Author Topic: Indonesia Trip - Seeking Travel Recommendations  (Read 3308 times)

Rufus.T.Firefly

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Indonesia Trip - Seeking Travel Recommendations
« on: March 31, 2016, 08:11:23 AM »
Hey Everyone!

My wife and I are taking a trip to Indonesia in June. My brother has been living there for a little while and we'll be traveling with him. He has acquired a decent bit of local knowledge, but I'm curious to see if anyone here has travel recommendations or advice for the area.

Our general itinerary is: Jakarta -> Yogyakarta -> Bali -> Jakarta. We have 10 days there (not including travel to and from the US).

On our must-see list so far:
- Borobudur and Prambanan
- Ubud (the area generally)
- Sacred Monkeys!
- Lots of Food
- Bali Beaches

Thanks in advance!

szmaine

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Re: Indonesia Trip - Seeking Travel Recommendations
« Reply #1 on: April 01, 2016, 08:09:28 AM »
The Jalan Surabaya flea market in Jakarta is kinda fun if you like that sort of thing. I really like the 3 rod puppets (Wayang Golek) I got there...Rama, Sita and Semar. I liked them because they were handmade from the village instead of the mass produced ones that are everywhere.

Ubud: go see Pura Dalem, Kecak dance.
https://www.tripadvisor.com/ShowUserReviews-g297701-d2056776-r119330996-Kecak_Fire_Trance_Dance-Ubud_Bali.html

Edit: http://www.indonesia-tourism.com/forum/showthread.php?49425-Jatiluwih-Rice-Terrace-the-World-Heritage-UNESCO

Delicious Food everywhere!
« Last Edit: April 01, 2016, 08:59:53 AM by szmaine »

Matumba

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Re: Indonesia Trip - Seeking Travel Recommendations
« Reply #2 on: April 01, 2016, 09:02:08 AM »
Google Ramadan dates.  It's in summer and lasts about a month.  Not sure how it will affect your vacation plans,  but some places may be closed -  restaurants,  bars etc.

Bali is not a Muslim island,  so many people go there during the Ramadan.

JoJo

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Re: Indonesia Trip - Seeking Travel Recommendations
« Reply #3 on: April 01, 2016, 12:20:47 PM »
Google Ramadan dates.  It's in summer and lasts about a month.  Not sure how it will affect your vacation plans,  but some places may be closed -  restaurants,  bars etc.

Bali is not a Muslim island,  so many people go there during the Ramadan.

ramadan starts 6/6 this year. 

Rufus.T.Firefly

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Re: Indonesia Trip - Seeking Travel Recommendations
« Reply #4 on: April 01, 2016, 08:55:24 PM »
The Jalan Surabaya flea market in Jakarta is kinda fun if you like that sort of thing. I really like the 3 rod puppets (Wayang Golek) I got there...Rama, Sita and Semar. I liked them because they were handmade from the village instead of the mass produced ones that are everywhere.

Ubud: go see Pura Dalem, Kecak dance.
https://www.tripadvisor.com/ShowUserReviews-g297701-d2056776-r119330996-Kecak_Fire_Trance_Dance-Ubud_Bali.html

Edit: http://www.indonesia-tourism.com/forum/showthread.php?49425-Jatiluwih-Rice-Terrace-the-World-Heritage-UNESCO

Delicious Food everywhere!

Thank you for the suggestions! We'll check out those links. Balinese dances should definitely be on our list. I had read that it was pretty easy to rent bikes and travel around. I think that would be fun to go on a bike tour through the rice terraces, along the beach and so on.

I am super pumped about the food too!

Google Ramadan dates.  It's in summer and lasts about a month.  Not sure how it will affect your vacation plans,  but some places may be closed -  restaurants,  bars etc.

Bali is not a Muslim island,  so many people go there during the Ramadan.

ramadan starts 6/6 this year. 

This is a good thought. According to a lot of research we've done, June is one of the best times to travel based on weather and lower crowds. Apparently July and August are the high-times for travel. I guess we'll hope for the best that Bali isn't too overcrowded - we're not planning to do much around Kuta though, which seems to be a hot spot.

nnls

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Re: Indonesia Trip - Seeking Travel Recommendations
« Reply #5 on: April 01, 2016, 09:03:52 PM »
The Jalan Surabaya flea market in Jakarta is kinda fun if you like that sort of thing. I really like the 3 rod puppets (Wayang Golek) I got there...Rama, Sita and Semar. I liked them because they were handmade from the village instead of the mass produced ones that are everywhere.

Ubud: go see Pura Dalem, Kecak dance.
https://www.tripadvisor.com/ShowUserReviews-g297701-d2056776-r119330996-Kecak_Fire_Trance_Dance-Ubud_Bali.html

Edit: http://www.indonesia-tourism.com/forum/showthread.php?49425-Jatiluwih-Rice-Terrace-the-World-Heritage-UNESCO

Delicious Food everywhere!

Thank you for the suggestions! We'll check out those links. Balinese dances should definitely be on our list. I had read that it was pretty easy to rent bikes and travel around. I think that would be fun to go on a bike tour through the rice terraces, along the beach and so on.

I am super pumped about the food too!

Google Ramadan dates.  It's in summer and lasts about a month.  Not sure how it will affect your vacation plans,  but some places may be closed -  restaurants,  bars etc.

Bali is not a Muslim island,  so many people go there during the Ramadan.

ramadan starts 6/6 this year. 

This is a good thought. According to a lot of research we've done, June is one of the best times to travel based on weather and lower crowds. Apparently July and August are the high-times for travel. I guess we'll hope for the best that Bali isn't too overcrowded - we're not planning to do much around Kuta though, which seems to be a hot spot.

