With over 17,500 islands to explore, Indonesia is one of the most diverse destinations in Southeast Asia, with plenty of opportunities to experience the natural wonders, wildlife, spiritual opportunities, and historical significance it has to offer. While many people head to Bali for luxury travel, there are many places worth visiting to make lasting memories.
When converting your local currency for this ultimate getaway, always look for the best rate for Indonesian Rupiah, allowing you to treat yourself to local cuisine and handmade souvenirs. Complete your conversion before you leave home to avoid any unnecessary hassles on arrival.
Ideal time to visit
For most of Indonesia, the dry season begins in April and ends in October. This is the best time of year to visit the main attractions of Java and Bali, with conditions for diving, surfing, and extended periods onboard ships at their peak. July and August are the busiest months of the year due to the school holidays in the northern hemisphere.
Because it is such a vast and spread-out country, it is essential to note that seasons and weather are inconsistent across locations. While it may be monsoon season in Bali and Java, Raja Ampat will have the ideal temperatures and conditions for water sports and outdoor activities. This is an excellent option for those traveling from November to April.
Raja Ampat Islands
The Raja Ampat Islands, located in an Indonesian archipelago off the northwest tip of Bird’s Head Peninsula in West Papua, is made up of thousands of jungle-covered islands, sprawling beaches, and beautiful coral reefs filled with spectacular marine life and exotic birds.
The islands are known for their vast scuba diving community, but a diving qualification is not required to enjoy the rich and diverse beauty offered in this part of the world. When planning your trip to the Raja Ampat Islands, decide whether you would prefer a resort stay or a multi-night experience on board a small boat.
For hikers and outdoor lovers, be sure to pack your best hiking boots and embark on the volcanic adventure of a lifetime through East Java. A pre-dawn hike to Mt. Merbabu’s summit will give you a sunrise view over four neighboring volcanoes. Alternatively, you can climb Mt. Semeru to watch Java’s most active volcano erupt roughly every 20 minutes.
Heading east towards Bali will introduce large crater lakes surrounded by sulfur mines, offering the high possibility of encountering local miners carrying loads, often barefooted, down the mountainside. With so many mountain trails to choose from, your biggest struggle will be deciding where to begin.
Bali is Indonesia’s most popular tourist destination, and one visit there will quickly show you why. It offers everything, from unusual street food to high-end cuisine, rice paddies, and stunning temples to explore, beaches that feel better suited in a travel magazine, and some of the best high-end resorts in the world. Often called the ‘Island of the Gods,’ Bali is a deeply spiritual place with daily practices and ceremonial rites.
Bali is a relatively small island, so dividing your stay into two parts, with one stay in the central area and one right on the beach, will allow you to experience everything this incredible place offers.
If you are looking for the ultimate adventure and an opportunity to experience a once-in-a-lifetime wildlife experience, head to the majestic location of Borneo. Starting your adventure with a boat trip through Tanjung Puting National Park will offer you the chance to see orangutans, proboscis monkeys, and other exotic animals in their natural habitats. Furthermore, you can learn more about the tremendous conversation effort put in place to preserve this vital part of the world.
As it will likely be the most adventurous part of your entire vacation, it is best to tackle this location first, when you are the most enthusiastic and energetic. As you work your way through the rest of your dream vacation, your days can include more luxury days spent by the beach.
Yogyakarta is known as the cultural and intellectual center of Java, home to both Hindu and Buddhist religion and culture, as observed through the architectural remains of Borobudur, the world’s largest Buddhist monument, and the Prambanan temple complex, a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
The location is deeply influenced by its religious and royal history and is considered to be the soul of Javanese culture. Borobudur Temple is best visited at sunrise, so be sure to plan ahead to catch it in its illuminated glory.
East Nusa Tenggara
Labuan Bajo, in East Nusa Tenggara, is the ideal location for a live on-board holiday, the perfect way to experience the islands, stunning shores, and untouched landscapes. This unique and trendy way of vacationing is specially created for paradise-seekers who prefer a private escapade.
Start your journey at Labuan Bajo Port, just ten minutes from the airport, and begin your luxury liveaboard island-hopping adventure. Explore hidden beaches, hike fabulous mountain trails, and unwind on deck, enjoying glorious sunsets and star-filled nights.