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  • Last Updated: 06th October 2016

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Indonesia travel guide

Indonesia, comprising 13,466 tropical islands between the Indian and Pacific Oceans, is not short on attractions. Offering snow-capped mountains, white sandy beaches, fertile paddy fields, and an unrivalled array of wildlife; Indonesia is both a backpacker’s and luxury hunter’s paradise.

Around 200 different ethnic tribes form the 215 million population of this multi-island paradise, many with unique and unfamiliar customs and traditions. Indonesia is well-known for its wildlife, ranging from the rare Komodo dragon to the Dugong and the Orangutan. For somewhere very different, yet familiar, use Netflights.com to find the best deals and travel to Indonesia today.

When to go

Indonesia’s location, right on the equator and spanning two of the hottest continents, Asia and Oceania, ensures temperatures are hot and humid all year round. This means there is no particular time of year to visit. Each season offers something different, and tourists are to be found throughout the year.

The dry season in Indonesia is from June to October, and the rainy season from November to March. Temperatures tend to stay the same throughout the year, but in the rainforest it’s understandably hotter, and the snowy West Papua Mountains are colder. The best time to visit depends on personal preference between dry or moist air.

Jakarta
The sprawling metropolis of Jakarta, Indonesia’s political, financial and population capital and by-far its largest city, is a confusing concoction of loud city sounds, busy roads, and unfamiliar smells. But it’s a worthwhile experience and the most popular entry point to the country. The city has multiple layers waiting to be explored; a Dutch colonial history shining through the abundance of colonial buildings scattered across the atmospheric old town, Kota, a thriving nightlife scene with regular 24-hour parties, and opulent stately neighbourhoods with their gleaming shopping centres and minimalist museums. Jakarta has all that a city should have, and is only a short flight from Indonesia’s treasures.

Bali
The island of Bali is the ultimate backpacker’s paradise, and the synonymous destination for travellers to Indonesia. Bali’s essence is of paradise, with all night beach parties, clean white sand, and a multitude of diving experiences on offer. Bali is not just for beach bums as the island offers everything that a visitor could possibly desire. Dramatic volcano landscapes dotted with thousands of temples and lush rainforests, combined with expanses of rice fields in the east and west of the island, and secluded surf beaches in the north; a visitor cannot get bored.

Java
Another symbol of Indonesia’s illustrious and culturally rich past, the island of Java is known around the world for its many mountains and rainforests; filled with an abundance of local wildlife. Java has a hidden side, one of rich Islamic heritage and wealthy fiefdoms. Masjid Agung, a 16th century Islamic Mosque in the former capital of the Javanese Mataram Empire, Banten, offers an insight into the historic importance of Islam in the development of Indonesia. Java is an island that you cannot afford to miss.

Indonesia highlights not to miss

Among the many highlights of a trip to Indonesia are:

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    Taking part in the many unique Temple dance and singing performances, particularly prominent at the Batukaru and Pura Dalem Temples. Low-lighting, flickering candles and talented Balinese dancers makes for an unforgettable experience.

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    Watching the sun rise through the towering Temple spires of the UNESCO-listed 9th century monument in Borobudur; just a short drive from Yogyakarta.

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    Swimming in the pristine volcanic waters of Lake Toba on the island of Sumatra.

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    Searching for the infamous Komodo dragon amongst the rusty red landscape of Komodo Island.

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    Exploring the culture-rich village of Tana Toraja with its intricately painted houses, farmers in the paddy fields, and their buffalo.