Exotic islands in our world. You can enjoy your vacation in here. This is like heaven in the world. Beautiful place, exotic islands, nice people, interested cultures, amazing world.


Exotic islands in our world. You can enjoy your vacation in here. This is like heaven in the world. Beautiful place, exotic islands, nice people, interested cultures, amazing world.

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Indonesia Diving, Raja Ampat Island "The incredible reef and fish"

No doubt about it, the Raja Ampat is definitely the richest place for fish, that I have ever been. Dr G.R.Allen

" I was like a five-year-old, seeing a reef for the very first time. I was awestruck, held by the incredible power of this richest reef. We must, with all available resources, preserve the beauty of Raja Ampat. This may be the last frontier. Michael Aw

"I love the people, I love the diving, It's super!! I've never been for a second time to the same dive destination but now
I'm thinking about going back for the third time!! Should I say more?"
Peter van Dalen
(Taken from www.iriandive.com

Raja Ampat Island is the most western district of the Indonesian province of Papua. Raja Ampat consists of an area surrounding four major island off the western coast of Birds Head Panisula of New Guinea Island. The western half of which is Indonesia and the eastern half, Papua New Guinea. The province was called Irian Jaya, and its a cluster of over 1500 small Islands.

Raja Ampat is the most bio-diverse location in the world more than 3000 species of fishes and over 300 species of corals have been identified here, in a single one and half hour dive you can identified more than 282 fish species and more than 400 species. Till this very day the area is virtually unexplored and unknown due to its size. This area as there are still many remnants of WW II.

The Roughest seas and decreased visibility in the Raja Ampat area are from mid-June until the end of August. During the rest of the year, the sea is mostly very smooth whit good visibility.

Dive sites in Raja Ampat Island:

  • Kri Island: Kri has several sites and Cape Kri is one of the fishiest. The fish numbers and variety are truly amazing. The site is current dependent. Generally it's a steep slope with beautiful coral growth, lots of reef and schooling fishes, including the giant Queensland Grouper.
  • Sardine Reef: Sardine Reef has really giant clams at 10m (33ft) but it's all about non-stop fishes here. There's a resident school of bumphead parrotfish in the shallows, colorful soft corals and plenty of critters.
  • Kaboei Bay Rock Islands: The bay is a labyrinth of rock islands. Visibility isn't great but this is a great place for macro and finding odd nudibranches, mollusks and the pictured dragonet. Bat caves and skeletons are found on some of the islands.
  • The Passage: This is a drift dive through a narrow channel near Waigeo. Look for archerfish among the mangroves, orange cup corals, seahorses, and percula clownfish.
  • Fam Island: Several sites near Fam have stunning coral growth. Sponges and soft corals add color and fishes keep it going. Sites include walls, sloping reefs, and muddy bays.
  • Misool: Misool is awash in fish life and huge sea fans. Caverns and boulders mark several sites. The schooling fishes seem endless and pygmy seahorses live in less than 10m (33ft). Some sites are current dependent.

At a Glance Irian Diving

  • Reef type: Vertical walls, Lagoon channels, caves, platform reefs, etc.
  • Access: By boat from base camps.
  • Visibility: Very good, 20-45 meters.
  • Current: Moderate, excellent for drift diving.
  • Coral: Excellent " abundant & divers.
  • Fish: Variety & abundance guaranteed.
  • Highlights: Snorkeling with dolphins near the Wai base camp (5m); White-tip sharks under P47B wing; finding new wrecks untouched/complete.

It is easiest to fly through to Sorong via Jakarta or via Singapore. Merpati, Pelita and Lion/Wings Airlines operate daily flights from Jakarta to Sorong (with stopovers in Ujung Pandang/Makassar and/or Manado), whereas Silk Air operates regularly from Singapore to Manado. Daily flights to and from Sorong by Airlines Merpati, Lion/Wings or Pelita.

Raja Ampat Island have several accommodations whit traditional design, and there many boat you can rent for a stay. If you using dive operator they will arrange for your base came.

Raja Ampat islands have a very diverse topography with steep mountain shores and deserted white sand beaches. Explore the land on foot. Use a boat to move from one dive site to another dive site.

There are several restaurants and cafes throughout Sorong. Try their specialties: traditional irian foods!

There are many traditional souvenirs made from wood.

You can visit gorgeous waterfalls, ancient burial sites, bat caves and stunning waterways breathtaking limestone landscapes and Manta ray spotting and bird watching.

  • To enter Papua itself, you need a surat jalan (Travel Permit) which is issued by the local police. Please bring: 3 Passport Photos, 3 Copies of the photo page of your passport and 3 Copies of the passport page with the Indonesian Visa.
  • Guide Book : Diving Indonesia (a guide to the world's greatest diving), Periplus Action Guide, Kal Muller.
  • More Information about Irian Jaya Dive, contact: Sorong, Indonesia Office: Papua Diving. Phone: +62 (411) 401 660, Fax: +62 (951) 325 274. www.Iriandiving.com
(Visit Indonesia)

Thursday, June 25, 2009

Komodo National Park

Komodo National Park

Komodo National Park lies in the Wallacea Region of Indonesia, identified by WWF and Conservation International as a global conservation priority area. The Park is located between the islands of Sumbawa and Flores at the border of the Nusa Tenggara Timur (NTT) and Nusa Tenggara Barat (NTP) provinces. It includes three major islands, Komodo, Rinca and Padar, and numerous smaller islands together totaling 603 km2 of land. The total size of Komodo National Park is presently 1,817 km2. Proposed extensions of 25 km2 of land (Banta Island) and 479 km2 of marine waters would bring the total surface area up to 2,321 km2. (Click on the map to enlarge - 70kB)

Komodo National Park was established in 1980 and was declared a World Heritage Site and a Man and Biosphere Reserve by UNESCO in 1986. The park was initially established to conserve the unique Komodo dragon (Varanus komodoensis), first discovered by the scientific world in 1911 by J.K.H. Van Steyn. Since then conservation goals have expanded to protecting its entire biodiversity, both marine and terrestrial.

The majority of the people in and around the Park are fishermen originally from Bima (Sumbawa), Manggarai, South Flores, and South Sulawesi. Those from South Sulawesi are from the Suku Bajau or Bugis ethnic groups. The Suku Bajau were originally nomadic and moved from location to location in the region of Sulawesi, Nusa Tenggara and Maluku, to make their livelihoods. Descendents of the original people of Komodo, the Ata Modo, still live in Komodo, but there are no pure blood people left and their culture and language is slowly being integrated with the recent migrants.

Little is known of the early history of the Komodo islanders. They were subjects of the Sultanate of Bima, although the island’s remoteness from Bima meant its affairs were probably little troubled by the Sultanate other than by occasional demand for tribute.

