Blue at Blue Stone Beach

On our way from Riung to Moni, we broke up the long journey at Blue Stone Beach on the southern coast of Flores. Famous for the colorful baby blue rocks which wash up on a stretch of black volcanic sand, the beach is featured on every tour itinerary. Blue Stone Beach, Blue Stone Beach, Blue Stone Beach. It sounds incredibly exotic. I couldn’t wait to see this masterpiece of nature.

But it wasn’t there.

Dozens upon dozens of Indonesian entrepreneurs have taken it upon themselves to gather up the unique, pastel blue stones and haul them off to markets across the country. Right next to the road, a line of sales people pawn bucketloads of rocks to passersby. Obviously, this is no small-scale business. Suddenly, I flashed back to blue stone reflecting pools in Bali, blue stone walkways in Lombok, and blue stone flooring in Java. Apparently, this once grand miracle of nature is being devoured by designers.

Surprisingly, tour operators still “thrill” guests with a short stop at “The Incredible Shrinking Blue Stone Beach”. But there’s something seriously wrong when your first reaction is “This is it?” Granted, I uttered these same exact words when I saw the Grand Canyon for the very first time, so I might require more bang for my buck than an average tourist. Blue Stone Beach just sounded so amazing. As it turns out, Blue Stone Beach without blue stones is – well – just a beach.

Blue Stone Beach is getting less and less blue

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