‘Caster sugar’ white sands, beach pigs, whale sharks and legendary waves...
Boutiq Founder Greg recommends this secluded Timor jewel as the ultimate island disconnect. Surfer or not, get ready to fall in love with Rote...
For many of us, the idea of travelling solo just isn’t on the cards. ‘Me time’ equates to a Game of Thrones binge in the solitary confinement of home, not a flight to a remote island of thatched villages. Then, there’s those addicted to it. “I like to escape by myself at least once a year”, says the entrepreneur, who ventured to Rote for the first time this year.
Looking specifically for a quieter island with stunning surf breaks that wouldn’t have to be shared (his max quota was 10 people out on the water, not exactly Bondi!) the Sydney local made his way to the Southernmost part of Indo for a dream relaxation trip.
So, what makes Rote so special and what can we expect?
It seems this limestone oasis can be compared to Bali a few decades before tourism started to boom. “The island just feels so untouched”, reflects the French-Aussie, “and I really hope it stays that way.” Don’t expect nightlife and a stretch of little bars down the road to choose from, this place is total tranquility. “With only one restaurant, Rote has little infrastructure and you will feel immersed in the quiet village life. Instead, you can expect breathtaking star gazing from the lack of light, and friendly locals who are incredibly happy and always make you feel safe.”
The island is also abundant with some four legged friends- Greg says you can expect to come across cows, goats, and little pigs running about. “They seem wild, though each pig actually belongs to a family who can recognize them!”
Planning to stay in a ‘Boutiq Place’ conjures up different images of accommodation for each person. What makes for unforgettable Boutiq style lodging for the Founder of the App himself?
“I love trying out new places that are truly authentic”, Greg tells. “I still like a little bit of comfort (hot water, for example), but definitely simple. I don’t search for anything fancy, just tasteful.”
The typical communal style of Rote accommodation was another big drawcard. “There is a real home atmosphere to some of these places, and you can enjoy full board and the experience of getting to know the other guests and owners, who go out of their way to show you the island.”
Let’s catch Greg’s Boutiq recommendations for Rote…
"WOW! This is what I felt when I arrived at Seed, a resort of only eight bungalows. The bedroom I had was one of the best I tried in Rote, in the "island bungalow" style. Simple, yet tasteful, with all the comfort and space you need. And just wait until you see the "bathroom"..."
"Malole is really nice. You come here to have a homestay atmosphere, not a resort feeling. What makes Malole special, besides Maria, Diego and Dani who run the place (the first ones to set up Rote accommodation), is the food. Wow! It's so good, varied, healthy, and super fresh. Each meal is a surprise, it's plentiful, and you will 100% love it, guaranteed! The bedrooms are simple and comfortable. Definitely stay here if you want to feel at home and enjoy good food!"
"This was my favourite of all. Staying at Carla's place was stunning! The food is super fresh, very healthy, and prepared daily by the friendly girls in the kitchen. I really loved all of the meals I had while staying at Boa Vida. I booked it in advance as I felt it looked like the paradise ‘Robinson Crusoe’ style of place I love. Well, it was and it was MUCH better than expected. A true b&b experience, Carla who owns the place is the best host you could dream of. The location is absolutely stunning, and I'm not even talking about the surf... I can't wait to go back!"
"Diving with Mike (who runs the dive centre) was one of my most enjoyable dives! Mike is really cool and easy going, he told me "if you're lucky we'll see mantas, if you're even more lucky, a whale shark, but don't count on it...". I had the luck to have both, such an amazing experience! The dive site we went to was really nice, one of the few known accessible cleaning stations for Mantas. Definitely recommended if you're into diving!"
"Rote will please surfers of any level. For me, the two main breaks were T-Land and Boa. T-Land has 3 left handers, whilst Boa is a right hander and is more wind affected. Having Boa all to my own at sunset was a moment I’ll never forget!"
You can discover and save Greg's places on Boutiq, the app allowing you to recommend your favourite places, sharing them with your friends and followers. Use it as a memory bank for your amazing discoveries, and the best way to find hidden gems - all recommended by the ones you trust. Where will your network lead you?