There are presently almost 4,000 inhabitants living within the park spread out over four settlements (Komodo, Rinca, Kerora, and Papagaran). All villages existed prior to 1980 before the area was declared a national park. In 1928 there were only 30 people living in Komodo Village, and approximately 250 people on Rinca Island in 1930. The population increased rapidly, and by 1999, there were 281 families numbering 1,169 people on Komodo, meaning that the local population had increased exponentially. Komodo Village has had the highest population increase of the villages within the Park, mostly due to migration by people from Sape, Manggarai, Madura, and South Sulawesi. The number of buildings in Kampung Komodo has increased rapidly from 30 houses in 1958, to 194 houses in 1994, and 270 houses in 2000. Papagaran village is similar in size, with 258 families totaling 1,078 people. As of 1999, Rinca’s population was 835, and Kerora's population was 185 people. The total population currently living in the Park is 3,267 people, while 16,816 people live in the area immediately surrounding the Park.

The average level of education in the villages of Komodo National Park is grade four of elementary school. There is an elementary school located in each of the villages, but new students are not recruited each year. On average, each village has four classes and four teachers. Most of the children from the small islands in the Kecamatan Komodo (Komodo, Rinca, Kerora, Papagaran, Mesa) do not finish elementary school. Less than 10% of those which do graduate from elementary school will continue to high school since the major economic opportunity (fishing) does not require further education. Children must be sent to Labuan Bajo to attend high school, but this is rarely done in fishermen’s families.

Most of the villages located in and around the Park have few fresh water facilities available, if any, particularly during the dry season. Water quality declines during this time period and many people become ill. Malaria and diarrhea are rampant in the area. On Mesa island, with a population of around 1,500 people, there is no fresh water available. Fresh water is brought by boat in jerrycans from Labuan Bajo. Each family needs an average of Rp 100,000.- per month to buy fresh water (2000). Almost every village has a local medical facility with staff, and at least a paramedic. The quality of medical care facilities is low.

Traditional Customs: Traditional communities in Komodo, Flores and Sumbawa have been subjected to outside influences and the influence of traditional customs is dwindling. Television, radio, and increased mobility have all played a part in accelerating the rate of change. There has been a steady influx of migrants into the area. At the moment nearly all villages consist of more than one ethnic group.

Religion: The majority of fishermen living in the villages in the vicinity of the Park are Muslims. Hajis have a strong influence in the dynamics of community development. Fishermen hailing from South Sulawesi (Bajau, Bugis) and Bima are mostly Moslems. The community from Manggarai are mostly Christians.

Anthropology and Language: There are several cultural sites within the Park, particularly on Komodo Island. These sites are not well documented, however, and there are many questions concerning the history of human inhabitance on the island. Outside the Park, in Warloka village on Flores, there is a Chinese trading post remnant of some interest. Archeological finds from this site have been looted in the recent past. Most communities in and around the Park can speak Bahasa Indonesia. Bajo language is the language used for daily communication in most communities.

Topography: The topography is varied, with slopes from 0 – 80%. There is little flat ground, and that is generally located near the beach. The altitude varies from sea level to 735 m above sea level. The highest peak is Gunung Satalibo on Komodo Island.

Geology: The islands in Komodo National Park are volcanic in origin. The area is at the juncture of two continental plates: Sahul and Sunda. The friction of these two plates has led to large volcanic eruptions and caused the up-thrusting of coral reefs. Although there are no active volcanoes in the park, tremors from Gili Banta (last eruption 1957) and Gunung Sangeang Api (last eruption 1996) are common. West Komodo probably formed during the Jurasic era approximately 130 million years ago. East Komodo, Rinca, and Padar probably formed approximately 49 million years ago during the Eocene era.

Climate: Komodo National Park has little or no rainfall for approximately 8 months of the year, and is strongly impacted by monsoonal rains. High humidity levels year round are only found in the quasi-cloud forests on mountain tops and ridges. Temperatures generally range from 170C to 340C, with an average humidity level of 36%. From November through March the wind is from the west and causes large waves that hit the entire length of Komodo island’s west beach. From April through October the wind is dry and large waves hit the south beaches of Rinca and Komodo islands.

The terrestrial ecosystems are strongly affected by the climate: a lengthy dry season with high temperatures and low rainfall, and seasonal monsoon rains. The Park is situated in a transition zone between Australian and Asian flora and fauna. Terrestrial ecosystems include open grass-woodland savanna, tropical deciduous (monsoon) forest, and quasi cloud forest.

Due to the dry climate, terrestrial plant species richness is relatively low. The majority of terrestrial species are xerophytic and have specific adaptations to help them obtain and retain water. Past fires have selected for species that are fire-adapted, such as some grass species and shrubs. Terrestrial plants found in Komodo National Park include grasses, shrubs, orchids, and trees. Important food tree species for the local fauna include Jatropha curkas, Zizyphus sp., Opuntia sp., Tamarindus indicus, Borassus flabellifer, Sterculia foetida, Ficus sp., Cicus sp., ‘Kedongdong hutan’ (Saruga floribunda), and ‘Kesambi’ (Schleichera oleosa).

The terrestrial fauna is of rather poor diversity in comparison to the marine fauna. The number of terrestrial animal species found in the Park is not high, but the area is important from a conservation perspective as some species are endemic.. Many of the mammals are Asiatic in origin (e.g., deer, pig, macaques, civet). Several of the reptiles and birds are Australian in origin. These include the orange-footed scrubfowl, the lesser sulpher-crested cockatoo and the nosy friarbird.

Reptiles: The most famous of Komodo National Park's reptiles is the Komodo Dragon (Varanus komodoensis). It is among the world's largest reptiles and can reach 3 meters or more in length and weigh over 70kg. To find out more about this fascinating creature click here.

Other than the Komodo Dragon twelve terrestrial snake species are found on the island. including the cobra (Naja naja sputatrix), Russel’s pit viper (Vipera russeli), and the green tree vipers (Trimeresurus albolabris). Lizards include 9 skink species (Scinidae), geckos (Gekkonidae), limbless lizards (Dibamidae), and, of course, the monitor lizards (Varanidae). Frogs include the Asian Bullfrog (Kaloula baleata), Oreophyne jeffersoniana and Oreophyne darewskyi. They are typically found at higher, moister altitudes.

Mammals: Mammals include the Timor deer (Cervus timorensis), the main prey of the Komodo dragon, horses (Equus sp.), water buffalo (Bubalus bubalis), wild boar (Sus scrofa vittatus), long-tailed macaques (Macaca fascicularis), palm civets (Paradoxurus hermaphroditus lehmanni), the endemic Rinca rat (Rattus rintjanus), and fruit bats. One can also find goats, dogs and domestic cats.

Birds: One of the main bird species is the orange-footed scrub fowl (Megapodius reinwardti), a ground dwelling bird. In areas of savanna, 27 species were observed. Geopelia striata and Streptopelia chinensis were the most common species. In mixed deciduous habitat, 28 bird species were observed, and Philemon buceroides, Ducula aenea, and Zosterops chloris were the most common.

