Imagine a holiday filled with days at pristine clear beaches and nights at quaint little towns with hip nightlife, and then rising up to take a trek on one of the countless idyllic mountains only to return to serene islands and their greenery.
Now imagine them in one place. I know that sounds impossible but that is Indonesia for you.
Made of 18330 islands, where 6000 are inhabited, Indonesia is the largest archipelago in the world. From adventure seekers to homebodies, cultural genteel to the beach bums, Indonesia is a paradise for everyone.
No wonder, more than 15m people visit this fairyland every year. Are you ready to pack your bags right away?
Connectivity to Indonesia
Indonesia is quite connected to the rest of the world via air and has three major international airports: Ngurah Rai (DPS) at Denpasar, Bali, Soekarno-Hatta (CGK) at Tangerang, Banten, near Jakarta, and Juanda (SUB) at Surabaya, East Java.
And several airlines offer direct flights to these airports as well. Garuda Indonesia is its national carrier and can fly you around the country.
Know Your Indonesia
Time: GMT+7 (Jakarta)
Telephone Code: +62
Currency: Indonesian Rupiah (IDR)
Visa: Visa on Arrival (except for some specific countries)
Weather: Temperature is stable, hot, and humid throughout the year. Average high temperature - 30/32 °C; average low temperature - 22/25 °C
Best time to visit: June to September
Clothing & Personal Care: Bring loose-fitting that lets you breathe through the afternoon heat and humidity. Add an umbrella to brave the rainy days.
Places to visit in Indonesia
Raja Ampat Islands
Situated on the northwestern tip of Papua New Guinea, this archipelago is a paradise for marine and underwater life enthusiasts. Do not miss this diving haven, home to more than 500 types of corals, and more than 1,000 types of reef fish.
Komodo National Park
As the name suggests, this national reserve is well known for the rare Komodo dragon among the other exotic wildlife. The park also is home to 250 coral species and other aquatic animals.
Wae Rebo Islands
This quaint little island near Flores is well known for its cone-shaped houses against the backdrop of mist and mountains - a picture-perfect fairyland, if we may. Do not forget to tour the orchid and other flora in this UNESCO World Heritage Site.
Torajaland, Southern Sulawesi
Among the highlands of Southern Sulawesi, Tana Toraja or the Land of the Heavenly Kings is the home to the Toraja, a Christian and animist tribe. They are famous for their tongkonan (peak-roof houses) and their fascinating burial ritual.
What better chance to get to know some local culture, right?
How can we miss the one place that is known for beaches as well as lush rice farms alike? Bali is the most dreamed of location in this part of the globe and for many good reasons. Beaches, volcanoes, hillside, temples, and their colorful architecture are some of the few things you have to add to your Indonesian bucket list.
Did we get your adrenaline pumped to travel to Indonesia and visit its wonders for yourself? Happy traveling!
Must-Do Things In Indonesia
Snorkeling at Raja Ampat
Raja Ampat means “four Kings”, named after the main four islands of Waigeo, Misool, Salawati, and Batanta. Besides those, there are about 1500 minor islands in the cluster and is one of those remote places compared to the rest of the places on the list.
The archipelago is one of the best diving and snorkeling destination offering some of the best marine and aquatic experiences. It is also home to 75% of all known coral species making it perfect for every underwater adventure from wreck diving to underwater photography.
With steep, jungle clad islands, turquoise water, and innumerable bays and lagoons, Raja Ampat and its underwater adventures are once in a life time opportunities that can't be missed.
Visit an Indonesian temple
Located in Central Java is the world's largest Buddhist temple, Borobudur. This hand-built 9th-century monument has survived numerous natural disasters like earthquakes, volcanic eruptions, and even some man-made terrorist attacks.
This ornately carved pyramid-shaped structure protects about 5 floors worth of statues and just the central dome has 72 Buddha statues. It is surrounded by the green, lush kampung or rice villages making it a magnificent sight to look at.
Even if you are not a religious or spiritual person, this trip to Borobudur will be a night to remember forever.
Meet the Orangutans
If you are tired of the beaches and quiet country life among the 1000s of islands (if you can ever be), you might have to make a visit to the Tanjung Puting National Park. The huge national park is located in the untouched and protected tropical jungles of Borneo.
The misty fresh air and gushing water from the river, surrounded by lush greenery make it a heaven on earth. The main attraction is the wild Orangutans that often visit this reserved forest area. Do not miss the chance to meet them, or even the occasional leopard.
Climb a volcano
If you wish to climb a still-active volcano, this might be a good chance. Take a trip to the Bromo Tengger Semeru National Park, in East Java. As much as you can enjoy the sightings of wildlife like the leopard, Java rusa deer, wild pigs, and marbled cats, the chance to hike up to the peak of the volcano at sunrise would be your jackpot.
Incessantly surrounded by white clouds and smoke, the sunrise from the volcanic peak is ethereal and once in a lifetime opportunity. You might have to get a permit from the national park authority to ascend the volcano. And maybe check if the volcano is not erupting, before you start.