Nature. Wildlife. History. Coastline. Indonesia has all of these in beautiful abundance and scattered across over 18,000 islands in the archipelago. While many visitors flock to Bali as a first port of call, other destinations hold surprising and plentiful appeal. Whether you are young, free and single, newly-weds, or travelling with tots and tweens in tow, you’ll find Indonesia a charming land full of magic and mystery.
Girl’s About Town
If you do want to touch down in Bali but are looking for something a little more subdued than tourist magnet Kuta beach move a little up the coastline to Seminyak. With surfing, upscale shopping and sightseeing there’s lots to keep you and your girlfriends entertained by day, while the area’s dining scene and famed beach bars let you party and unwind in style at the same time. Start the day with a Bali rite of passage, with some yoga, and then hit the waves at Seminyak Beach, where you can swim, surf or just admire the view from a sun-lounger. Refresh your resort wardrobe at Jalan Laksmana, Seminyak’s main shopping strip, or shop the boutiques here for a special accessory or two. As dusk hits, Tannah Lot temple is a popular choice. Here the sun’s setting rays reflect off the water rushing around this shrine to the sea gods. Finish up with cocktails at the Ku De Te or Potato Head beach bars or sit one of the bars along the white sand stretches of Blue Ocean Beach.
For an out-of-this world honeymoon with a difference, head to Beilitung Island. A first stop should be to Batu Baginde, where two gigantic granite rocks said to represent the two genders and long a sacred blessing site rise from the earth. Sweeping unspoilt island views are a fine reward for adventure-seekers who make the difficult journey to the peak of the rocks. For an alternate view of Beilitung, the old mine at Kaolin Lake is now filled with impossibly blue waters and immediately puts you in an otherworldly landscape more like a volcanic crater. This peaceful island is surrounded by over 100 islands giving room for lots of water sports and activities. Kayaking, paddle boating and diving are all easy to arrange, and when you want to just kickback and revel in beautiful surroundings (and each other’s company) you’ll bask in beautiful balmy beaches all to yourselves. Try a night of star-spotting under the old Dutch lighthouse at Lengkuas Island for a magical night you’ll never forget.
Family Fun Days
If you and your little ones have more than a passing interest in King Kong or legendary dragons your ideal stop should be clear. The Komodo Islands are your must-see. Named for and made famous by the huge dragons inhabiting the island, these beasts are a real treat to behold. Weighing up to 150lbs they appear on the landscape like monsters on a movie set and are just as captivating as any blockbuster. Once you have slayed your desire to glimpse the dragons, plenty more wonders wait to be discovered. Komodo is also home to the instagram-ready Pink Beach, a national park with pink sands and turquoise ocean brimming with tropical fish that looks like a Unicorn’s wanderland. View more pink sand beaches, as well as neighbouring white and black sand beaches on the easy Padar Island hike while families with adventurous kids will delight in a day trip swimming with manta rays. Maintain the aura of fantasy adventure with a nighttime boat ride where you’ll find the best views of the dream-like Milky Way.