Wanderlist: Island hopping in Indonesia

23rd June 2016

bali

So you wanna go island hopping in Asia and the Pacific? Well, Malaysia may seem an obvious choice, or possibly French Polynesia if you can afford it, but Indonesia is really where it’s at – mainly because I know they do mean bami and nasi.

Bali is ridiculously popular, but I would love to see the dozens of hidden islands around it. Who knew an hour-long plane flight could transport you to a whole different world? Heading there and booking on the fly is the adventurous route, but it’s smarter to at least book ahead some hotels and flights, check Traveloka for flights between the different islands.

Now – time for my Indonesia island hopping wanderlist…

Experience the closest thing that comes to Jurassic Park meets Game of Thrones at The Komodo National Park, which is home to the Komodo dragon, the world’s largest lizard. This dragon breathes no fire, but is 4 meters long and only found in wild in this very spot. They look way better than the computer generated dragons on TV too, though I’m not sure they’d be happy letting you ride them around a la Khaleesi. It’s apparently also an excellent diving spot, which could be a possible escape route if the dragons get a bit too hungry…

bali2

Bali is obviously for sun, sea, surfing and trying to find yourself. But I would love to be there around Galungan, which is a Balinese holiday celebrating the victory of good over evil which marks the time when the ancestral spirits head down for their version of spring break on Earth. The last day of the celebration is Kuningan, when they return. The festival occurs every 210 days and lasts for 10 days. During the festival, people of Bali decorate a tall bamboo pole outside their houses and evil spirits are driven off by spells and fire crackers. It’s something that seems so Bosnian I want to see it up close.

After Bali, Yogyakarta is other big popular international tourist destination in Indonesia. And you know what? This is the place to be to get your ‘Tomb Raider’ on, so don some sunglasses, adventure gear and head in for your own historical adventures. First stop should be the world’s largest Bhudist temple, then the royal palace and finishing off with Unesco world heritage site temple.

Head to Mount Kelimutu in Kelimutu National Park and see its unique natural phenomenon – aka a super Instagram worthy spot. We’re talking volcanoes. Now this one is called Kelimutu and has three crater lakes with each a different colour: dark green, teal and grey. What’s maybe even more special the fact that the lakes have changed colour several times over the years. It is said that these changes are caused by the neglected ancestral souls, but scientifically the colours are caused by high-concentration of volcanic gases mixing with the minerals in the lakes. I know which story I prefer.

Have you been to Indonesia? Do you have any spots I’ve missed?

5 thoughts on “Wanderlist: Island hopping in Indonesia

  1. jess

    I fell in love with Bali & the Gili Islands after spending a couple of weeks over there and I’m itching to go back and explore a bit more of Indonesia! I was gutted I couldn’t make it to Komodo but it was a bit too much of a stretch for my backpacker budget.

    Reply
  2. Anne

    I highly recommend Yogyakarta on Java for volcanoes, the incredible temple complexes of Borobodur and others whose names i cannot recall and super friendly people. It’s within an hour of Bali too!

    Reply

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