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discover hidden myths, taste diverse food and sleep below a sky full of shooting stars and galaxies every night
Indonesia is the largest archipelago in the world. First, Indonesia is a large area with many islands. It is made up of more than 17,000 islands, of which the main ones are Sumatra, Java, Borneo, Sulawesi and Bali. The most visited for their exoticism are the Maluku Islands, Papua or Lombok. Where in Indonesia do you want to go? Your question must be more specific.

Do you want to explore Lombok or only Gili Islands which are bordered by Bali? So after you get the tourist locations you want to go to, you can find detailed travel and tips on the Internet. The shore along much of the mainland of Indonesia isn’t great, but there are countless well-known islands like Bali and Komodo that salvage its rating.

Are you going to Indonesia for the first time or have you ever been to Indonesia before? If this is your first time and want to easy journey, go to Java, Bali or Lombok. Because the facilities and infrastructure on the islands of Java, Bali and Lombok are good and comfortable for tourists. If you have a long time for example 1 month, you can even go all three.

Between locations is easier by plane or even by land using buses, trains and connected by ships. So it depends on the budget you have. Determine your traveling style. Java island is also wide. Start from Central Java to the east, from East Java cross to Bali by ship and from Bali cross to Lombok by fast boat or public boat. Between Kelingking and Wedi Ireng, Indonesia should get credit for its coastal scenery.

If you are planning a trip to Bali and Indonesia, you are likely to find that flight tickets are much cheaper during the monsterous monsoon in Indonesia. If you don't mind the inconvenience of getting wet every now and then, and would like to explore this stunning country on a budget, traveling to Indonesia before and after the monsoon can be a good idea.

It is hard to determine when the rain arrives, due to the changes in the gulf streams strength and direction in the past few years. It is almost impossible to predict how heavy the rain will be. Still, if you choose to travel between January to April or October to November, you will have to be prepared for some travel disruption and inconvenience. Once you know the risks and have made all the precautions, you can plan your vacation accordingly.

Life in Indonesia is easy. The weather is great, the land is beautiful. You can take your motorcycle and find amazing places to unwind; forests, waterfalls, beaches. Indonesians are experts at stealing hearts. They have the most beautiful smiles and they speak softly. Of course with time you realise that a nice smile doesn’t necessarily mean a nice person. But it is still nice to be surrounded by smiling faces.

Best Things to Do in Indonesia

1. West Bali National Park


If you have arrived at the tip of Bali, don't forget to stop by Menjangan Island. You can stay overnight in the village of Pemuteran, go to the people's harbor to bargain for snorkeling or diving. The island of Menjangan has the most beautiful underwater world in Bali compared to some other regions such as Amed and Tulamben.

2. Ubud


After having lived an unforgettable New Year's Eve in Kuta, we headed towards Ubud with a lot of desire to flee from the chaos of Kuta and breathe a lot more zen air. It was time to leave Bali and, with all the sorrow in the world because that island had stolen our hearts.

We left the Bali island by the extreme northwest of the island, by Gilimanuk to be more exact. From there ferries leave every hour towards Banyuwangi, already on the Java island. Our last stop in Bali was Sanur so from there we had to take a taxi to take us to Ubung which is where the buses to Gilimanuk leave from.

When you arrive at the Ubung station you will be offered all kinds of transport to Gilimanuk, much more expensive than what it really costs and they will try to buy you the bus ticket along with the ferry ticket. Do not get involved! It took us about 3.5 hours to get to Gilimanuk and once there it was very easy to take the ferry to Java. The bus leaves you in the same port.

The ferry trip (1 hour) was most entertaining. In that journey you start to see that you are already moving away from the tourism of Bali and you are entering a more authentic and deep Indonesia. People threw coins into the sea asking for wishes and many of them wanted to take pictures with us, it was very interesting.

3. Yogyakarta


Unlike Bali, the Java island is mostly a muslim island and as you approach the ferry you will appreciate it. You start to hear the chants of the mosques and suddenly you find yourself surrounded by veiled women. Everything pointed out that Java was going to be more adventurous than Bali, and it was!

