Bali is the place that first springs to mind when people begin planning holidays in Indonesia – here is where you will some of the best waves in the world. Of course, you have the crowds to contend with in the surf, but you just have to be patient.
Indonesia is already much visited. However, since it is comprised of 17,508 islands (6000 of them inhabited), it is very easy for a traveler to find the place that best suits their travel goals...whether it be a beach full of surfers and bars, or a desert island paradise with half a dozen cabins for rent and a warm sea stuffed with corals and fish of all colors. You might even want to lose yourself a little in a rain forest or at the top of a volcano. Whatever you want, you will find it.
If you have a weak heart, stay home. Indonesian causes a deluge on all of your senses, which seem to have no end, and which may not be advisable for the faint-hearted. On the island of Java, watch the sunrise for this is the landscape where the photogenic Bromo volcano is located. Not the greatest. It is not the tallest or the longest. But it is almost certainly the most beautiful volcano in the world.
Indonesia holidays are a year-round affair. The Indonesian climate is equatorial with rainfall throughout the year, although at times less frequent and intense from May to October. The rainy season (monsoon) lasts from November to March in Indonesia. Annual temperatures range from 25 to 35 degrees Celsius at sea level. At altitude, the climate is cold. Sea temperatures range between 26 and 29 degrees Celsius on the Indonesian coasts.
Bali is a hot and humid island and practically all year round the thermometer sits around 30 degrees Celsius. The Balinese define Bali in two seasons: the drought (high season) that runs from April to the end of September – the best time for holidays in Indonesia, and the rainy season (low season) that begins in October and goes until the end of March.
In the rainy season, the climate is like this: hot, humid and with scattered showers usually late afternoon or night. I was there from January 19th until February 5th and got some rain but nothing from strong storms or anything that spoiled the rides.
The problem of going in the rainy season is to face a monsoon (seasonal winds connected to the rainy season), and then the way to sit and wait is because the rain comes strong for days at a time, sometimes weeks.
It does not look like it, but the island is pretty big, and it takes a lot of time to get from one region to another. The main regions are:
The Bali region is much sought after by surfers on holidays to Indonesia, with high surf there. Uluwatu and Balangan are two great beaches for surfing, but full of corals and rocky cliffs. Padang is a well-known beach in the south (many people call it Julia Roberts beach...), and very busy.
But Uluwatu is worth the visit even if you do not surf - there is a beautiful temple (Uluwatu Temple), which is even more beautiful at sunset. The entrance cost 20,000 rupees (about 2 dollars), and there are lots of monkeys there (watch out for sunglasses, earrings, and food, they can be a bit aggressive). At the end of the day, there is a typical Balinese dance performance (the entrance costs 100,000 rupees, $9).
On Indonesia holidays head to Balangan, which has a belvedere at the top of a rocky cliff with a beautiful view of the beach, and where you can enjoy a sunset mass.
Northeast Bali is a great place to dive (better than Gili Islands, by the way, and much less crowded). In Tulamben, there is a wrecked ship that is near the coast, where you can dive even taking only the Open Water course (where you can only dive up to 18 meters).
Amed is right near Tulamben, it's a bit bigger and has more choices of homestays and restaurants. In Amed, in addition to diving, you can snorkel. The water is mega transparent, you can see many fish - and the funny thing is that the sand is super black because it is volcanic.
Sanur: This is a beach region, full of resorts, families, and couples. It is close to Dempasar (which is where the airport is) and is the best option to stay for those who want to get the Indian visa in Bali since it is nearby. The beach is nice, but nothing spectacular, often the water is very dirty. The sea is practically without waves - probably why there are so many families in the area. Average prices in the restaurants quite expensive, because it is a tourist area, and it is difficult to find small local restaurants (warungs) where normally the food is cheaper.
Bali has some volcanoes, such as Batur and Agung, where you can climb to see the sunrise from above. Batur, which is 1,717 meters high, only takes 1 hour and 30 minutes to climb (the Agung is 3,142 meters and takes twice as long).
Java is close to Bali too but on the left side. On this island lies the capital, Jakarta (on the west side), and several interesting volcanoes, such as Bromo, which is very popular with tourists. A famous city in Java is Yogiyakarta, which is a historical and cultural city.
