If you're thinking about travelling to Indonesia, you're in for a real treat. With its diverse landscapes, vibrant culture, and friendly locals, Indonesia is a true gem in the world of travel.
It is located in Southeast Asia that is perfect for travelers looking for a mix of culture, adventure, and relaxation. With over 17,000 islands, there is no shortage of things to see and do in this beautiful country.
One of the main highlights of Indonesia is its culture. You will find a diverse range of ethnic groups and cultures throughout the country, with the largest Muslim population in the world. The country is home to many ancient temples and monuments, including the world-famous Borobudur and Prambanan temples. You can also experience traditional dances and ceremonies, such as the Ramayana ballet, and explore the colorful local markets.
For those looking for adventure, Indonesia has a lot to offer. The country is home to some of the best diving and snorkeling spots in the world, with crystal clear waters and an abundance of marine life. For nature lovers, there are many national parks and protected areas to explore, such as the Komodo National Park, home of the Komodo dragon.
One of the best places to start your Indonesian adventure is the island of Java. Many people make the mistake of overlooking Java and heading straight to Bali, but Java offers a unique and authentic experience that is different from Bali.!
Overview of the Itinerary
Jakarta is the capital and largest city of Indonesia, located on the northwest coast of the island of Java. The city is known for its rich cultural heritage, bustling streets, and modern skyscrapers.
2-3 days is more than enough to explore the city
Either stay at the wonderloft or the Packer lodge. Wonderloft is just next to the night market and the Dutch square. So it is more of a convenient place.
If you do decide to stay in Wonderloft then next behind the Dutch Square there is a lot of delicious and cheap street food.
Things to do
Visit the National Monument, which is an iconic symbol of Jakarta and a popular tourist attraction. The monument is located in the centre of Merdeka Square and features a golden flame at the top, symbolizing the struggle for independence. You can take an elevator to the top of the monument for panoramic views of the city.
Explore Old Jakarta: Old Jakarta, also known as Kota Tua, is a historic neighbourhood located on the western bank of the Ciliwung River. The area is home to a number of Dutch colonial-era buildings, including the Jakarta History Museum and the Wayang Museum, which displays traditional puppets. You can also take a walk along the Ciliwung River and visit Fatahillah Square, a popular spot for local food and souvenir stalls.
Visit Taman Mini Indonesia Indah: Taman Mini Indonesia Indah is a cultural park that showcases the diverse cultures and traditions of Indonesia. The park features replicas of traditional houses from various regions of the country, as well as museums, theatres, and a lake. you can also enjoy traditional dance performances and try local food at the various restaurants in the park.
Go shopping at Pasar Baru: Pasar Baru is a popular shopping destination in Jakarta, known for its wide range of products and cheap prices. The market is divided into different sections, including clothing, electronics, and household goods. You can also try local food at the various stalls in the market.
Take a trip to Ancol Dreamland: Ancol Dreamland is a popular theme park located on the northern coast of Jakarta. The park features a variety of rides and attractions, including a water park, a beach, and a golf course. You can also visit the SeaWorld aquarium and watch dolphin and sea lion shows.
For transport within the city, you can take the public bus which is efficient to use. You just need to purchase a daily card at the bus station.
After finishing from Jakarta make your way to Bandung.
Transport from Jakarta to Bandung
After finishing from Jakarta make your way to the city of Bandung.
Take a train from Jakarta to Bandung. Make sure to book the train at least a day in advance as they book out quickly. Use tiket.com to book your trains.
Bandung is a city located in West Java, Indonesia and is known for its cool mountain air and beautiful panoramic views. It's a popular destination for tourists, with a range of accommodation options to suit all budgets.
The Attic Bed & Breakfast
Sate Khas Senayan: Delicious sate (grilled meat skewers) and other Indonesian dishes
Sari Rasa Restaurant
Things to do
Rent a scooter/moped and drive to the white crater down south. The drive will take around 2 hours but totally worth it!! You’ll be going up to the Mountains so make sure to take a jacket.