Make the city of Yogyakarta as a travel point in Central Java. Yogyakarta City is a small city, a city of students and culture. From there you can go to the Magelang area where there are many ancient temples and to the Gunung Kidul area to see some seas if you want. But the waves in the sea of ​​Gunung Kidul are big.

See the craftsmen making Batik. Batik is a traditional Indonesian cloth. Each region has its own characteristics. Batik from Central Java is known to have a philosophy for each picture painted on fabric. In Yogyakarta you can rent a motorbike or take a pedicab because it is not far to the tourist site. From Yogyakarta to Magelang you can also ride a motorcycle.

Visit the famous Borobudur. Candi Borobudur in Magelang, Middle Java is one of the Forgotten Wonders. Candi Borobudur used to be one of 7 Wonders of the World, but because not many foreign country know about this than it become The Forgotten Wonder’s list. There are other old temples such as Prambanan, Boko temple.

Kedung Kandang is a real hidden gem, because even our local driver admitted he had never been here before. While I was expecting to see a waterfall, I was pleasantly surprised to see the rice fields and the puddles underneath the waterfall.

Would you dare to go down the Jomblang Cave? It takes a 60 meter vertical descend hanging on a single rope to get here, but these views were absolutely worth it. Make sure to bring an extra set of clothes, as things will get muddy in this cave.

Karedok is local delicacy from West Java, Indonesia, although this delicacy is now available throughout Indonesia. Karedok has fresh and a bit umami taste. Karedok is made from raw vegetable ingredients such as cucumbers, bean sprouts, cabbage, long beans, sweet potatoes, basil leaves, and eggplants.

Karedok is always completed with a special dressing. The dressing for karedok is a peanut sauce made from red chili, garlic, kencur, peanuts, tamarind water, brown sugar, salt, and shrimp paste. Modern version of karedok often has kerupuk (crackers) and minced boiled egg as condiment.

4. Malang


Cool weather. There are many plantations there. It was time to go to Java to two of the most famous volcanoes in Indonesia, Ijen Volcano and Bromo Volcano. Malang city becomes a strategic point for you to Mount Bromo. There are tour packages that you can take from Malang, or you can stay overnight in the villages around Mount Bromo. Don’t worry, Mount Bromo is very easy to reach because there are comfortable stairs.

5. Bromo Tengger Semeru National Park


After a month touring Lombok, Gili and Bali it was time to say goodbye to the island of Gods and leave for Java. While we can say that Ubud is a little spot in the incredible Bali, we recommend you not to miss the opportunity to spend at least one day discovering this incredible town, the spiritual center of the island. We left Bali with the feeling of needing more time there. We would have liked to extend our stay in that magical island but we only had another month of visa in Indonesia and many things to do and see in Java.

If the visa extension procedure in Bali were easier surely we would have been longer in Indonesia. The bureaucratic procedures are so heavy that we were too lazy to go through the same thing that we already had when asking for the first extension. But well, papers aside, Java expected us full of adventures and anecdotes to remember. It's time to make our expedition to the Kawah Ijen, the blue lava volcano.

If you like trekking then don't miss the Ijen Crater. Ijen Crater is famous for its blue fire. Imagine a 5-meter-high flame flickering in the night sky. It's so cool. There is a lot of sulfur in the gas emitted by the volcano. Under high pressure, sulfur and air ignite, and the flame generated is blue. That's why Ijen volcano emits blue lava.

Ijen Crater is located between Banyuwangi Regency and Bondowoso Regency of East Java. The ferry that comes from Gilimanuk, in Bali, leaves you in Banyuwangi, which is precisely the best place to stay if you want to visit the Kawah Ijen volcano.

We stayed in the homestay that despite having very small rooms, has a pool and from the common area you have good views to watch the sunset. Through Airbnb you can also find very good offers. Or if not, you can take a train or bus directly to Banyuwangi to cross to Bali. But in Banyuwangi there are some seas which are also beautiful.

Our intention at first was not to go see the Ijen volcano because we had decided that we wanted to see only the Bromo volcano. Once in the hostel they proposed the tour and we really thought we could not miss the opportunity to go and see a blue lava volcano (one of the most peculiar volcanoes in the world) having it so close.

