Indonesia: tips for first-time travelers

Indonesia is one of Asia’s favorite tourist destination. This archipelago country represents 17,000 islands which span more than 5000 km (around 3,200 miles) eastward from Sabang in northern Sumatra to Merauke in Irian Jaya. To make sure you hit the ground running in this complex and diverse nation, follow our top ten Indonesia travel tips!

Be Picky

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Avoid the temptation to cram every places of this geographically challenging country. If you only have a week or so and stay near capital, Jakarta, try to visit Geopark Ciletuh for a night or two and spend the rest of the time exploring the undiscovered Ujung Kulon National Park. Longer trips allow rewarding discovery further afield, where gems like the UNESCO heritage Tana Toraja, South Sulawesi await.


Bali is only a tiny part of our country

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Over 4.4 million foreign tourist travel abroad to Bali. Most of those who do come focus almost entirely on Bali, which has, of course, been the face of Indonesia for the international jet set for decades. And in most cases, those foreign tourist think that Bali is the only tourist destination that this country has, which are not. Also tempting on the coast is Togian Islands, the country’s hidden gem, whose remarkably a spectacular diving site, one of the best in Indonesia.

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The same goes for the city of Tanjung Bira, Bulukumba in the south of the Sulawesi Island, which its Phinisi Village listed as one of the UNESCO Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity.


Don’t let the bugs bite

This mosquito-borne disease is a major problem and Indonesia has one of the world’s highest infection rates. As there is no vaccine available it can only be prevented by avoiding mosquito bites. The mosquito that carries dengue bites day and night, so use insect avoidance measures at all times. Tics are a more pressing problem as they can cause serious illness so wear thick socks and cover up your legs when hiking. A simple tic remover is a good investment, especially if you may be trekking in rural areas.


Try Uncommon Airbnb/Hotel in Bali

Bali has always been a  favorite amongst travelers looking to explore its superb tropical jungle landscapes, exceptional temples and pristine white sandy beaches. Therefore, it comes as no surprise that the idyllic island has been named as one of the best holiday destination in the world.

Kosta Hostel Bali. Photo copyright

Should Bali be on your bucket-list? Yes. Should Bali be the only one on your bucket-list? No.

When you get a chance to visit Bali, make sure your visit is worthwhile. Despite all the famous luxury hotel, try to blend with locals and make your stay unforgettable. For those with limited budgets, we have selected the best affordable yet amazing hotels in Bali! Read more about 10 undiscovered tropical hotels in Bali!


Health Matters

You should always take out decent travel insurance, even for a weekend break. A travel-insurance policy to cover theft, loss and medical problems is essential. There is a wide variety of policies, most sold online; make certain your policy will cover speedy medical evacuation from anywhere in Indonesia.


Be Adventurous

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Indonesia may be famed as a sea and sun destination, but getting adventurous is the best way to discover its wilder corners. Taman Nasional Gunung Rinjani offers superb hiking and trekking route, located in the Lombok Island highest point, Mount Rinjani offers remarkable views.


Eat Well

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Wherever you are, a local market is never far away, so shop at a local market to put together a mouth-watering picnic bursting with fresh flavor. Indonesian cuisine is one of the most vibrant and colorful cuisines in the world, full of intense flavor. Many regional cuisines exist, often based upon indigenous culture and foreign influences. Indonesia has around 5,350 traditional recipes, with that many, can you imagine how delicious Indonesian food can be?


Talk to the locals

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Indonesia in some ways, can be regarded as a different world compared to our western world perspectives. The country contains specific cultural dynamics that can be difficult to understand or interpret for an outsider. Therefore it is highly recommended that you take effort to indulge yourself in this new culture which contains different customs, habits, norms and values than in the western countries. Read more about Indonesia Etiquette. 




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