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Travel Directory / Oceania / Indonesia

Indonesia Travel Guide

Stretching 3,200 miles from eat to west, endless adventures awaits those who will visit the largest archipelago in the world. Coming from the Latin word 'Indus', meaning India and Greek word 'nesos', meaning island, Indonesia boasts of balmy breezes, unspoiled beaches and humbling rich culture among others.

Indonesia's major provinces are Sumatra, Kalimantan (Borneo), Java (Jakarta and Madusa), Sulawesi (Celebes), Nusa Tenggara (Lesser Sunda Islands), Maluku (Moluccas), and Irian Jaya (Papua). If you love drinking coffee, chances are you are already familiar with these names and places.

The country's cities are Jakarta which is the most congested Indonesian city, Bandung which is located in cooler uplands of Java and Banjarmasin which is the largest town on Kalimantan. Manado city is located in the northeastern end of Sulawesi and is famous for good diving spots. Medan is the main city of Sumatra, while Surabaya is the second largest city in Indonesia. Other major cities are Ujung Pandang or Makassar which is the gateway to Sulawesi and Yogyakarta which is Java's cultural center and location of famed Prambanan and Borobudur temples, you should dare not miss to visit.

When you visit, the wet season can be quite a deterrent to some of activities you might have in mind. Generally, Indonesia is best enjoyed during the dry season of May to October, when you are free to roam even to some road less traveled areas.

For water sports enthusiasts, you can choose from surfing, diving, snorkeling, rafting and sailing. From beginner's break to professional ones, exotic surfing spots can be done off the coasts of Bali, Java, Lombok, Sumbawa, Sumba Timor and Flores. If you are not too keen on crowds and prefer and simpler accommodation, try to steer clear of Bali and visit the other places mentioned.

For diving and snorkeling, with more than 80,000 kilometers of claimed territorial seas, get your dive gear ready for Indonesia holds approximately 15% of the world's coral reefs. Adrenaline seekers can opt to try the white water rafting in the rivers of Unda, Ubaya, Balian, Agung and Telaga.

If you are after local attractions, then experience and watch the Kekak and Ramayana Dances in Denpasar. Kekak is a famous Balinese dance with no musical accompaniment except the rhythm produced by a chanting chorus; while Ramayana is a mixture of traditional and modern dance techniques reenacting the famous epic. Additional cultural attractions you must make plans to visit are Wayang Leather Puppet Shows which is in the ancient city of Yogyakarta, the Madura Bull Races in Surabaya and the Tana Toraja which is burial place Northeast of Ujung Pandang.

Next, make a quick stop at Komodo Island which is home to the famous Komodo dragon-the world's biggest reptile measuring over two meters long and weighing 136 kilograms. It is probably the only living family of dinosaurs and the giant lizards holds legendary reputations.

Other places where you can take a side trip and enjoy Indonesia's rich natural resources are Krakatau Volcano where you can take good landscape photographs, Lake Toba which many say is simply a walker's paradise, Mt. Bromo, Mt. Tangkuban and Tm. Mini which is an open air cultural and amusement park.

Diversity is at it's greatest in Indonesia. For the eager wanderer who wants get a good taste of the eastern way of life, then you might just be reading about the destination who will fulfill you wander lust.


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