In addition, the Bromo volcano at that time was in eruption so we were not sure if we were going to be able to visit it or not, so Ijen there we go! We hired the tour from the same hostel because besides that we found a reasonable price, other travelers had just arrived from doing it and recommended it to us.

Seldom in your life will you have the opportunity to visit a volcano that emits blue flames in the dark. This is the reason why you should visit at night. If you arrive too late to the inner part of the crater and it has already been done during the day you will not see the blue color of the volcano's flame! So do not get too busy on the climb or you'll be late.

We left the hostel at 12 noon and arrived around 2:30 at the base of the volcano. We start the walk! It's cold and a steep climb of something more than an hour's walk awaits us and then 40 more minutes of descent into the crater. The effort and fatigue are worth it! We got to the lowest part of the inside of the crater around 4:30 so it was still night and we could see the famous blue lava!

We do not want to spoil your fantasies but do not imagine the red lava of the volcano that you have always seen on television but of blue color! First of all it will cost you a bit to see the lava because smoke does not stop coming out of the volcano and secondly you will not see the lava move but rather you will see some blue flames and the surrounding rocks as if they were red hot but in this case the bright blue.

In spite of this, the Ijen volcano is something unique to see and of course we loved having lived it. Not only the power to see blue lava, but the whole experience of the walk in the middle of the night, the miners working with the sulfur, seeing the sunrise inside a volcano.

With conventional cameras (like ours) it is impossible to photograph the blue lava, only those from National Geographic can. So if you do not have a super reflex camera do not waste your time taking pictures in which then you will not see anything and enjoy the moment watching such a spectacle of nature to retain it in your memory.

Right next to where you will see the blue lava there is a turquoise lake of hot water! The gases that give off the volcano and the sulfur mine overwhelm a bit and sting the eyes. The sulfur extracted from the mine is basically used to make cosmetic products. In one side of the world people die so that in the other we have fine thin skin.

Surely this happens with many other products that we use and we have no idea where they come from.
This situation reminded us a lot of the experience that we lived in the Potosi mine, in Bolivia. About 8 or 9 in the morning they will leave you again in the hostel and you will be able to rest because you have spent the whole night awake.

6. Gili Islands


To be in paradise without exploring what it hides under its waters? Nah, it's not a good idea! So put on your glasses, grab a snorkel tube and plunge into the crystal clear waters of Gili. Gili Islands are a small group of islands in the northwest of the Indonesian island of Lombok. The archipelago consists of the three sister islands Gili Meno, Gili Air and Gili Trawangan.

Gili Islands have enjoyed great popularity for years, especially among backpackers, but for a long time small boutique hotels with high standards have found their way to the paradises of the island. From Bali it is best to reach the Gili Islands by speedboat in about 1.5 hours from the Padangbai ferry port.

They say that in the waters of Gili you can see turtles with relative ease. You can snorkel for free directly from the beach or hire an excursion that takes you to visit the three islands.

The first stop is usually off the west coast of Gili Meno, with corals and colorful fish. The last stop is the southern part of Gili Air. Many say that in the Gili you can enjoy one of the best sunsets in the world. And boy, it's true! See the sun hide behind the volcanoes of Bali across the Java Sea.

Gili Trawangan is the largest and best-known of the three Gilis, and is also often described as a holiday island. Whether in the night market of Trawangan where you can stuff yourself with sate, nasi campur or grilled fish or in one or another restaurant with sea view dare with Indonesian cuisine, it seems delicious. In the market area during the day there are also very cheap restaurants with excellent food, a smart choice for budget travelers!

The best snorkeling areas for free in Gili Trawangan are in the northeast part. The best bars to spend the night are the Sama Sama, in which every night there are bands that play reggae music, with a super disco and chill out bars in the sunset area. Take a picture of the sea swings. One of the most famous is where near the swing (everything an instagram star) there is also a hammock.

Go snorkeling around secret Gili islands with manta rays and turtles. Besides snorkeling with turtles, snorkel around some amazing underwater statues. There are quite a few of them around the island. This particular site is called The Nest and is located off the coast of Gili Meno. It has gained a lot of popularity worldwide.

Reach here early in the morning. These underwater statues are created by a well known underwater sculptor Jason deCaires Taylor. These 48 life size statues are placed on the ocean floor for creating an artificial reef. The hope is to see corals grow along this artificial reef. The concrete used to make these statues is environmentally friendly and the statues are quite the sight to behold.

