A country known for its beautiful beaches, rainforests, and megalithic temples, Indonesia is another Asian country that should be on your travel list. Similar to countries like the Philippines, Thailand, and Singapore, Indonesia has a diverse local culture that makes the overall travel experience interesting.
Are you planning on traveling to Indonesia this year? We got you covered. In this article, we’ll help you make the most out of your 10-day vacation. From visiting the best Islamic and Hindu architectures to enjoying captivating beaches and luxurious Indonesian hotels, we’ll help you navigate and choose the best spot to spend your trip!
Day 1-3: Bali
To have a fantastic first day in the country, start your journey in its bustling tourist hub, Bali, Indonesia. You might have heard of Bali on Instagram. It’s where most celebrities go on vacation. Bali is the no.1 destination for foreigners who want to experience the #islandlife.
Who wouldn’t? Bali is the jewel region of Indonesia. It’s the perfect place for swimming, diving, and relaxing. Instead of going directly to the big chaotic city of Jakarta, tourists often visit Bali first.
You’ll never run out of Bali accommodations. Bali has hundreds of traditional Balinese villas and resorts to choose from. You can start your first day relaxing and swimming at the resort of your choice while enjoying authentic Indonesian food. It’s the best place to unwind and relax after a jetlagged trip.
Many people traveling to Indonesia decide to stay in Bali for the rest of their vacation but we don’t recommend it. There’s still a lot more to see in this country than just Bali. But if you’re ever here, don’t forget to try the following:
Diving in Padang Bai
Located east of Bali, Padang Bai is famous for its beautiful underwater paradise. Visit here and try different dive sites that can be reached by boat. Tourists often go to Padang Bai to see sharks and turtles.
If you want to go somewhere with fewer tourists, we highly recommend Nusa Penida. It’s one of the many islands that are close to Bali but are not always flocked by tourists. Here you’ll see amazing jaw-dropping coastlines and pristine waters. They also have beautiful luxurious resorts, beaches, and tree houses to spend a night on. Nusa Penida can be reached by ferry from Padang Bai in East Bali.
Day 4: East Nusa Tenggara
Just an hour flight from the beautiful beaches of Bali is the Nusa Tenggara region in Indonesia. The region is famous for one thing: its Komodo dragons. Often known as the largest living lizard and our last link to dinosaurs even though it’s just 4 million years old, Komodo dragons roam freely in this region.
Here you can visit the world’s largest Komodo dragon park and enclosure. The Komodo National Park has already been declared a World Heritage Site by UNESCO in 1986. Home to some of the unique species of Komodo Dragon, the park cares for around 2,500 komodos in its vicinity.
Through the years, the park has expanded and now includes several endemic species of fruit bats and Rinca rats. It also includes wild horses, long-tailed macaques, water buffalo, and different species of snakes. The park is also known for its breathtaking marine landscapes such as the Coral Triangle which is home to around 250 species of corals, sea sponges, and bony fishes.
While you’re in Nusa Tenggara, visit the famous Pink Beach. The beach is known for its pink-looking sand made by shattered red coral reefs from microscopic animals called Foraminifera.
Day 5-6: East Java
If you want to experience the best natural sights and hikes, go to East Java. Here you’ll find mount Bromo, Indonesia’s most famous volcano. Many people say this active volcano is the closest thing to hell on earth. Sitting on the ring of fire, Indonesia has one of the world’s most active volcanoes.
Visiting Mount Bromo you can have an up-close encounter with a volcano. You can see its lava and its smoke just a few feet with just some railings to hold you to safety. Mount Bromo shares its area with a vast desert, flower field, and a beautiful waterfall. Traveling to Indonesia and trekking in Mount Bromo is an unforgettable experience. It can be explored in a day or two so be sure you have your hiking party ready before the day starts.
While in the area, don’t forget to visit Goa Tetes. Goa Tetes is a beautiful and unique cave in East Java near Mount Bromo. Here you can see a collection of caves and waterfalls all the way up a cliff. The water leads to the pitch-black caves where water falls on top.
Day 7-8: Central Jakarta
On your seventh day of traveling to Indonesia, move south to Central Jakarta to experience the past and future side of Indonesia. Here you can travel back in time and enjoy the architecture of the 19th and 20th centuries. See several of Jakarta’s most famous buildings including “The Monas” which is surrounded by the Presidential Palace and other government buildings. You can book a tour at the top of the Monas to get a bird’s eye view of all of Central Jakarta.
While in the area, also visit the Istiqlal Mosque, the biggest mosque in Southeast Asia. First opened to the public in 1978, the mosque was built to commemorate Indonesian Independence. The word ‘Istiqlal’ is the Arabic word for ‘Independence.
Just a short drive from the center city is Jakarta’s famous flea market called Jalan Surabaya Antique Market. Here you can find exquisite Indonesian antiques, salvaged ship parts used luggage, and more.
Day 9: West Java
On your ninth day, visit the most populous region in Indonesia, West Java. In the past, West Java was called the Sunda Kingdom. It is governed by the Sultanate of Cirebon who ensures art and culture are alive up to this day.
Bogor Botanical Gardens
Just 40 miles outside of Jakarta is the Bogor Botanical Gardens in West Java (Indonesian name: Kebun Raya Bogor). It’s a 200 acres park filled with around 15,000 species of plants and trees. Today it is run by the Indonesian Institute of Sciences and is used for the cultivation of tropical plants. The Botanical Garden is divided by the Ciliwung river and has three bridges. Here you can spend a day just exploring nature with your family. Admission is just $1 USD and can be reached via train from Jakarta.
Day 10: Sumatra
Traveling to Indonesia wouldn’t be complete without seeing the orangutans in Sumatra. These beautiful endangered creatures are so satisfying to watch live in the wild. There are only about 6,000 orangutans left in the wild in Sumatra as most of them died due to deforestation.
The ones found in the center are rescued and protected by the government. They are now safely in their natural habitat along with other animals such as birds and reptiles. To get to the orangutans you have to first get to the tiny village named Bukit Lawang. To get there you need to take a taxi from Medan Airport which is roughly a 2-hour ride if there’s no traffic.