Places to Visit in Indonesia – Here is a list of the best places to visit in Indonesia during the holidays. There is so much interesting tourism places that we can explore in the world, include country in Asia like Indonesia. This country is an archipelago state that has five main islands which are Java, Kalimatan, Sulawesi, Sumatra and Papua.
Indonesia has about 17.000 islands include those five main islands; some of the island is unpopulated and only inhabited by animal and plantation. Each island has its unique, exoticism view, mystical and wonderful culture that we can explore. This is the list of 37 places that you must see in this lovely country, presented by Serbi Serbi.
List of The Best Places to Visit in Indonesia You Should Know
1. Sabang, Aceh
Sabang is the city at Aceh province, well known as the western city of Indonesia. Sabang is located at Weh Island, and it is surrounded by four other Islands which are Klah Island, Rondo Island, Rubiah Island, and Seulako Island, they all together are the area of Sabang administrative city.
Sabang has iconic tourism place named “Zero Kilometer” monument that marked Indonesia started area. Local and foreigner tourist who visit this monument usually take selfie for their memories. Sabang also well known by it amazing beaches that spreads in all over those islands. Mostly have amazing white sand, clear blue water, nice vegetation and warm cozy air.
2. Banyak Islands, Aceh
Beside Sabang, Aceh also has Banyak Islands as interesting tourist places. This island’s cluster located at Aceh Singkil district, border on Hindia Ocean at the western tip of Sumatra Island. Same as Sabang, Banyak Islands also have many long beaches that will amaze anyone who visit it.
One thing that made Banyak Island become unique tourism place is the existence of turtle habitat, there is three turtle species that inhabited at Banyak Islands which are green turtle, scales turtle and Belimbing (star fruit) turtle. We can see the turtles along the beach or under sea water while we dive or snorkelling.
3. Mentawai Islands Regency
Still talk about islands cluster, there one islands cluster that located at west side of West Sumatra Island, called Mentawai. This islands regency has four main islands which are Siberut, Sipora, North Pagai and South Pagai.
Mentawai Island is one of the best Indonesia tourist attractions. This place has become a legend place among surfers. You can find at least four hundred surfing spots in this island which present a variety level of swells. Mentawai Island is also included as the most consistent destination for surfing in the world. It is because this island has consistent surf breaks.
This place is even being home to several surf breaks. The scenery here is awesome with bright sun, blue water, offshore winds, and flawless reef. When best time to visit Mentawai Islands? If you want to surf here, you better come during dry season in May up to October.
The tourists who come to this island can also explore the area instead of just surfing on the beach. A lot of foreigners visit this island. They are usually come from United States and Europe. These people choose Uma for sleeping place to feel traditional and exotic life like local people. You could also visit Butui River as calming experience when visiting this island.
Mentawai islands also presents very beautiful white-sand beach view and its amazing endemic fauna such as pig-tail monkey, kasturi squirrel, Sipora fly squirrel and many others. We can go travelling around the beach and enjoy the wildlife all at once. Mentawai also has must-taste local culinary called Taro chips, made from Taro plant, it has delicious savory flavour.
4. Bangka Belitung Islands
Bangka and Belitung are islands near South Sumatra province, Bangka Belitung (Babel) province government has been legally work since February 9th 2001, that means this province belong within new province in Indonesia. This place become popular tourism places since Indonesia Box office movie called “Laskar Pelangi” that is adapted from Andrea Hirata’s novel, took their movie’s background in this places.
Then Andrea Hirata, the writer of the novel, continues his works by build “Words Museum” in this place and become famous tourism object till now. Beside words museum, another museum that we can visit at Babel Islands is Tin museum because Bangka Belitung Island area is also rich in tin mining.
You should have to visit this island if you are interested to enjoy the stunning beach with the different looks. The beaches on this island are unique with the looks of big granite stones. Around Belitung, there are also some small islands that can be visited. One of them is Pasir Island. For you who are curious with the real looks of star fish, you can visit this island and see the star fishes on the beach.
