A FEAST OF CULTURES, LANDSCAPES AND COLOURS
As you explore the islands of Indonesia, you’ll find a land as diverse and unusual as those living upon it. The main island, Java is the world’s most populated island and includes the capital city of Jakarta, but also the beguiling royal centres of touristy Yogjakarta and more authentic Solojakarta. This is where you’ll find the headline sights of Borobudur and intricate carvings of Prambanan, the blown-out cone of world-famous Krakatoa and the still-active Mount Bromo, smoking gently through the mists of dawn.
When we say the people are diverse, it’s not a case of a different accent or food preference, but instead you will find people who are of different genetic make up to the people of the next island, from the Hindu enclave and surfing-mecca of Bali to the indigenous beliefs of the people of West Papua.
The tropical paradise of Bali is Indonesia’s most well known destination and arguably the jewel in their crown. Bali does draw huge numbers of tourists with a number of the beach resorts in the south being quite busy and lively and populated with a number of large resorts, but there are still plenty of places where you can escape and find a quiet beach and a boutique hotel. You can also explore the island and find interesting local villages where life hasn’t changed much over centuries, as well as places of a cultural and architectural interest.
The neighbouring Lombok is another popular region and is often likened to Bali without the crowds! It enjoys a wonderful coastline with wild surfing beaches in the south and sweeping bays and calm waters on the west coast and around the Gili Islands in the north west. Mount Rinjani, is a mountain of 3,726 metres and popular with adventure seekers. Lombok offers a good selection of hotels and resorts, with choices for all ranges of budget. It also lends itself as the perfect two-centre destination with Bali.
Culturally, Indonesia also has much to offer the visitor, with its ancient temples and palaces and many ancient wonders. The Borobudur Temple in central Java is the world’s largest Buddhist monument, whilst nearby Prambanan is the largest Hindu temple in south east Asia.
Forests cover approximately 60% of the country and support a huge variety of flora and fauna. It is home to over 1,500 species of birds and 500 species of mammal, although a number are endangered. The wildlife species of note include the Komodo Lizard, the orang-utan, the rhinoceros, and the dwarf buffalo, as well as wild boar, deer, lemurs and a number of monkey species.
Indonesia is a nation that defines diversity. A land of so many cultures, peoples, animals, customs, plants, features, artworks and foods that it feels like hundreds of countries moulded into one. This is an archipelago with a million stories to tell, and more.
Indonesia covers such a vast area and thus has many regional variations in climate and seasons. It is a hot and humid country with a tropical climate and receives a lot of rain all year round, with rainstorms and thunderstorms common. The temperature remains high throughout the year and the average temperature in the coastal areas is 25-30°C. It is a bit cooler in the mountain areas. The direst period is between June to September, whilst December to March is the wettest time.
BEST TIME TO TRAVEL
Indonesia has a tropical climate and is a hot and humid country but as the country is spread over such vast distances the climate does vary by geographical area. In general terms the temperatures average between 25°C and 28°C throughout the year and the best time to travel is between June to September. The period between December to March is the wettest time and should be avoided. Note, however, that rainstorms can occur throughout the year. The humidity ranges between 70% and 90%. The shoulder seasons of May and September tend to also be good months for travel with generally good weather and very good offers and prices.
Health & Vaccinations
We recommend that you are up to date with the usual vaccinations – Typhoid, Polio, Hepatitis A & B, Tetanus and Rabies. In addition there is a malaria risk throughout Indonesia all year round but the risk is small in all large cities and the tourist resorts on the islands of Bali and Java. However, the malaria risk is substantial in islands close to Bali and Java, including Lombok, and therefore a malaria prophylaxis is recommended. Please contact your local GP for full advice at least 3-4 weeks before travel.
Passport & Visa
British passport holders must be in possession of a full 10-year passport and must have at least 6 months validity beyond the date of the return journey. British passport holders also need a visa to enter into Indonesia, which can be obtained on arrival. The cost is currently USD $35 and the visa is valid for stays of up to 30 days.
WHERE TO STAY BY REGION