The marine area constitutes 67% of the Park. The open waters in the Park are between 100 and 200 m deep. The straits between Rinca and Flores and between Padar and Rinca, are relatively shallow (30 to 70 m deep), with strong tidal currents. The combination of strong currents, coral reefs and islets make navigation around the islands in Komodo National Park difficult and dangerous. Sheltered deep anchorage is available at the bay of Loh Liang on Komodo’s east coast, the South East coast of Padar, and the bays of Loh Kima and Loh Dasami on Rinca.

In the North of the Park water temperature ranges between 25 – 29°C. In the middle, the temperature ranges between 24 and 28°C. The temperatures are lowest in the South, ranging from 22 – 28°C. Water salinity is about 34 ppt and the water is quite clear, although the waters closer to the islands are relatively more turbid.

Indonesia is the only equatorial region in the world where there is an exchange of marine flora and fauna between the Indian and Pacific oceans. Passages in Nusa Tenggara (formerly the Lesser Sunda Islands) between the Sunda and Sahul shelves allow movement between the Pacific and Indian oceans. The three main ecosystems in Komodo National Park are seagrass beds, coral reefs, and mangrove forests. The Park is probably a regular cetacean migration route.

The three major coastal marine plants are algae, seagrasses and mangrove trees. Algae are primitive plants, which do not have true roots, leaves or stems. An important reef-building algae is the red coralline algae, which actually secretes a hard limestone skeleton that can encrust and cement dead coral together. Seagrasses are modern plants that produce flowers, fruits and seeds for reproduction. As their name suggests, they generally look like large blades of grass growing underwater in sand near the shore. Thallasia sp. and Zastera spp. are the common species found in the Park. Mangroves trees can live in salty soil or water, and are found throughout the Park. An assessment of mangrove resources identified at least 19 species of true mangroves and several more species of mangrove associates within the Park's borders.

Komodo National Park includes one of the world's richest marine environments. It consists of forams, cnidaria (includes over 260 species of reef building coral), sponges (70 species), ascidians, marine worms, mollusks, echinoderms, crustaceans, cartilaginous and bony fishes (over 1,000 species), marine reptiles, and marine mammals (dolphins, whales, and dugongs). Some notable species with high commercial value include sea cucumbers (Holothuria), Napoleon wrasse (Cheilinus undulatus), and groupers.

While most visitors enter Komodo National Park (KNP) through the gateway cities of Labuan Bajo in the west of Flores or Bima in eastern Sumbawa, the departure point for your trip is actually Denpasar, Bali.

By Air:
Indonesia Air Transport (IAT)
Depart : Everyday
DPS - LBJ : 10.00 – 11.30
LBJ - DPS : 12.00 – 13.30

Y CLASS : IDR 751.000
H CLASS : IDR 696.000

Trans Nusa Airlines (TGN)
Depart :
DPS – LBJ : 10.00 – 11.50 & 13.00 – 14.20
LBJ – DPS VIA BMU (BIMA) : 12.05 - 12.35
BMU-DPS : 12.50 – 13.45
LBJ – DPS : 14.35 – 15.15

Y CLASS : IDR 761.000
L CLASS : IDR 651.000
M CLASS : IDR 541.000

By Land:
The gateway cities of Labuan Bajo and Bima are connected to Denpasar, Bali by overland buses.

By Sea (ferry):

Travel time: approximately 36 hours
The gateway cities of Labuan Bajo and Bima are also connected to Denpasar, Bali by inter-island ferry.

Contact the Indonesia Sea Transportation Company (PELNI) at Jalan Raya Kuta No. 299, Tuban - Bali (Tel: 0361 - 763 963) to reserve a seat on the KM. Tilong Kabila, which departs Benoa Port, Bali bound for Bima and Labuan Bajo

Benoa-Bima-Labuan Bajo
Fortnightly (every two weeks) on Saturdays: 09.00-20.00 (next day).
One-way ticket (as of 10/6/06) from Rp. 143,000.00 - Rp. 435,000.00

Labuan Bajo-Bima-Benoa
Fortnightly (every two weeks) on Thursdays: 08.00-11.00 (next day).
One-way ticket (as of 10/6/06) from Rp. 143,000.00 - Rp. 435,000.00
Note: the ferry schedule and ticket prices may change with or without prior notice

By Sea (live-aboard):
Komodo National Park is serviced by a wide range of live-aboard boats, with return packages to Komodo National Park from a variety of departure points, including Bali, Lombok, Bima and Labuan Bajo
Prices (as of 10/6/06) are ranging from USD 230.00 - USD 295.00 / person / night.

From Gateway Cities to Komodo National Park (KNP)
You can easily organize a shared boat charter by local boat from either ports at Labuan Bajo or Bima (Sape) to the two major points of access in the Park: Loh Liang (on Komodo Island) or Loh Buaya (on Rinca Island)
Charter price (as of 10/6/06) - excluding meals, KNP entrance fee etc:
Labuan Bajo: KNP: Rp. 750,000 - 1,500,000 per boat / day
Bima (Sape): KNP: Rp. 1,500.000 - 2,000.000 per boat / day
"Note: the charter prices may change with or without prior notice"

For more information please contact:

Komodo Marine National Park Office
Jl. Kasimo Labuan Bajo
West Flores, East Nusa Tenggara 86445
Ph. +62 385 41004 Fax. +62 385 41006
e-mail: tnkomodo@indosat.org

PT Putri Naga Komodo
Bali: Jl. Pengembak No.2 Sanur 80228, Bali T: +62 381 780 2408 F: +62 361 747 4398
Labuan Bajo: Gg.Masjid, Kampung Cempa. Labuan Bajo, 86554 West Manggarai. East Nusa Tenggara. T: +62 385 41448 F: +62 385 41225
E-mail: info@putrikomodo.com Website: www.komodonationalpark.org / www.gokomodo.org

(Visit Indonesia)
Friday, June 19, 2009

GUNUNG RINJANI NATIONAL PARK : One of the Best Treks in Southeast Asia

Gunung Rinjani National Park covers an area of 41,330 hectares on the northern part of Lombok. The peak of Gunung Rinjani reaching up to 3,726m dominates the landscape.

Gunung Rinjani National Park offers the beauty of the volcano, the Segara Anakan Crater Lake and the challenge of climbing the mountain. There are also guided village tours which provides a glimpse of local culture and the opportunity to meet the locals.

How to Get There :
Senaru and Sembalun Lawang Villages are The two starting points for excursions into the park as well as for climbing Mount Rinjani. Senaru Village can be reached within three hours drive to the north from Mataram, while Sembalun Lawang Village is approximately a four hours drive to the east of Mataram.

The Best Season to Visit :
August to December every year.