To visit this island, you can use airplane from Soekarno-Hatta airport in Jakarta to Tanjung Pandang airport. Then, just rent a car or motorcycle to go to the beach. This island is a pleasure destination for you who love to go spend your holiday in backpacker. Do you want to make your skin looks tanned? This island is great choice for you as the sun shines brightly here and ready to kiss your skin.
5. Medan, North Sumatra
Medan is the capital city of North Sumatra Province that keeps many tourism objects. We can do fun activities in this city whether it alone or together with our friends and family. Eating durian fruit in the durian seller alongside the road could be nice experience at Medan city.
If we want to know more about the life of Deli Kingdom, ancient Kingdom at Sumatra area, we can visit Maimun Palace which has bright yellow painting, in the center of Medan. There are various historical things to see inside the palace like the Sultan (King) photos, King’s throne, and many other.
6. Bukittinggi, West Sumatra Province
Beside Medan, Sumatra Island also has Bukittinggi as one of tourism city. Bukittinggi located at West Sumatra Province, in history of Indonesia, this city once become capital city of Indonesia emergency government. The city has cool air about 16 – 24 Celcius degree because it build at 909 – 914 meter above sea level.
An iconic tourism places in here is Gadang Clock, the big clock monument shaped like Gadang house with its buffalo horn curves. Around the Gadang clock, there are pleasant park that always crowd by visitor who want memorize the glorious Gadang clock. Also many young parents bring their kids to play around in here in the afternoon.
7. Palembang, South Sumatra Province
Let move on to another corner of Sumatra which is South Sumatra province, Palembang city for exact. This city is very famous with the typical culinary called empek-empek, the fritters made by fish and flour with eggs filling, usually eat side by sweet hot sour sauce named “cuko”.
It is not only the foods, Palembang also has iconic tourism object which are Musi River and Ampera Bridge. This suspension bridge was built in 1962 to connect upper and downstream of Musi River. The best time to enjoy Ampera Bridge is in the night because it has beautiful light formation along the bridge and we will be amazed by its reflection in the Musi River.
8. Bintan Island
This island still part of Sumatra Island, in the Riau archipelagos area to be exact. Bintan Island is the biggest Island in a Riau Archipelago that has beautiful long beaches shore. Along the beaches shore there are many resorts that we can rent if we want to stay longer and enjoy fun activity at the beach like surfing, swimming, and diving.
Enjoying sunrise and sunset from the beach also become wonderful unforgettable experiences. Bintan Island also has unique places to go, the most unique is a desert in the middle of tropical forest, named Busung desert. Before formed as desert, this location is actually used as bauxite mine. People love to take a photo at the desert because it’s look like be in the Middle East country desert.
9. Pahawang Island at Lampung Province
Pahawang Island is an Island also a village located at Pesawaran district, Lampung province. Just like the other Island, Pahawang also has beautiful beach scenery in all over the area. Pahawang divided into two parts which are Small Pahawang and Big Pahawang, each island has same attractive tourism place.
At Small Pahawang Island there is small cape called Putus cape. Between Putus cape and Small Pahawang Island there is natural bridge made by pile of hard coral and only can be seen on low tide, because it will drown when the sea has high tide.
10. Tanjung Lesung, Banten Province
Tanjung Lesung at Banten province has been categorized as interesting vacation spots near Jakarta, beside Ancol beach or Puncak Bogor. Tanjung Lesung is also a good places to visit in indonesia for honeymoon. This cape shaped like grain mortar, very curved yet so beautiful. We can enjoy the clear water, play over the white sand, and also do diving or snorkeling to enjoy underwater view.
Do not forget to watch the extreme performance called Debus by local artists, the artists will eat anything sharp like broken glass, nail, or knife tip without any hurt on their body. If we’re hungry, there is numerous restaurant offering delicious sea food dishes.
