With all the beautiful places in the country, choosing the best holiday destinations in Indonesia is a challenge. But you shouldn’t fret if you’re cramming in planning your vacation. This post will help you choose the places you should go to without losing the charm of the Asian wonder. All the islands here are magnificent in its own right but these ten stood out among travelers.
Before you choose, you should identify what kind of vacation you want to have. All these are wonderful and it will fit almost all travelers.
Bali is the quintessential holiday destination in the country. Stunning shorelines and indulgence extraordinaire- this is the hook of Bali to many tourists. And true enough, this island is a paradise. It’s home to the sacred Uluwatu temple that serves as a watchman of the Indian Ocean. There are also numerous beaches here like Canggu, Nusa Dua, Kuta, and Seminyak that offer different levels of luxury.
Aside from the azure waters, this island also takes pride in its Bali Safari and Marine Park. It’s a 40-hectare land that houses about 60 species and a number of restaurants and parks. Bali is also a place for trekking and other inland activities like the adrenaline-kicking TreeTop Adventure Park. Overall, this island is the perfect getaway even for families.
If your budget will only bring you to the Java Island, you don’t have to worry as there are tons of natural wonders you can see here. Bandung is a large city on the West Java where volcanoes and tea plantations adorn the wide stretch of land. The weather here as one of the best holiday destinations in Indonesia is mostly cold which is perfect for a stroll and outdoor activities.
In Bandung, you shouldn’t miss the Tangkuban Perahu. You can go hiking here to reach the top crater where a small space is organized for the visitors. There are also tons of cafés here to chill out as well as resorts that can give you the Bali vibe. At the Mercure Setiabudi Hotel, you should check the Pool of Stars.
Bintan Island is like the Bali of the Riau Archipelago. It has stunning shorelines like the Lagoi Beach that can compete with Nusa Dua or Seminyak. But beyond the usual resorts, there are a lot of activities here you can enjoy. You can rent an aircraft from the Air Adventures Asia to fly above the majestic island. You can also try your luck to hook a dancing fish in the colorful fishing platforms in the Swiss-Bel Hotel.
If you prefer lepaking by the beach, you shouldn’t miss trying out the Jetovator which is like FlyBoarding. For an extra dose of fun, you can head to Nirwana’s Happy Valley or the Lagoi Weekend Bazaar. The most challenging of all is trying building your own boat at the Trikora Beach. Bintan is one of the best holiday destinations in Indonesia that’s the right mix of fun and luxury.
Magelang is sharing the stretch of the Borobudur with the city of Yogyakarta. But aside from the sacred landmark, Magelang is also the home of Mount Merapi, one of the tallest points in Indonesia. Although this city doesn’t have shorelines to boast, it’s pack with fun activities like rafting at the Progo and Elo River and swimming at the Sekar Langit Waterfall.
If you want to take a dip, don’t miss the sacred waters of the Umbul Temple. This place is believed to be built as a bathing place in the 9th century. More of the things you shouldn’t miss here is the Tidar Hill, Gemawa Batik Village, and the OHD Museum of Art. If you’re looking for countryside immersion, Magelang is the place to be.
Island hopping would be your fix of adventure once you visit the Lombok Islands. This place is far from the bustling vibe of Bali but equally stunning. You just have to let go of Bali to discover this place that boasts its breathtaking vistas.
Lombok is first known as a surfer island. But if you want to enjoy the tranquility of the place, you should head right away to the Gili Islands. The islets here would be your dream private beach with no hawkers or noisy beachfront cafés to ruin the scene.
Aside from the Gili Islands, you should head to Senggigi Beach which is also one of the best holiday destinations in Indonesia. There are ambulant vendors here but they’re not as pushy as those in other attractions. Locals here love football and you can stir a nice conversation with a bunch of folks.
Yogyakarta is famous for three things: Borobudur, Prambanan, and Ratu Boko. These places are staples to every holiday vacation of families or just solo travelers. But aside from these, you should discover other attractions like the Goa Jamblang, Timang Beach, Mount Merapi, and the Ramayana Ballet. You can also stay in a boutique hotel here to witness the colorful art of the city.
If you want an Instagram-able place to visit, head to the Kalibiru National Park Viewpoint. Here, you can stand on a platform like those in Bali Treetop to have a view of the adjacent lake. After taking some selfies, you can enjoy a ride on the zip line.
On free days, you can join a Batik making class or have a buzzing night at the Alun-Alun Selatan Kraton.
7. Banda Aceh
Banda Aceh is the Northern tip of Indonesia, and though far from the modern life of the capital, this is still one of the best holiday destinations in Indonesia. It’s famous for being the sole place in the country to have the Shariah Law and the most sought-after beaches. Aside from the sea, there are also hidden gems here like the Blang Kolam Waterfall, Ketambe Rainforest, and Lhok Nga.
It can be remembered that in 2004, a killer tsunami hit Aceh and claimed the lives of about 200,000 people. You can visit the Tsunami Museum here to pay respect to the lives sacrificed on the tragedy.
If you’re coming from Singapore, it’s surprising to know that the Batam Island is just 40 minutes away with a boat ride. Since it’s surrounded by water, Batam is the perfect place to enjoy water sports like skiing, wakeboarding, and canoeing. You should visit the Penyengat Island nearby to see the yellow mosque called Masjid Kuning. You can circumnavigate the island in just two hours by walking. Other shorelines you should see are the Nongsa Beach.
For more leisure activities, you can watch the sunset at the Barelang Bridge, splurge on seafood at the Harbor Bay, and have a splash at the Ocarina Waterpark. Although from the mainland, Batam can still give you an upbeat nightlife at NED.
Flores Island is famous for its three colored crater lakes. This is also the favorite spot of tourists who are planning to hop to the Komodo National Park. If you’re planning a holiday stay, this island won’t disappoint. You should go to the Padar Island to experience the pink, black, and white beach all close to each other. If you want more shoreline wonder on the best holiday destinations in Indonesia, head to the Blue Stone Beach.
Flores is also famous for its webbed rice in paddies in Cancar. You can hike a vantage point to see the formation of the fields. After a tiring day, you’ll enjoy a Caci dance of locals. Your guide will tell you when the next one will happen in the village near you.
10. Thousand Islands
Who says Jakarta can’t be beach getaway? On the northern part of the Jakarta coastline lies the white sand islands. It doesn’t consist of a thousand islands but of 110 islets that are classified as tourism, historical, and conservation spots.
It’s hard to choose on the hundred islands here but if you want the best, go to Ayer Island. This is known as the cleanest and brightest spot in the whole archipelago where you can find floating cottages. Instead of staying in luxury hotels, the cottages of Ayer Island are the perfect refuge from the usual tourist spots.
Choosing the best holiday destinations in Indonesia is now easier that you have this guide. Be it for vibrant, secluded, or a humble vacation, you’ll find nice choices here. Do you have one in mind? Let us know in the comment section!