Flores is the largest of 500 islands comprising Indonesia's Eastern Nusa Tengarra province. A small portion falls within the boundaries of Komodo National Park, which lies of its west coast. Nusa Tengarra is of volcanic origin, formed by the subduction of the Australian continental plate beneath the Asian continental plate.
With annual precipitation only reaching 1,000 mm (39 inches), the area's arid climate contrasts the majority of Indonesia; very fitting for a true land of contrasts. Brilliantly blue ocean wraps around various white sand beaches, mangrove forests, and bays. Combined with the sheer cliff headlands, rolling hillsides, and predominantly dry savanna landscape of its islands, a unique juxtaposition is created.
2,000,000 residents call Flores home, representing nearly half the population of East Nusa Tengarra and consisting of several distinct tribes speaking 8 different local dialects. These tribes have be influenced to varying degrees by western cultures, beginning with the arrival of the Portuguese in the 16th century. In stark contrast to the overwhelming Muslim majority in Indonesia, over 80% of the population in Flores is Roman Catholic.