Best things to do in Indonesia
Thinking of going to Indonesia, but not sure what you’re going to do when you get there?
Being a country made up of over 17,000 islands, there’s a lot on offer. Climb an active volcano for sunrise or snorkel with tropical fish over colourful coral? It’s a tough choice.
Not to worry! We’re here to help and have put together a list of our top 10 favourite experiences in Indonesia.
1. Explore Ubud’s emerald rice terraces
Famous for being Bali’s cultural hub and centre for traditional crafts and dance, Ubud is one of those “must-see” places that you often hear about. Surrounding the town you’ll find rolling rice fields dotted with Hindu temples and ancient holy sites. A buzzing place to spend a few days, where you will certainly not run out of things to do.
2. Seek out Komodo dragons on Komodo Island
3. Watch the sunrise over Mount Bromo
Probably Indonesia’s most iconic volcano, Mount Bromo is a spectacular spot to witness a sunrise that you won’t forget. With many neighbouring volcanoes lying in the middle of a huge crater called the “Sea of Sand”, it’s one of the most magnificent landscapes you’ll set your eyes on.
4. Discover wild Sumatran orangutans
Trek through dense rainforest in northern Sumatra to find wild orangutans swinging through the trees. Once widespread throughout South East Asia, the population of our close relatives has dramatically declined and they are now limited to specific areas. Otherwise known as the “People of the Forest”, seeing these magnificent animals in their natural habitat is a truly magical moment.
5. Snorkel over rainbow reefs at Menjangan Island
A little piece of uninhabited paradise, Menjangan Island is just a few miles off the coast of Bali. As you land on the island, you’ll be greeted with a pristine, white sandy beach and crystal clear waters. Secluded from the tourist rush, there is an underwater world here full of well-preserved coral reefs and marine life.
6. Head to the highlands and waterfalls of Munduk
Venture to a world of misty mountains, forest waterfalls and serene temples. There are many hidden gems in and around the mountain village of Munduk, including Bali’s most famous temple at Tamblingan Lake. Despite its fame, Munduk isn’t on every traveller’s radar, which means you’ll still have a truly authentic Balinese stay here.
7. Bump into giant Buddhas at Borobudur Temple
Buried in the jungle are impressive giant Buddhas that look out into the natural landscape, all part of Borobudur Temple – the largest Buddhist temple complex in the world. It’s not too far from the nearby town of Yogyakarta and we recommend setting off just before dawn to make it in time to catch the sunrise. It’s really something quite special!
8. Surf the waves in Balangan’s bays
Balangan is one of Bali’s more hidden beaches, with rocky cliffs and a surfing hot spot. It’s the perfect place for surfers of all levels and even has a white sandy shoreline, so you can lie back and relax after your session.
9. Relax like royalty in an Indonesian palace
Amidst the lush green rice paddies and rippling rivers of Bali, you’ll find the ancient royal palace, Taman Tirtagangga. Spend the night in the water palace and you’ll find yourself in a world of carved fountains and cobbled paths with distant views across the ocean.
10. Camp on a volcano crater
Sleep under the stars on the crater of Mount Rinjani and watch dawn break over Lombok’s valleys. It’s the second highest volcano in Indonesia and perfect for those who like a challenge. Trek high up through volcanic plains and be treated to jaw-dropping views.
For even more Indonesia travel tips, head to our travel guide below.