Although Sumatra is part of Indonesia, it is far away, near Malaysia but worth visiting if you have time on your holidays in Indonesia. The island is known for natural beauties, volcanoes and surf beaches, and is the third largest island in the country (the other two most massive, Borneo and New Guinea, have a part in Indonesia and part of another country).
Flores and Komodo: These islands are far apart but on the right side. The island of Flores is known with one of the best places in the world to dive, and Komodo is where the park has the huge Komodo Dragons. On the island of Flores there is a lake of three colors, the Kelimutu, which is super beautiful.
Suwalesi: This island is further north, and is a great spot for snorkeling too. The best known custom in Suwalesi is the funeral ceremonies, where according to the Indonesians the bodies of the dead move by themselves and even go from one place to another.
The Island of Bali has for some time been a well-developed tourist destination for holidays to Indonesia, not only for tourists looking for perfect waves to surf. The hotel infrastructure is excellent, and there are restaurants to suit all tastes and a lot of sights to visit. With so many lodging deals in Bali, there are options for all budgets, but we recommend booking in advance and checking availability on the dates you want to travel.
In Indonesia, it is necessary to enter with a tourist visa, which can be obtained at any Embassy of Indonesia in your country of origin. If you want to know how to get to Indonesia, flying is the most useful and important method, through the airports of Medan, Batam, Manado, Jakarta, Biak, or Pekanbaru in addition to Bali, the main entry point for tourism in the country.
By boat, there is also that possibility. You can go via Europe, Dubai or South Africa. Regardless of which route you choose, prepare to spend more than 24 hours in the air and lose two days only on the way, since in addition to the flight time, you still miss at least 8 Hours because of the time zone.
By plane or by boat are the only two ways to enter the country, the ports of Medan, Batam, Jakarta, Semarang, Surabaya, Bali and Manado are the main gateways to Indonesia.
Of course flights are only part of the equation and often they come in at a cheaper price as part of a package deal. Be sure to check out our Indonesia tour packages.
Surfing in various places for this sport is something that is affordable for beginners and experienced. The country promises powerful waves. Among some of the best places to practice surf are the Mentwai, Panatian and even the incredible Bali. You will discover a great surfer within yourself. For beginners, most beaches offer an instructor to assist the first-time surfer.
Bukit Lawang is one of the few places in the world where it is still possible to observe some orangutans living in their natural habitat. Take advantage of this exceptional opportunity to practice trekking and meet these nice creatures, who do not make themselves shy with the visit of tourists. The wild environment is truly inspiring. There are instructors to ensure that the entire experience occurs safely.
In the country, there is the Komodo National Park. To get to it, you will need to go by boat but it is well worth making time for this on Indonesia holidays. This is a tour enjoyed by visitors. Komodo is an island, in which you can see hundreds of Komodo dragons, a rare species, typical of this region. A guide will take you through the most interesting trails. The bugs take this name for resembling the mythical dragon, and its size can sometimes frighten but, as a rule, they are not dangerous for visitors.
Bali is as big a city as it is cheerful. One of the favorite destinations among tourists who choose a place to party while on holidays to Indonesia, Bali has the reputation of being a vibrant city, full of parties happening all the time. You can get to know the city center and get a sense of the grandeur, shop at ease in the largest and cheapest malls in Asia. And when you hit the lure of a lull, go to the famous beaches of the city where it is possible to rent a bungalow and watch the day pass. Relax in your bungalow and watch an inspiring sunset, blended in shades of orange. You will discover that Bali represents very well everything that is always said about Indonesia.
Indonesia is a relatively large country. It is formed by the largest archipelago in the world, whose breadth means it becomes part of two continents. When one thinks of doing tourism in Indonesia, it is common to come to mind images that are commonly associated with the islands of Asia. In this magical country, you can get in touch with nature in a way that is not possible to do in a big city.
Contact with the rare species found in the rainforests renew the energies and offer a new perspective on life. A dip in the crystal clear waters is something you should not miss on your holidays in Indonesia. In a country that offers so many attractions at the same time, it can be a bit confusing knowing what to do.
Check out Booked.net’s Indonesia tour packages and make the most of the charms of this country.
Here are some of our picks of where to stay on Indonesia holidays: