Indonesia Travel Guides for Backpackers

Nuvasa Bay: A Sweet Spot in Batam Riau, Indonesia

Looking at it now, Batam Riau seems to be one of the fastest-growing tourism spots in Indonesia. No doubt it still isn’t very famous now… but it still grows at an unbelievably tremendous rate. How? Simple. It is an island about 30 kilometers from Singapore- a nation which happens to be one of the most developed and also among the top 25 most visited places in the world. That makes Batam Riau a sweet tourist paradise for the residents there- away from the hustle and bustle. Just around half a century ago, Batam Riau was almost non-existing. Well, maybe not entirely, but there were a very few cars visible around here and there… basically an idea of a village. Speak of the Resort: Nuvasa Bay When you surf up for the name ‘Nuvasa Bay’, you’ll probably come up with something like ‘Nuvasa Bay: New Face of Batam’. This is a residential area and frankly, I don’t know if it’s open now or anything about it. My best guess is that it is the rest of the larger part of the place I visited. But anyway, the part that I’d been to, seemed to be just a resort. This place is relatively new. I’ve been in and out of Batam Riau for over 10 years now and I came to know about Nuvasa Bay this year. So I and my family gave it a visit… and believe me, the beach is great! A couple of things to keep in mind You’re visiting a beach, what could possibly be a few more things that I’d look to add? You’re right about that. Just make sure you get yourself a cap or an umbrella when you visit. Sure, the resort does offer a lot of shade around, but the entrance to Nuvasa Bay is a roundabout with a metal structure in the middle. I can’t describe it as I couldn’t figure out what it was, but it was one of a kind. If you think this looks fascinating, then there are a couple of other structures which look pretty cool too. As you can see, it looks great, but it has no shade around. It’s beautiful that way. So if you wish to take a look around by walk, then make sure to cover up your skin… or at least your face. With no sort of shades on, the heat in Indonesia can be a serious issue (not if you live on the equator line too though), especially for your skin. Do make sure you get your caps or umbrellas or whatever is comfortable. Quad bike riding You can get banana rides and boat rides all over Batam, but not this. I didn’t get to do this myself but Nuvasa Bay is one of the few spots that offer quad bike riding. Wish to give it a try? Then here’s the right spot for you! Anyway, that would be all for you to be aware of… Have a great vacation!       […]

Travel Guide to Bali: An Exuberant Holiday Destination

You may have been to a lot of vibrant and exotic places in the world but Bali is one of those places where one can make indelible memories with the natural wonders of the country loaded with warm-hearted people and delectable cuisine. However, being a paradise for nature lovers, this place has to offer a lot more than one can expect. This small island is a part of the magnificent country, Indonesia, which has the potential for peaceful living and audacious adventures that make it a quintessential holiday destination for travellers. Therefore, here are some awesome must-visit holiday destinations and things to do beyond any guide books that will make your experience in Bali unforgettable. Tips to travel to Bali  Before travelling anywhere, one must be familiar with what all he/she will get to experience. As far as Bali is concerned, travellers like me will come across various other things apart from natural allurement. Pleasing climate This place is for people like me who love the warmer climate as it remains hot in most part of the year. However, be mindful and avoid travelling to Bali in the rainy season which may ruin your experience. Currency and cash As a matter of fact, Bali uses Indonesian Rupiah as its local currency. Nonetheless, in this era of plastic money, credit or debit cards do not work in most part of the island. Therefore, keep a handful of cash with you all the time. Natural Wonders Most of the mountains on the island are known as active volcanoes. So, as a significant tip, check the local geographical report before visiting any peak. Ways to get around There are a variety of ways, available in Bali, to travel may that be through the car, taxi, local transport, or bike. Nevertheless, to travel Bali like a local, you must prefer renting a Scooter over any mean of transportation. Must visit places in Bali Bali, an untouched heavenly beauty, is a perfect escape from all the hustle and bustle of your whirlwind schedule. So, here are some outstanding holiday destinations that made me come across rich culture, ancient architecture and temple encircled with lush green mountains and beguiling beaches. Kuta One of the most famous places in Bali, Kuta is an amalgamation of city and beaches as it is counted amongst the first tourist developments of the country. For people who love to enjoy the luxurious property in scenic beauty, this place is perfect because here I found the availability of excellent tranquillizing resorts for my stay. Uluwatu Uluwatu is situated in the southern part of the island and I found this district astoundingly beautiful because it made me speechless as I moved my eyes from one side to the other. Besides, do not forget to pay your visit to the famous temple as the scenery behind it will provide you with the perfect background for your photograph. Ubud If you are somewhat like me. then you will be excited to see the brilliant culture […]

Things to do in Bali, Indonesia

What makes Bali so unique from the rest of the vacation spots is that it’s an ideal location for all kinds of people. By all kinds, I mean people who wish to stay idle and stretch their feet to the warm sun by the beach or those who like to explore and travel around. It’s also ideal for those who love all kinds of water sports. It’s obvious! Bali is known for its varieties in water sports. But of course, Bali is really recognized for its lifestyle and tradition. So before you regret about it, there are quite a few things that you shouldn’t miss out here. This includes cuisine and tradition. Cuisine in Bali Going to Bali and not getting the feel of Nasi Padang on your tongue is equivalent to not visiting Bali. If you’re a vegetarian, that is a whole different case. Because in Bali, or anywhere else in Indonesia for that matter, the number of varieties in non-vegetarian delicacies is in abundance. If one sets out to try all of the varieties, he or she may go on for a whole day with breakfast, lunch, and dinner. But let me assure you that not even a whole day is enough for checking out all its varieties. What makes these delicacies even more compelling is the fact that each tastes better than the other. There is no stopping it. Now if you are asking for the best restaurants, quite frankly, Bali is packed with these restaurants. There isn’t much difference between one another in terms of taste. So there isn’t much to worry about. A Spot to Trek in Bali I’m sure there are a few places here and there that are available for trekking but I found this to be the best among all. If one is carrying an infant then this option is out. But for the majority out there, just like I said before, Bali is for all. If you are into trekking and adventures, then this is not a spot you would want to miss out on. Even if you are sort of an indoor person, the view and the feel on the top is going to be overwhelming. The view has the power to make an illusion that one is floating above the clouds. So either way, it is worth the time and climbs. Speaking of climbing, if you’re going out for the first time (I believe you are), I would suggest taking a guide. Usually, the trek will begin early about three in the morning. The trek will take up to four hours. Start out in the dark but you will come down with a radiant face under the sun. Conclusion So if you’ve packed up your bags and ready to visit Bali, these are the most basic places and things that one must do if he or she goes to Bali. Another thing to keep in mind is that the longer you stay, the better. The place is so vast that […]