The statues are 3 metres below the water and next to a reef. It can be reached by amateur swimmers as well. But make sure to be the first people here in the morning to avoid major crowds.

7. Lombok


If you go to Lombok for a holiday, consider going to touristy areas out of Mataram, the capital city. If you like going to bars, crowds, night party, boating, diving, and snorkeling, stay around Senggigi beach and Gili Trawangan. There are many four to five star hotels and resorts in Gili Trawangan. If you like to enjoy beautiful beach scenery, sunbathing, with less crowd, you can stay in southern beaches of Lombok around Kuta Beach.

The weather there is warmer with less precipitation, with white hot sand and bigger waves, and limestone cliffs along the beaches. It is now more convenient to go the this area since the new airport is nearby. However, you can also rent a car and go to explore other areas of Lombok. Lombok is unique in its cuisine such as ayam taliwang, plecing kangkung, etc.

It also a producer of pearls, which is abundant around Senggigi beach. Don’t forget to visit Sasak village, which shows the traditional house and life of indigenous Lombok tribe. If you are more adventurous, you can even climb mount Rinjani and see its crater called Segara Anakan. Or you can go further to east Lombok to see pink beach.

You're here for some beach time, so get to it as soon as you arrive. What to do? Visit Tangsi beach which is one of the only 10 pink sand beaches in the world. Then take your first surfing lesson at Tanjung Aan beach or Selong Belanak beach. Watch Komodo dragons, heaviest lizards on earth, before these islands get closed for tourists! Head to El Bazar Cafe and Restaurant for Mediterranean food bolstered by locally caught seafood.

Rinjani is an active volcano found on the Lombok island. At 3726 meters it is the second highest volcano in Indonesia after Kerinci, in Sumatra. Its crater, at 2000 meters above sea level, hides an immense turquoise lake, the Segara Anak, and another small volcanic cone, the Gunung Barú.

The main attractions are its spectacular landscapes, ranging from leafy forests with monkeys and waterfalls, to long fields in the purest Savannah style, the views of Bali, Gili Islands and the crater from the top, its thermal waters. It is very important to be warm. Although at the foot of the beach it is very hot, we must bear in mind that we will spend a night at 2670 meters high and temperatures go down a lot.

In addition, the strong icy winds during the climb to the top are a classic. It is also necessary to carry some money in cash, since in the camps there are small stalls where you can buy energy bars (much needed), cookies or a drink other than water. You can buy sachets of Extra Joss, a powder that when mixed with water turns into a Red Bull type, which can serve as an energy kick if your forces falter on the way to the top.

The 2-day route starts at the place where we hired the tour. They pick up and take to the small town of Sembalun, at 1100 meters high. There we prepare our backpack for trekking Mount Rinjani and leave everything unnecessary to go as light as possible. They give breakfast, which in our case was made of toast with cheese and jam. After breakfast, the route begins.

The first section consists of a gentle ascent along paths through infinite yellow fields. 3 breaks are made to eat and regain strength. All the meals were a combination of rice, noodles, vegetables and chicken, cooked in different ways, but the truth is that they filled a lot and were good enough to have been cooked in the middle of the bush.

About 3 hours later we arrived at the third hut, at 1700 meters high. There are 5 strong climbs with a small flat part between them. At the end we reach the edge of the crater, where we have spectacular views of it and the top. There, at 2670 meters, the porters set up camp. It is amazing how the temperatures fall as the sun sets. They serve dinner, a soup of noodles and vegetables very warm. It is best to go to bed soon because the next day we wake up at 2 in the morning to climb to the top.

At 2 they wake us up with breakfast, a hard-boiled egg and a toast with jam, and we prepare for the ascent. I had to use the flashlight of my cell phone across the cold wind and darkness. The first section is the one with the highest slope and the road is sheltered from the wind, which makes it quite affordable.

The second section is the most difficult with almost no places to shelter from the wind and worst of all, a sandy soil and volcanic ash. When we approach the top, the first rays of sun begin to appear. This is where the third section begins. The feeling when arriving at the top is indescribable. The effort is really worth it.