11. Thousand Islands, Jakarta
Who knows that Jakarta has tourism object such Thousands Islands to relax and releasing some big city stress. There are about 12 islands that become holidays destinations for almost tourist from Jakarta or other city. Because thousand Islands located in the middle of the sea, to reach those islands we need water transportations that available in certain dock.
We also can follow any tour packages that provide by tourism agent or travel bureau to go to wonderful trip of thousand islands. Some islands in the thousand island cluster provide cozy guest house or comfortable resorts that often has romantic vibe, therefore Thousand Island become honeymoon destination for many newlywed couples.
12. Bandung, Capital City of West Java Province
In Indonesia there is one city called “City of Flowers”, the city named Bandung, Capital city of West Java province. Most Bandung’s area is plateau, so it has very cool air. Therefore, Bandung district has many nature plateau concept tourist spots such as tea plantation, Strawberry garden, Tangkuban Perahu Mountain, white crater, Maribaya Lodge and also observatory of Lembang.
Beside nature object, Bandung also has a lot historical places such as Gedung sate (Sate building), Geology museum, Asia Africa Conference museum, Sri Baduga museum, and many other museums. Bandung also known by its delicious culinary, so don’t forget to try all the unique foods at Bandung like Surabi, Seblak, Cireng, Banana Bolen and others.
West Java has another town to visit that is Bogor. The city area has straight border with Jakarta city. The iconic place in Bogor is Kebun Raya Bogor (Bogor Botanical Garden) that located at the center of the city. Bogor Botanical Garden consist of thousand plantation species, some has been growth for about hundred years.
This place is very ideal for family sightseeing or to reunite with old friends from high school. Because it has 87 hectare large area, we can not go around all the area on foot, so the garden administrators provide tourist car to take a tour for anyone who want to explore the garden more.
14. Dieng Plateau, Central Java
Just like West Java, Central Java province also has beautiful plateau to visit, one of them is Dieng plateau, located at Banjarnegara and Wonosobo District, in the west of Sindoro and Sumbing mountains. Dieng is one of active volcanic area in Indonesia, so it has active crater that can contain potential poison gas.
Beside crater, Dieng also have few volcanic lakes that must visit such as Lake Cebong, Lake Merdada, Lake Pengilon, Lake Dringo, Lake Nila and the most famous is Lake Color because it has lovely color in the water sometimes its blue, change in red and then turn into green. Tourists can visit the lake or the crater to enjoy the scenery.
Dieng tourism administrator also held the Dieng Festival every year, in July – August. There are many tourists whether local or overseas join in this festival, to see cultural richness of Dieng people like the dance, the cutting hair ritual of dreadlocks child, lampion festival and others unique culture.
15. Semarang, Capital City of Central Java Province
As capital city of Central Java province, Semarang less known as tourism places, but it still has interesting places to see. First, we can visit iconic intersection in the center of the city called Simpang Lima (five intersections). In this place, we can go for street foods culinary tasting alongside the road or go shop to the mall around the intersections.
The newest tourism places in Semarang is Rainbow Village (Kampung Pelangi), located at Dr.Sutomo street, Randusari, South Semarang. What to see in this village is very wonderful; every house in the village is paint by rainbow color forming vibrant color, like it decorating the village with beautifulness.
16. Karimunjawa Islands
Located at Java sea, near Jepara district, there is islands cluster named Karimunjawa. This islands well-known as one of the best dive sites in Indonesia, has about 400 fish species, also home for many coral species and mangrove conservation site.
For best experience in Karimunjawa, we can make itinerary by ourselves so that every attractive place in Karimunjawa can be visited. Tourism places at Karimunjawa that we can visit such as Shark pool at Big Menjangan Island, Love hill at Karimunjawa village, Mangrove forest at Kemujan Island and a lot beautiful beach and seas.
If we want to travel but do not have enough budget, maybe we can go to Yogyakarta. This city has cheapest street vendor shopping places called Malioboro. We can find any kind of lovely handmade craft and batik with lowest price ever, for example we can buy batik pants for about 2 dollars only.