Places to Visit in Yogyakarta

Yogyakarta, also known as Jogja, is a city in Java Island that is home to the culture and arts of Indonesia. If you are interested in the country’s rich heritage, this city should be at the top of your itinerary. There’s a variety of things to do and places to visit from this city alone, from the breathtaking architecture of the temples (Borobudur and Prambanan) to the relaxing pine tree forests (Pinus Pengger). There’s just so many places to choose from but my friend and I did not have much time and budget to go to all of them so we have chosen only a few places that we really wanted to visit. We’ve made friends with some locals and asked them to tour us around with their bikes. Jalan Malioboro Our first stop, Jalan Malioboro. Jalan Malioboro is a street where you can buy all sorts of stuff from street food and batik clothes to paintings and small trinkets. Tip: Stick to a budget and ask yourself multiple times if you really want to buy something before you buy them. It will save you an AWFUL LOT OF MONEY. My mistake when we went to Jalan Malioboro was I bought too many key chains to bring back to my country as gifts to my friends. The prices of the goods are so cheap that I ended up buying way too many souvenirs (which took up so much luggage space on my flight back home). Explore your options by going around different stalls first before buying anything. You might get a better deal in the next shop with more varieties of t-shirt and key chain designs to choose from. Borobudur and Prambanan Temple Before I went to Indonesia, I’ve always been curious about the architecture and history of old temples. It was so exciting when I finally got to visit two of the most popular temples in the country (Borobudur and Prambanan). The two Temples are located in the outskirts of Jogja. It’ll take about 45 minutes to travel from central Jogja to Borobudur and about 40 minutes to Prambanan. We went to Borobudur via our local Indonesian friends’ bikes because they don’t allow Grab drivers to enter the facility. Prepare around 130,000-500,000 Rupiah for the entrance fee (I’m not so sure how much it costs now but it really helps to find a local friend to go with so you don’t have to pay extra for a tour guide). When we got to the temple, it was crowded with tourists so it was hard to take a decent photo without other people getting into the frame. We were able to appreciate the view when it was almost closing time because more and more people were starting to go home. It was such a breathtaking and unforgettable scenery as we witnessed the sunset before we left Borobudur. When we went to Prambanan Temple, we rode a Grab car going there because it was more convenient and they were allowed to pick us up and […]

Travel Without a Tour: Bali to Kawah Ijen

One of only two locations in the world, the phenomenal “Blue Fire” can be seen inside the volcanic crater of Kawah Ijen, a mountain situated in the far eastern region of Java, Indonesia. Climbing down the steep slopes of the crater, one can witness the sulfuric gas emit blue flames, only made visible in the darkness. Hearing so much about Ijen from travelers and locals alike, I dove headfirst into getting their myself and without a tour. Why Travel Without a Tour? A sense of adventure Experience local transportation Freedom to change plans Get out of your comfort zone Usually the cheaper option For whatever reason you decide to travel without a tour, the journey will become so much more a part of the whole experience than just the final destination. A rewarding an enriching adventure awaits those who dare to take the road less traveled. Here I will detail my own experience as well as a few other options to get you to Kawah Ijen and view the breathtaking sights for yourself. Bali to Banyuwangi From the Ubung Bus Terminal in Denpasar, you will first need to reach the ferry port connecting Bali and Java. As soon as I set foot on the bus station grounds someone immediately approached me asking where I wanted to go. If this isn’t your same experience ask around an tell them you’re going to Gilimanuk and follow suit as they direct you to the correct bus. The bus ticket shouldn’t cost more than 40k rupiah. The bus ride will be approximately 4 hours with frequent stops and bumps along the way. Because Gilimanuk is the last bus stop I just say back and enjoyed the scenery. Once you reach the harbor you will follow the signs for ticket purchases. As of 2018 ferry cards are being issued which cost 20k rupiah. The actual ferry tickets only cost 6,500 rupiahs but the cards cost 10k with an additional 10k minimum balance charge.  The ferry comes every 30 minutes so no matter when you arrive you won’t have to wait long. From Gilimmanuk to Ketapong it is about 1/2 an hour, and the boat ride is likely to be full. Seeing as there were no available seats I just sat on my backpack, and trust me you won’t be the only one sitting on the ground. Exiting Ketapong there will a single road leading into Banyuwangi. Small minivans painted blue or yellow and gutted out for seating will line the roadway. Typically called a  bemo or angkot these vehicles function as the local inner city buses and shouldn’t cost you more than 10k rupiah per ride. Ask around and you’ll find one heading into the city. The bemos have a fixed route so just asked to be dropped off along the road closest to your hotel. In such situations, I usually have google maps open and when I see the little blue dot nearing a crossroad to my hostel I motion the driver to stop. […]

The Unusual Places Bali Tour Guides Won't Mention

Part of the thriving country of Indonesia, the island of Bali stands proud as the global mecca for eating, praying, and loving. While half the visitors swill smoothies and do sunset yoga, the other half make the most of cheap beers and cigarettes. Whichever path you take, there will come a time in your holiday when you feel the urge to try something different; something off the beaten path. You can do sun salutations anywhere in the world. Only in Bali can you meditate with bats or play mini-golf with a monkey. It's an incredible place with a deep history, most of which you won't see when sticking to the usual tourist traps. Below are some of the more unusual things the island has to offer: if you like hunting ghosts or chugging coffee, you're in luck. 1. Bali Mini Golf It says mini golf on the tin, but the infamous kopi luwak is what this café’s putting forward. You’re warmly welcomed to the Tabanan café by several smiling faces and one civet (luwak in Indonesian). This furry animal looks a little like a possum, and is the source of the most expensive coffee in the world. The luwaks roam coffee plantations and eat only the nicest beans; they then excrete them out in partially-digested clumps. For only Rp. 50,000 (US$3.50) you can try the resultant coffee; it’s slightly more bitter and less caffeinated than your average long black. Add a sliver of lemon rind and this is a damn good beverage. The luwak’s a cuddly critter; although it might nibble, those teeth are designed for cracking coffee beans, not skin. Nestled up the back is the golf course and a monkey or two to watch you play. Enjoy the huge platter of free kopi bali (Balinese coffee) on offer, and then spend all your money buying a kilo of it to take home. 2. Ghost Palace Hotel Only about 50 km north of the bikini-ridden streets of Kuta lies one of Bali’s most feared attractions. For those who don’t want to risk taking home a Balinese hex, the Ghost Palace Hotel is a must-do. Originally called the P.I. Taman Rekreasi Hotel & Resort, construction was halted in the 90s when workers mysteriously disappeared overnight, leaving demons and spectres to take their place in the halls. Locals will tell you that there's no mystery: the wealthy owner couldn't get planning permission for what he wanted, so abandoned the project. They will tell you this, but admit they never go there. You’ll be hard-pressed to find many other visitors except for the resident lizards, snakes, and – of course – ghosts. Ghost-hunters should go during the day – it's tricky to get in at night, and if they catch you sneaking past the guard you could be deported. With an entry fee of only Rp. 10,000 (US$0.70), it's well worth the price. 3. The Temple on The Lake Near the Ghost Palace Hotel is Lake Beratan, which the locals will tell […]

7 reasons to visit Lombok

Lombok is almost the same size as Bali just about 40 kilometers away on the East but still remains undiscovered. This is a great time to visit it before it becomes so popular and crowded as his famous sister.  I will tell you in secret that the island itself has many beautiful places and the nicest people I have met in Indonesia. Read the information below and book your flight! What to see in Lombok? The 7 reasons to visit Lombok are: Gili Islands 3 small paradise islands: Gili Trawangan – The Party Island, Gili Meno: The Honeymoon Island, Gili Air: The Chill Island. Depends on what you would like to do, every one of them is unique and you will feel relaxed after 1 hour of looking at the crystal clear sea. And then you can choose between sunbathing, snorkeling, biking, partying and other interesting activities. Gunung Rinjani If you are a hiking fan or just want to enjoy spectacular views, you have to climb the still active volcano. Before the climb ensure yourself that you are in shape to climb the mountain which height is 3,726 m (12,224 ft). The hike takes 2 days but definitely is worth the effort. You can book a guided tour in many touristic places. Waterfalls Located in the north part of Lombok are one of the most breathtaking highlights of the Island. You can sit there and listen to the sound of falling water for hours! You can go there on your own or join guided tours offered almost everywhere. Beaches Many spectacular and beautiful spots worth seeing. One of the best is Selong Belanak with perfect, smooth sand and many surfing schools. You should definitely try the sport there – you will be hooked since then. Despite the Selong Belanak, there are many other worth seeing: Pink Beach – with pinkish sand which took the color from small fragments of the coral and turquoise water. Getting there by land may be difficult due to lack of asphalt road but again – it is worth the effort! And you will get a very instagrammable photo if you know what I mean! Mawi Beach – just from the south from Selong Belanak. The beach for more advanced surfers. Last but not least – Kuta Mandalika. The beach itself is not one of the world’s wonders but it perfectly closes the tourist spot on the south of Lombok. Kuta Mentioned above is a wonderful place to stay a little bit longer. During your time there u can choose from many hostels, hotels and guest rooms available and also dine yourself in many great places. You can also meet very friendly expats and enjoy your time in their coffee shops. I have to admit that coffee is really outstanding there! Kuta has this chilled and relaxed vibe that you will extend your stay (as I did). Sasak villages Indonesia has this special thing about it, that every Island has its own culture. According to the […]

Restaurant Recommendations in Ubud

The food scene in Ubud is definitely one for the books. Foodies and bloggers travel to Ubud from far and wide to experience the restaurants here, and, of course, to snap those all-important Instagram shots. Although Ubud has plenty to offer beyond the amazing food, you could easily spend your entire visit simply stuffing your face with all the deliciousness the Ubudian restaurants have to offer. I was lucky enough to spend an extended period of time in Ubud and had the opportunity to eat at so many fantastic restaurants that my mouth spontaneously begins to water when I think back to my time there!   Foodie Heaven Sometimes I get overwhelmed by choice, and the selection and variety of restaurants in this tiny town are pretty immense. You can, of course, just wander about and see what looks appealing, but if your time is limited and you’re a food fanatic like me, you don’t want to miss out on the amazing culinary experiences Ubud has in store. Based on my personal experience I’ve put together a selection of the must-try restaurants, highlighting some of the best in each category to help you out. Selamat Makan! – Bon Appétit  in Indonesian.   Vegan, Vegetarian & Raw Food Vegetarian food is widely available throughout Bali, with just about every restaurant offering vegetarian options as tofu and tempeh are native to the country’s traditional cuisine. However, Ubud is the place where the health conscious congregate, so if you’re passionate about healthy eating you’re going to be elated with the selection of restaurants that cater specifically to you. Some of the most famous restaurants for plant-based diets include The Seeds of Life, Kafe, Moska, and Akasha, and for those with a sweet tooth, there’s even a vegan gelato parlour! Kokolato has unique designer flavours such as moringa mint chip, and cold pressed coffee gelato that will blow you away. If you’re following a raw food diet or simply need a detox day, you’ll be in heaven devouring the raw dishes served at Alchemy and Suriya Healing Foods. These are both hip and happening venues that have more of community vibe than a traditional restaurant. In addition to their extensive menus, they also host a variety of events and sell a selection of natural health products. Lastly, be sure to swing by Paradiso, a vegan movie theatre where you can dine on vegan food while watching a movie. You can exchange your ticket as a purchase coupon for anything off their amazing menu, a pretty sweet deal!   Gluten-Free Delights If you’re gluten intolerant, eating out can sometimes be difficult in a foreign country, but with plenty of options, Ubud has you covered! While there are many restaurants with gluten-free options, these are especially well done at the well-established health-conscious & plant-based restaurants such The Elephant, Zest and Sage. My all-time favourites are a bit more low-key casual dining spots: Fussy Bird and the Gluten Free Kitchen. Fussy bird has a selection of Asian […]

Borobudur, the temple on the hill

Borobudur (Barabudur) is one of the greatest Buddhist temples in the world and UNESCO listed it as a World Heritage Site. exactly, a peaceful place, with a panoramic view of hills and jungle, and awesome monument. just as Buddhists selected this place to build this huge temple in the 9th century (more than 1000 years ago); you will like to travel there. Do you like to know more about this famous traveler destination which listed as top 10 must be visited in Indonesia? Borobudur temple (Indonesia: Candi Borobudur ) was designed base on mandala pattern and has three levels, the symbol of Buddhist cosmology (desire, form and formlessness world) and all outstanding reliefs show us the path of this journey by stone media. actually, visiting the Borobudur temple is an interesting and outdoor class about Buddhist. are you desire to visit this temple?   How to get Borobudur temple? Borobudur is located in Magelang city in central Java island, Indonesia. the temple is in the middle of a village called the same name. You can get a flight ticket to one of the big cities close Borobudur (I suggest Yogyakarta). the easy way to temple is to join Borobudur and Prambanan tour and enjoy your trip. but if you like to travel on yourself, you can use online transportation app to take a taxi or go to terminals (for example Jombor terminal) to take a bus, and the cheapest and a little difficult way is to rent a motorbike and ride to the village. how to get Borobudur temple? Borobudur is located in Magelang city in central Java island, Indonesia. the temple is in the middle of a village called the same name. You can get a flight ticket to one of the big cities close Borobudur (I suggest Yogyakarta). the easy way to temple is to join Borobudur and Prambanan tour and enjoy your trip. but if you like to travel on yourself, you can use online transportation app to take a taxi or go to terminals (for example Jombor terminal) to take a bus, and the cheapest and a little difficult way is to rent a motorbike and ride to the village. How many hours do you need to visit Borobudur? The temple is within a great park. The archaeological park contains the temple, the restaurant, the coffee shop, two museums, and amazing streets. I suggest starting your trip in the early morning because it will be crowded after 8 am when many student-travelers enter to temple. Also, they like to take pictures with travelers and practice speak English by explaining about temple.it is wonderful to communicate with them. if you want to visit the temple in early morning notice that the price of the ticket and the gate to enter for sunrise (before 6 am) and sunset is different and more expensive and for sunrise, you should stay in Borobudur village from last night. but it will be an unforgettable experience for you. you will be relaxed […]

