10 Top Tourist Attractions in Indonesia

by Sarah Rizwan

In terms of both people and land, Indonesia is a massive country, and its culture and landscape are equally varied. There are 18,110 islands in total, with just 6,000 being inhabited. A total of over 240,000,000 people live there, descended from 300 distinct ethnic groups and speaking over 250 distinct languages. While most international travelers have only heard of Bali, there are a variety of other top tourist destinations in Indonesia for you to explore.

10. Lake Toba

Sipolha Hill at Lake Toba

A scenic view of Sipolha Hill, located in the circle of Lake Toba. Image source: Andry Beruat/Shutterstock.com

The volcanic Lake Toba on the island of Sumatra is enormous—100 km long and 30 km wide. The biggest resurgent caldera on Earth, it was formed by a massive volcanic eruption around 70,000 years ago. According to genetic data, just a few thousand people are thought to have survived the disaster. Pulau Samosir, the island in the center, has two lakes and is the biggest island inside an island. Tourists come here to rest and swim in the volcanically heated waters, as well as to see the “lake on an island inside a lake on an island.”

9. Tanjung Puting

Orangutan at Tanjung Puting National Park

An Orangutan spotted at Tanjung Puting National Park, Borneo, Indonesia. Image source: Al Carrera/Shutterstock.com

Central Kalimantan, Indonesia, is home to Borneo’s Tanjung Puting National Park. Many local tour companies provide multi-day boat cruises to the park to see the animals and check out the research facilities, making it a popular ecotourism destination. Other animals found there include the more well-known orangutans as well as gibbons, macaques, clouded leopards, sun bears, pythons, and crocodiles. Sadly, the park faces serious danger from illicit logging and forest removal for agricultural purposes.

8. Baliem Valley

Baliem Valley, West Papua

The breathtaking beauty of Baliem Valley in West Papua, Indonesia. Image source: Pvince73/Shutterstock.com

Discover what life was like in the Stone Age in Western New Guinea’s highlands, in the Baliem Valley. After an airborne observation mission in 1938 from Hollandia (now Jayapura) identified a significant agricultural population in the valley, news of it spread. Wamena is the jumping-off point for most tourists that go to the region to see the rugged beauty of the mountains, the roar of the rivers, the unique culture of the Dani people, and the hospitality of the locals.

7. Mount Bromo

Bromo volcano at sunrise

The magnificent Bromo volcano bathed in the golden hues of sunrise, Tengger Semeru National Park, East Java, Indonesia. Image source: lkunl/Shutterstock.com

As an active volcano, Gunung Bromo can be found in East Java’s Tengger massif. Although it is not the tallest mountain in the massif, its fame has helped it gain elevation to 2,329 meters (7,641 feet). Among visitors to Indonesia and Java, this location ranks high. The summit of the volcano was blasted off, and white smoke continues to spew from the crater within. Fine volcanic sand forms a sea around it. The impact as a whole is alienating and strange.

6. Bunaken

Underwater view of fish in Bunaken, Sulawesi

A vibrant and diverse marine life teeming with fish beneath the surface in Bunaken, Sulawesi, Indonesia. Image source: fenkieandreas/Shutterstock.com

Bunaken, near the northern tip of the island of Sulawesi, is a popular destination for scuba divers and snorkelers. More than 70% of all fish species found in the western Pacific Ocean can be seen in the waters around the island, which are part of the Bunaken Marine Park. Between April and November is peak diving season at Bunaken.

5. Torajaland

Tongkonan traditional old houses in Buntu Pune village

Explore the charming Tongkonan traditional old houses in Buntu Pune village, Tana Toraja, Sulawesi, Indonesia. Image source: Larisa Dmitrieva/Shutterstock.com

South Sulawesi is home to the mountainous area known as Torajaland (Tana Toraja), which is inhabited by the indigenous Toraja people. The tongkonan, or giant peaked-roof houses, of the Torajan people are well-known, as are their elaborate but sometimes violent funeral rites. In many cultures, the deceased’s corpse is stored for years until the funeral service, which can take days. Afterwards, the body is placed in a small cave or a hollow tree for burial.

4. Gili Islands

Gili Air, West Nusa Tenggara

Enjoy the serene beauty of Gili Air, a stunning island in West Nusa Tenggara, Indonesia. Image source: TannerPhoto/Shutterstock.com

The Gili Islands are a trio of smaller islands off the coast of Lombok that are quite popular with visitors. These islands include Gili Trawangan, Gili Meno, and Gili Air. There are no cars or motorbikes to disrupt the tranquility on the islands, and instead there are innumerable modest coastal cafés still playing reggae. Since gili means “small island” in Sasak and there are several other islands off the coast of Lombok with Gili in their names, the term “Gili Islands” is rather redundant.

3. Komodo National Park

Komodo dragons fighting in Indonesia

Witness a fierce battle between two Komodo dragons in Indonesia. Image source: GUDKOV ANDREY/Shutterstock.com

Located in the Lesser Sunda Islands, Komodo National Park encompasses not just Komodo, Padar, and Rincah but also another 26 smaller islands. The Komodo Dragon, which can grow to be more than 3 meters long and 70 kg in weight, inspired the park’s name. However, Komodo dragons are strong predators and will also pursue live prey, such as birds and mammals. Attacks against people are quite uncommon.

2. Borobudur

Borobudur Buddhist Temple

Behold the magnificence of Borobudur, a renowned Buddhist temple in Indonesia. Image source: Adel Newman/Shutterstock.com

One of the best-known Buddhist temples is Borobudur, which is situated on the island of Java about 40 kilometers (25 miles) northwest of Yogyakarta. Borobudur was constructed by the Sailendra dynasty over the course of 75 years, in the 8th and 9th centuries, using around 2 million stone blocks. They left it in the jungle in the 14th century for unknown reasons, and nobody knew about it for centuries. It is becoming one of Indonesia’s top tourist destinations.

1. Ubud

Rice terraces in Bali

Admire the stunning beauty of the iconic rice terraces in Bali, Indonesia. Image source: Monika Vlageryte/Shutterstock.com

Ubud is one of the most popular tourist destinations in Indonesia and is often regarded as the cultural center of Bali. The city is filled with art galleries, craft shops, and dance and music performances every day. Ubud’s tourist industry has grown tremendously in recent decades, despite the town’s longstanding reputation as a top destination for those interested in Balinese culture. Thankfully, getting away from the hustle and bustle of the city center is simply a short trip on foot or bike.

You may also like

Leave a Comment


At OnTravelX, we’re passionate about travel and helping people explore the world. Our mission is to provide comprehensive, informative, and inspiring travel content to our readers. From destination guides and travel tips to the latest trends in travel and tourism, we strive to cover every aspect of the travel experience.

Contact us: contact@ontravelx.com

@2023 – OnTravlex. All Right Reserved. Designed and Developed by OnTravlex