Travel Destinations in Indonesia You Must Visit For The First Time
Travel destinations in Indonesia – With 18,330 islands, 6,000 of them inhabited, Indonesia is the largest archipelago in the world. The island nation is home to 167 active volcanoes, far more than any other country and has some of the largest remaining tracts of tropical forest anywhere in the world.
You can wander the busy streets of Jakarta, or take a step back in time with a visit to the remote villages of Tana Toraja, indulge in the bliss of Bali, or come face to face with the volatile Anak Krakatau.
If you’re tired of beaches, there are ancient temples, volcanoes, waterfalls, and nature parks waiting for you in 18,306 more islands. Inspire your adventure in Indonesia with these must-visit places and top things to do for first-time travelers.
Explore the last Indonesian city still ruled by an ancient monarchy, follow in the literal footsteps of rare Komodo dragons, and soak in steamy hot springs surrounded by nothing but wild, raw jungle. If you’re looking for magic hidden in the everyday, you’ve found it. Here’s a look at the best places to visit in Indonesia.
Travel Destination in Indonesia Borobudur Temple
This ancient temple is one of the most famous and culturally significant landmarks in Indonesia. Borobudur was built in the 8th century and constructed in the shape of a traditional Buddhist mandala. It is one of the top UNESCO World Heritage sites, and is considered one of the greatest Buddhist sites in the world.
The massive temple was forgotten for centuries, when it is believed that much of the population moved to eastern Java due to volcanic eruptions. But it was rediscovered in the 1800s and, today, is one of the main draws in Java.
Visit at sunrise for a torch-light climb up the temple and for the breathtaking experience of watching as the complex is bathed in sunlight. Borobudur lies near Yogyakarta, an old Javanese city known for its rich cultural and historical offerings.
Travel Destination in Indonesia Raja Ampat Islands
An island cluster on the northwestern tip of Papua New Guinea, Raja Ampat is one of the most sensational diving destinations in Indonesia. Raja Ampat – which means ‘Four Kings’ – is made up of four major jungle-clad islands surrounded by turquoise lagoons and pearly-white palm-fringed beaches – Waigeo, Salawati, Misool, and Batanta – along with thousands of smaller islands.
The archipelago is celebrated for its rich marine life and underwater coral reefs – home to as many as 75% of all known coral species! With everything from underwater photography to wreck diving, it’s so beautiful, you should definitely invest in an underwater camera.
But the fun isn’t limited to offshore. The islands are also a fantastic bird-watching destination. Pack your binoculars and keep your eyes peeled for eagles swooping overhead and birds of paradise such as the Wilson’s and Cendrawash chirping in the treetops while you trek to waterfalls and mysterious age-old caves.
Indonesia sits on the Ring of Fire, an area with some of the most active volcanoes in the world. Many of the country’s volcanoes, such as Mount Merapi, are famous for their violent eruptions and their stunning, but dangerous beauty.
Mount Bromo is among the best known for travel destionations in Indonesia, thanks largely to its incredible views, particularly when seen standing over the caldera at sunrise. Bromo’s peak was blown off in an eruption, and you can still see white smoke spewing from the mountain.
The volcano is part of Bromo Tengger Semeru National Park, which also includes Mount Semeru, the highest peak in Java. The park is home to the Tengger people, an isolated ethnic group who trace their ancestry back to the ancient Majapahit empire.
Take the ultimate selfie, at the top of an active volcano’s crater rim. Mount Bromo is an easy place to do it. A lot easier than Mount Rinjani since the actual trek to Mount Bromo’s crater rim only takes less than an hour.
- Hike to Mount Bromo crater rim & see the sunrise from the viewpoint at nearby Mount Penanjakan.
- Visit Madakaripura Waterfall near Cemoro Lawang.
- Go on a homestay & see the slope farms in Ngadas Village.
- Enjoy the cool views at Mount Bromo savannah.
How to go to Mount Bromo :
Mount Bromo can be found in Central Java. The most popular way is to travel to Probolinggo by land from Surabaya, Banyuwangi, Yogyakarta, Jakarta or other cities on the island. Then, ride a bus or shuttle to Cemoro Lawang village, the main tourist area in Bromo-Tengger-Semeru National Park. A jeep or motorcycle taxi (ojek) ride to the base of the summit takes less than 30 minutes. And, a 30-minute to 1-hour ascent on steep stairs, takes you to the crater rim. You can also reach Cemoro Lawang via Malang, located west of Mount Bromo. Although public transport is quite limited, this can be a good option if you’re headed from Yogyakarta. The way to Cemoro Lawang passes through the scenic village of Ngadas, Mount Bromo’s savannah, and the sea of sand.