Reasons you should take that solo trip to Bali

Following a break-up and a few too many viewings of Eat Pray Love, I decided to take the plunge and book that solo trip to Bali, Indonesia. Yes, I wanted to find myself as well. Here’s why you should do it too. Bali is cheap Accommodation Coming from New Zealand, flights bought at the right time, from this side of the world are CHEAP (and the flight time isn’t long either). You will also find that you can book the most beautiful, idyllic tropical paradise of a room in a perfectly adequate location for a very small price (see mine below). This is a major plus for solo travellers – paying for a whole room just for one can get very pricey and unattainable at times. In Bali there is an abundance of amazing rooms you might pay 10x as much for in other parts of the world, so why not take advantage? I also booked a mountain trek and a week-long yoga retreat ahead of time and found these very reasonably priced for the quality of experience. Shopping And the shopping is amazing. Not only because of how cheap it is but because of the beautiful style of goods. I picked up an array of beautiful clothes, creams, oils, soaps, paintings, jewellery, etc, all for minimal price. In most markets/market-like shops it is expected to haggle over price a little. This is totally acceptable, however, don’t go too far the other way in your ecstasy that you have finally arrived in the land of beautifully crafted cheap shopping. Remember this is someone’s livelihood, and dragging the seller to rock bottom prices out of desperation, just so you can save a couple of bucks, isn’t worth it. If you think the first asking price is fair and a good price for what you’re receiving, then be happy to pay it – everyone wins. Bali is set up for tourists It’s just generally easy This was the main reason I chose Bali as my first solo destination. I had heard about how easy it is to get around and experience Bali, without speaking the language or necessarily having much knowledge about the island. Bali has long hosted hoards of excited holidaying Aussies, and more recently has seen increasing amounts of European and American travellers. The result of this appears to be an amazing adaptation by Balinese people to embrace the constant flow of tourism and make life very easy for those of us who want to see what Bali has to offer. Getting around Most of the Balinese people I interacted with spoke more than enough English for us to communicate well, and all were very friendly. Everyone knows (or is) a driver who can drive you around all day, to where ever you want to go for the equivalent of about $50au, amazing bang for buck even for a solo traveller. And if you can’t decide where to go, most drivers will take you to some hot spots they think you would like. It is […]

Things to do in Ubud, Bali, Indonesia

Ubud, Bali, Indonesia Ubud is one of the must-see destinations in Bali. It’s far from the roaring nightlife in Kuta; Ubud is for those who seek to be suspended in awe by the profound beauty of the vast green lands with its thick, lush rainforests. Those who are willing to lose themselves in the nurturing sound of crystal waterfalls. For a moment of calm and centeredness: Those who seek the solitude that is ever so longed for when you feel trapped in the chaos of life in the city – Ubud is a perfect place for you.   Tegallalang Rice Terraces Talk about suspended in awe! If you’re like me who likes to trek in the early morning. This is a highly recommended place to visit. Just a short drive from the heart of Ubud (~30 minutes, one way). You can rent a scooter or take a Grab ride using their mobile app (Beware: If you take a Grab ride, there’s a chance it might be difficult to get a ride back. There’s a monopoly of local taxis discouraging Grab drivers to enter Ubud.). This is definitely a complete sensory experience! The slight chill from the cool mountain breeze is certainly a refreshing soft feel to the skin. The orchestra of serene sounds all around you: The soft chirping of distant and near birds. The steady melody of buzzing insects. The gentle touch of leaves brushing against each other swaying along with the wind. They don’t charge tourists an entrance fee, however, there are farmers roaming around different parts of this labyrinth that will ask for 5,000 IDR for donation. Although tagged as “donation”, you must provide this amount or else they will not let you through the rest of the walk. Make sure to wear trekking boots as the landscape is mostly muddy paddy areas. Best time to go is early morning as it can get scorching hot here around noon up to the rest of the afternoon (plus you’d want to avoid the other tourists to maximize the experience). Tegallalang Rice Terraces, Kabupaten Gianyar, Bali 80561, Indonesia   Campuhan Ridge Walk One of the unforgettable parts of my first time in Bali was my early morning trek at Campuhan Ridge walk. It was a short walk from where we were staying. On my way to the ridge walk, I was able to witness the city at its’ purest form. Filled with a sense of calm – no crowd, no hustle and bustle of tourists. Before sunrise, fruit vendors start to quietly set up shop – just before the streets start to come alive. The entrance point is a bit tricky as there is no sign that that pathway sloping down from that restaurant and spa entrance called “Warwick Ibah – Restaurant and Day Spa” actually led to the ridge walk. To find the place easily, make sure you download the map before you leave the hotel. It’s an estimate of a 2KM walk (one way) from the starting point. It’s an up and […]

One-day trip to Bogor: Temples, Waterfalls and More!

Bogor, a lovely province situated at the last train station from Jakarta. It is one of the many destinations where Jakartans visit for a quick holiday trip other than Bandung. I have lived in this province for about 6 months during my student exchange program and can say that anyone will surely enjoy a one-day trip to this wonderful place.   Sites to see:       Temple: Pura Parahyangan Agung Jagatkarta (Hindu Temple)       Waterfalls: Curug Nangka, Curug Daun, and Curug Kaun       Chinatown: Suryakancana Food trip and Vihara Dhanagun (Chinese Temple)       Gardens: Kebun Raya (Bogor Botanical Gardens) Pura Parahyangan Agung Jagatkarta This place is a Hindu temple located at the edge of Mt. Salak which boasts its serenity and cool air. Its name means “the perfect divine nature” and is the 2nd biggest Hindu temple in Indonesia. It’s nice to come to Pura Jagatkarta early in the morning so that it won’t be too hot or rainy (especially since you will need to remove your footwear while walking on temple grounds). You can ask for a guide to help you go through the place. People here are typically friendly and will lend a helping hand but please respect their decisions and beliefs if they cannot allow you to enter some places. You can either come prepared or rent/buy some of the items at a nearby canteen just nearby the temple’s entrance. Hindu Temples of Bogor Things to bring: Sarong Incense Lighter The sarong is typically wrapped around your waist like a skirt. If you do not have one, a long cloth (ex. batik) that can be tied into a long skirt will suffice. The incense and lighter is optional if you want to bring some to offerings. They already have mats inside for you to sit on the grass.   Curug Nangka, Curug Daun and Curug Kaun This is a fairly near place to the temple. It’s about 10-30 minutes away but you will end up paying some fees for entering the roads. Here, you can enjoy a picnic breakfast, brunch or lunch (whichever time you choose to arrive in). I still suggest the morning will be a better time since there won’t be crowds of people and the weather is better. Curug Nangka You can also option to just take one of these waterfalls. To enter Curug Nangka, you will go the lower path and walk in the stream for about 10 minutes before you reach a magnificent falls. Curug Kaun and Daun Curug Daun and Kaun, on the other hand, will take the road upwards. These two will take about 15 minutes to hike up each.  They are composed off a big waterfalls at the top then it will stream down into smaller ones. Things to bring: Extra clothes Outdoor Sandals Water Snacks First Aid Kit Stairs going up and picnic grounds You will get pretty wet if you’re planning to go to the waterfalls so you should bring some extra clothes and shoes. It’s still possible to dry up quickly […]

