few natural caves, and if you’re feeling up to it, ask your local guide to show you around. (Photo by @loemnitzera on Instagram)

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