Beside Malioboro, Yogyakarta also has many interesting places to visit like Sultan Castle, Town square, Bringhardjo traditional market, Prambanan Temple, Gunung Kidul Beaches and other tourism places. Yogyakarta’s traditional foods such as gudeg and bakpia are worth to try when we visit this city.
18. Surabaya, East Java Province
Move on to eastern Java Island, we can visit Capital city of East Java province that is Surabaya. The name of Surabaya came from “Sura” fish and “Baya” or Buaya or Crocodile, according to legend in the past days there are animal battle royal between fish and crocodile in that place, so it called Surabaya.
In center of the city, there is a big statue picturing those animals battle that become points of interest of Surabaya. Another top tourism places in Surabaya that we can visit are Heroes Monument (Tugu Pahlawan), Bungkul Park, Surabaya Zoo, Mangrove forest, Kenjeran beach, Bratang flowers market and many other attractive tourism place.
19. Malang and Batu City, East Java Province
Still at East Java province, Malang and Batu city also available as beautiful tourism places to travel. Malang, especially Batu city is famous as their apple agriculture field and also its products such as apple juice, apple chips and of course fresh apple. We can explore the apple’s field and picking apples from its tree.
Beside apple, Transportation Museum (Museum Angkut) is worth to visit especially for automotive maniac because there is a hundred or maybe thousands any kind of transportation is displayed in this museum. We can see many oldest transportation vehicles such as car, motorbike, an old bike or even traditional cart.
20. Banyuwangi, East Java Province
One of best surf spots in Indonesia which located at Banyuwangi is named Plengkung beach or G-Land. This beach has seven giant waves that almost six meter height, so it called The Seven Giant Waves Wonder by foreigner surfer, but the giant waves only appear on April until August every year.
Not only have the beaches, Banyuwangi also had Ijen Crater which has blue fire, that only two of them in the world. Blue fire can be enjoyed before dawn, about 3 – 5 A.M, because when the sun rise, the light of blue fire can not be seen because the brightness of the sun. Sulfur miner activity that’s up and down along Ijen crater track become unique sights in this place.
21. Ubud, Bali
Bali, The Paradise Island, is the most favorite places to visit in Indonesia. There are so many amazing tourism objects and cultural richness that we can enjoy in this God’s Island. Ubud is one of them, if you ever watch the movie called “Eat, Pray, and Love” starred by Julia Roberts, than you see a little bit of Ubud beautifulness.
We can rent a bike to go around Ubud villages, enjoying green farming, just like Julia Roberts did in her movie. We can use travel guide book to show us tourism object at Ubud. Monkey forest is the most visited place in Ubud, in this forest we can get pleasure from the fresh air, while watch the wild monkeys and take a picture with them.
22. Nusa Penida, Bali
Nusa Penida is an island located at southern Bali, separated by Badung sea narrows. Just like another islands, it has best beaches in Indonesia, Crystal Bay Beach is one of them. The most fascinated view in here is when the sunset started because the beach position is facing to the west side, so it shows the most amazing sunset atmosphere.
Beside Crystal Bay, Nusa Penida also has Atuh Beach, Pasih Uug (broken beach), Suwehan Beach, Kelingking Beach, Andus Beach, and Banah Beach. In this island, we can spot one human made cave called Gala-gala.
The cave made about 7 meter underground be functioned as a house. The owner of the house named Mangku Byasa, a farmer also a hermit. He built the cave for about 15 years since 1961 using very simple tools and traditional building material like cow feces.
23. Lombok Island
Lombok Island located near Bali, we can reach this island by airplane or by boat from Bali. Lombok has some island’s cluster called Gili by local people. Each Gili has its own beautiful scenery that we can enjoy during our travelling. The most popular Gili is Gili Trawangan that has beautiful underwater sights, therefore many tourist visit it for diving, snorkeling, swimming or just take a photo.
