INDONESIA - THE DESTINATION

With 18,110 islands, 6,000 of them inhabited, Indonesia is the largest archipelago in the world with an amazing abundance of cultures. Bali has a unique Hindu culture, Sumba is home to one of the few remaining megalithic cultures anywhere on earth. In Sulawesi, the Tana Toraja region is famous for spectacular animist burial rites. Visiting the vast hinterland of Papua in the far east of the country requires considerable planning, an awful lot of money, and a tolerance for extremely challenging conditions. However, for those who want a true wilderness experience and the opportunity to witness first-hand cultures that have had very little contact with the outside world,

it is hard to think of a better option anywhere on Earth. Read more...

ITINERARY IDEAS

Our itineraries are suggestions and are fully customisable according to your needs, interests and budget.

Treat these itineraries as inspiration and one of our experts will create your uniquely tailored holiday with your requests in mind so that you can truly experience Indonesia with Seven Senses.

JAVA - BALI OVERLAND ADVENTURE

12 Days / 11 Nights

From £1,660 pp / with 4 star hotels

Yogyakarta - Borobudur - Dieng Plateau - Prambanan - Surabaya - Bromo - Ketapang - Ijen Trekking - Bali - Ubud

Start with Borobudur, the world's largest Buddhist monument, see Telaga Warna lake which constantly changes colours. Tour Yogyakarta and Prambanan, go horseback riding at Mt. Bromo, hiking at Mt. Ijen, then whitewater rafting, cycling and trekking in Ubud, Bali.

EXPERIENCE BALI WITH SEVEN SENSES

12 Days / 11 Nights

From £ request a quote

Make the most of your trip to Bali on this adventure. 

Art, Temples, Volcanoes, Mountain Trekking, Rice Terraces, Cooking Class,

Mountain Cycling, Whitewater Rafting and Beach Club Cruise

ORANGUTANS IN BORNEO, BOROBUDUR, JAVA, KOMODO & BALI

17 Days / 16 Nights

From £ request a quote

Pangkalan Bun - Semarang - Yogyakarta - Bromo - Kalibaru - Bali - Komodo - Bali

Trek in Borneo's rainforests and spot wild orangutans, then fly to Yogyakarta and visit Borobudur, the largest Buddhist monument in the world. Visit traditional Javanese villages, admire Prambanan, view the sunrise at Mt. Bromo, then explore Bali & Komodo.

KOMODO ADVENTURE,

BALI, GILI AND LOMBOK

14 Days / 13 Nights

From £2,180 pp / with medium range hotels

Sail to Rince Island, a safari like island with savannah dominated landscape, see the Komodo Dragon, snorkel at Pink Beach, experience Lombok, chill out on Gili Trawangan, finally explore a bit of Bali.

MENTAWAI TRIBE ADVENTURE

& JAVA - BALI OVERLAND

12 Days / 11 Nights

From £2,295 pp / with 4 star hotels

Padang, West Sumatra - Siberut Island - Padang - Yogyakarta - Borobudur - Dieng Plateau - Prambanan - Surabaya - Bromo - Mt. Ijen - Bali

Visit the Mentawai tribe's village on Siberut Island off West Sumatra. Explore their daily activities such as hunting, fishing, making sago powder, and stay at a native's house. Head to Java, tour Borobudur & Prambanan temples, then go trekking at Mt. Bromo and Mt. Ijen.

ORANGUTAN TOUR AND 

TREKKING IN SOUTH BORNEO

12 Days / 11 Nights

From £2,290 pp / with basic accommodation

Visit a rehabilitation center for the new ex-captive orangutans. Trek into the rainforest for a possible sighting of wild orangutans, gibbons, macaques, and birds. Observe the Proboscis Monkeys on Kaget Island, then go trekking and bamboo rafting in South Borneo jungles.

FLORES, KOMODO, BALI,

LOMBOK & GILI TOUR

17 Days / 16 Nights

From £2,615 pp / with medium range accommodation

Visit some of Indonesia's 17,000 islands. Experience the beaches, nature and ethnic villages of Flores, spot the Komodo Dragon in the wild, swim in the waterfalls of Lombok, relax in the Gili Islands and explore Bali on this unforgettable tour.

NORTH SUMATRA & 

JAVA - BALI OVERLAND

14 Days / 13 Nights

From £2,195 pp / with basic and medium range hotels

Go trekking in Northern Sumatra, experience riding the Sumatra elephant, walk through palm oil plantations and local villages, cross a river by traditional canoe then trek in the jungle to see and feed the orangutans, visit islands, waterfalls, traditional villages, see Borobudur & Prambanan, before trekking again at Mt. Bromo.

