TABLE OF CONTENTS
8 OFF BEAT PLACES IN INDONESIA
What comes to mind when you think of Indonesia? Bali or Jakarta maybe! Well did you know that the Indonesian Archipelago is home to more than 17,000 islands? So why get stuck with just these two destinations when there are so many more to explore. And while the country’s tourist magnet is Bali, those wanting to venture off the beaten path will find that Indonesia is a treasure trove of unique cultures, breathtaking landscapes, and natural beauty.
So, if you are looking for offbeat places in Indonesia, these definitely need to be on your list.
Papua Or Western New Guinea
This probably is one of the most off beat places in Indonesia! With limited infrastructure, yet abundant natural beauty it is a remotely located island destination that is bound to mesmerize you. A trip here will definitely take you back in time as you are transported to a place that is still abundant with tribal villages, ancient traditions and their unique way of life.
The tribal island requires a permit to visit and you can engage in activities like sailing in Raja Ampt Islands, diving with whale sharks, snorkeling near coral reefs and discovering underwater wrecks from World War II.
Located off the coast of Bali, Nusa Penida has some of the most stunning virgin beaches in Indonesia. And the best part is that since not many people know about this, you can literally have the whole beach to yourself! The journey from Bali to Nusa Penida is a 90-minute boat ride and its home to the famous T-Rex island. You can spend a whole day here basking in the sun, swimming the crystal-clear blue waters aur hiking around the island.
To the east of Bali, lies a surfer’s paradise hardly touched by tourists. Sumba has gorgeous violet waters, big waves and some of the most amazing beaches you’d ever see. Generally visited by surfers, this little island hamlet provides a sneak peek into local tribes’ life, their unusual huts and massive megalithic tombs of their ancestors.
Apart from surfing the island’s highlights include hidden lakes, breathtaking hillsides, pristine beaches and beautiful waterfalls! Some of the best spots on the island are Weekuri lake, Tarimbang beach, Kampung Tarung and Marosi beach.To get to Sumba island you will have to take a short boat ride from Bali or other islands like Lombok.
Consisting of four islands, the Wakatobi archipelago is a breathtaking location known for its marine life and vibrant corals. And because of this, Wakatobi has been designated a UNESCO marine biosphere reserve! The marine life here has attracted scuba divers and snorkel enthusiasts from all over the world and you will find more than 750 species of coral along with 942 species of fish here! Another must visit site here are the Lakasa caves which are located in the Sulaa village. The natural caves have a cool fresh water pool inside with the surroundings decorated with stalactites and stalagmites.
And when you are done exploring caves, you can take a dip on the Hoga island beach which has pristine blue waters and unspoilt sand. With 12 dive sites, you can also hire a dive master here to take you on a magical underwater tour!
Unknown to majority of tourists is a hidden paradise just off the coast of Bali. Moyo island is a largely uninhabited island that is home to the Moyo Island Hunting park and inhabited by animals like macaques, deer, wild pigs, flying foxes and a large number of birds. And one of the most scenic off beat places in Indonesia!
The island’s claim to fame is a luxury resort, the only accommodation option on the island that is frequent by a select group of high-end travelers. The coastline has beautiful beaches, clear waters and stunning coral reefs. The best activities to engage in are snorkeling and scuba diving with the southern end of the island the best spot for these activities.
This island is one of the New Seven wonders of the world and the Komodo National park is a must visit whenever you are in Indonesia. The island is home to the largest lizard on earth, the Komodo Dragon after which the island is named. You will need to book your stay at the nearest island of Labuan Bajo from where you will be taken to Komodo Island by ferry.
Apart from being in the presence of the massive Komodo dragons you can also go on a trek to Padar island, which is one of the most beautiful viewpoints in the country. The hike is tough but from the top you will witness one of the most beautiful landscapes you’ve even seen. If hiking is not your things, then you can lay back and enjoy the sun at Pink Beach located in Mawan Island. The pink color comes from a combination of red corals and white sand! Most island tours have Pink beach included in their route as this is a great spot for snorkeling and exploring coral reefs.
All though this is not one of the off beat places in Indonesia, but a lot of tourists skip this on their Indonesia tour. The biggest draws of Sumatra are the national parks, soft sandy beaches and great trekking trails. One of the main attractions here is Lake Toba which apparently is the largest crater lake in the world and has a magical legend behind its creation. The lake is located on top of a long extinct volcano and the best way to enjoy its serenity is to take a dip here or a short boat ride.
One of the most well-kept secrets in Sumatra is the Weh Island which has Dawki like crystal clear waters perfect for swimming, snorkeling and sun bathing. The coastal front is lined with restaurants, cute little cafes and surf shops from where you can book snorkeling tours.
Ok so this one is one of the largest islands in the world and home to some mystical and intriguing traditions. If you are looking at experiencing the diversity of Indonesian culture then this is your go to place! Tana Toraja is home to some of the most unique funeral traditions and there are a lot of cool things to do here. Explore the villages, taste some tribal food and indulge in the natural surroundings of Sulawesi as much as you can. Head to the village of Kete Kusu if you are interested in adventure activities like diving.
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Hey Archana & Vidur, great site and travel tips! It’s the local knowledge and insights that make many trips really memorable. That’s why I built Stayy, to make it easy for friends and family to share their homes and vacation properties.
And I have friends for you to ride with if you’re ever in the San Francisco bay area. 🙂