On the way back from the White Crater make a stop at the Putih Gamboeng
On your third day explore the north of Bandung. Visit the Orchid Forest Cikole, Kebun Begonia & Ciater natural hot spring.
After finishing from Bandung, make your way east to Yogyakarta.
Transport from Bandung to Yogyakarta
Book a train from Bandung to Yogyakarta. The journey will take around 8 hours.
Yogyakarta, also known as "Jogja," is a city located in the central part of the island of Java in Indonesia. It is known for its rich cultural heritage, beautiful temples and palaces, and vibrant arts scene.
Pixel Coffee & Kitchen
Black Forest Cafe (Vegan)
Things to do
Rent a scooter/moped and visit the main attraction in Yogyakarta The Borobudur Temple. This is a UNESCO World Heritage Site and the largest Buddhist temple in the world. The temple is made up of nine stacked platforms, each featuring intricate carvings and reliefs depicting Buddhist teachings.
Another popular attraction is the Prambanan Temple, which is a Hindu temple complex featuring three main temples dedicated to the gods Brahma, Vishnu, and Shiva.
The Kraton: This is the official palace of the Sultan of Yogyakarta and is a beautiful complex of buildings and gardens. You can take a tour of the palace and learn about the history and culture of the region.
The Taman Sari Water Castle: This is a former royal garden and bathing complex that was built in the 18th century. It features beautiful pools and gardens, as well as a number of buildings and structures that have been beautifully preserved.
The Vredeburg Fort: This is a Dutch colonial-era fort that was built in the 18th century. It offers panoramic views of the city and is now home to a museum that showcases the history of Yogyakarta.
The Malioboro Street: This is a bustling street in the centre of Yogyakarta that is known for its shopping and street food. It's a great place to find souvenirs, try local snacks, and experience the vibrant atmosphere of the city.
If you have time drive down south to Sendang Ngembel
After finishing from Yogyakarta. You have two options, either you can book a tour with Lasmanos hostel to see mount Bromo & Ijen volcanos or you can take the train to Malang and then go and see the volcanos (but will need to arrange the tour separately).
Transport from Yogyakarta to Malang
You can take the train from Yogyakarta to Malang. The train takes around 5.5 hours. You can also take the bus, it will take around 8 hours.
Malang is a city located in East Java, Indonesia. It is known for its beautiful mountain scenery and cooler climate, making it a popular destination for tourists and locals alike.
MADOR Malang Dorm Hostel
Warung Bu Kris
Sate Klatak Pak Pong
Warung Bu Narti
Things to do
Visit the Jodipan colourful city.
Rent a scooter/moped and head south to see Tumpak Sewu Waterfall. You can do a tour there.
One of the main attractions in Malang is the Batu Secret Zoo, which is a unique wildlife park featuring a range of exotic animals, including tigers, elephants, and bears.
Another popular attraction is Jatim Park, which is a theme park featuring a range of rides and attractions, as well as a botanical garden.
Malang is also home to a number of cultural landmarks and historical sites. One of the most famous is the Tugu Monument, which is a monument and museum dedicated to the heroes of Indonesia's independence struggle.
Overall, Malang is a vibrant and lively city with a range of attractions and activities. Whether you're interested in exploring its natural beauty, experiencing its cultural landmarks, or trying delicious local food, Malang has something for everyone.
After finishing from Malang and before heading to Bali, make sure you do a 3-day/2night tour to Mount Bromo & Kawah Ijen
Mount Bromo & Kawah Ijen
Transport from Malang to Mount Bromo & Kawah Ijen
The best way to do this tour is to book whilst you are in Malang, you can also have the option to book it whilst in Yogyakarta. The starting point would be in the town of Probolinggo East of Java. If you do book whilst in Yogyakarta then you would need to take a train from Malang to Probolinggo and then the tour guides will pick you up from there.
Things to do
In my modest opinion, this tour is a MUST!! Do both volcanos as a tour or can do them alone but will be more stressful and expensive.