We can see the whole island of Lombok, especially the crater with the lake, the Gili Islands, and even the Agung volcano of Bali. The views of the sunrise are spectacular. The descent becomes much more distracted thanks to the views and some monkeys. It took us about 2 hours to return to the camp but it must be said that we take it easy and stop to take pictures and enjoy the views.

Once in the camp we prepare a banana pancakes for a second breakfast. Then we return to the town of Sembalun by the same road to end the trekking in the afternoon.

In case of the 3-day route, everything would be the same until the descent of the top. From there one goes down to the crater lake (2000 meters above sea level). Nearby you can find thermal baths where everyone bathes to relax and recover strength after the climb to the top. Then you have to go back to viewpoint at 2650 meters, where you can enjoy the views of the crater from another angle.

Next morning start the road to Senaru. On the way enjoy lush forests with monkeys and different types of birds and two beautiful waterfalls. For me it was the best experience of my trip to Indonesia along with diving in Komodo. Even if you do not reach the top it is totally recommendable since the views are impressive.

8. Flores


If you like adventure and exploration of underwater beauty, visit East Nusa Tenggara province (there are Labuan Bajo, Komodo Islands and Lembeh Strait Marine Park in Alor. For culture you can go to Wae Rebo and to the traditional village of Bena). You can explore up to the island of Sumba even to the border of Timor Leste.

To go to East Nusa Tenggara you can take a plane or even a public boat if you want to go in a backpacker style. There are also overnight packages on the ship that start from Bali or Lombok. Usually they will stop by small islands along the journey to Labuan Bajo. Ship prices vary depending on the facility. There are boats that provide private rooms with air conditioning. So the budget depends on your travel style.

9. Komodo


Komodo is a small island of Indonesia located in the smaller islands of the Sonda. Komodo National Park is famous for hosting the Komodo dragons, the largest living species of lizards in the world. The Komodo dragon of Indonesia is the largest reptile in the world and also one of the most effective killers of the animal kingdom.

A small abandoned island Pulau Kanawa will welcome you if you have finished your marine adventure of Lombok and Komodo. The island offers an endless experience of snorkeling and the great vacation. where your days will be enchanted by the magnificent views of the nearby islands, the white beaches, the tranquility, and the nature.

10. Bunaken


Explore Sulawesi Island. Sulawesi Island is broad, divided into several provinces. You can choose one or if you want to explore everything you might need one month. Taka Bonerate National Park, Togean, Selayar Island, Lembeh island, Bunaken, and for culture in Toraja. The Bunaken island, or Pulau Bunaken is located a few kilometers from Manado, the most important city in northern Sulawesi.

Bunaken is located within the Bunaken National Park. It hosts more than 300 types of coral and 3000 marine species.

We took a plane from Jakarta and had the opportunity to fly over the Borneo island, an opportunity that showed us the reality of a country, especially when seeing with our own eyes how large extensions of one of the lungs of the planet are devoured to palm plant.

From the plane it is possible to see perfect cuts in the landscape, endless lines where on one side you see jungle and on the other, desolation or dry land. After almost two hours of flight we arrived in Manado, where a boat from the hotel was waiting for us in the direction of the Bunaken island, where we had the first experience in feeling the sea water of the Celebes, since to access the ship we had to go a few meters wetting ourselves on a somewhat contaminated beach in Indonesia.

The first image we see of Bunaken is a volcano, one of the views that we will have during this small trip and a point of reference for many dives in the area. After half an hour we arrived at the resort, one of the few hotels in the area where we rent some cabins facing the sea, without luxuries but with charm. Neither it have windows, and the shower is with sea water.

Apart from that, something usual in these latitudes, it is an idyllic place, where the nights are lit by the thousands of noises inside. With the desire of a beginner, we dived, seeing seabeds full of life with dozens of clownfish, the fish known worldwide for the Nemo film and a great defender of its anemone.

Now it is so famous that it has become one of the star fish and still it is easy to see even doing snorkeling, an activity that by the way does not detract at all from diving, since the waters are quite transparent. Snorkeling in Bunaken is almost like doing a dive in a pool full of wildlife.