Contact :
Gunung Rinjani National Park Office
Jl. Erlangga 88, Mataram
Lombok - Nusa Tenggara Barat
Ph. (0370) 627764
Email: tngr@indo.net.id

(Visit Indonesia)

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Mt. Bromo & Semeru, A Spectacular Volcanic Landscape in East Java

The Bromo Tengger Semeru National Park covers some 800 square kilometers in the centre of East Java. It is the largest volcanic region in the province and there stands Mt. Semeru, which rises 3676 meters above sea level. At its northern end is the spectacular Tengger Caldera, Java's largest, with its 10 km barren desert-like sea of sand. Within the caldera rise the deeply fissured volcanic cones of Batok and Bromo, the latter is still active with a cavernous crater from which smoke blows skyward. Temperatures at the top of mount Bromo range about 5 to 18 degrees Celcius . To the south is a rolling upland plateau dissected by valleys and dotted with several small scenic lakes, extending to the foot of Mount Semeru, a towering grey forest-skirted cone dominating the southern landscape.

Tengger sandy area has been protected since 1919, and its believed to be the only conservation area in Indonesia, even probably in the world possessing a unique ocean and sand at the attitude about 2000 m above sea level. There are several mountains inside the calderas namely: Mt Watangan (2,661 m asl)., Mt Batok (2,470 m asl), Mt Kursi (2,581 asl), Mt Watangan (2,661 m asl), and Mt Widadaren (2,650 m asl).

On the fourteenth day of the Month Kasada, the inhabitants of Tengger Mountain range gather at the rim of Mount Bromo's active crater to present annual offerings of rice, fruit, vegetables, flowers, live stock and other local produce to the God of the Mountain, as adherents of religion combining elements of Hinduism and Mahayana Buddhism the Tenggerese ask for blessing from the supreme God, Sang Hyang Widi Wasa. This ceremony called Kesodo Ceremony.

While the Great Mountain or Semeru offer a wonderful place to 3 days hike. Serenity of small lakes and large meadows, a three hours struggling through loose screw to the peak and breathtaking views from peak Semeru explodes every half hour and sends billowing smoke upwards. These gases and belching lava make Semeru dangerous " stay well away from the vent. The fine scenery and bracing climate, easy access and reasonably visitor-oriented facilities make this one of the most popular reserves in Java.

Bromo Tengger Semeru can be reached by private and public vehicle. There are four gates to access the place, Probolinggo, Wonokitri, Ngadas and Lumajang. Probolinggo approach is the easiest and by fat the most popular route, especially if you go by public bus, Wonokitri is the closes and the easiest one if you go by private vehicle from Surabaya (5 hours journey). To get closer to Mt. Bromo you must rent 4x4 vehicles (there are many 4x4 vehicles rental there).

There are a few options that you can choose to stay. You can stay at The Bromo Guest House which is located at Ngadisari that lies 3 km from the crater rim. Or you can choose other hotels at Cemoro Lawang because it this situated at the crater rim.

Walking on the sea of sand and stepping up on the 249 steps to rim is worth to try. Enjoying the unique crater in crater, watching the dawn at Bromo is the main attractions in the area.

Its kindly hard to find some food at night, because mostly of warung are closed after 7.30 pm. If youre in Wonokitri area, theres some warung in Tosari market, which still open at 7-9 pm.

There are many souvenir shops around Mount Bromo viewpoints who are selling T-shirts, scarf that are made from wool and others. There are also street hawkers who are selling these things too at the caldera area.

You can moving around on foot and normally it will takes 2 hours, or you can ride a horse or even rent a jeep (for this two, you are suggested to ask first and make a negotiation)

  • Necessities for the trip include a torch, warm clothing, comfortable trekking shoes, and glove as a protection against the freezing temperature which hovers between zero to five degrees Celsius (33 to 41 degrees Fahrenheit).
  • If you buy or rent something please Bargain.
  • Sunrise starts at 5.00 am till 6.00 am (If werent cloudy), so you may leave from your hotel or guesthouse at 3 am or even less than that.
  • Before start trekking, hiking or climbing, be sure that you already eat, or you can bring some food and drink from your places of stay.
  • Otherwise, you can buy some food and drink on the nearest markets for your supply before you start your activities on mountain.
  • If youre come in the right time, you may possible to watch the annual ceremony of Kesodo.

(Visit Indonesia)

North Sumatra

The people of the region can be divided into five main ethnic groups and Languages: The coastal Malays, living along the Malaka Straits, the Bataks, consisting of the sub-tribes around Lake Toba and Samosir Island, are Karo, Toba, Dairi, Simalungun, the Angkola or Mandailing of the southern Tapanuli, and Nias Islanders off the western coast of the province. These groups each have their own dialects, religious beliefs, arts, custom and cultures. Several ethnic groups live in Medan and other towns of North Sumatra, the largest of these being Chinese and Indian.

Tourist Office
Jl. Jend. A. Yani No.107, Medan. 20111
Phone. (061) 4538101, 4520559, 4524908 Fax. (061) 4528436

Getting there
Regular bus is available via Trans Sumatra. Bus station Jl. Sisingamangaraja Medan.
Regular flight from Singapore, Kuala Lumpur, Penang, Amsterdam, Vienna, and Jakarta to Polonia Airport Medan, Sumatra.
Belawan seaport is the sea link to Penang, Malaysia. PELNI Lines Jl. Krakatau 17A Phone. (061) 6622526
Train station PERUMKA
Jl. Stasiun 1 Medan Phone. (061) 514114.

Tourism Events

Danau Toba Festival will be held in a week in Lake Toba and performs traditional sports, boat race, cultural attractions, horse race, watersports race and crafts fair.

Places of Interest

Crocodile Farm at Asam Kumbang

Crocodile Farm at Asam Kumbang is 10 km from the heart of the city, with nearly 2,000 crocodiles of different sizes and species. It is open from 9:00 am - 5:00 pm.


Tangkahan’s combination of vegeta¬tion and topography makes it a marvelous tourist spot rarely found elsewhere. The Batang Serangan and Buluh rivers, converging exactly in this zone, are typical of rainforest streams, with diverse varieties of vegetation and colorful rocks and Sumatran elephants on their banks. The clear, bluish green river water against the panoramic view creates a mystical atmosphere. Fly to Medan the capi¬tal of North Sumatra Province and proceed with cars or public transport from Pinang Baris Bus Terminal in Medan to Tangkahan, located three hours from the province’ capital. The Best Season to Visit is June to October every year.


Brastagi is a lovely tourist town in the Karo highlands, 70 Km on the way from Medan to Lake Toba. Brastagi is famous for its flowers, vegetables and fruit, most famous of which is the ‘Marquisa’ passion fruit. The local markets are swarming with activity and scenes from traditional Karo life. Days are extremely pleasant and nights can be quite cool. Gundaling Hills provides a clear view of Mt. Sibayak and Mt. Sinabung volcanoes, there is a pleasant colonial-style hotel with a golf course.