FLORES ISLAND TREKKING WITH 

WAEREBO VILLAGE AND KOMODO

14 Days / 13 Nights

From £2,380 pp / with basic accommodation

See the three coloured lakes of Kelimutu, go trekking in the mountains of Flores visit traditional villages, isolated ethnic civilizations, volcanoes, coffee, and cacao gardens. Experience the everyday life of the local communities then continue to Komodo to observe the Komodo Dragon, and relax on Pink Beach.

EXPERIENCE THE REMOTEST 

TRIBES OF PAPUA

14 Days / 13 Nights

From £8,990 pp / with very basic accommodation

West Papua is home to around 312 different tribes, including some uncontacted peoples. The tribes we visit can only be reached by a day's boat ride and an additional day's hiking in the jungle. A truly unique experience.

 

TAILOR MADE TOURS

INDONESIA

A Wonderful World That is Full of Beauty,

Charm and Adventure

 
 
 
 

INDONESIA - THE DESTINATION

With 18,110 islands, 6,000 of them inhabited, Indonesia is the largest archipelago in the world. About 240 million people live in this fourth most populous country in the world — after China, India and the USA — and by far the largest country in Southeast Asia. Indonesia also has the largest Muslim population in the world. 

Dozens of kingdoms and civilizations flourished and faded in different parts of the archipelago. Some notable kingdoms include Srivijaya (7th-14th century) on Sumatra and Majapahit (1293-c.1500), based in eastern Java but the first to unite the main islands of Sumatra, Java, Bali and Borneo (now Kalimantan) as well as parts of Peninsular Malaysia.

The first Europeans to arrive (after Marco Polo who passed through in the late 1200s) were the Portuguese, who were given permission to erect a godown near present-day Jakarta in 1522. By the end of the century, however, the Dutch had pretty much taken over and the razing of a competing English fort in 1619 secured their hold on Java, leading to 350 years of colonization. The British occupied Java from 1811 to 1816, and as a result Indonesians still drive on the left.In 1824, the Dutch and the British signed the Anglo-Dutch Treaty which divided the Malay world into Dutch and British spheres of influence, with the Dutch ceding Malacca to the British, and the British ceding all their colonies on Sumatra to the Dutch. The line of division roughly corresponds to what is now the border between Malaysia and Indonesia, with a small segment becoming the border between Singapore and Indonesia.

Hardly surprisingly in the world's largest archipelago, beaches are significant attractions. Aside from the obvious like Bali, there are wonderful beaches in off-the-beaten-track locations in Maluku, Nusa Tenggara and Sulawesi. In a nation of 18,000+ islands, the options are almost endless.

Indonesia is home to no less than 167 active volcanoes, far more than any other country and has some of the largest remaining tracts of tropical forest anywhere in the world. These support an incredibly diverse wildlife from Orangutans and other primates to critically endangered Javan Rhinoceros and Tigers, and an extraordinarily wide range of bird species. Komodo is the home of the remarkable Komodo Dragon and a very diverse marine life. Close to the very eastern limit of Indonesia, the remote Lorentz National Park in Papua has a permanent glacier, and is the single largest national park anywhere in Southeast Asia.

Borobudur in Central Java is the world's largest Buddhist monument, dating from the 8th century, and nearby Prambanan is a remarkable Hindu monument dating from just a few years later. Those two, together with the charm of Yogyakarta, make for a popular cultural combination in Central Java. Also in Central Java, the Dieng Plateau is home to the oldest extant temples in Indonesia, predating Borobudur by some 100 years, and just north of Solo, the early man archaeological excavation at Sangiran is a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

In such a vast archipelago it is hardly surprising that there are some very distinct and unique cultures, often contained in relatively small areas. Bali has a unique Hindu culture, descended from the great Javanese Majapahit Kingdom in the 13th and 14th centuries. The whole island is adorned by beautifully kept temples (pura), and there is a seemingly endless procession of colourful ceremonies. Some of the better known are the mother temple at Besakih, Pura Ulun Danau Bratan, and Pura Uluwatu.Further east, Sumba is home to one of the few remaining megalithic cultures anywhere on earth. In Sulawesi, the Tana Toraja region is famous for spectacular animist burial rites.