The two volcanos are both located in the Bromo Tengger Semeru National Park and are known for their beautiful scenery and unique geological features.
Mount Bromo is an active volcano that is located in the centre of a vast plain called the "Sea of Sand." The best time to visit Mount Bromo is during the dry season, which runs from April to November.
Kawah Ijen is a volcanic crater located near Mount Bromo. It is known for its bright blue flames, which are caused by the burning of sulfuric gases. Kawah Ijen is also known for its beautiful green lake, which is located at the bottom of the crater.
Both Mount Bromo and Kawah Ijen are located in a remote and rugged areas, so it is important to be prepared for the trip. It is therefore recommended to hire a local guide and to also bring warm clothing, as the temperature can be quite cold at the top of the mountain.
Overall, Mount Bromo and Kawah Ijen are must-see destinations for anyone visiting East Java. Whether you're interested in experiencing the beauty of the natural landscape or witnessing the unique geological phenomena, these two attractions offer a truly unforgettable experience.
Transport from Kawah Ijen to Bali
After finishing from Kawah Ijen, the ticket purchased to see the volcanos should include a drop-off to the island of Bali in Canggu. If this is not included in your ticket, be sure to clarify this with the tour office prior to starting your hikes. To get to Bali it will take around 6-8 hours.
The Tipsy Gypsy Hostel
Farm House Hostel
The Shady Shack
Milk & Madu
The Avocado Factory
Things to do
Watch the sunset at the beach
Learn how to surf
There are yoga schools around Canggu so sign up for one them if you are interested
Visit Love anchor market
Check out the local temples, including Pura Dalem Desa Canggu, a beautiful Balinese temple set amidst rice paddies.
Transport from Canggu to Ubud
Unfortunately, there are no buses that travel between towns in Bali, so the only way to get to Ubud is by sharing a taxi or renting a scooter. While a scooter can be a convenient and cost-effective way to explore the different parts of Bali, it may not be the best option for those who are unfamiliar with the area, not comfortable with driving a scooter and want to spend more days in each place.
Ubud is a town located in the central region of the Indonesian island of Bali. It is known for its beautiful natural surroundings, vibrant arts and cultural scene. It was my favourite town in Bali.
Warung Pondok Madu
Things to do
One of the main attractions in Ubud is the Monkey Forest, which is a natural reserve home to a large population of monkeys. The forest is also home to a number of temples. Personally, I saw more monkeys outside the temple than inside so it's down to personal preference if you want to visit
Visit Ubud Palace, which is a beautiful palace and cultural centre that hosts a range of performances and events.
On the second day rent a scooter and visit the Tegalalang Rice Terraces. With their picturesque terraced fields and beautiful views of the surrounding mountains.
After finishing from the rice terraces, drive to Agrowisata Kopi Luwak Satria, which is a coffee plantation, and includes a free tour & coffee tasting. (Definitely worth it!!)
Afterwards, visit the temples of Tampaksiring and Pura Gunung Kawi Sebatu (This temple was really empty and free from any tourists and probably one of the best I have seen in Bali)
Relax at The Kayon Jungle, which has a swimming pool with views of the rice terraces.
On the third day take your moped and drive around the different waterfalls in the area. The ones that are recommended are Tibumana Waterfall, Suwat Waterfall, Gao Rang Rang Waterfall, Tegenungan Waterfall,
Visit Gap Gajah which is known for its stone carvings of Hindu gods The cave dates as far back as the 9th century.
Lastly, you can choose to do a cooking class at Balinese Farm Cooking School. The class will cost you 400,000 IDR and includes the transfer to and from the farm to the hostel. You will be making 7 courses in total - 2 started, 4 mains & 1 dessert. All the ingredients used are grown on the farm
Sign up to trek mount Batur for sunrise]
Visit Campuhan Ridge Walk for nice views
Transport from Ubud to Gili Trawangan
From the place you are staying in Ubud you can book transport from Ubif to Gili Trawangan, Make sure you book it a day in advance.
