15 Best Things To Do In Indonesia On Your Vacation

An abode to over 13,000 islands, the unique archipelago and topography of Indonesia offers a lot of things to do. Indonesia is a land of contrasts. The dramatic landscapes, frightening volcanoes, and the rich wildlife of the country make it a nature lover’s paradise. The ancient and beautifully built temples like the Borobudur and Tanah Lot are a treat for all those who are interested in history. The islands like Gili Island, Weh Island, and Padar Island tell us why Indonesia is not just about Bali. And the national parks like Komodo National Park and Kelimutu National Park will bring out the wildlife lover within you. Still confused about where to go to Indonesia? Have a glimpse at this list of things to do in Indonesia.

1. Take a walk through ancient history at the Borobudur Temple 

Borobudur TempleImage Source: flickr.com

Located in the Magelang Regency, the Borobudur Temple is graced with a stunning line-up of relief panels and as many as 504 Buddha Statues. The history of the temple dates back to the 8th century. Located high on a mountain, you can get stunning views of the surrounding jungles of Indonesia from here. It wasn’t until 1814 that the temple was rediscovered and caught by the eye of humanity. A trip to Indonesia is incomplete if a structure this spectacular and marvelous is not visited.

2. Splurge at Ubud Art Market 

Ubud Art MarketImage Source: flickr.com

The Ubud Art Market is known as the ‘Pasar Seni Ubud’ by the locals. Taking an easy stroll across the Ubud Art Market is one of the favorite things to do in Indonesia among tourists. The market is a perfect representation of the artistry and craftsmanship of the Balinese artists. Some of the many items featured in the market are Bohemian skirts of satin, Balinese style paintings, woven baskets, wood carvings, Moroccan style oil lamps, and brass Buddha statues. All these items are of higher artistic value than probably all the markets in Ubud.

3. Experience Peace at Tanah Lot 

Tanah Lot TempleImage Source: flickr.com

Tanah Lot is not only one of the important temples but also one of the most photographed temples in Indonesia. The temple is popular for its unique offshore location and the iconic sunset views it offers. It is a Hindu Temple built in the 16th century. It is said that the temple is guided by the many venomous sea snakes at the base of the rocky island. Dewa Baruna is the main deity of the temple and is said to be the sea god. 

4. Roam Around the Kelimutu National Park 

Kelimutu National ParkImage Source: flickr.com

The Kelimutu National Park and the three lakes are arguably one of the most beautiful places in Indonesia. The national park also has a ‘steaming mountain’ which is said to be the most haunted place in the park. The Murundao Waterfall in the park is a sight worth catching. There are several other things to do in the park beside hiking. You can choose to roam around the small villages and local markets situated around the park to have a fun-filled time.

5. Visit the strange Sidoarjo mud volcano 

Sidoarjo mud volcanoImage Source: flickr.com

The Sidoarjo Mud Volcano is one of the strangest tourist attractions in Indonesia. A flow of hot mud destroyed the whole town in May 2006. It buried the entire villages in East Java. the statues of the victims trapped in mud are very eerie. If you are interested in eerie and weird places, then the town of Sidoarjo Mud Volcano is the right place for you.

6. Go Island Hopping at Gili Islands 

Gili IslandsImage Source: flickr.com

The Gili Islands is a group of three islands. The islands are located at the northwestern shore of Lombok. The islands have a mix of serene beaches to relax as well as hip beaches perfect for partying. The Gili Islands with the turquoise blue beaches and palm trees are a vision of paradise to every tourist. Each of the three islands has its own special character and has something different to offer.

7. Revel in the beauty of Lake Toba 

Lake TobaImage Source: pixabay.com

Lake Toba is a large natural lake located in the region of North Sumatra. It is the largest volcanic lake in the world and the largest natural lake in Indonesia. The lake occupies the area of the caldera of a super volcano. This enormous crater lake is also one of the deepest lakes in the world and one of the most widespread in Southeast Asia. The pristine scenery around the lake is something you should not miss when in Indonesia.