Exploring Balekambang Beach in Malang

I have been living in Malang, a city in East Java for four years. From all the years that I’ve spent here, I know that this city is full of touristy places that you could ever think of. It’s 30 minutes away (depending on the traffic) from Batu, which is where the main of tourist attractions are at with its theme parks and paragliding site. The city is also on the higher ground and surrounded by mountains nearby, where people usually go when they come here. But what I find so underrated is the hidden gem of beaches in Malang. If you go further South then you will find a series of beaches in one place. Which each has its own name and offer distinct amazing landscape. This one that I was lucky enough to visit is called Balekambang beach. Getting There I got asked by my friends to go to the beach just the day before, I had nothing to do and I heard beach so naturally I quickly said yes. These days with the stress of writing a thesis, nature is an escape that I just couldn’t refuse. We didn’t really plan it to the details, it was just an easy quick one-day getaway that we can just go to but if you’re planning to go explore the beaches in Malang, please know that some of them might require you to request for a reservation as it has quota on how much people can go there. Some reservations usually come with a price that includes a package of overnight experience, tents, tour guide and other services like boat or food. Good news is you don’t need to have reservations to go to Balekambang beach, it’s one of the closest and easiest to access from Malang city. So you can go there whenever you want! The Ride We planned to leave at 9 am but we ended up leaving around 11.45 am after having some lunch. I think in total I was sitting in the car for about 2.5 hours with just quick stops for gas and ATM. The journey of getting to the beach was also my favorite part of visiting the beach. The ride was pretty smooth other than the occasional bumps so it’s very much enjoyable, so keep your eyes open people! The beach is basically located on the other side of a small mountain so prepare yourself if you’re sensitive to motion sickness because you are going to face a winding road up and down the hill. It was all worth it though because the view was incredible! We passed through a beautiful forest and we could see a sneak peak of the glistening water underneath. Arriving At The Beach We got there at 2 pm, to get inside you have to purchase a ticket for Rp.15.000 per person or equals to just a little bit over a dollar! Also additional Rp.10.000 for the car. When we get to the beach, there were not many […]

Places To See On The Nusa Islands

Getting bored and tired of being stuck in traffic when traveling in Bali, Indonesia? Why not escape to The Nusa Islands! The Nusa Islands consists of a trio; Nusa Lembongan, Nusa Ceningan, and Nusa Penida. These remote islands have amazing breathtaking views that go on for miles, and I’m always in search of white sand, quiet beaches, and turquoise water when I’m on a beach holiday – The Nusa Islands are perfect for that. The best part is, they are only a 20-minute ferry ride away from the hustle and bustle of mainland Bali. There are multiple fast boat options you could choose from Sanur, which is only about 30 minutes from Seminyak. Note: You are strongly advised to take antihistamine,  which will be provided by the fast boat companies because the journey might get really rocky and choppy! 1.  Dream Beach (Lembongan) Throughout the trip, we were blessed with blue, cloudless skies – which means incredibly sparkly turquoise water combined with huge waves rolling and crashing into the shore. After having researched about this dreamy beach, I decided to book a night at Dream Beach Huts which is a beachfront resort located at Dream Beach itself.    The infinity pool overlooking a beautiful coastline is right outside my room. This resulted in me lounging at the pool and the beach the whole day, suntanning and taking a dip (y’all beach bums know what I’m talking about). As I do not know how to ride a bike, I stayed in the resort come sundown as the trails and roads were too dark for me to explore by feet. Fortunately, the in-house cafe kept me occupied and well-fed. The resort offered their local taxi services but we figured it was too much of a hassle anyway. 2.  Devil’s Tear (Lembongan)   Only a 3-minute walk from Dream Beach and the resort, this majestic sunset spot is a must-see if you are in Nusa Lembongan. Waves come crashing and get sucked into the cove at high speed and then gets spewed out with a high force that they tear up in the air. Mother nature really is powerful. We just sat there for hours admiring the spectacular show of crashing waves. There are tons of little coves and corners in this huge area for adventures and exploring. Don’t be taken aback by the huge amount of tourists when you arrive. Just wait a little longer for them to disperse in order to get that Instagram shot ? 3. Atuh Beach (Penida) We hired a tour guide from Lembongan to Penida, as we were told it would be dangerous to explore alone given the condition of the trails and the distance between locations. From Lembongan, it was just a mere 15 minute slow boat ride to Penida, where we were greeted by our guide and thus beginning our journey to our first stop, Atuh Beach. It was raining cats and dogs while in the car, but fortunately, the weather cleared up and once again, we […]

Things to do in Indonesia, Batam Riau

Speaking about Indonesia, it is a country consisting of over 17,000 islands, most of them usually uninhabited. Indonesia has some of the most spectacular underwater marine life. The staple food here is rice but many also do depend on fishing. But there also another set of people who depend on tourism for their livelihood, and oh yes, they will make sure you enjoy your stay. So if you want a spot to relax, Indonesia would be just the right place, with its everlasting warm weather. Batam Riau: A small island Batam Riau is a city which also happens to be an island of about 20km from Singapore. It is a city which is developing at a fast rate in its industries, so it is entirely an industrial area. But there are some fascinating features here that make it an amazing tourism spot. In an attempt to succeed in making Batam Riau a popular tourist spot, many resorts, hotels, and amazing facilities have been set up here. What’s more? The prices of tourist packages to this place are quite reasonable and worth it. So if you’re on a budget and looking for a place in Indonesia to loosen up, this place would be a sensible choice. It takes about an hour of a ferry ride from HarbourFront, Singapore to reach. Now we all know that Indonesia is famous for some of its coastal regions, so I suggest if you are staying, why not stay at a resort nearby to the ocean. Nongsa Point Marina and Resort is, in my view, one of the best places to settle down. It doesn’t matter if you are on your honeymoon, you are on a trip with your friends or having a family vacation, the resort has the best accommodation facilities for all. The resort is a large area covering a beautiful hilly region. Large chalets cover the place and from many, the view of the ocean is available which makes it even more amazing. And of course, never forget the water sports when you’re here. Click here to know more about Nongsa Point Marina. Must do things in Batam Riau Visiting the Barelang Bridge If you’re visiting Batam Riau for a holiday, make sure not to miss out the Barelang Bridge here, as it is an amazing sight and probably the biggest landmark here in Batam Riau. The Barelang Bridge consists of 6 bridges, all of the different types which connect the islands of Batam. The first bridge is the most spectacular one of them all which is held up by cables. It’ll definitely be a great spot if you’re looking forward to clicking some amazing photographs. Love corn? Then make sure you have it! If you do reach up to the first bridge, then make sure to have some corn! For they have the best finger-licking fried corns on their cobs. These stalls which sell corns are located right after you cross the first bridge and are usually found open in the evening. Enjoy the […]