Lake Toba-Parapat

Lake Toba-Parapat is the largest lake in Southeast Asia with a surface area about 1,145 sq. kilometers, and the deepest lake in the world, over 450 meters deep. The town of Parapat is the main tourist resort and lies on the shores of the lake. The Batak Toba and Batak Simalungun peoples of Parapat are happy, easygoing people, known for their lively and sentimental love songs. In Parapat, there area facilities for swimming, water skiing, motor boating, canoeing, fishing and golf. The climate is cool and dry, and ideal place to relax. There is a plethora of Hotels, bungalows, villas and guesthouses. Parapat is 176 km from Me¬dan and can be reached in 4 hours by bus.

Jangga Village

Jangga Village is located on the edge of Simanuk-manuk Mountain, 24 Km from Parapat. It is famous of its weaving the beautiful ‘ulos’ cloth. There are monuments of King Tambun and King Manurung, rows of traditional houses.

Lingga Village

Lingga Village is 15 km from Brastagi, a traditional Karo village and still preserved and inhabited today.

Samosir Island

Samosir Island situated at the middle of Lake Toba, is accesible by regular ferries from Parapat. The original home of the fierce Toba Bataks, the island has many sites of stone tombs and traditional villa¬ges. The villages of Tomok, Tuk-tuk, Siallagan and Ambarita are noteworthy. Transportation can be arranged through your Hotel or rent a motorcycle for day’s adventure on the island. Accomodation of various styles and standards are readily available.

Sipiso-piso Waterfall

Sipiso-piso Waterfall is located on the north side of Lake Toba, 24 Km from Kabanjahe, the 120 m waterfall is visible from gazebo near the food and souvenir stands.

Bukit Lawang

Bukit Lawang is about 3 hours by car from Medan. Its main attraction are the Orang Utan rehabilitation center, crossing the Bahorok river and climbing steep, jungle-clad hills it is located at the South of the Mount Leuser National Park. (Visit Indonesia)


Riau, which includes a large part of East Sumatra, is homeland to Malays and the source of Indonesia’s Malay-based national language. The first book of Malay grammar, called Bustanul Katibin, was written and published here in 1857.

Pekanbaru became the provincial capital in 1959, taking over from the former capital of Tanjungpinang on the island of Bintan. About 160 kms upstream on the Siak River a number of buildings in the traditional style are still in this area, among them the Balai Dang Merdu the Balai Adat and Taman Budaya Riau, or Riau Cultural Park.

Tourist Office=]

Jl. Jend. Sudirman No.200, Pekan Baru Phone. (0761) 31452, 40356, Fax. (0761) 40356

Riau Tourism Board

Gd. Badan Promosi & Investasi Prov. Riau, Lt. 2 Jl. Gajahmada 200, Pekanbaru - Riau
Tel/fax: +62-761-858441

Getting thereSimpang Tiga Airport is a busy visa free entry point. Pelangi flies to Kuala Lumpur and Silk Air flies to Singapore. Domestic airlines direct flights from Jakarta as well as from Medan and Batam. There are frequent departures from the bus station. Agencies all around town sell tickets for the boats to Batam.

Tourism Events

  • Perahu Naga Festival, Tanjung Pinang. It is the Dragon Boat Race, both local and foreign contes, tank race a distance of 400 m.
  • The event is held on Oct-08 at the Tanjung Pinang seaside facing Penyengat Island. To enhance the event there are culture performances, swimming competition for men and women and traditional diving contest.
  • Pacu Jalur, Teluk Kuantan, Indragiri Hulu, Riau. Jalur or canoe races coincide with Indonesia’s Independedce Day celebration. Every decorative jalur used for the race on the Kuantan River is made of one single large bark of tree, approximately 30 m long and manned by 25-30 rowers. Before the festival was only held after a harvest and considered a sacred event. The event will be held on Aug 23-26 2008.
  • Traditional Culture and Dance Parade on March, 2008 presents the Malay culture and traditions the event features a dance competition and dance performance from dance group and schools in city of Batam.

Places of Interest=]

Candi Muara Takus

Candi Muara Takus. Like many others structures of its kind in Sumatra, this Budha temple stupa near the village of Muara Takus in the Tigabelas Koto district, was built with red bricks and sand. The temple is believed to have been built at arround the 9th century A.D. when the power of the South Sumatra-bassed Sriwijaya Empire was at its peak. Excavations are still being made to determine the precise age and function of the stupa. It can be reached in 118 Km from Pekanbaru.

Kerumutan Nature Reserve

Kerumutan Nature Reserve. Located in mainland Riau in the Kuala Kampar district, this 120,000 hectares (30,000 acres) nature reserve can be reached in 18 hours by motor boat from Pekanbaru.


Bono is a curious natural phenomenon, which the Rokan River (in the Kampar regency) displays daily along its downstream reaches. Every day at the time high tide sets in, a swelling appears in the water at the river mouth. Accompanied by a rumbling sound, the swelling grows in mass until it is about as high as a small tree, spinning as it moves upwards along the river and growing smaller in the process until it finally disappears.


Dumai. Formerly a fishing village on the east coast, it is now a major oil terminal. Storage tanks and modern installations rise against the sky, although the town itself is quite pleasant and interesting.

The Siak Sultanate’s Park

The Siak Sultanate’s Park. This Moorish style palace of the Sultan Siak, 120 kms upstream from Pekanbaru on the Siak River, was built in 1889 by Sultan Syarif Hasyim Abdul Jalil Syarifuddin. Now a museum, the palace contains the sultanate’s royal paraphernalia and others items of historical interest.

(Visit Indonesia)

Riau Archipelago

Riau Archipelago with Tanjung Pinang as the capital city Is blessed of a lot potential tourism objects, beautiful beaches, and culture attractions. It is located at the crossroads of one of the world’s oldest and busiest maritime routes and well reputes as an ideal stop over for trade and commerce. Riau Archipe¬lago was once home a sea gypsies cruising its rich mangroves forest and waterways. Moreover, it was on this island that the Sultan of Malacca found refuge from Portuguese attack in the 16th century, mapping tales of the legendary importance when Bintan thenceforth grew as the center of the powerful Johor Riau Sultanate.

Jl. Basuki Rahmat 17 Tanjung Pinang, Phone/Fax (0771) 315822 http://www.disparsenibud-kepri.com.
Batam Tourism Promotion Board :
Sekupang Ferry Terminal Jl.R.E. Martadinata, Phone. (0778) 322871, 322875 Fax.322898

Riau Islands can easily reached by air or sea from Jakarta and Pekanbaru directly. Batam and Bintan have international shiplines and flight. It is only 45 minutes away from Singapore by ferry.

Perahu Naga (Dragon Boat) Festival in every October covers a distance of 400 meters with both domestic and foreign contestants. It is held along the Tanjung Pinang coast facing Penyengat Island. It features cultural performances, swimming contest and traditional diving challenge.

Tanjung Pinang

Tanjung Pinang is a busy town on Bintan Island, now as a capital of Riau Archipelago. It has a Museum on Jl. Katamso. A large section of the old part of the town was built in traditional local fashion, on stilts, over the water. Tanjung Pinang City is located at about 10 km from the airport. This town also has 2 ports, Sri Bintan Pura in Tanjung Pinang and Sri Bayintan in Kijang. Tanjung Pinang Serves flight to Pekanbaru and Natuna.

