Days 1-3

U.S. / Denpasar, Bali / Sanur Beach

Fly independently from the U.S. to Denpasar, crossing the International Date Line en route. Our home for the night is the Segara Village Hotel in Sanur Beach. (Days 1-2: Meals Aloft, Day 3: D)

Day 4

Denpasar / Embark Indonesia Cruise

After breakfast, fly to Labuan Bajo on the island of Flores. Here we board our home for our four-night Indonesia cruise, the nine-cabin WAOW. Set out for Tatawa Besar Island, where you enjoy snorkeling in one of the best locations in Indonesia. Cruise toward Wainiloo Island where we anchor overnight. (B,L,D)

Day 5

Rinca Island

Set out on a nature walk to explore Rinca Island, one of the two preserved habitats of the world’s largest lizard, the Komodo dragon. As hatchlings, Komodo dragons hunt insects, rodents and small birds. Within two years they are able to bring down small deer and even water buffalo. Rinca is also home to crab-eating macaques, wild water buffalo, Timor deer, horses and pigs. Our naturalist leads an easy walk in the vine forest, pointing out birds, monkeys and dragons. More adventurous guests can continue for sweeping vistas of the bright blue bays of Rinca and the park. Mangroves near the jetty provide shelter for brilliant kingfishers, flycatchers and cuckoos. Continue our cruise to Pink Beach for snorkeling before heading to Komodo Island. (B,L,D)

Day 6

Komodo Island

Enjoy a ranger-led exploration of Komodo Island. The bulk of our time is spent observing Komodo dragons during our nature walk, but this is also a wonderful time to learn about the island’s flora. Along our path, spot lontar palms and bright-pink vanda orchids. Watch for megapode birds, which lay their eggs in piles of rotting leaves to utilize the heat of composting for incubation. In the trees search for forest birds such as flowerpeckers and sunbirds that feed along our path. Timor deer are also common. Komodo Island is located in the region known as Wallacea, denoting the overlapping of Australian and Asian bio-geographical areas. This overlapping ensures an interesting mix of bird species including yellow-crested cockatoos and friarbirds of Australian origin, and monarch flycatchers and kingfishers originating from Southeast Asia. Depart the island this afternoon, cruising toward nearby Gili Lawa Darat and Gili Lawa Laut, where we spend our afternoon snorkeling. (B,L,D)

Day 7

Tatawa Besar Island

Continue our Indonesia tour as we sail the emerald waters to Sebayur Besar, or Tatawa Besar Island. Spend the afternoon snorkeling in an area where hawksbill turtles, giant trevally, black tip reef sharks, bumphead parrot fish, manta rays and great barracuda can be spotted swimming amid a field of orange soft corals. After dinner back aboard WAOW, anchor overnight at Labuan Bajo. (B,L,D)

Day 8

Disembark / Denpasar / Ubud

Say goodbye to our friends aboard WAOW and board our flight to Denpasar to continue our Bali tour. Travel to the Sacred Monkey Forest, where there are approximately 340 Balinese long-tailed macaques from four distinct troops. The primates in this forest are protected because in Balinese Hinduism monkeys can be the embodiment of both positive and negative forces. Encounter the amazing creatures on a walk through the forest. Continue to the Bali Bird Park, a lush tropical garden filled with 250 species, including birds of paradise, green peafowl, Asian pied hornbill, Javan kingfisher and Bali starling. A private local ornithologist will accompany the group through the park. Travel to the village of Mas, famous for its skilled and artful woodcarvings and masks. Spend the next two nights at the five-star Kamandalu Resort and Spa.(B,L,D)

Day 9

Ubud: Bali Village

Meet and interact with Balinese people and experience some of their daily life. Visit an elementary school, singing songs with the children. A family welcomes our small group into their home for a glimpse at life in a traditional Balinese house compound, learning how families live together in Bali. Sample seasonal fruit juices while learning how rice is grown. Guests are invited to participate in cultivating the rice and other village activities. Enjoy an afternoon at leisure in Ubud. (B,L)

Day 10

Ubud / Bali Barat National Park

Spend a full-day exploring the countryside of Bali en route to Bali Barat National Park on the western tip of Bali. Tour Bali’s largest Hindu temple, Besakih, on the slopes of Mount Agung. Take a restorative stop in the springs at Pura Tirta Empul, where a sacred spring believed to have been created by the god Indra has curative properties. Mount Batur is Bali’s most active volcano and surrounded by picturesque villages and lakes. Finally, we stop at the rarely visited Pura Beji, a 15th century subak temple. Carved of pink sandstone, the temple is dedicated to the goddess Dewi Sri who protects the rice fields. Spend the next three nights at The Manjangan. (B,L,D)

Day 11

Bali Barat National Park: Teluk Gilimanuk

On a morning excursion explore the mangroves of Teluk Gilimanuk, where you may spot kingfishers, Javanese herons and other prolific birdlife. This afternoon, a local park guide leads an exploration of Bali Barat National Park. The park is home to black monkey, leak monkey and macaque, as well as Java deer, buffalo and wild pig. (B,L,D)

Day 12

Bali Barat National Park

Start out our day with a tour of a Bali Starling reintroduction project, which is in part responsible for the restoration of this critically endangered bird back into the wild. This striking white and sapphire blue bird has not expanded its range since scientists first discovered and recorded it in 1912 — it can only be found in the wild on Bali. The captive breeding program has successfully released many starlings into the wild and is working with local villages to protect the birds. Head out to uninhabited Pulau Menjangan – Deer Island – to snorkel amid unspoiled coral reefs. In this calm, shallow water, you are sure to spot purple parrotfish, silvery jacks, butterfly fish and more amongst the enormous barrel sponges and sea fans. The rest of your day is at leisure. (B,L,D)

Day 13

Bali Barat National Park / Sanur Beach

En route to Sanur Beach, the last stop on our Bali ecotour, enjoy a full day of exploration. At the Reef Seen Turtle Project, discover how local villagers are being included in the efforts to conserve and protect sea turtles. Next, soak up the serene beauty of the Taman Ayun Temple. Discover the complex’s network of temples and courtyards, designed to ward away evil spirits. End our day at stunning Lake Bratan. On a tiny island in this lake stands the isolated Pura Luhur Bratan, a Hindu/Buddhist temple. After lunch at a local restaurant, check into the Segara Village Hotel. (B,L,D)

Day 14

Denpasar / Depart

Transfer to Denpasar to meet your independent flight home. (B,Meals Aloft)