Must-do Experiences in Bali, Indonesia

As a holiday destination in Asia, Bali is a part of everyone’s wish list. And it should be! It’s an island full of unfathomable beauty and unforgettable experiences. I was fortunate enough to have selected Bali as my holiday destination and spend my time there, fulfilling my dreams. Sandy beaches, clear blue waters and an even bluer sky is just not enough to describe the abundance that Bali holds. An island snuggled in the southeast part of Indonesia, it is one of the most travel-friendly destinations in the world. The smiles of the locals and the warmth in the air are enough to kick-start a great holiday for you! Planning any trip takes incessant research nights and offbeat to-do lists. The best time to travel to Bali would be from June until September. Apart from beaching and people-watching on the pristine shore beaches around the circumference of this island, here’s a list of must-do experiences I believe, can change your life, etch your hearts with sweet memories and make you fall in love with this beautiful island, all over again. Waterfall Hopping Bali is home to some of Mother Nature’s best-kept secrets and most beautiful sceneries. Nestled away in slightly denser and deeper regions all over the island, you’ll find breathtaking natural waterfalls; some very secret and hidden deep inside, encasing an area of picturesque all to themselves. Surrounded by bushed greens and creating their own little stream of absolutely clear and fresh water, these falls embrace you like you belong to them. The best part about these waterfalls is they do actually give you that privacy (because they’re still untouched by the human race) like they belong to you too! And that’s not it! They come with their double rainbows, some have natural swings and some are heaven-like in their own way. Their beauty is raw and whole and can take every breath away! Be prepared for a short trek to reach these secret beauties. They’re worth a whole hundred miles! Hire a bike and off you go, discovering and exploring untouched natural sites! Camp on a volcano If you’re adventurous, there’s no doubt that you’ve been on a trek and camped at a place or two. But your adventure can’t be complete without having been up on to a volcano. I’d recommend selecting Mount Batur in Bali as your pick. It’s an active volcano and is still safe to trek up to. However, it’s not just the trek that makes me add this to the list. It’s the whole bundle of experiences that you have right from the get-go. From the peaceful sunset and fiery sunrise to the hospitable meals, from the magnificent view of the Milky Way to the time you’re back to the base of the mountain, every single minute is a time of immense joy. It’s one of those places where you leave a part of yourself because you reach atop, never wanting to descend that volcanic mountain. Look for Overnight Camping on Mount Batur, […]

A FRESH TASTE OF BALI, INDONESIA: NUSA PENIDA

Not very well known to the public, Nusa Penida is a virgin island outside of Bali, Indonesia’s main land. It’s a perfect spot for travelers who love to discover unspoiled paradises and utopias. Around 202.8km2 in area, Nusa Penida has a lot to offer, from a wide range of fine sand beaches, ocean cliff views, gorgeous villas, to a wide range of snorkeling and diving spots. This article is a travel guide for first timer travelers who are planning on visiting Bali, Indonesia in the near future. How to get to Nusa Penida from Sanur Harbor: There are a lot of fast boats heading to Nusa Penida from Sanur harbor, leaving every hour or 30 minutes depending on the fast boat company. You can also go to Nusa Penida from Padang Bai Harbor, but if you’re planning to stay around Kuta, Sanur is the most convenient place to get there. Roundtrip tickets cost around 750K ~ 1000K IDR depending on the fast boat company you’ll be choosing. It’s best to book them ahead of time to save yourself from the hassle and save time when you get to Sanur harbor. Although there are a lot of fast boat options to choose from when you get there. During our 2 days and 1 night stay on this beautiful island, we were able to visit 9 tourist spots: Day 1: Atuh Beach Rumah Pohon Tree House (Thousand Islands) Kelingking Beach (T-Rex Island) Day 2: Manta Point Crystal Bay Gamat Bay Wall Point Broken Beach / Pasih Uug Angel’s Billabong 1. Atuh Beach Among the beaches in Nusa Penida, Atuh beach is one of those virgin beaches with some decent facilities. I can compare it to some of the beaches in the Philippines with white sand, clear waters and several mini islands nearby, except that the waves in Atuh are strong. Some even go there to surf. To be able to get to the beach, you need to go through quite a long staircase down the cliff. But believe me, the view was worth all the sweat! I also love that the beach was not crowded at all when we got there. Just enough tourists around to get your beautiful photos right on the perfect spots. 2. Rumah Pohon Tree House (Thousand Islands) The Rumah Pohon Tree House or what they call the Nusa Penida Tree House, is located within the Thousand Island viewpoint, which is not far from Atuh beach. From the view at the tree house, you will already see the islands nearby. It was quite a challenge to trek around the viewpoints but the minute you get to each point, you will truly be awestruck. It was paradise. 3. Kelingking Beach (T-Rex Island) Kelingking beach, well-known for the island’s T-Rex form, was my personal favorite Bali attraction. It has a steep staircase from the cliff that leads down to the beach which makes it chilling to go down. Unfortunately, we were not able to go to the beach because me and my […]

Explore different scenery in 4 days ~ Bali style

FALL IN LOVE WITH WHAT BALI HAS TO OFFER: CLEAR ICE BLUE WATERS, WHITE SANDY BEACHES, TRANQUIL GREEN RICE TERRACES, EXQUISITE OCEANS AND STUNNING VIEWS OVER CLIFFS AND NIGHTLIFE THAT OFFERS AN ETHNIC BALINESE CULTURE & TRADITIONS  ~ FOUR REGIONS    When this popular island – Bali gets mentioned people automatically think ” A great escape to calmness and no longer feeling trapped in their everyday busy lifestyles.” Of course, that is what bail offers, but not only is an Island, it's an Island that doesn’t just offer one style of scenery but has a variety of different regions which offer different things to explore. It offers many popular destinations but there are also many hidden gems that very few travelers have discovered. Tips for traveling to Indonesia:  Make sure you have your passport with you, make copies to keep in your luggage. Visa's may be required on arrival in Indonesia – make sure to do your research. Have some cash on hand. If you are exploring throughout Bali – Pack light and specifical for what each region offers. Remember to pack any medication for Nausea, diarrhea or personal needs. Respect the locals and their traditions. Remember your camera and most important have fun. 1. Baturiti: Tranquil Green coffee Terraces, Yoga in the clouds and Pure relaxation.  If you are just looking for a tranquil place somewhere between the lush green of rice terraces with breathtaking views and calmness then this is the place to be. Visiting this beautiful resort Yoga above the clouds that is surrounded by coffee terraces definitely allows to you catch your breath. If you are looking to just relax you could enjoy a yoga session overlooking the coffee terraces in the early hours of the morning, followed by a tasteful tropical breakfast which is included for free in your night stay. If you didn't feel like heading out to explore the area you could relax under the Lapa reading your favorite book or just embracing the beautiful view this fantastic region has to offer – Peace of mind.   Some places to visit in Baturiti:  The heartland of Bali Tour Bedugul Village and Tanah Lot Tour Abandoned Bedugul Hotel Bali Treetop Adventure Park Pasar Candi Kuning – exploring markets & Souvenir shops If you are traveling from the airport – Ngurah Rai International Airport it is about an hour’s drive ~ but don't worry because there are a lot of things to see along the route.   2. Ubud: The Famous Luwak coffee, My favorite ~ The big Bali Swing and the Chocolate Pod Factory.   Ubud is known to be the center of traditions and cultures in Bali not only is it surrounded by historic Hindu Temples & shines Rice Terraces & Rainforests but it also gives you a taste of Bali while exploring hidden gems. On our way to start our booked tours our taxi driver offered an additional stop to try the famous Luwak coffee which was a coffee plantation that was owned by a family and […]