Batu Bedaun Beach

Batu Bedaun Beach is very famous among the teenagers in Dabo Singkep. The beach situated 20 km from Dabo. This white sandy beach is very clean, with blue sea and small wave.


Daik is a small town but has many historical relics of Riau Lingga kingdom as in the Penyengat Island. We can reach the town by speedboats from Tanjung Pinang. In Lingga Island there are also many variation of tropical plantation and marine water fish species that cannot be found in other pla¬ces. Other interesting objects is Mount Daik with 3 peaks.

Senayang Island

Senayang Island. Boat cruising touring the waters between the islands is among potential attractions. Some real and thrilling adventures are available since there are many islands surrounding Senayang and excellent packages include cycling, bush wacking, swimming, snorkeling and diving.

Tambelan Island

Tambelan Island is about 200 km away from Tanjungpinang. There are only six villages, which are spread over a few islands, with a total population of about 4,000. As is to be expected, the environment here is largely unspoilt, and the scenery is truly magnificent. One of the most interesting of natural attraction in this island is watching turtles laying their eggs in great number that protected by local peoples.

Bintan Island

Bintan Island. International investors have developed many new hotels, integrated world-class resorts, international golf courses on the island of Bintan. Other deve¬lopments include industrial parks, medical, commercial and banking facilities that are readily available to any visitors. During your visit to Riau Archipelago will not be bored or uninspired because there are many other interesting places like Pasar Ikan (Fish Market) where fresh, cheap seafood and ve¬getables are sold. There are also the Akau (Night Market), Pelantar (Water Villages) and shops selling local handicraft, natural attraction like watching the turtles laying their eggs or fishing on the Kelong.

Trikora Beach

Trikora Beach is about 40 kilometers south of Tanjung Pinang on the eastern side of the island. Good beaches are also found on the islands of Terkulai and Soreh, about an hour away by boat.

Natuna Archipelago

Natuna Archipelago is a part of the vast province, which embraces all of the islands off the Riau mainland. The main island clusters of the Natuna archipelago are: Anambas, Natuna, South Natuna and Tambelan. Matak Island at present serves as a base for offshore oil exploration. Colourful co¬rals and reef fish are found in the waters surrounding these islands. South Natuna comprises the islands Serasan, Panjang and Subi. The surf is strong on these islands and the scenery impressive. The Tambelan Islands are accessed by boat in 6 hours from Pontianak in West Kalimantan or from Tanjung Pinang in 16 hours. Turtles habitually come to some of the beaches to depo¬sit their eggs in the warm sand. There are probably more turtles than people on these islands. Natuna is located in area of South China Sea with the geographical location passed by international shipping and coast lines. Natuna’s Ranai airport has length of 2,550 metres and Matak airport with length basis of 1,700 metres. Natuna’s seaport are Lampa (100 x 10 sqm) and Penagih (50 x 8 sqm).

Karimun Island

Karimun Island is one of the most important islands in the Riau Archipelago, due to its thriving economy and proximity to Singa¬pore. Tanjungbalai Karimun is a medium-sized town, with a large Chinese community and shops selling a large variety of imported items. Lies in a shipping line in Malacca Strait and Singapore, Karimun gateway can be passed by international ferry from and to Malaysia and Singapore.

Sea Gardens

Sea Gardens with beautiful corals and fish are found in the waters around the islands of Mapor, Abang, Pompong, Ba¬lang and Tanjung Berkait.

Batam Island

Batam Island is a very strategic island designated as a center of industry, tourism and trade. It lies close to Singapore. The Nongsa recreational region has international hotels, four golf courses, a marina sports facility and a forest reserve. Batam can be reached in two hours from Tanjung Pinang by ferry and in about half an hour from Singapore.

Pulau Penyengat

Pulau Penyengat (Stinging Island) When people found on the first time, Penyengat Island was an island with many stinging bees it is six kilometers from Tanjung Pinang, can be reached in 15 minutes by boat. The seat of the powerful Bugis viceroys of Riau during the 18th century, Penyengat still bears the traces of its illustrious past. Ruins, abandoned for almost 70 years, were recently restored. The old ruler’s palace and royal tombs are among the legacies left by the Riau sultanate. Still in use is the old viceroyal mosque, the Mesjid Raya, there is also a newly built cultural center for stage performances of Malay music and dances.(Visit Indonesia)

Dining Experience in Metropolitan City

Jakarta to Indonesia is like New York to United States of America'a city that never sleeps. Many Indonesians go all the way from their remote hometowns to work in Jakarta, supplying the capital of Indonesia with unique contrasts of culture and palates. Jakarta has so many to offer if you know where to look.

Getting There
Since Jakarta is the capital of Indonesia, this megalopolis is only one, two (or several) trips away by plane, from many big cities in the world. From Sukarno-Hatta airport, formerly known as Cengkareng, you're free to see the sights of Jakarta.

Where to Stay
Tight budget. Look for inns that rent their rooms with nomical fees. For those who prefer luxuries, choose five-starred hotels or apartments (for rent).

Moving Around
The most comfortable way is by renting a car. You can find taxi quite easily, though, and if you're feeling adventurous why not try riding public transportation such as buses and busways. Make sure you know your destination (and most importantly, which bus to take, so you won't be lost).

Dining Guide
From street vendors to chic and elegant restaurants, Jakarta has everything. If seafood is your choice, then Muara Karang is your ideal place. Located in southern Jakarta, this is the perfect site to buy fresh seafood products. Don't worry if you can't cook, some restaurants in Muara Karang will cook the raw materials you have chosen. Or, to save time, just visit the restaurant and choose your favourite cuisine from the menu.

Perhaps one of Jakarta's specialities is called kerak telor. It is made of eggs and other ingredients. Mostly sold by street vendors, this treat has gained popularity so now you can get your portion in some food courts and traditional restaurants. Gado-

gado, ketoprak offer delicious taste and they're quite filling, too. Usually they are eaten with steamed rice or lontong a dish made of rice stuffed into banana leaves shaped into a tube, then boiled until it's ready to eat. Gado-gado contains beancurd sauce and various boiled vegetables in it, such as potatoes, lettuces, cabbages, and so on. A sauce made of grounded peanuts and other herbs is then added. Ketoprak uses a similar sauce, but it mainly consists of beansprouts, fried beancurd, and boiled bihun angel hair-like noodle. Ketoprak & gado-gado are available in street vendors and most traditional restaurants.

Sate (meat on skewers) is tasty. Covered with peanut sauce and other ingredients, sate ayam (the main ingredient's chicken), sate sapi (beef) , sate kambing (mutton) are widely sought by many people. You can find sate in most traditional restaurants. You can also try sate sold by street vendors.

Want to combine shopping and dining experience. Try the malls. All shopping centers in Jakarta have their own food courts and restaurants. Food courts tend to be noisy and crowded, so if you prefer privacy, choose restaurants/cafes, instead.

