Indonesia is a massive country consisting of over 18,000 islands, some 800 of which are inhabited. It’s definitely slow travel if you aren’t flying as some crossings between islands are multi-day journeys. Roads are slow, too. Here is a listing of my blog posts, plus general travel advice for Indonesia.
I traveled in Indonesia for one month. Here are blog posts on the country. If there’s no link yet, I haven’t published it yet. Feel free to contact me with any questions!
Indonesia Packing List – I thought this was simple, but I met people on the road who brought far too much stuff and didn’t even pack a snorkel! They regretted the heavy load they carried everywhere. I packed carry-on and used everything I packed, including my drone.
Komodo Islands – I spent 5 days in Komodo National Park. 2 days on a snorkel and island tour and 3 days on a SCUBA liveaboard (sleep and eat on a boat).
Flores Island: Off the Beaten Path – Starting in Labuan Bajo to visit the Komodo Islands (see above), I then flew to Ende, since I only had 10 days left. Ende was my favorite large town in Indonesia. Then, I went by bus to Mt. Kelimutu where I did a village homestay for 4 nights in Waturaka and visited a village known for its ikat weaving. Next, I went to Koka Beach, and later to Maumere. I couchsurfed, was invited into people’s kitchens for a chat, and ate wonderful food! Overall, Flores is darn nice!
Ubud, Bali with a Private Driver – Is it worth it? Yes!!!!! For about $45 a driver took me from the airport to Ubud for my 12-hour layover. We ate delicious street food, visited Ubud’s temples and waterfalls, and hung out at his family’s home where I was invited to play the steel drums used in Balinese puppetry theater. I’ve never done a private driving tour before, and it was a lot better than I expected.
Kuta, Bali – Did you know Kuta is right next to the Denpasar (Bali) airport? I stayed in a great little hotel with free airport transport, and it was right by the beach in a quiet neighborhood. Lots of tasty food within a 5-minute walk. Read all about what I saw and did and ate!
Books, Maps, and Research Sources
I use a lot of sources when researching a trip. In the end, my best source is other travelers I meet along the way. For a kickstart on reaching out to other travelers Facebook groups are a huge source of information.
Facebook Groups: search ‘Indonesia Backpackers’. These groups are very active and current knowledge is available regarding many places outside of the main tourist areas, such as Bali.
Indonesia Map – I suggest selecting the map that best suits your trip. I bought the country map, since I wasn’t sure initially where I might decide to visit. It really helped me understand the vast distances between islands and the road system on any particular island.
Indonesian Phrasebook – It fits in your back pocket. Many Indonesians speak at least a tiny bit of English, but were thrilled when could say a few phrases in their own language. Off the beaten path, this book really is invaluable.
Indonesia Guidebook – A guidebook is invaluable for trip planning. It provides cost and distances of bus rides, and recommends small restaurants and hotels that aren’t on the internet.
On the ground, you can ride a bus, ojek (motorbike taxi), taxi. The apps I used are Go-Jek and Grab. You can also get a private driver for the day. For a 12 hour day on Bali I paid 700,000 rupiah (approx. $45 USD).
Flights to Indonesia are relatively inexpensive if flying from Asia and Australia on the less expensive airlines like Air Asia. Click here and read all about how I find cheap international flights.
Domestic flights in Indonesia can be booked on Tiket and NusaTrip websites. These websites accept credit cards from other countries. If everything is booked, you can try going to the airline’s office in the airport and seeing if a seat opens up.