Gili Islands, located off the northwest coast of Lombok in Indonesia, are a paradise destination for travellers looking for a laid-back tropical getaway. The island has crystal clear waters, white sandy beaches, and an abundance of marine life. The Gili islands contain 3 islands. My recommendation is to stay at Gili Trawangan and from there you can discover the other islands during a day trip.
The Tipsy Gypsy Hostel
Farm House Hostel
My Mates Hostel
The Beach Club
Things to do
Sign up to do a snorkelling day trip. You will be able to see sea turtles.
Explore the island by bike and visit the turtle sanctuary.
The Gilis are also home to several beautiful beaches, including Gili Meno's Bird Park Beach and Gili Trawangan's Sunset Beach.
In the evenings' everyone goes out to town
Next, head to the island of Lombok. This beautiful island is home to Mount Rinjani, an active volcano that offers breathtaking views from its summit.
Transport from Gili Islands to Lombok.
You have to catch the ferry from Gili to Lombok, it takes around an hour to get to the island and you will be dropped off north in Senggigi
Similar to Bali, there are no public buses so you will have to use grab to get around. It would be expensive but negotiate to get the price down.
Most people head to Lombok to go down to Kuta but Lombok has more to offer.
Hostels in Senaru
Dragon fly lodge
Hostels in Mataram
Dewi Sri guesthouse
Hostels in Kuta
Things to do Senaru
If you’re feeling adventurous then sign up to climb the Rinjani volcano in Lombok. However, this is super challenging so make sure you are ready and takes 3 days.
Visit Sendang Gile Waterfall, it’s in the north. And if possible try to visit Sembalun Village and see the Strawberry Hill Gardens Ponds and Bukit Selong viewpoint.
Afterwards, head down to Mataram
Things to do Mataram
Rent a scooter and drive down to Gili Nanggu
Explore the capital of Lombok island
Things to do Kuta
Do not go to the pink beach because It’s actually not pink!
Learn how to surf here
Visit Kuta Beach and try your hand at surfing or sunbathing on the sandy shore.
Take a stroll along the local markets and boutiques, where you can find handmade crafts, clothing, and other souvenirs.
Check out the local temples, including Pura Lingsar, a historic temple that's considered a sacred site by both Hindus and Muslims.
Go on a snorkelling or diving trip to explore the beautiful coral reefs and marine life in the surrounding area.
Visit the Banyumulek Pottery Village, where you can see artisans at work and purchase handmade pottery and other crafts.
After Lombok, take the ferry and head to Penida Island. You will need to get back to Senggigi.
Nusa Penida Island
Transport from Lombok to Nusa Penida
You will need to catch the ferry from Senggigi to get to Penida. The ferry will head to Bali first and then to Nusa Penida.
Grab does not work on the island, so the best way to see the island is to rent a moped for a few days and drive around.
Nusa Penida is a small island located just off the southeast coast of the Indonesian island of Bali. It is known for its beautiful beaches, crystal-clear waters, and stunning natural scenery.
Nuansa pendia hostel
Warung Bu Mi
Visit the Chill Pendia restaurant.
Greenkubu Penida. Make sure to go there. It has a beautiful gate and is not very touristy. Basically a hidden Gem.
Sugar daddy. Really nice Ice cream
Things to do
Rent a scooter and go and visit Kelingking Beach Nusa Penida which features a dramatic cliffside setting and offers breathtaking views of the surrounding landscape., Diamond Beach Nusa Penida, Crystal Bay and Broken Beach.
Nusa Penida is also home to a number of other natural attractions, including the Goa Giri Putri Cave, a large cave system with beautiful stalactites and stalagmites, and the Atuh Beach, a secluded beach with beautiful rock formations.
Book a snorkelling tour. Nusa Penida is famous for having manta rays.
Overall, Indonesia is a fantastic destination for anyone looking to experience the beauty and culture of Southeast Asia. Whether you're a beach lover, a nature enthusiast, or just looking for a new adventure, Indonesia has something for everyone. Happy travels!