At the end of the day's dives we could seee the phenomenon of the tide in all its splendor. Just in front of our cabins the tide went down so much that left almost 100 meters of sea exposed, leaving the coral to the sun, starfish of all the colors, hundreds of ponds with fish of all kinds, like the puffer fish, a friend from the area that we had to rescue several times so that the sun would not dry the pond where it had been trapped.

We could even do a dive at night. Diving at night is an experience that a diver should not leave out. We walked in search of some beach, some practically impossible since almost the whole island is surrounded by a coral reef. Still venturing has its prize, as we discovered Pantai Pangalisang, a fishing village where children play on the street and they look surprised when a Canon reflex shoots at everything that moves.

Finally, one of the extra activities you can do in a place like this is see dolphins, but not one or two, hundreds, preamble to our departure to Makassar to see one of the tribes with more chilling customs of the world, the Tana Toraja.

Maluku and the surrounding islands Halmahera, Morotai, Ternate and Bandaneira have beautiful seas and underwater. You can get on a plane. There are also many backpackers who even take ships from Jakarta or Surabaya, East Java. Of course it will take a long time if using a ship.

11. Batam


If you are looking for a quick getaway from Singapore, Batam Island is the best option and both Indonesian and Singaporean people come here as there are many things you can do as a tourist here. It is currently a decent place to make a getaway with family or friends who want to have fun doing water sports, eating fresh seafood, going shopping or even enjoy a spa and a good massage.

The options for water sports are banana boat, parasailing, windsurfing, kayaking and jet ski. You can also find activities on the Nongsa coast or, if you want an option where there are not so many people, the Melur Beach on the island of Galang. On Batam Island you can also do scuba diving and snorkeling.

Batam is known by connoisseurs in golf for having some of the best golf courses in the world and is a very popular activity on this island. Here you will find the Tering Bay International Golf course, designed by Greg Norman, one of the best golf course designers in the world. Batam is one of the best places to go with a mountain bike and where you can pedal through a dense green jungle and end up facing the sea.

To do this you must take the road on your own through the Duriankang Reserve and the Nongsa Coast. It will take you about 30 kilometers by bicycle to go from Turi Beach/Nongsa village, through Teluk Mata Ikan, down the coast to Batu Besar until you reach Tering Bay. Maha Vihara Duta Maitreya temple is famous for its laughing Buddha statues.

The Barelang Bridge itself is a piece of spectacular architecture, consisting of a total of seven bridges

One of the best places to shop in Batam Island is the Nagoya Hill Mall. You can find local food products like the popular Kueh Lapis (cake), Indomie (instant noodles) and tidbits. You can find a great selection of seafood such as prawns, crabs, mussels and much more. If you come from Singapore then you will find that, in comparison, beer and alcohol in general is much cheaper.

12. Sumbawa


There is Moyo Island, although we don't hear much about it, but it is quite often as a holiday destination for world celebrities such as Mick Jager, David Beckham and even the Princess Diana.

13. Belitung


The seas in Bangka and Belitung have their own uniqueness. The waves are also very calm. You can go to orangutan conservation, or do diving and snorkeling in Derawan, Sangalaki, Nabucco, Kakaban (you can stay overnight on one of the islands and do island hoping) in Kalimantan.

14. Medan


Sumatra has the island of Weh which is also known among scuba divers. Or you can go to Toba Lake in North Sumatra. Popular cuisine in Indonesia during Ramadan is Shredded Cucumber Ice. Cucumber ice is originally from Aceh, Indonesia and consumed during iftar mostly in Sumatra Island. This simple beverage made from peeled and seed-removed cucumber. After the cucumber is shredded, it’s combined with simple syrup, lime, and ice cubes.

15. Jakarta


In Jakarta’s city center, Istiqlal Mosque is the biggest mosque in Indonesia located across to Cathedral Church. These two house of worship represents religious harmony in Indonesia. Jakarta has traditional music originally from Betawi (native Jakartan) ethnic group named Keroncong Tugu and Tanjidor. These traditional music often play traditional songs in Betawi or Malay Language.

