7 Reason Why Rote Island Should be on Your Next Bucket List

After more than 2 weeks staying in the island, I can say why Rote Island Indonesia, caught my attention a lot. I love the simple atmosphere wherever I go in the island. Even most of the time, I am staying in Nemberala area, but also I had some opportunity to visit some places in the island. Lots of them are beautiful. I also love the friendly gesture from local people here.

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The smiling face of ibu Cornelia, she didn’t feel bother when I approach her and have a conversation about seaweed.

One of the moment, when some guys invited me to sit down with them and have a chit chat. I know young guys can be so flirted and sometimes annoying, but they were so polite to me, even many times asking whether it was really ok for me to sit with them. I like the generous smile from local people, here. No matter what they do, when you give them your smile, they always give back their smile to you. You will never pass the area, without having full of local’s smile in your pocket.


There are 7 things of reason that make you think Rote can be your next travel bucket list. What are they? Check it out…

  1. The island is safe for tourist

Wherever tourist wants to go, first thing they will consider of course about the safety. Whether it is safe for them or not. Tourist won’t want to go to a place that famous with so many crimes and villainy. Tourist wants to be safe and feel comfortable in the place they are visiting, and I can say, in Rote, I feel so safe. Whether I put some stuff on the Rote Island beach and enjoying my swimming, I won’t be worry that my things will be gone.

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The smile from this beautiful kids grabbed my heart ❤

I’d asked a guest about why he or mostly people he knew wants to come to the island. It was same answer. Because they felt safe. It’s true that wherever we go, we need to take care of our belongings, but having such comment assure me that the island is really safe.

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Here is it, for another smile…

One time I had a chit chat with a lady who sell a sweet iced syrup to us, I was busy searching for my phone so she interrupt her things to also check in her table. My phone was actually inside my bag – yeah, silly me. Then she said, “Don’t worry, if you leave it here, we keep it for you, no one will take it.”


Another thing, that my local friend here has a habit to let his car parked on the road with window opened. I always remind him to close it, but he said, “Don’t worry. It’s fine here.” So if local and guest said so… What else should I say? 😉


  1. Less crowded beaches

When was the last time you are in a beach and no matter how you look around, it was only you standing there… including with the ocean, some trees perhaps palm trees, some little crabs trying to hide their tiny body from your giant steps and the regularly sound of waves? If the answer is never, come visit Rote, when the whole beach can be yours! No one around you, except probably some pigs – but don’t be scared, they are truly cute.

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Tunggaoen beach.

If there are few people around, probably the local seaweed farmers doing their stuff to take out the seaweed and bring in to the ground to dry it. Some kids probably also around with their carefree laughter, playing with each other, helping their parents or just simply swimming in the sea. They just a perfect mix to make you appreciate the view more… With such a lovely natural landscape in front of you and local people which busy doing their things surround you, the atmosphere in Rote’s beaches are too magical to explain…

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The seaweed farmer carrying the seaweed in Nemberala beach.
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If you are a sunset hunter like me, this place is simply breathtaking!


  1. It’s not only for surfers

Since Rote is very famous with good place for surf, especially in Nemberala area, but definitely visiting the island is not only a must thing to do for surfers, because for travelholic as me who can’t surf also found plenty of beautiful places to visit here.

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Traditional house in Rote island.

By driving around from one beach to another, pass some humble villages and get in touch with the local will give you a peaceful feeling. You will love the way they stay in their exotic traditional houses. A nice eco-friendly rooftop made from palm leaves. You will also love the feeling when you pass some savanna, even it looks so dry and sad, but miraculously it looks so beautiful. You will amaze with the shape of branches and empty trees. No leaves left but it likes a group of dancers try to perform some art for you. A special art from Mother Nature.

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Quite a view you will see a lot in Rote island. Dry savanna but in the other hand, it is so exotic.
  1. Oh yes it’s a right place for surfers

But all in all, yes, the island is absolutely great for surfers. Mostly for the intermediate and advance surfers since waves in Bo’a beach and Nemberala beach can be so high and strong. IF you love surfing and want to challenge yourself for more adrenaline, Surf in Rote is a must-thing-to-do.

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Bo’a beach, famous for surfers.
  1. The virgin underwater life

Sound so tempting isn’t it? Yes, it is what it is. The underwater life in Rote is so beautiful that you will like it whether you do the diving or just floating around the ocean while put the mask on and try to take a peek of the underwater life by snorkeling. There are so much new dive spots to be explored in Rote. Some area still unexplored and can be such a great choice for you who wants to feel complete ocean experience.

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A dive course in Anugerah Surf Dive Rote.

You can join Anugerah Surf Dive Rote, the only dive operator in the island, to book for your next diving trip or course. People also can follow the snorkeling group trip held by them, to make your underwater experience amusing and memorable.

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Can you see the turquoise water? It is really crystal clear, and no, no need editing for this beautiful place! Photo courtesy of Bobby Ertanto.
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Don’t grow up too quickly, lest you forget how much you love the beach…
  1. Places for adventurous traveler

If in every single year you always visit the thousand of gods Island, aka Bali. Probably you need to make your flight a bit longer to arrive in Rote. For some of people who used to love the natural beauty of Bali and think that Bali now is too much, too much people, too much café, too much bars, too much pub, too much western style, Rote island is an alternative destination for those who already get tired with the crowded and hedonism life in Bali. There is nothing wrong by loving Bali, because I also do. But the feeling I got when I arrive in here and enjoying my silent moment on the beach, really made me think that Rote probably just like Bali decade ago… I wish in some point, the noiseless atmosphere will be still that way in the future.

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The main road in Rote island, yes it is well asphalted and nice road.
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But in some villages, you probably find this kind of dusty road.

But if you are a sloppy person and hope for an excellent infrastructure area and cannot live another single day without night life in overloaded pubs and bars, don’t come to Rote. This place still natural, and I hope those pub and night club will be not so much in the future here, because I believe Rote is still growing and growing, even it is for sure to be great if there is few of it in the island. Balance is the key for a healthy tourism development.

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Even the land is so dry and cracking, it is still look so beautiful to see and explore.

The only big city is Ba’a, which 1 hour drive (without traffic) from Nemberala. So you can imagine how still simple is the island and really fit with your adventurous blood – I believe you have it 😉


  1. Islands hopping

Beside one big island called Rote. Surrounds Rote also consists of some small islands that can be reached by boat in vary distance. To check the local woven fabric, you can visit Ndao island, the beautiful white sands island. To experience more of local life, you can visit Nuse island, where all the villagers will welcome you with their warm genuine smile. To see the red lake, you can go to Ndana island, the uninhabited place for Indonesian military ground, also the southernmost island in Indonesia, the border between Australia and Indonesia. There are also some another islands to visit such as Landu and Manuk.

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Our journey to Nuse island from Tongga beach.
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Happiness is sitting in the white sands, light by the sun beams and singing. Singing the happy songs! 😉


No more words, the island is just simply beautiful. Go discover and make the experience as your own experience here.

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Are you sure you need more reason to go?


Dea Sihotang




  1. I love Nemberala and the southern beaches. Raw, peaceful, beautiful. There’s no need to find more reason to revisit and your post just added did that. Arrgghh!!

    I’m just a bit confused are you talking about Rote or Nemberala, as you emphasize the name Rote a lot?

    Liked by 1 person

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