Ligaya in Indonesia - Kupang, West Timor

We made our entry into Indonesia at the town of Kupang, in West Timor. It is not much visited by yachts - perhaps 10 or 12 a year, so we were quite a novelty.

Kupang was one of the main settlements founded by the Dutch, when this area was called the Dutch East Indies. It was where Captain Bligh chose to sail to after he was cast adrift from the Bounty by the mutineers.

We could see little sign of the earlier Dutch occupation. There are no facilities for yachts. We anchored among the fishing boats in front of the town and had to come ashore onto the rather dirty beach used by the smaller fishing boats.
There seem to be two forms of transport in Kupang; brightly painted minibuses and mopeds. We saw very few private cars.
When people were walking and needed to carry things, they nearly always had a wooden pole over their shoulder and their goods hanging off each end.

Mopeds can carry a surprising about of stuff. It was not uncommon to see a family of four on a single moped.

How many chickens can you carry on a moped? In Kupang, it seems that the answer is "a lot". These chickens were still alive!

Most of the shops sold a wide variety of goods. Few appeared to specialise.
Some families seemed to be living on board the fishing boats, unless these people were just visiting the metropolis of Kupang from one of the more remote spots.
Some of the boats looked like they were staying afloat out of habit. Look at the twist in the hull of this boat. It was loaded with a long net and no doubt still goes out every night to catch fish.
The small wooden boats with outriggers venture far out to sea. Often they go out at night and very few show any lights at all. They hardly show up on the radar and it is quite scary trying to pick our way through a fleet of these boats in the dark, without sinking any of them
Indonesia is a nation of islands and boats are in their blood. The kids start their boat-handling at an early age.
There is a small harbour for fishing boats to the north of town. There is a large market beside the harbour, for fish as well as fruit and veg.
Provisioning was not easy in Kupang. Here Boris the chef is trying to find out what this lady is selling and he was also trying to get directions to the market.
We picked up guests in Kupang. Rather than try to load them into the tender off the beach, we came into the fishing port with the tender. That attracted a large audience from the market and the fishing boats. Apart from one expatriate Australian, we did not see any other Caucasians while we were in Kupang.
Back to Indonesia page
Back to Ligaya main page Back to John and Lana's home page