8. Explore Tana Toraja

Tana TorajaImage Source: wikimedia.org

The Tana Toraja is home to the Toraja people and is located behind lofty mountains and granite cliffs. The Toraja people are very interesting and still believe in age-old beliefs and traditions. The Toraja countryside is almost untouched by human beings and is great for hiking and exploring. The unique rituals performed by the Toraja people are also worth watching.

9. Enjoy Scuba Diving at Weh Island 

The Weh Island is popularly known as Sabang. The island is mainly known for its ecosystem. The beaches on the island can be visited in one day by rental vehicles. Anoi Itam Beach is a black sand beach and has a beautiful scenery. The Gabang Beach and Iboih Beach are other beaches on the island. You can enjoy activities like diving and snorkeling at the island. The Air Terjun Pria Laot, and Benteng Jepang are some significant attractions on the island.

10. Relax at the Kuta Beach 

Kuta BeachImage Source: pixabay.com

Kuta Beach is deemed to be the most famous resort destinations in Bali. Along with the breathtakingly beautiful resorts on the beach, the beach also features many local shopping places which are a must visit. The beach also has vibrant restaurants and nightlife. Kuta Beach is one of the popular Indonesia points of interest.

11. Padar Island 

Padar IslandImage Source: wikimedia.org

The Padar Island is located between the Komodo and Rinca Islands. It is the 3rd largest island of the Komodo National Park. The island is dotted with steep, rugged volcanic mountains. The four deep bays on the island have beaches of many colors. The sand is white, but the beaches are either of grey or pink color. Scuba Diving and Snorkeling are some of the most popular activities on Padar Island.

12. Take a day trip to the Kalimantan Rainforest 

Kalimantan RainforestImage Source: flickr.com

The Kalimantan Rainforest is a part of the 3rd largest island in the world, Borneo. The vast rainforests are some of the most bio-diverse areas in the world. The Derawan Island is a UNESCO World Heritage Site on the island. The island is one of the most famous places in Indonesia for diving. The Balikpapan city is a more modern side of the island. It has many resorts perfect for a quick and peaceful getaway. Banjarmasin and Kakaban Island are some of the other interesting places on the island.

13. Look out for the Komodo Dragons at Komodo National Forest 

Komodo National ForestImage Source: pixabay.com

Located within the Lesser Sunda Islands, the Komodo National Park includes three large islands- Padar, Komodo, and Rinca and 26 smaller ones. The National Park has been declared as a UNESCO Heritage Site. It has also been selected among the New 7 Wonders of the World. The park houses one of the most biodiverse areas in the world. The presence of Komodo Dragons in the park makes it one of the most popular Indonesia tourist places.

14. Be awestruck at Ijen Crater 

Ijen CraterImage Source: flickr.com

The Ijen Crater is home to a glowing blue fire which happens due to the combustion of sulphuric gases. It is one of the most fascinating things to see in Indonesia. The real-life sulfur mining operation is also a major point of interest in the Ijen Crater. Hiking along the crater is a popular activity among tourists. You can also purchase pure sulfur hunks from the sulfur mine here. Ijen’s Blue Fire is a must see thing in Indonesia. 

15. Marvel at the enormity of Goa Jomblang Caves 

Goa Jomblang CavesImage Source: wikimedia.org

Goa Jomblang is a part of the system of caves that covers the Gunung Kidul. The caves were formed due to erosion by underground rivers and rainwaters over the course of thousands of years. The sinkhole of the cave which is 25 meters in diameters has a forest at the bottom. The tunnel linking Goa Jomblang and Grubug Cave is 250 meters long. Walking through these caves is one of the best things to do in Indonesia.

Do you know of any more attractions to be added in the what to do in Indonesia list? Let us know in the comment section below.

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ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Raised in an unconventional and feminist family, Revati believes in hope and love more than anything else in the world ...

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