Restaurants located in starred hotels are generally quite pricey but good in taste and service. Ideal for those who value quality.

Cafes like Starbucks and Tea Leaf are favorites for both locals and tourist to interact. Try various types of Indonesian coffee, to freshen up your day.

If you want to try Indonesian food, bear in mind that Padangese food tends to be spicy.

Sundanese tends to be bland yet tasty, ideal for most people. Javanese food tends to be sweet. Ask locals for more information.

Some restaurants that you might like to frequent:

Jalan Melawai IV no. 17, Blok M

Chase Plaza Tower, 25th Floor, Jalan Jendral Sudirman Kav. 21

Jalan Kemang Raya 14

Jalan Kemang Raya 90

Dharmawangsa Square, Jalan Dharmawangsa VI/IX

The Ascott Jakarta, Taman Ria Senayan, Jalan Gerbang Pemuda, Senayan

Jalan Fatmawati 15 Blok E 31

Jalan Cokroaminoto 78

Bakmi GM
Delivery Hotline:
+62 21 56 55 007

The Duck King
Daily Opening Hour 10.00-22.00
STC Senayan Lt. VII Mezzanine
Jl. Asia Afrika Pintu IX
Gelora Bung Karno Jakarta Pusat 10270
Tel. +62 21 579 32032/33
Fax. +62 21 579 32031

Le Meridien Hotel, Jalan Jendral Sudirman Kav. 18-20

Jalan Kemang Raya 24A

Jalan Kemang Raya 9 JK


Kawasan Hanggar Teras Pancoran, Jalan Gatot Subroto Kavling 72

Masakan Sunda
Pusat : Jl. Wolter Monginsidi No. 41 Kebayoran Baru, Jakarta, 12180
Tel. +62 21 727861138, Fax. : +62 21 72786137
Cabang : Jl. Pakubuwono VI No. 10 Kebayoran Baru, Jakarta 12120
Tel. +62 21 7395454, Fax. : +62 21 7259955
Email : warung_daun(AT)yahoo.com (AT dibaca @)

Rumah Makan Gudeg Bu Tjitro
Jalan Veteran I No. 23 Monas
Jakarta Pusat
Tel. +62 21 3456727

Waroeng Chamoe-Chamoe
Ikan Bakar Manado
Jl. Panglima Polim IX No. 53
Jakarta 12160
Tel. +62 21 720 8294; +62 21 726 7094
Fax. +62 21 727 91805
Gedung Millenia Lantai 2
Sudirman Central Business District
Jl. Jend. Sudirman
Jakarta Selatan 12190
Tel. +62 21 5152905; +62 21 515 2906

Jalan Wahid Hasyim 55A

Hotel Mulia, Jalan Asia Afrika

Balinese & Sea Food Restaurant
Kemang Jakarta
Reservation: +62 21 780 5572 & +62 21 781 4984

Bebek Bali

Komp. Taman Ria Senayan
Jl. Gerbang Pemuda
Jakarta 10270
Tel. +62 21 574 7667/69/70
Fax. +62 21 574 7229

Souvenir Tips">Souvenir Tips

  • Visit Sarinah Building in Blok M or Pasar Seni (Art Market) in Ancol. This way, you can buy souvenirs from various parts of Indonesia. The prices might be a bit expensive, but it's much cheaper compared to buying them in their original place! (If you travel to Bali to buy a wooden carving, for instance, it will cost you more money than buying the same carving in Jakarta!)
  • Why not books? There are many books about Indonesia in English. You can buy them in local book stores such as Gramedia or QB.
  • Original pieces of paintings, sculptures, and so on. Get them on Pasar Seni Ancol. If you're lucky, you can even meet the artists.

Other Things to See or Do">Other Things to See or Do

  • Shop till you drop! There are many boutique and classy stores selling sophisticated and exclusive items in Jakarta. Malls like Mangga Dua, for instance, might even persuade you to buy new sets of underwears to party gowns!
  • Visit DUNIA FANTASI (Fantasy World) in Ancol. This place offers entertainment for kids and adults. Try the rollercoaster for a breathtaking experience. Ride ferris wheel to marvel at magnificent view of Jakarta.
  • Visit SEAWORLD, also in Ancol, where you can observe gigantic fish from Amazon, piranhas, and watch the numerous fish eat!
  • Go to Taman Mini (Indonesian Miniature Park) to see miniatures of many things including Indonesia's traditional houses.

Travel Tips

  • Should you decide to travel by taxi, make sure that the taxi use the argometer. If possible, opt for Blue Bird taxis. They're known for their reliability.
  • Bring lightweight clothes unless you plan to stay indoor most of the time. Jakarta is quite hot.
  • Learn a few necessary phrases in Indonesian. Not all Indonesians can speak English well.
  • Check your bill before you leave, to avoid any mistakes. Tipping is not common if you buy food from street vendors or most fastfood restaurants. It is polite to leave a tip in classy restaurants, though.?
(Visit Indonesia)

Bunaken National Park, North Sulawesi

A flat island about 15 km from Manado, with a friendly people. The coral reefs off Bunaken island shouldn't be missed while you are in Manado. These magnificent virgin reefs are still relatively unspoiled. The drop-off walls at Liang cove is not only rare in the world, with caves, gullies and caverns, harboring an immense wealth of marine life. Spectacular formation of reefs begin with flat at about 5 m depth. These plunge downward to form underwater vertical crevices with often reach depth on several hundred meters. On these beautiful reefs, a wonderful collection of marine life thrives.

The Bunaken reef is a chain of over 40 five star dive spots. The Marine Park is spectacular with the greatest concentration of tropical fish, coral species and world famous wall diving.
Clear, warm waters (sea temperatures usually range between 27-30 degrees C), light currents and calm seas allow easy access to the underwater attraction awaiting visitors to the five-islands of the Bunaken-Manado Tua National Marine Park which sits directly offshore of Manado. Bunaken is the standout favorite, with the highest density of schooling fish and the greatest probability to see larger species such as turtles, sharks, and napoleon wrasse. There are enough sites here to keep any diver happy for over a week without going elsewhere.

The Dive Sites :
Most diving takes place near Bunaken and Manado Tua, because of their many excellent sites. The following is representative of the diving in the area.