Travel Destination in Indonesia Komodo National Park
Located in Indonesia’s Nusa Tenggara region, Komodo National Park is famous for one thing and one thing only – its reptilian namesake, the Komodo dragon. Spread across three main islands – Komodo, Rinca, and Padar – as well as a collection of smaller islets, the park provides a sanctuary for this strange looking creature reminiscent of the dinosaurs. It’s the largest living lizard on the planet and can reach a mighty three meters in length! The reptiles roam freely over the islands, and visitors rely on experienced tour guides for sightings and to keep them safe.
Today, the park has expanded to include the conservation of the entire ecosystem both on land and in the ocean. There are several endemic species, such as Rinca rats and fruit bats, as well as wild horses, long-tailed macaques, water buffalo, and several species of dangerous snakes.
But while the terrestrial beings within the Komodo National Park are definitely worth seeing, it’s the marine life that really stands out. The park protects some of the most abundant marine landscapes in the world, part of the Coral Triangle, home to more than 250 species of coral and a plethora of sea sponges and unusual bony fish.
The Komodo Islands should be at the top of your list if you’ve been dreaming of visiting the remote islands of the World’s biggest archipelagic country. Located over an hour east of Bali by flight, Komodo National Park is home to the giant Komodo Dragons and stunning natural sights including a rare Pink Beach!
How to go to Komodo National Park:
The fastest way is to fly from Bali to Labuan Bajo (1.5 hours), the gateway town to Komodo Islands. Then, join one of many speedboat or slow boat tours from Labuan Bajo to reach the stunning islands in Komodo National Park.
Travel Destination Jakarta in Indonesia
Indonesia’s bustling capital stands in stark contrast to the country’s famous beaches, rice fields, and volcanos. Here, tourists can discover the cosmopolitan side to this otherwise very traditional destination.
Jakarta contains more than 170 shopping malls, each brimming with stores, high-end restaurants, and cinemas.
Other highlights of Jakarta include a number of noteworthy museums. The relatively new Museum MACAN showcases more than 800 pieces of contemporary art. There’s also the Museum Nasional, an archeological and ethnological institution with more than 70,000 artifacts, and the vibrant Museum Layang-Layang, dedicated to the art of kite-making.
Jakarta may seem like a daunting megacity, but it also has a couple of interesting places that are worth a stopover. Wander around the Dutch colonial heritage sites in Kota Tua (Old Jakarta), the old market in Pasar Baru and the historic port of Sunda Kelapa.
Visit the sights in Central Jakarta including Monas (National Monument of Indonesia) at Merdeka Square, Istiqlal Mosque, Jakarta Cathedral & National Museum of Indonesia.
Walk around historic Jakarta Old Batavia. Explore Fatahillah Square, Jakarta History Museum, Wayang Museum & Maritime Museum
- Wander around Glodok (Chinatown) and go on a food walk in Pasar Baru (Jakarta’s oldest market).
- Enjoy the nightlife at Kemang, Skye Bar, Ecobar & Jalan Jaksa.
- Spend a day at Taman Mini Indonesia, Seaworld Ancol or Ancol Dreamland.
- Go shopping at Mangga Dua, Blok M, Pasar Ikan and huge malls in Central Jakarta.
- Head east to Medan, Lake Toba, Bandah Aceh & Sumatra.
- Be sure not to miss Kota, Jakarta’s Old Town, to see what this city looked like in the 17th century.
How to go to Jakarta :
Jakarta’s Soekarno–Hatta International Airport is the primary gateway to Jakarta and Indonesia. This airport serves the country’s most extensive flight network. You can fly direct from most major airports in Asia & Australia. Including Singapore (1.5 hours), Kuala Lumpur (2 hours, 15 minutes), Bangkok (3.5 hours), Manila (4.5 hours), Sydney (7 hours) & Melbourne (6.5 hours). Major airlines are AirAsia, Batik Air, Citilink, Garuda Indonesia, Lion Air, Nam Air & Sriwijaya Air.
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