Indonesia is a wonderful place to visit for your holiday. The diversity of landscape and culture offers for every type of traveler a suitable array of options. From tall cloud-swept mountains covered with jungle and green rice terraces, a rich cultural heritage, the exclusive orangutan and Komodo dragon, to white sandy beaches and crystal blue seas. Finding some unique places to visit without being overrun with other tourists is nowadays a challenge. Therefore we have selected some unique and stunning places to visit in Indonesia.
Ora beach on Seram Island
Photo credit to Tripcanvas
Hidden in the north of Seram Island in Maluku province is Ora Beach. The beach is even largely unknown by its residence and really off the beaten track. It is surrounded by tropical limestone cliffs, has sugary white sand and crystal-clear water. To get there is a bit arduous, but this will be soon forgotten as soon as you arrive at the only resort in the area, Ora Beach Resort. It is wonderful for snorkeling as the reef in front of the beach is very well maintained. You can stay here from 77 USD a night.
Green Canyon Java
Photo credit to Orchia
The Green Canyon is located around 31 km from Pangandaran in the village Kertayasa, in West Java. Its turquoise clear water and jungle covered cliffs at every side of the stream are really mesmerizing. You can even have a swim if you wish. A traditional wooden boat will take you up the stream for 130.000 Rp per boat (capacity of 6). The best time to enjoy the beauty of this place is in the dry season from May to late September as otherwise the water level will be high, the stream wild and the water not green.
Tiu Kelep and Sendang Gile Lombok
Photo credit to Dave Anderson of Jones Around the World
Mount Rinjani on Lombok contains some beautiful natural wonders of which the waterfalls of Sendang Gile and Tiu Kelep are amongst them. You can see layered water flows, cool and misty air and green scenery all around. It is not necessary to have a guide to reach the waterfalls, but if you want to hire a guide you can do that just before the entrance. The walk to the waterfalls will take at least 2/2.5 hours for a full round trip. Just go to the village of Senaru from where you can find your way to the waterfalls. You can find more information on Rinjani National Park website. Travel blogger Dave of Jones around the World shares his experience in his blog Sendang Gile & Tiu Kelep Waterfalls: exploring northern Lombok.
Mamole Tree house
Photo credit to Nihiwatu
Nihiwatu will exceed your expectations, as it is breathtakingly beautiful. You can reach Mamole Tree House on Sumba Islands via Bali. In many respects it’s like travelling back in time from what Bali must have been in the past. The place has several tree houses hidden between the ancient trees. The views from the houses are stunning. It also has a fabulous infinity pool. You can surf, do horse riding, take a spa treatment or mingle with the locals.
Aling Aling Waterfall Bali
Photo credit to Baliwonderland
This place is extraordinary. It exists of several waterfalls of which Aling-Aling with a height of 35 meters it is the biggest. The waterfall provides you a chance to take a jump from 5, 10 or 15 meters. There is an entrance fee of IDR 10,000, but worth every penny.
It may be a bit difficult to get there because most drivers don’t know where it is, but with Google maps it should work. The waterfall is located in Sambangan village, Sukasada district, Bali. Bali even has more amazing waterfalls.
Pink Beach on Komodo Islands
The pink beach is located on Komodo Islands. Its name relates to the little pink coral pieces that cover the beach, which gives it a pink glow. Even more stunning is the view it gives you when snorkeling. The underwater landscape is stunning and the water is really clear. Often the pink beach will be visited while also seeing the dragons during a Komodo tour.
Photo credit to Hideout
This little paradise is located hidden in the mountains of the Gunung Agung volcano next to a small river among rice fields. The owners have built it out of bamboo in an eco-friendly way. Here you can still get off the beaten track and experience authentic life of a Balinese village. They provide you with a scooter so that you can explore the direct surroundings yourself. Hideout is a lovely place in the middle of nature.
Wae Rebo Village Flores
Wae Rebo is the last remaining traditional Manggaraian ethnic village that is still home to 7 traditional houses and located in the crater of a very old volcano. It is at an altitude of 1,125 meter above sea level. It is if you are going back in time. Everything seems peaceful in the village. The village is well known for its coffee production, which you can also enjoy during your stay.
To get to Wae Rebo you first have to go to the village of Denge from where it is a 2-hour pleasant hike to the village. When you arrive, you must first go and meet the elder to ask permission to visit the village. The entrance fee is IDR 325.000. If you want you can stay over night, reservation is required.
Mount Bromo, Java
Mount Bromo is one of the most famous volcanoes in Indonesia and with a reason. Ok, I have to admit, this is not a place where you don’t encounter any tourists, but it should definitely be on our list to visit. Mount Rinjani on Lombok is another beautiful mountain to climb, maybe even more beautiful, but this requires quite a level of fitness.
The view from the top of Mount Bromo is breathtaking, but be aware that you will not be the only one who wants to get a glimpse of the sun rising over the crater edge. If you want to avoid the crowd you can also hike the Mount Bromo yourself. Travel blogger Kristin of Be My Travel Muse writes about her experience of exploring it by herself and was glad she did when she saw all the tourist buses.
If you want some peace at the summit and a good view then go to the last wooden railing you get to before the asphalt road, just a half-kilometer from the summit. Here you will probably only encounter a few people instead of hundreds at the summit itself. The view is just as good. If you are considering hiking Mount Bromo check out her article Mount Bromo in Java without a tour.
Dieng Plateau Java
Photo credit to Java Solo
The Dieng Plateau looks and feels completely different to almost anywhere else in Indonesia. The Dieng Plateau is absolutely stunning: rolling hills terraced with vegetable gardens as far as the eye can see, boiling pits of mud and coloured lakes. It is home to several beautiful temples, crater lakes and hot springs. Be aware that it often rains and can be cold. You can do it in a day trip from Jogyakarta if you have a driver.
Pantai Bara, Tanjung Bira, Sulawesi
Photo credit KSM Tour
Powdery white sand, quiet and crystal clear water, that is what you can find on Bara Beach located on the southern tip of Sulawesi. It is located six hours by car from Makassar. You can easily rent a car with driver for IDR 425,000.- until IDR 500,000.- per car & return (for the driver). Rent a boat, dive, snorkel or relax in your hammock. That is all you need here.
Togean Islands Sulawesi
Photo credit Arian Zwegers, Flickr
The Togean Islands consists of 56 little islands and are located off the central coast of Sulawesi. It is maybe not the easiest place to get to, but if you are looking for an uncrowded place, crystal clear sea and being off the grid for a few days then this is the place to go. It provides nice diving opportunities and some good places to stay. Stuart McDonald and his family loved their experience so much that they made it the focus of their second Ebook.
Photo credit Arian Zwegers, Flickr
Looking for some amazing local travel experiences in Indonesia? Check out these off the beaten track things to do and places to sleep.