Visiting the vast hinterland of Papua in the far east of the country requires considerable planning, an awful lot of money, and a tolerance for extremely challenging conditions. However, for those who want a true wilderness experience and the opportunity to witness first-hand cultures that have had very little contact with the outside world, it is hard to think of a better option anywhere on Earth.

CLIMATE AND WHEN TO GO

Lying along the equator, Indonesia's climate tends to be relatively even year-round. Upon arrival and disembarking from the plane, you'll immediately notice the sudden rush of warm, wet air. Indonesia is a warm place. It has no spring, summer, autumn, or winter, just two seasons: rainy and dry, both of which are relative (it still rains during the dry season, it just rains less). While there is significant regional variation, in most of the country (including Java and Bali) the dry season is April to October, while the wet season is November to March.

In the highlands temperatures will naturally be cooler, and there are even snow-covered peaks in Papua, whose mountains can soar above 5000m. Bring a jacket along if planning to visit, for example, Mount Bromo on Java or Tana Toraja in Sulawesi.

PRACTICAL INFORMATION

Like anywhere in the world, treating people with a high level of respect goes a long way. Be kind and they will be kind in return. By and large (hawkers and touts don't count), Indonesians are a polite people and adopting a few local conventions will go a long way to smooth your stay.

One general tip for getting by in Indonesia is that saving face is extremely important in Indonesian culture. If you should get into a dispute with a vendor, government official etc, forget trying to argue or 'win'. Better results will be gained by remaining polite and humble at all times, never raising your voice, and smiling, asking the person to help you find a solution to the problem. Rarely, if ever, is it appropriate to try to blame, or accuse.

When meeting someone, be it for the first time ever or just the first time that day, it is common to shake hands — but in Indonesia this is no knuckle-crusher, just a light touching of the palms, often followed by bringing your hand to your chest. Meetings often start and end with everybody shaking hands with everybody! Some Muslim women may prefer a friendly smile and held nod over a handshake - it's safe to open with this gesture, and shake hands if offered. It is also respectful to bend slightly (not a complete bow) when greeting someone older or in a position of authority. Children may go to the extreme and kiss your hand or bow down to it.

Never use your left hand for anything! It is considered very rude. This is especially true when you are shaking hands or handing something to someone. It can be hard to get used to, especially if you are left handed. However, sometimes special greetings are given with both hands.

Don't point someone with your finger, if you want point someone or something it is better use your right thumb, or with a fully open hand.

Remove your shoes or sandals outside before entering a house, unless the owner explicitly allows you to keep them on. Even then, it might be more polite to remove your shoes. Do not put your feet up while sitting and try not to show the bottom of your feet to someone, it is considered rude. Don't walk in front of people, instead walk behind them. When others are sitting, while walking around them, it is customary to bow slightly and lower a hand to "cut" through the crowd; avoid standing upright.

Do not stand or sit with your arms crossed or on your hips. This is a sign of anger or hostility. If a guest, it is not polite to finish any drink all the way to the bottom of the glass. This indicates that you would like more. Instead, leave about a half of an inch/2 cm in the bottom of your glass and someone will most likely ask you if you would like more. A common follow-up gesture is to gulp down the rest of your drink right before leaving, down to an empty glass - this gesture implies that one appreciates the drink and wouldn't like to see it go to waste. This is often done while simultaneously standing up or after gathering your belongings.

And if all this seems terribly complex, don't worry about it too much — Indonesians are an easygoing bunch and don't expect foreigners to know or understand intricacies of etiquette. If you're wondering about a person's reaction or you see any peculiar gesture you don't understand, they will appreciate it if you ask them directly (casually later, in a friendly and humble manner), rather than ignoring it. In general such a question is more than an apology; it shows trust.

REQUEST A QUOTE

At Seven Senses Tours, the sky’s the limit in terms of creating your next unforgettable experience. Our knowledgeable and experienced travel consultants are waiting to plan every last detail of your upcoming trip, so all that’s left for you is to enjoy it.

We work Monday to Friday: 10am-6pm and we aim to respond to your query within one business day.

 

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WHY BOOK WITH US ?

  • If you travel with us you will not just visit, you will experience your destination

 

  • Get in touch with the local culture, meet the people

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SEVEN SENSES TOURS

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SEVEN SENSES TOURS IS A TRADING NAME OF BRS TRAVEL SOLUTIONS LIMITED REGISTERED IN ENGLAND. COMPANY NUMBER 10287236. REGISTERED ADDRESS: 19 CROSSFIELD ROAD, LONDON, N17 6AY, UNITED KINGDOM.

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