European influence could be seen on the use of trumpet, violin, viola, trombone, clarinet, cymbal, snare drum, bass drum, guitar, accordion, and oboe, that often used in Western orchestra. Besides National Monument (MONAS) and Hotel Indonesia roundabout, Jakarta has other freemasonry symbol located in Menteng, Central Jakarta. Certain areas in Jakarta like Melawai and Kota are famous for it’s bizarre nightlife activity.

Skouw is located in the easternmost part of Indonesia, in Jayapura Regency. Jayapura is also the capital of Papua Province. Skouw has become one of West Papua's iconic places. It is the best border in the Pacific. However, what makes Skouw interesting is the market. Skouw Market is known very well among the Papua New Guineans.

Sota is the second largest cross-border post after Skouw. The place has the Merauke Kilometer Zero Monument, the first statue of Indonesia's Founding Father Soekarno, and the cross-border gate. Once known as Holtekamp Bridge, the bridge spanning over the Youtefa Bay, Jayapura, now is known as Youtefa Bridge.

Although Jakarta is well know for wide availability of Indonesian food an the melting pot of international cuisines, Jakarta do have a lot of local foods. Semur Jengkol are native Jakarta’s food made from jengkol, seasoned with sweet soy sauce, tomatoes, and brown sugar. Many people are fond of semur jengkol because it is sweet, tasty and resembles meat.

Soto Betawi was originally created by Chinese community in Jakarta. Soto Betawi consists of goat meat and various innards such as intestines, tripe, ears, throat, lungs, liver, even the brain and “torpedoes” (testicles) seasoned with coconut milk, milk, ginger oil, and various spices. Soto Betawi is also complemented with tomatoes and chips.

Sayur Babanci is a traditional food from Jakarta that is rarely found. Enjoying this food can be an interesting experience for local and foreign tourists because it is an exotic dish. Sayur Babanci or Ketupat babanci has no vegetables at all. The name Babanci is due to the fact that the shape of this vegetable is unclear or resembles banci, because it is considered not soto, not gule, and not curry.

Many also believe that the name babanci is taken from the words Babah and Enci because this food was once made by Betawi-Chinese Peranakans. The reason, only rich merchants and landlords can serve this food on big festives.

Sayur Babanci have become scarce because of their complicated manufacturing cooking processes. To make sayur babanci, 21 types of ingredients, herbs and spices including rare spices such as kedaung, botor, temu mangga, and bangle.

This is the widely local food from Jakarta that often served for breakfast. Nasi uduk literally means "mixed rice" in Betawi dialect, related with Indonesian term aduk ("mix"). The name describes the dish preparation itself which requires more ingredients (coconut milk, clove, lemongrass, cinnamon, and pandan leaf) than cooking common steamed rice and additional side dishes like tofu, fried tempeh, egg, shredded chicken and crackers. Nasi uduk often served with peanut sauce too.

Dodol Betawi is traditional sweet delicacy from Jakrta which made from sticky rice, brown sugar, granulated sugar and coconut milk cooked on a stove with wood firewood for 8 hours. Dodol Betawi is often used as a gift during Ied Fitri and Chinese New Year. Dodol Betawi somewhat looks like the traditional Chinese glutinous rice cake named Nian Gao.

Gabus Pucung is a Jakarta dish made from snakehead fish with a black broth. The black broth color comes from rowal fruit. The fish is steamed in various herbs, chili, and rowal fruit, and completed with several vegetables.

The name Tangkar itself is a term for beef rib in Betawi language. Soto Tangkar has long history. During the Dutch colonial era, when the Dutch masters throw a party, they usually slaughtered cows for the party. The masters will separate certain parts of the cow that are slaughtered to give to the workers including the head, the inside (lungs, intestine, tripe, etc.) and the ribs.

By these workers, the parts are processed into a variety of foods. The ribs then processed into a special food, the ribs are boiled or cooked for about two hours, after which seasonings or spices are added, such as turmeric, pepper, lemongrass leaves, bay leaves and coconut milk. Therefore the new food was created and named as Soto Tangkar.

16. Nusa Lembongan


In this list, Nusa Penida and Nusa Lembongan were to be the most popular drift diving spots in Bali. Almost all the diving sites around its area are incredibly famous. You can have the opportunity to see some truly amazing animals such as manta rays, large tuna, eagle rays or Mola Mola. Plan a day trip as this place has few locations and is a separate island that will require a ferry trip. You also need transport on the island to go from one part to the other if you want to see all the locations.

