A Peek into Life on Indonesia’s Small Kukusan Island

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Originally Published on Wandering Wolf Child by Ashley Leonard-Jones 

I had the amazing pleasure of visiting Kukusan Island recently. It is situated about 45 minutes by boat from Labuan Bajo harbor and is home to roughly 300 people, it is a completely Muslim island. Due to the island being Muslim, there were no dogs, however, it was abundant with goats and cats, which I found surreal. The houses were all painted in pastel colors, which looked beautiful against the aqua ocean.

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I had gone out for the day with some fishermen so they took me through the island and introduced me to the local people. I sat with a group of young girls selling some food on the side of the road and the fisherman translated for us. They talked about life on the island and the differences in how we looked. They found it hilarious that I was so pale and that I actually bought fake tanner in order to be darker.

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I met these two gorgeous young girls who were so shy and followed me down the road. I asked if they wanted a picture and they were so excited to see themselves on the screen. They walked me all the way back to the docks and waved me off upon leaving. I was told that you can arrange to stay on the island and do “a day in the life of,” which would be something I would be really keen to do another time as these people were so kind and welcoming; it is a beautiful community.

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This was just a short post. If anyone else has been to this community I would love to hear from you and learn more about the island. I have also read that visiting the school is a really special experience so I would love to hear more about that!

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