MUST DO Things When Backpacking around BALI

Visiting Indonesia was a mind opening and a deeply relaxing experience. It was our first time traveling to Indonesia, so obviously, we didn’t know what exactly to expect. I was imagining nice beaches, good food with different spices, various smells, and palm trees. Well, there was all of this, but also much, much more… UBUD Taxi to get to Ubud from the airport cost us 300 000IDR (approximately 20euro) and it takes around 1 hour to get there because of the usual traffic. We stayed in a quite decent place and it wasn’t of much cost plus it was including nice breakfast (banana pancake or eggs, fruit, tea/coffee and fruit smoothie) it also had a pool and the staff was very friendly. If you plan a day trip, it’s best to find one taxi driver and stay with him all day.  He will take you to all the places and also gives you suggestions where else you can go as Balinese people are really friendly and helpful. Yoga Barn When staying in Ubud, you definitely have to go to the Yoga Barn ! If you are a yoga lover, you will not want to leave this place. You can choose from different levels and types of lessons, there is also a shop with clothes and a restaurant that is outdoors with amazing views and they cook super healthy and delicious food! Monkey Forest We also went to the famous ‘’Monkey Forest’’ which is definitely nice to see as you don’t normally watch monkeys running on the streets and jumping on you. You can also buy some bananas there and feed them 🙂 Rice Fields After Monkey forest, we went to have a look at the spectacular Rice fields. That was amazing! I definitely suggest going there since most of their food is rice. If you want to enjoy it at the best time, I suggest going there as early as possible so you avoid the crowd of people. White water rafting If you want some adrenaline, then you should try rafting. We had soooo much fun, it was a bit tough but everything else was unbelievable. Get ready for 500 stairs to go down, and then going up. But it was definitely worth it. Kopi Luwak Coffee Our taxi driver suggested us to try ‘‘The best coffee in the world’’ – Luwak coffe. It is made from poop of the animal mongoose (Luwak). It is one of the most expensive coffees in the world, so you will normally pay up to 70 euros per cup. We paid around 2 euros and they also showed us and explain how they make the coffee and you can also see the animal there. Apart from this coffee they also give you a full tray of different teas to taste. Temples In Bali, there are a lot of temples, so we decided to go and see some of them. If you are wearing shorts, they will not let you enter without ‘’sarong’’. It is basically a long piece of fabric that you need to wrap around […]

Bali Diary: Explore Island on a Budget

For the last decades, Bali Island has become one of the most desirable places to visit for anyone who wishes to dive in peculiar Asian culture of an island full of myths and secrets. Bali as a part of Indonesia has its unique and charming atmosphere, which is different from other Southeastern neighboring countries, and it has something to offer for every traveling soul. Thanks to numerous traveling agencies and social marketing, Bali gained that aura of luxurious-only travel place where you should visit with a decent amount of money in your pocket. However, it's not always true. In reality, Bali has to offer as many options as there are various types of travelers. Here you can find some tips which will help you to save some cash and plan your budget trip. Planning your trip. Traveling on a budget is not always as bad as it may sound. On the contrary, it may open you new opportunities to explore local's life more closely and indulge in their culture. Before heading to Bali on a budget you should remember three things. First, don't have high expectations about anything since luxurious hotels with chic restaurants will not be on your bucket list. Second, be prepared to communicate with local citizens a LOT and adjust to their mentality and cultural sense.  And last but not least, be a respectful and responsible traveler. Now, let's get more specific about managing your budget. It's better to skip flight ticket prices because it may vary up and down depending on a departure point but you should definitely visit Skyscanner platform and some Asian low-coster airline websites such as AirAsia and EastarJet where they usually have great value deals.  Next, coming to accommodation issue it's always a good idea to visit Booking.com or Airbnb platforms where you can find some decent rooms at local guesthouses for less than 10$ per night for two adult guests and usually, breakfast is included in that price. It all may vary based on a location of the guesthouse, property's facilities and time of the season, but in general, you always can find good offers after extensive research. I'm in Bali, what's next? If you eventually managed to arrive in Bali, my sincere CONGRATULATIONS! Your long-awaited journey is about to start. Transportation. So which transport is the cheapest and the most convenient? Public transportation here is inconsistent and almost non-existing. Best option to move around the island is to rent a scooter. It may sound frightening at first, but after you get one it's not so overwhelming as it may appear. However, it's better to note that the traffic is crazy here, so you should quickly adjust to local driving manner. Medium sized motorbike or scooter will cost you around 5$ to 10$ per day based on the condition and the model of a vehicle. So, if you are traveling with someone it's wiser to rent one scooter for two and split the cost. Renting a scooter has lots of benefits which include but not limited […]

Top Activities for a Short Stay in Bali

Bali is an island paradise in the South West of Indonesia, known for its beautiful beaches, coral reefs, volcanic mountains, iconic rice paddies, and lush forests. The Island of Gods has something for everyone, and offers great value for money, so it’s a perfect destination for travellers who are short on funds, or time. Whether you’re visiting Bali for a long weekend or a month long adventure, here’s my top destinations to get the most out of your trip: Bali’s Best Beaches No trip to Bali would be complete without checking out the best beaches that the island has to offer, conveniently located a short distance from the capital Denpasar. Depending on your budget, you can either visit these beaches using public transport, or book a private taxi and driver to take you around. If you spend a couple of hours at each beach you should be able to visit them all in one day, and if time permits- visit your favourite another day. Pandawa Beach: Located in a fast developing area of Bali, Pandawa beach is perfect for swimming, kayaking, or soaking up some sun. There are plenty of restaurants and stores along the waterfront, but it gets busier as the day progresses so if you want to avoid a mass of tourists make this your first stop for the day. Dreamland Beach: This is definitely my favourite of the 3 beaches; the water was Gatorade blue and the waves made it super fun to swim in. Rocky cliffs that you can walk along to get beautiful views of the ocean surround the beach, and while there isn’t much in terms of shopping here, there is a nice resort which offers reasonably priced food for lunch, and purchasing lunch allows you to use the pool which also offers great ocean views atop the rocky cliffs. Padang Padang Beach: This beach is a hot spot for tourists, but deservingly so. To get to the beach you follow a short path through narrow cliffs, leading to a very calm beach. On the left of the beach you’ll find loads of monkey filled trees atop a cliff, whereas the right side is filled with large meter tall rocks throughout the sand. There are plenty of beach vendors offering snacks and drinks here. Kuta Although it might be full of tourists, the popular beachside town of Kuta is deserving of at least a day while you’re in Bali, since it’s the best place to find cheap markets and experience Bali’s popular tourist beaches and infamous nightlife. Uluwatu Temple Uluwatu temple is a must-see in Bali, regardless of how long you spend there. Located on the top of a huge cliff, the beautiful sea temple offers amazing views of the ocean below. There are plenty of monkeys throughout the temple as well, but be careful because they aren’t afraid to get up close and grab your belongings! Throughout the day they offer cultural dances and shows which you can enjoy after exploring the temple. Lembongan Island […]

