The Komodo dragon may not be as impressive as The Hobbit's Smaug or Game of Thrones' Dracarys, but it is the largest extant species of lizard alive today. It is a member of the monitor lizard family and is endemic to the Indonesian islands of Komodo, Rinca, Flores, and Gili Montang.

One of the bonuses of visiting Komodo Island is that those islands in Indonesia boast stunning pink beaches just made for snorkeling. Seeing the Komodo Dragon is a great option as part of a greater Bali trip so that one can enjoy other activities in addition to relaxing on the idyllic tropical beaches of Bali.

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About The Komodo Dragon And its Environment

The Komodo Dragon is an example of an insular giantism where a species may become massive in an isolated environment like an island. They can grow up to 3 meters (or 10 feet) long and weigh up to around 70 kilograms or 150 lbs. Not as large as a saltwater crocodile but large enough for one not to want to make them angry.

  • Scientific Name: Varanus komodoensis
  • Monitor: The Komodo Dragon Is A Member of The Monitor Lizard Family

In their world, the Komodo dragons are the apex predators who dominate their ecosystems. They hunt and ambush their prey and feed on mammals, birds, and some invertebrates. Their main quarry is the Javan Rusa (a native deer to Indonesia) although they also eat a large amount of carrion.

  • Apex Predators: Komodo Dragons Are Apex Predators

They are said to have a venomous bite as there are two glands in their lower jaw that secrete several toxic proteins.

Caution: Komodo Dragons Occasionally Attack Humans

Young Komodo dragons are vulnerable and live in trees to avoid predators (that also include cannibalistic adults). It takes around 8 to 9 years for Komodos to mature and they live up to 30 years.

  • Listed: They Are Listed As Endangered on The IUCN Red List

Related: Everything You Should Know About Going To Bali’s Sacred Monkey Forest

When To Visit

One of the best times to visit the island of Komodo is from April to June. At this time the islands gleam in greenery and the temperature is cool and fresh at night while the seas are calm (often with whale sharks).

Between July and August, the weather is hot and sunny - while this time is also high tourist time and the tours are often pricier. September to November is also warm with fewer tour boats and fewer people on the tracks.

From January to mid-March is the rainy season. While Komodo National Park is one of Indonesia's driest regions it is still a time that can have wild winds, waves, and heavy rainfall and there are few tours running during these months.

  • Best Season: April To June and September to November
  • High Season: July to August
  • Rainy Season: January to March (Few Tours Running)

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Dragon Island Tours: Komodo Day Tour

One of the main tour providers is Dragon Island Tours. They have extensive experience on the islands of Komodo and Flores and offer a full range of tours of the islands and the resident dragons.

  • Pick up Time: 8.00 am
  • Drop Off Time: 4.00 pm

For a day tour of the dragons consider their Komodo Day Tour. This tour has hiking, scuba diving, and trekking the Komodo Dragons, but the main attraction here is the fearsome Komodo Dragon. There is also other wildlife that one is likely to see including the Rusa Deer, wild pig, monkeys, water buffalo, wild horses, and various snakes. The flora is also unique and a number of the plants and trees on the islands are found only here.

This tour picks guests up from the local airport and heads to the tropical Padar Island by Speed Boat on a trip that takes around 1.5 hours. On Padar Island, one will enjoy around 30 minutes of soft trekking to see this stunning island before continuing on to Komodo Island.

At Komodo Island, there are 2 hours of trekking to see the iconic Komodo Dragon as well as the other wild animals. After seeing the dragons, go to Pink Beach for snorkeling on the tropical beaches and see the exotic life teeming beneath the waves. Then there's more snorkeling at Manta Point where one can snorkel and swim with the graceful Manta Rays.

  • Duration: 7-8 Hours
  • Non-Private Tour: $115.00 Per Person
  • Minimum For Shared Tour: 10 People

Private Trip Cost:

  • Adult: $400.00 Per Person
  • Child: $200.00 Per Person
  • Minimum For The Private Tour: 2 People
  • Excluded: Entrance Fees To Komodo National Park
  • Includes: English Speaking Guide, Speed Boat, Meals, Snorkeling Equipment

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There are many other tours on offer that include multiday expeditions across Komodo Island.

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