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Three weeks in Indonesia: Bali, Java and...

Three weeks in Indonesia: Bali, Java and...

Old Apr 25th, 2014, 03:02 PM
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Three weeks in Indonesia: Bali, Java and...

I'll meet my parents in indonesia for three weeks.
They told me they wanted to see three islands, one week in each, Java and Bali beeing two of them. My dad is looking forward the most to see mount bromo and my mother wants to see the temples of Yogyakarta.

I told my dad about the Gilis but my mother doesn't know how to swim and I doubt it will be the most rewarding place for them and the trek in mount rinjani in Lombok seams to me too extreme for them. I thought Flores might be a good fit for them but I don't really know how to get there.

So, I have too major questions:

1. What is the best island to diversify their itinerary?

2. How to search for flights around indonesia? I hear their companies aren't safe and Airasia, while cheap, doesn't have a lot of destinations in Indonesia.
marianacardoso is offline  
Old Apr 25th, 2014, 03:29 PM
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Can't help with the third island, but try Skyscanner to search for flights.

You are wise to avoid Indonesian airlines, we once met an aircraft engineer who advised against using any airline that maintains it's planes in Indo.

Jetstar Asia is okay for short flights too.
sartoric is offline  
Old Apr 25th, 2014, 03:48 PM
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Thank you fot the tip, I guess Jetstar doens't have domestic flights in Indonesia...
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Old Apr 25th, 2014, 06:40 PM
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I think your choice of islands depends on what you like to do. If one of your party doesn't like the beach, then I would eliminate Lombok and the Gilis.

My first choice would be Sulawesi -- specifically the Tanah Toraja area of Central Sulawesi. To get there you fly into Makassar and drive about 6 hours to Rantepao. The Torajan culture is a fascinating mix of art, architecture, and religious rites and the countryside is stunningly beautiful.

North Sulawesi -- the Manado and Lembeh areas -- offer a lot of marine based activities and some wonderful national parks. To get there you have to go back to Makassar and fly to Manado.

The entry point into Flores is Labuan Bajo. You can fly from Bali or you can arrange a live-aboard tour from Bali by boat. From there you can go to Komodo and Rinca if you wish.

If you're interested in diving or snorkling there are many excellent site in Indonesia. [Great article in today's Asian Wall Street Journal about Raja Ampat.]

Or you could just extend Bali and Java a few days each. There's enough to do in both to fill up 10 days and you can cover a range of diverse experiences -- nature, culture, relaxation.

You can look at Air Asia's website to see its destinations in Indonesia. They say they fly to 16 cities, but the routes may not be the most direct.

I would have no hesitation in flying Garuda Airlines and would prefer it to AA as they have more flights and offer full service (e.g., free baggage check). They service many parts of Indonesia, but again the routes you need may not be covered.

If you can't find flights on either of those two, you'll have to rely on some of the less known budget carriers. Some are better than others, but in most cases you just don't have a choice.

Overland (train, bus, car) and sea travel can be equally problematic. If it's any consolation, millions of people fly Indonesia's budget airlines every year. It's a big country and there aren't a lot of better options.

For example to get from Borobudur in Central Java (Yogyakarta or Solo/Surakarta) to Bromo (Surabaya) in East Java, it's most efficient to fly, but neither Air Asia nor Garuda flies that route. You'd have to go back through Jakarta which would take up most of the day. Otherwise your choices are one of the budget carriers -- Wings, Sriwijaya, Lion -- or take a train, bus or car.
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Old Apr 25th, 2014, 06:43 PM
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PS, Jetstar does operate in Indonesia, but again you have to check the specific routes.
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