One of beautiful mountain in Indonesia also located at Lombok Island called Rinjani (3726 meter heights) and it open for climbers every year between Aprils till August. In the middle of the mountain, there is a Lake, named Lake Anakan, that formed after volcanic eruption in the past day.
24. Sumbawa Island
Sumbawa Island is the part of Nusa Tenggara Barat province area that consists of some district such as West Sumbawa, Sumbawa, Dompu, Bima, Big Sumbawa and administrative city of Bima. Sumbawa, located at eastern of Lombok Island, has its own exoticism charm especially for the existence of Mantar Village, ‘The Cloud Village”.
The village located at 630 Mdpl above the sea, so we can see the clouds dance around the village as we life above the skies. Another lovely tourism object at Sumbawa is Mata Jitu waterfall, one of the most beautiful Indonesia waterfall, located at Moyo Island, in Ai Bari village for exact.
The waterfall is very beautiful like a master painting, with four level terraces and seven pools; tourist can enjoy the freshness of the water and also get pleasure from the plantation around the waterfall.
25. Sumba Island
If Sumbawa is the part of Nusa Tenggara Barat province, Sumba Island is the part of Nusa Tenggara Timur province. The island also has many amazing tourism object, same as Sumbawa Island. Cultural Village Ratenggaro is a village that full of traditional culture of Sumba ethnic.
All houses at this village are traditional Sumba house named Uma Kelada which has almost 15 meter heights monument. Beside the village, Sumba also has wonderful beaches and nature tourism object that we can enjoy.
26. Flores Island
The one and only Island that has Komodo natural habitat is Flores Island. Tourist can visit and do tracking activity into Komodo National Park along with best experiences tour guide. Safety is the most important thing when we visit this park, because even the Komodo look like they are calm, but they can attack when they feel any threat surround them, so just follow the tour guide and do what they said.
Beside Komodo National Park, Flores also has an iconic tourism place called Lake Kelimutu. The lake well-known as lake with three color; red, blue and white; combine with the green plantation around it, become so much attraction in this place.
27. Labuan Bajo
Labuan Bajo actually a city in the Flores Island, where the Komodo National Park belongs. This city itself also has another attractive tourism object beside Komodo National Park. The most attractive is Pink beach or Red beach because it has white pink gradation sands, and it becomes heaven for beach lover.
There is another tourism object such as Batu Cermin Cave, Padar Island, Love Hill, Rangko Cave, Cunca Rami dan Cunca Wulung waterfall and Wae Rebo village.
28. Pontianak, West Kalimantan Province
There are so many things to do in Indonesia including at Pontianak, capital city of West Kalimatan province. The longest river at Kalimantan Island; named Kapuas flow beautifully through this city. Tourists can do river cruise or riding canoe to explore the river.
Another Indonesia tourist attractions placed in Pontianak is Equator Monument that located at zero point of earth equator. In this monument, two times a year, on March 21-23 and September 21-23, the point of sun culmination occur at noon, so everything in this area has no shadow for about a minutes before the sun move again.
29. Derawan Islands
Derawan Islands is an archipelago placed at Berau district, East Kalimantan Province. There are four famous islands in Derawan, which are Maratua, Derawan, Sangalaki and Kakaban island that inhabited by rare turtle species; green and scales turtle. Just like another island in Indonesia, Derawan Islands has many beautiful tourism objects.
The famous one is Derawan Island that has numerous pretty sea fish and colorful coral species. We can enjoy the underwater view through snorkeling and diving activity. Besides diving, we also can get pleasure from the beauty of the beach, mangrove forest, swimming along with shark whale, and staying at the hotels on the beach shore.
30. Morotai Island
North Maluku province has Morotai Island as alternative tourism place for local or international tourists. Morotai Island is kind of Island where to visit when we want different feel of adventure. In this island, we can visit Batu Kopi (Coffee Stone), the unique stone which smell like coffee in certain time even there is no coffee tree near the stone.
The island also keeps so many historical building and property from World War II because the island was used as Japanese Military base in South Asia area. Great General from US Military, General Mac Arthur, used Sumsum Island at Morotai area for his military base.