Lombok and Gili Island in Indonesia

Mount Rinjani is located in Lombok island, Indonesia. It is the second highest active volcano with 3,726 meters. This is a “Short Gateway + Hike” trip! Starts with Hiking at Mount Rinjani then moved to Gili Trawangan to relax yourself and enjoy with the beach and sun after a hardcore activity. These are the #rinjani8xplorer! Here's the stories 🙂   Day 1 – Landed & Check in Taking AirAsia Flight from Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia to Lombok, Indonesia took about 3 hours in distance. There are only 2 flight in a day to Lombok Island which are morning 08:35AM & afternoon 3:35PM. (New flight time added recently at 12:35PM).  We took the afternoon flight because the morning one was sold out. It would be suggested to take the morning flight as it takes about 3 hours transfer from airport to the Senaru homestay. We checked in homestay at 11:30pm and got to get up on the next day at 04:30am for breakfast & start hiking.   Dinner of the day : NASI PADANG & TEH BOTOL This is the local dishes and one of the famous drink in Indonesia.     Day 2 – Mount Rinjani via Sembalun Sunrise in Indonesia is an hour earlier then in Malaysia. The sun rise at about 5:30AM. After breakfast, we were then transfer to Plawangan Sembalun for registration and starts hiking at 8:30AM. Lunch break at rest area station 3 which is about 3-4hours away from the starting point. Our group hired 8 portals to help us to carry for our foods, soft drinks, sleeping tents and bag. The porters cook us the meals as well. Porters is the hardest job in the world and I am truly salute to all of them. You would be amazed with the night view at the base camp. The night sky full of shinning stars.        Day 3 – Summit of Mount Rinjani Hiking starts at 2:30AM. The summit attack is so much harder and tiring. Walking in the sandy and rocky surface required more energy and steps to move forward. ( Video : Down from Summit of Mount Rinjani ) The amazing feeling when you conquered to the summit of Mount Rinjani! And YOU KNOW YOU DID IT!     Day 4 – Down from Sembalun One of our friend had injury on his knee, thus we decided to trek down using the same way which the route is shorter, faster and easier. It was a regret could not visit to the hot spring and see the volcano in near in front of the lake.     Day 5 – Stick Fighting Stick fight is held on every Wednesday in the village beside the entrance of Sendang Waterfall. It is also called the friendship fight. Our tour guide explained that this game allows them to make new friends. The audience can propose themselves or be selected by the referee edge and fight with other visitor or those selected fighters. (All consequences caused in the game is on own risk […]

MUSEUMS IN JAKARTA: THE BEST WAY TO DISCOVER INDONESIA’S HERITAGE

If you are forced to brand Jakarta by the first sight you will probably mention its horrifying transport system and insubstantial character as capitalistic economic centre. So I did a couple of months ago! Every time I entered the city I did almost everything to leave it as soon as possible. Everything changed when I moved there and started to explore this city from different perspectives. Jakarta is namely one of the three predominant art centres (beside Bandung and Yogyakarta) on Java island and therefore definitely worth to be discovered more deeply. For museum lovers Jakarta is doubtless one of the best places to be in Indonesia! But still, Jakarta remains one of Asia’s fastest growing megacities and can be puzzling in the first place. Let me navigate you a bit through Jakarta’s museum-scene and explore with me two of my favourite museums in Jakarta and its best-kept secrets. THE NATIONAL MUSEUM IN JAKARTA In the footsteps of Indonesia’s Past and Present. MUST-DO FOR MUSEUM FAN’S BUCKET LIST For everybody who’s arriving in Jakarta with just a basic knowledge about this huge archipelago you are going to tour around, I highly recommend to visit Jakarta's National Museum. It’s not only a fantastic way to learn more about Indonesia’s Buddhist and Hindu period, but moreover to get a good idea about the richness and diversity from one island to another. Probably you’ll discover some local peculiarities that mesmerise you that much, so that you might rethink and change your travel plans. WANDERING THROUGH THE MUSEUMS DIVERSE COLLECTION Usually the National Museum, based in Jakarta, has a permanent display of over 100.000 artworks and artefacts from Indonesia and Asia dating back to ancient times. However, due to renovation works (since January 2017) in the old wing (gedung gajah = elephant building), only the new part of the museum (gedung arca = building of statues) is accessible until August 2018. Even large sections of the museum are meanwhile not exhibited, the Museum’s collection is the best of its kind in Indonesia, and therefore remains a must-visit. The new wing consists of four levels, which showcases thematically structured permanent exhibitions. Strolling through the museum, you will meet giant stones with ancient inscriptions next to miniature versions of Indonesia's traditional houses. Moreover the museum showcases a typical Papua standing canoe, which was used for headhunting in former times. MUSEUM HIGHLIGHT: INDONESIA'S RE-DISCOVERED TREASURY On the top floor the collection has another gem to offer: The impressive treasure collection, re-discovered by a farmer in 1990 in Central Java, gives an amazing impression of Indonesia's rich kingdom. Don’t miss out the “keris”-collection, an asymmetrical richly decorated dagger and important status symbol for Javanese men, or the precious betel-set on the same level. A great way how to get out the best of your museum visit in Jakarta is with certainty to join one of the free guided tours in English. Volunteers from the Indonesian Heritage Society offer their time to take you on a journey discovering the history behind some chosen objects within the museum. LOCATION & MORE INFORMATION Where? […]

Bali: The Blend Of All Worlds

People all over the world aim to explore different countries every while, even if the world is full of fascinating places that nobody will be able to visit all in such a short life. Thankfully the universe is full of beautiful destinations to stop by and enjoy the best of holidays anytime throughout the year according to every person's free time. One of the best of these destinations is Bali, the beautiful island of Indonesia which is known as the dream place for a honeymoon, but what not everyone knows is that Bali's reputation isn't only about honeymoons, Bali has got all sources of joy present in any other sought after destinations in other regions around the world, which surely makes Bali must be your next stop. A Magnificent Nature One of Bali's main assets is the wide variety of natural attractions, it has the loveliest beaches, huge areas of charming green forests, enormous mountains, and a lot more. Kuta To begin with, the beach of Kuta is considered one of the best in Asia, surfers cut long distances to go and enjoy the optimum surfing conditions along this five-kilometer long beach located on the south-western coast of the island. Nobody would ever get bored or tired of spending the whole day by this lovely beach, and of course, all services such as restaurants and supermarkets are a few minutes away from any spot on the beach. Other than surfing, different generations spend some time of their day cycling by the beautiful beach of Kuta enjoying the relieving weather and the best of views.Briefly, Kuta should be your first place to visit as soon as you arrive in Bali. Seminyak Apparently, Kuta is a perfect place for friends to enjoy their time together, but as for couples, I would rather recommend the Seminyak beach, a deserted beach perfectly made for lovers where they can enjoy some romantic days in one of the fancy restaurants where they should try appetizing traditional Indonesian food. And at night, the atmosphere becomes livelier as they would be able to witness the entertaining nights of Bali that never end. Ubud Apart from the beaches and its luxuries, credit should also go to the amazing wildlife of Bali present mostly in Ubud which is referred to as the heart of Bali. What makes Ubud stands out is its astonishing wildlife found in The Ubud Monkey Forest for example, where you will be able to have the closest look at the lives of monkeys, one of the most delightful creatures  I have personally ever seen. Other than the lives of monkeys, you would be really amazed to take a ride through the cool mountains out there in Ubud, and The Tegallalang Rice Terraces which not only are they wide areas in Ubud that are used mainly for growing rice, but they also attract tourists to witness these alluring green spots between the enormous mountains which truly cure all sorts of depression. This tempting wildlife present in Ubud attracts […]
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