About Indonesia Travel
Bali, including Ubud: Bali sits in the western most end of the Lesser Sunda Islands, between Java and Lombok. The island is home to most of Indonesia’s Hindu minority. It is also the primary tourist destination in Indonesia, and is known as a center for arts, including traditional and modern dance, sculpture, painting, leather, metalworking and music. The artisan villages of Celuk, Mas and Ubud are centers of the Balinese gold and silver jeweler industry, wood carvings and paintings. Rural villages, beautifully terraced rice fields and many 17th-century village temples are worth exploring. In Ubud, the focus is on culture, yoga and nature. In contrast to the beaches of southern Bali, Ubud is in an area of forests and rivers and has cooler temperatures. Puri Saren Agung is a large palace that was the home of the last king of Ubud. It is currently occupied by his descendants, and dance performances are held in the courtyard. The Ubud Monkey Forest is a sacred nature reserve located near the southern end of Jalan Monkey Forest. It houses a temple and more than 300 crab-eating macaque monkeys. The Blanco Renaissance Museum is also located in the town.
Borneo (Indonesian: Kalimantan): The island is the third largest in the world, and rests north of Java, Indonesia, at the geographic center of Maritime Southeast Asia. The island is divided among three countries: Brunei, Indonesia and Malaysia. Approximately 73% of the island is Indonesian territory. The Malaysian states of Sabah and Sarawak in the north occupy about 26% of the island. The sovereign state of Brunei, located on the north coast, comprises about 1% of Borneo’s land area. Borneo is home to one of the oldest rainforests in the world, along with the Daintree Rainforest in Australia and the Amazon Rainforest.
Diving: Indonesia’s Archipelago is made up of more than 17,000 islands – many largely inaccessible, and most uninhabited. While once on the spice trade routes, they became lost to history and are only now being rediscovered little by little. That means some of the most unique diving adventures can be found in the Indo-Pacific regions, where superb visibility, endless marine life, extensive coral sites, migrating whales, pristine reefs and caves are the norm. It is a water world of powerful beauty and extensive biodiversity.
Komodo Island: Komodo Island’s most famous residents are the remarkable Komodo dragons, the largest monitor lizard on earth. It also inhabits the nearby islands of Rinca and Padar. The great lizard shares the island with wild buffalo, deer, pig and various species of tropical birds such as the cockatoo. The island’s roughly 2,000 residents originally descended from exiled convicts who integrated with native islanders. Komodo Island is part of the Lesser Sunda Islands and forms part of the Komodo National Park. The island is a popular destination for scuba diving and boasts a pink sand beach – one of only seven in the world. The sand appears pink due to the mixture of white sand and red sand, formed from pieces of foraminifera, a type of marine plankton species.
Lombok and Tembok: Lombok is part of the chain of the Lesser Sunda Islands, with the Lombok Strait separating it from Bali. With beautiful beaches, enchanting waterfalls, the large, looming volcano of Mount Rinjani combined with relatively few tourists. Lombok has an enduring indigenous culture and the history of the Sasak people is one of the many unique attractions here. Tembok sits on the north-eastern edge of Bali, a dramatic landscape of soaring peaks that sweeps down across grassy lowlands to the black volcanic sand and the Bali Sea.
Moyo Island: Amanwana is the only resort on the island of Moyo, a nature reserve east of Bali. Set on a beach in a secluded cove overlooking the Flores Sea, Amanwana is a wilderness hideaway with luxury tent accommodations. The camp’s 32-meter/10-foot coastal cruiser offers excursions to nearby islands. Moyo is home to a deer sanctuary for the indigenous rusa deer, and its hilly forest shelters seven species of bat, monitor lizard, python, macaque monkey and wild boar. Jungle treks offer views of lovely waterfalls and observations of an array of birdlife such as kite, osprey and sea eagles.
Pangkalan Bun: This is the transit point for getting to Tanjung Puting National Park on the island of Borneo in the Indonesian province of Central Kalimantan. The park is famous for its orangutan conservation. Even though this is a protected park, about 65% of the park’s primary forest is degraded. Habitat destruction is the greatest threat to the precious wildlife here.
Sulawesi and Toraja: Sulawesi is one of the four larger Sunda Islands of Indonesia and the world’s 11th-largest island. About 127 mammalian species seen in Sulawesi include two species of dwarf buffalo, pig, palm civet, and primates including tarsiers and several species of macaque. Based on radiocarbon dating, the settlement of South Sulawesi by modern humans dates to 30,000 BCE. Beginning in the 16th century, Makassar was the dominant trading center of eastern Indonesia, and soon became one of the largest cities in Southeast Asia. In the Toraja highlands, the Toraja are an ethnic group indigenous to a mountainous region of South Sulawesi. They are known for elaborate funeral rites, burial sites carved into rocky cliffs, massive peaked-roof traditional houses known as tongkonan and colorful wood carvings. Toraja funeral rites are important social events, and last for several days. The cliffs at Lemo display ancestral sculptures and hanging graves, and Londa has an ancient ceremonial burial place. The village of Kete Kesu has fine examples of traditional houses and rice barns and is famous for its woodcarving.
Yogyakarta: At the center of the city is the Kraton – the sultan’s palace – which is surrounded by densely populated residential neighborhoods that occupy land that was formerly in the sultan’s sole domain. The core of the modern city is to the north, encompassing Dutch colonial-era buildings and the commercial district. Jalan Malioboro sports rows of pavement vendors, a nearby market and malls – all which comprise the main shopping area for tourists.
Best Time to Travel to Indonesia
Festivals and Special Events
Suggested Indonesia Tour Itinerary
Day 1: Jakarta, Indonesia
This is the exotic capital and largest city of Indonesia, located on the northwest of the island of Java.
Day 2: Jakarta / Pangkalan Bun, Borneo
Borneo is the third largest island with one of the oldest rainforests in the world.
Day 3: Pangkalan Bun / Tanjung Putting National Park
This national park on the island of Borneo is famous for the endangered orangutan.
Day 4: Pangkalan Bun / Semarang / Yogyakarta
Yogyakarta is a center of classical Javanese art and culture such as batik, ballet, drama, music and puppetry.
Day 5: Yogyakarta
The city is known for its 17th-century Sultan Palace, the old market of Beringharjo and Prambanan Hindu temple, said to be one of the most beautiful Hindu temples in the world. The city is known for its 17th-century Sultan Palace, the old market of Beringharjo and Prambanan Hindu temple.
Day 6: Yogyakarta / Borobudur
Borobudur is a ninth-century Mahayana Buddhist shrine with 2,672 relief panels and 504 Buddha statues.
Day 7: Yogyakarta / Depart
Custom Travel Options
Bali including Ubud (5 days)
Bali is known for its beaches but is also a center for traditional Balinese arts such as dance and painting.
Diving (3-5 days)
For serious divers, Indonesia’s islands are a unique opportunity to dive still untouched reefs and pristine waters that thrive with marine life, and include many endemic species.
Komodo Island (3 days)
Home to the famous Komodo dragon and for having one of the only seven pink beaches in the world.
Lombok and Tembok (4 days)
Less developed than nearby Bali, the island has the third largest volcano in Indonesia and rare wildlife such as the rare black ebony leaf monkey, long-tailed gray macaque, barking deer and a host of colorful birds.
Moyo Island (3 days)
The protected marine park offers some of the best scuba diving and snorkeling in Indonesia, with virgin reefs boasting a rich array of sea life.
Sulawesi and Toraja (3 days)
The Toraja from the mountainous region of South Sulawesi have a fascinating traditional culture.
Land price, per person, double occupancy: From US$500 per person per day