With so much to see and so much to do, there’s no way you can get bored on your trip to Indonesia. All its 17,000 islands offer something unique and exciting that’s sure to get you pumped. But if you only have a short time to stay in Indonesia, what activities should you squeeze into your itinerary? We recommend these ten to-dos that should be part of anyone’s bucket list.
Party in Bali
Bali is, hands down, one of the most beautiful beaches in the world. With soft white sand under your feet, clear and sunny skies overhead, and clear waters right ahead, you can forget all your troubles while you’re there and give in to hedonistic abandon at the clubs in Kuta, Kerobokan or Seminyak.
Trek Your Way Up a Volcano
As a land that straddles the Pacific Ring of Fire, Indonesia’s islands are dotted with volcanoes both active and dormant. Climbing these volcanoes can be a challenge, but the views from above are worth it. Peaks that offer the best views from the top are Mt. Bromo and Mt. Rinjani.
Swim in the World’s Largest Volcano Crater Lake
Danau Toba is the largest freshwater lake in Southeast Asia as well as the largest volcanic crater lake in the world. When you’re in its waters, the tranquillity of your surroundings can engulf you, so much that you can forget you’re swimming in a lake inside the caldera of an active supervolcano.
Go Diving or Snorkeling
Indonesia’s waters are said to be home to 15% of the world’s coral reefs, containing around 300 species of corals and 3,000 species of fish. So it’s no surprise that divers all over the world consider Indonesia diving and snorkelling spots some of the best in the world for the activities. If that’s true, then the diving spots of Palau Bunaken in North Sulawesi and the Togean Islands in Kalimantan are truly the best of the best.
Search for Orangutans
The critically endangered orangutans are the only species of apes native to Asia, and they’re found only in Indonesia. Now, the only places where you can see them are the jungles of Sumatra and Kalimantan.
Search for Komodo Dragons
Komodo dragons, also known as komodo lizards, are the largest species of lizards in the world. They are also close relatives of dinosaurs that lived in the Australasia region millions of years ago. They’re found only in Komodo, Flores, Rinca, Padar and the Gili Islands – all of them are islands in Indonesia. You can find a sanctuary of these dragons at the Komodo National Park.
Go on a Food Adventure
Indonesian cuisine is one of the most colourful and diverse in the world, influenced by the customs of the country’s 300 tribes as well as by the Portuguese and the Dutch. One dish can have many regional varieties, so you can’t say that if you’ve tasted one, you’ve tasted them all. Discovering the different flavours of Indonesia is already worth the trip and is definitely one of the must-do activities there!
Shop Until you Drop
Shopping is amazing in Indonesia, so if you’re a true-blue shopaholic, you must pay homage to its shopping malls and markets. Jakarta is full of upscale, air-conditioned malls where you can indulge your taste for French, Italian and Japanese fashions. Bandung is where you can get your money’s worth at night markets and factory outlets. Yogyakarta is the place to go if you want authentic Indonesian crafts.
Visit the Majestic Borobodur and Prambanan
A visit to Indonesia won’t be complete without stopping by the temples of Borobodur and Prambanan to see their amazing architectures. Borobodur and its companion temples form the largest Buddhist temple complex in the world, while Prambanan is the largest Hindu temple in SEA. Devotees from all over the world still go on a pilgrimage to these temples.
Witness a Toraja Funeral Rite
Death is a thing most humans dread, but in the land of the Toraja, death is embraced like a loving friend. The people of Tana Toraja celebrate funerals with elaborate rituals, which include animal sacrifice. Their dead are also buried in intricate cave tombs guarded with effigies.
Don’t wait to start your Indonesian adventure with these activities. Book your trip to Indonesia today. While you’re still in the midst of planning, check out other travel guides on Indonesia here!