31. Ambon City
Ambon or Ambonia is the capital city of Maluku province, also well-known as Ambon Manise which means Sweet Ambon that describes the beautifulness of Ambon. This city is one of the best cities to visit in Indonesia, especially at eastern Indonesia region, because it is the most developing city at eastern Indonesia region.
Like Morotai, Ambon also keeps historical building and property from past day, mostly from Portugal and Dutch nation that ever colonize Maluku Island. At least two defense fortress that exist at Ambon City which are Victoria fort and Amsterdam fort, both located near city center.
32. Togean Islands National Park
Indonesia’s government announces officially that Togean Island become National Park since 2004, it is located at Tomini Gulf Center Sulawesi. This island has plenty of sea biota and rare coral species. We can go for diving, snorkeling and also fishing at the sea.
The island is formed by volcanic activity, therefore it covered by dense green plantation and surrounded by atoll hill. The beach and the atoll provide the place or habitat for many living organism.
33. Tana Toraja
Tana Toraja is one of district at South Sulawesi that has many ancient traditions which still held nowadays. Toraja is the place where to go if we want to see real and complete ancient tradition that sometimes seem so creepy.
Ma’ene tradition or ceremony is the one tradition in Toraja that famous around the world; held in around August every year. In this tradition, the family will clean and change the clothes their family dead corpse that kept in the open public cemetery. Toraja ethnic believe that the spirits of dead person always watch the living person, so they must take care of the corpse.
Makassar is the capital city of South Sulawesi and the biggest metropolitan city at Sulawesi Island. There are two iconic tourism objects in Makassar which are Losari beach and Bantimurung National Park. Losari beach known as beach without sand, because the beach shore only have little sand, but it has concrete in the edge to maintain the beach shore structures.
The Bantimurung National Park is a special park because it has almost 250 Butterflies species, so it called as Butterflies Kingdom. We can visit the park and enjoy beautiful butterflies flying around us. If we’re lucky, we can see butterfly metamorphose process, which so amazing. Therefore, the Bantimurung become one of the places to visit in Indonesia for animal research especially about Butterflies wildlife.
The capital city of North Sulawesi is Manado that also has many wonderful places. Bunaken Sea Park is the famous sea park in Indonesia, even in the world, located at Manado. Since 2005, UNESCO officially announces that Bunaken Sea Park become one of World Heritage Site. The underwater view at Bunaken really awesome, so it is becomes the diver heaven.
There are many lakes in Indonesia, one of them located at Manado, that is Lake Tondano. The lake surrounded by three mountains, which are Tampusu, Kaweng and Masarang Mountain. Tourists can travel around the lake by motor boat that load 10 people each.
36. Wakatobi National Park
Wakatobi National Park is a marine national park, located at Southeast Sulawesi Province. Wakatobi named after four main Tukang Besi Island which are Wangi-wangi, Kaledupa, Tomia and Binongko. Like Bunaken, Wakatobi also listed as World Heritage Site since 2005.
The number one tourism object in this island, of course its underwater life that full of beautiful fish species and coral. Along the beach, we also can enjoy the various seabird species fly around the sea to catch the fish prey. Wakatobi also offer conservation tourism such as releasing sea turtle baby to the sea after they hatch at Anano Runduma Island, the center of sea turtle hatching.
37. Raja Ampat
Last but not least beautiful places in Indonesia are Raja Ampat Islands, located at West Papua province. The islands offer some wonderful places and fun activity for tourists. We can dive to enjoy underwater life or watching “sea ghost” when the sunset come in December.
If we like traditional music, we can watch the Suling Tambur or flute orchestra perform by local artist. Raja Ampat often called as best islands in Indonesia that worth to visit during holiday season.
So, there are 37 best places to visit in Indonesia that ready for our holiday mission. Do not forget to bring your family and friends to enjoy wonderful Indonesia. And also do not forget to bring your camera to save great memories of Indonesia tourism object.