  • Lekuan Walls (I, II, III)
    This long wall on Bunaken is divided into three sites: Lekuan I, II and III. Together they represent the park's best. Steep walls are marked with deep crevices, sea fans and giant sponges. The shallows are filled with fishes. The wall, often protected from stronger currents, is frequented by bumphead parrotfish, turtles, and Napoleon wrasses.
  • Mandolin
    Mandolin has a knockout reef crest and a wall that attracts thousands of fishes like schooling fusiliers, surgeonfish, unicornfish, and bannerfish. They are acclimated to divers and are easily approachable.
  • Bunaken Timor
    There are strong currents and lots of fishes on this long wall. The shallow reef isn't as spectacular as some but there are turtles, sharks, eagle rays, and other big fishes in the blue. Overhangs and small caves mark the wall.
  • Tanjung Kopi
    Tanjung Kopi is a nice wall with a small school of barracuda and lots of sweetlips. Visibility in the shallows is not terrific but the numbers of fishes make up for it. Nudibranches and fire gobies are easy to spot here.
  • Siladen Island
    Siladen has a beautiful wall of soft corals that bloom when the current is running. The shallows are nice with lots of fishes and schooling snappers.
  • Muka Gereja
    Muka Gereja is a pretty site with thousands of fishes in the shallows and deeper canyons that lead to the wall.
  • Barracuda Point
    Barracuda Point, on northwest Montehage, is one of the furthest sites. A school of giant barracuda are regulars along with jacks and tuna.
  • Manado Wreck
    This 60m (200ft) long German merchant ship sank near Molas Beach in 1942. It sits upright with the bow at 23m (78ft). The ship is split near amidships back to the stern, exposing the wheelhouse and cargo holds. Dives finish up on a nearby shallow reef. Expect 10-15m (30-50ft) visibility.

Getting There

Bunaken Island is easily reached from Manado by motorized outrigger boat start from Manado harbor, Molas, Kalasey and Tasik Ria beaches. The public boats from Manado to Bunaken are leaving daily around 2 p.m (depending on tide), except Sundays, from Pasar Jengki near Manado harbor. Back from Bunaken to Manado usually early in the morning, around 7-8 a.m

Where to Stay

On the island you have the choice amongst a number of homestays, with rates starting at
Rp. 40 000 per day and person including full board. Some of the dive operations on Bunaken are offering more up-market accommodation, and even running water.

Moving Around

You can explore the land on foot. And you can use a boat to move from one dive sites to another sites.

Dining Guide

There are several of restaurants and cafes throughout Manado and the islands. Try their specialties: seafood, bubur manado and food made of coconuts!

Souvenir Tips

Sea-related products, such as items made of seashells, corals, etc

Other Things to See or Do

  • Diving, swimming, and snorkeling.
  • Walking around on the beach.
  • Sampling the tempting seafood cuisine.
  • Ornithologists and amateur bird-watchers might find visiting Tangkoko Dua Sudara Nature Reserve entertaining.

Travel Tips

  • Entrance tags and tickets can be purchased through marine tourism operators based in Manado and in the Bunaken National Park, or can be purchased from one of three ticket counters in Bunaken and Liang villages on Bunaken Island and on Siladen Island;
  • You should be aware that during the absolute peak season months July and August it usually gets VERY busy. Many of the better resorts and dive operators will not be able to accept walk-ins during that time since they are fully booked. Better make a reservation before;
  • Try to hire equipment from larger firms as these tend to be more reliable, but remember the responsibility of checking the equipment is ultimately yours.

(Visit Indonesia)

Mentawai Island: the Ultimate Diversity of the Hidden Paradise

The Place and the People

Located in the middle of Indian Ocean, 150 km and takes 9 hours trip from Padang, West Sumatra-Mentawai glowing with all the nature spirits and make it an extraordinary escaping spot from a hectic life. Mentawai is the natural habitat for 16 endemic species, and some of them categorized as endangered species e.g. Simakobu monkey (simias concolor-eat leaf as primary food).

The present life of Mentawai people categorized as the legacy from Neolithic era and they have a strong believe in nature spirit, for their life strongly affected by nature. They believe that nature is the center of life. All the genuine attributes make Mentawai a perfect place to gain cultural experiences, here you will notice a very fascinating and indigenous culture, like traditional cloths, art, music and the way of life. The entire culture attributes strongly reflects their respect to nature.

Tattoo is one of the most important symbol for Mentawai people, its reflect maturity, manhood and status. The art of this body painting inherit from their ancestor. The tattoos ink naturally made from leaf.


Among the surfers, Mentawai is the best place to fill their demand for challenges and natures beauty. The beaches offer one of the highest wave in the world, 3 to 4 meters, totally challenge your gut. Once you grounded your self in this hidden Paradise Island, next you will paddle out to the worlds best surf. Dont call your self Surfer if you havent ride Mentawais waves said most of the surfer to expressed their surfing experiences in Mentawai

There are four ultimate diving spot here in Mentawai ,Siberut, Sipora, Pagai Utara (north Pagai) and Pagai Selatan (south Pagai). You can find great waves here year round, but the best waves are during dry season, March to October. Make sure you have the gut to explore all the glassy waves, because the best way to entitled your surfing experiences remarkable is through finding your own.

Getting There

  • Take flight from Sukarno Hatta air port, Jakarta to Tabing air port, Padang-west Sumatra (flight served every day)
  • Trip from Teluk Bayur port, Padang to Mentawai island by Ferry

Where to Stay

Lot of visitors said, that the best housing to stay is the local people house. Offer you a distinctive way of living in a unique architecture and experience interacting with local people. Other wise you could stay in a budget hotel in Siberut

Moving Around

To access all the beauties offered, you can use boat owned by local people. You can find the boat a long the beach and the rate depend on your bargaining power

Boost your taste with exotic and fresh sea foods that you can found in the local restaurants run by local people. If you are lucky enough, you can pick and cook your own sea food, but make sure you know the secret recipe/spices from Mentawais people. For those who are not sea food lover, you can find regular meals for your dining.

Souvenir Tips

Local hand made souvenirs like traditional hats, traditional bag and accessories will be genuine souvenirs for your relatives and friends. You can buy it in a souvenirs shop or buy it from local people directly.

Other Things to See or Do

Beach Activities

  • sight seeing
  • Diving
  • Snorkeling

Cultural Activities

  • Learn how to perform the Traditional dances (war dance and gratitude to nature)
  • Traditional ceremonies
  • Mentawai is one of the best place to conduct an Ethnographic study since its one of the oldest tribe in Indonesia

Ecotourism Activities
As the habitat for rare primate, the natural rain forest of Mentawai will be the perfect place for research or other educational purpose. Here, you can conduct research about

  • Snub-nosed monkey/Simakobu (Simias concolor) monkey family eat leaf as primary food
  • Joja or Lutung Mentawai (Presbytis potenziani) easily identified for the long tail, white face and black hair head
  • Bokkoi atau Beruk Mentawai (Macaca pagensis)
  • Kloss Gibbon/Bilou or Siamang Kerdil (Hylobates klossii) famous for the beautiful voice, different compared to general monkey

Travel Tips

  • Nature and culture come to be understood and respected
  • Bring your own surf board with you, because its may hard to find surf board shop in Mentawai
  • You may arrange your travel using the local travel agent in Indonesia
  • Great wave can be find year round, but best wave is during dry season March to October
  • Bring your personal medicine
  • You may arrange your visit by contact the travel agent and airline services in Indonesia

Photos Copyrigt : www.freelinesurf.com.au

(Visit Indonesia)

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