In fact, all the places you have read about are nearby. There is Crystal Bay, Manta Bay, Manta Point, Blue Corner, and Ceningan. You should visit some of these places if you would like to see a true representation of the underwater flora and fauna.

17. Padang


About 160 kilometers off the west coast of Sumatra, Indonesia's largest and northernmost island, is one of the world's most popular destinations for flying on the waves. The Mentawai islands are a practically virgin small archipelago made up of about 70 volcanic islands.

Metawai Islands can be lived in a very different way. Equally the main objective of every surfer is to take those tubes that is seen in many videos, but between sessions you can see an incredible, surprising and virgin place, and one of the most ancient cultures that exist in harmony with nature. The closest airport is the one in the city of Padang (Sumatra).

The access point to reach these remote Indonesian islands is through the Padang fishing port, where fleet of boats are located to take surfers to the Mentawai islands.

The most recommended option is to spend at least one night there on the way out and another on the way back. The Mentawai boats leaves on Tuesdays and Fridays from Padang at 7 in the morning and makes a stop before reaching the main town of Siberut. Buy your tickets to get to Padang from Monday or Friday and leave on Wednesday or Sunday.

Nasi Padang (Padang-style rice) is a mini banquet of meats, fish, vegetables, and spicy sambals eaten with plain white rice; Sumatra's most famous export and the Minangkabau people’s influence to Indonesia and Malaysian cuisine.
Kalyan Panja Kalyan Panja Author
Juliana e Elena said...

Indonesia is on my next future plan. I didn't know that camping is common there! I dont think I'll bring my tent until there, will sleep in hotel as your advice!

Cristina Petrini said...


Useful tips especially if you don't want to risk always visiting the usual things and ending up in clichés but living a vacation full of true wonder!

Ben said...

I would love to visit Indonesia one day. I think monsoon season would be an amazing time to visit. I love the geography, and I can almost see the rain falling in sheets.

wander women abroad said...

I'm so glad I read this. I'm planning a trip and desperately needed some advice. Thanks for the tips

Lisa said...

I’ve been 2 times to Indonesia, but just Bali. I’d like to see more of the country!

The Super Mom Life said...

I'm not sure I'll ever make it to Indonesia. I would love to see more pictures of it!

Beth Pierce said...

I would be a little hesitant to travel during the monsoon season. Is it really dangerous, or similar to traveling to Mexico during hurricane season?

Sara Welch said...

Such great information and so much to do in Indonesia, I had no idea! Thank you for sharing!

Sania Ahmed said...

My cousins recently went for their honeymoon to Bali, they couldnt stop praising the places they have been and how friendly the locals were and this post of yours again convinces me to plan a trip to Bali soon

PatiRobins @style-squeeze said...

i agree India is so much cheaper when it comes to buying things either for yourself or your home

Unknown said...

That sounds like an amazing place to visit. I'd love to go someday when my kids are older.

MemeandHarri said...

Such a informative and detailed post - sounds like an amazing place to visit.

Angela Ricardo said...

Thank you so much for sharing these practical and convenient tips if ever we will travel in Indonesia. I do agree on bringing anti-mosquito lotion and sanitizer always wherever you go.

Alexandra Cook said...

I never really thought about going to Indonesia before, it looks beautiful though. May need to add it to my want to do list.

SincerelyMissJ said...

I have heard from two people that Indonesia is beautiful. Thanks for sharing this guide.

Lyosha Varezhkina said...

It is so important to me! i do plan trip to Indonesia later on this year. Right in time. Bookmarking

Dear Mummy Blog said...

We've love to visit Ubud but definitely wouldn't want to camp in the rainy season and would prefer a hotel x

Kristy Bullard said...

I would love to visit Indonesia one day - it is such a beautiful place. I really appreciate all of the great advice!

Gladys Nava said...

Actually, Indonesia is on my bucket lists! And I will definitely use your amazing tips. Thanks for sharing. I totally love it.

Becca Wilson said...

This sounds like it would be such an amazing trip. I love that you have laid out how to still enjoy during monsoon season.

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