Early July is Winter school holidays in Australia, and Bali is a pretty popular holiday destination for Aussies but you are right Kuta and Seminyak are the main places people seem to go

Matumba

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Re: Indonesia Trip - Seeking Travel Recommendations
« Reply #6 on: April 02, 2016, 09:16:02 AM »
Go to Ubud in Bali.  Very nice place.

nnls

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Re: Indonesia Trip - Seeking Travel Recommendations
« Reply #7 on: April 02, 2016, 04:35:55 PM »
A non mustachian work college gave me this info for Bali about 6 months ago, he goes there about 6 times a year. Dont know how relevant it is for you, but thought it might help.
Quote
Money & Credit Cards
ATM issues and credit card info theft is a problem in Bali. Using your credit card at the hotel/villa and classy restaurants is fine. But cash is the best bet everywhere else. I don't use my Australian ATM card in the ATM machines there. I get a Travellex or MasterCard Travel Money card which you BPay money onto and I used that in the ATM around the place. They give you two cards and they arenít linked to your bank accounts in Australia. you can get money exchanged here before you go but be careful at the money changers in Bali, they are very sneaky and will not give you the right money. I would warn you away from using money changers over there.
 
So... be careful using your credit card... get a travel money card.... and take Indonesian cash with you
 
 
Driver
 
Email my driver and give him your flight details (date, time & flight number) and he will pick you up from the arrivals area. He will have a sign with your name on it.

His name is Wayan and is really good.

If you want to do some day trips around the island he is very good. Usually about 500,000 Rupiah ($50AUD) for a full day trip.



He will take you where ever you want to go, great if you want to do a day trip beach hopping down to Uluwatu or to Udud in the hills. 
 
Getting around Seminyak Legian and Kuta etc

Taxis are your best way to get around unless you hire a scooter but be warning... Bali roads are not for the novice.

ONLY even used a BLUEBIRD GROUP taxi as they will always use the meter and not over charge. Look for the BLUEBIRD GROUP sticker on the windscreen and side windows. If your stuck and can't get a BLUEBIRD taxi make sure you ask the price and fix it before getting in the taxi, you can bargain with them on price too. If you don't get the price you want walk up the road and get another taxi. they are everywhere.

 

He also had restaurant and bar recommendations.

Rufus.T.Firefly

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Re: Indonesia Trip - Seeking Travel Recommendations
« Reply #8 on: April 03, 2016, 09:29:35 AM »
A non mustachian work college gave me this info for Bali about 6 months ago, he goes there about 6 times a year. Dont know how relevant it is for you, but thought it might help.
Quote
Money & Credit Cards
ATM issues and credit card info theft is a problem in Bali. Using your credit card at the hotel/villa and classy restaurants is fine. But cash is the best bet everywhere else. I don't use my Australian ATM card in the ATM machines there. I get a Travellex or MasterCard Travel Money card which you BPay money onto and I used that in the ATM around the place. They give you two cards and they arenít linked to your bank accounts in Australia. you can get money exchanged here before you go but be careful at the money changers in Bali, they are very sneaky and will not give you the right money. I would warn you away from using money changers over there.
 
So... be careful using your credit card... get a travel money card.... and take Indonesian cash with you
 
 
Driver
 
Email my driver and give him your flight details (date, time & flight number) and he will pick you up from the arrivals area. He will have a sign with your name on it.

His name is Wayan and is really good.

If you want to do some day trips around the island he is very good. Usually about 500,000 Rupiah ($50AUD) for a full day trip.



He will take you where ever you want to go, great if you want to do a day trip beach hopping down to Uluwatu or to Udud in the hills. 
 
Getting around Seminyak Legian and Kuta etc

Taxis are your best way to get around unless you hire a scooter but be warning... Bali roads are not for the novice.

ONLY even used a BLUEBIRD GROUP taxi as they will always use the meter and not over charge. Look for the BLUEBIRD GROUP sticker on the windscreen and side windows. If your stuck and can't get a BLUEBIRD taxi make sure you ask the price and fix it before getting in the taxi, you can bargain with them on price too. If you don't get the price you want walk up the road and get another taxi. they are everywhere.

 

He also had restaurant and bar recommendations.

This is some great practical advice! I think we've got some good solutions for the money since my brother is in the country already with an Indonesian bank account. That's interesting about the ATMs though; I wonder if that is universally a problem everywhere, like at the airport, or just in the seedier areas. I had heard another recommendation to stick with Bluebird, so we will be careful to do that. And $40 for a driver all day is a great deal too! That's definitely something to look into.

We are considering renting bikes, but based on the comment about the road network, we will probably go with a bike tour guide so we don't get lost.  :)

NewbieFrugalUK

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Re: Indonesia Trip - Seeking Travel Recommendations
« Reply #9 on: April 03, 2016, 11:15:40 AM »
For Bali, temper your expectations. It's massively crowded and very touristy. I was given very good advice - avoid the Southwest corner entirely (Kuta etc) . Even Ubud is very crowded but still nice. For Yogyakarta, there is an awesome cafe that does brilliant walking and scooter tours - called Via Via. You pretty much can't go wrong there. And for Borobudur, it's 100% worth spending the extra money for the sunrise ticket, utterly magical. Have fun!!

Curious Cricket

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szmaine

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Re: Indonesia Trip - Seeking Travel Recommendations
« Reply #11 on: April 04, 2016, 08:02:17 AM »
I was there during Ramadan, pretty much a non-issue except for some Indonesian colleagues being unable to dine with us.

Misc.

Don't be afraid of the street food, malaria or yellow fever. DO be afraid of the water. If you can get a prescription filled for Cipro filled to take I recommend it. I actually had to use mine (drank from a bubbler on a govt ship) - cured me up fast!


"His name is Wayan and is really good." - LOL, nearly all first born males are name Wayan. Its a fun tidbit. We also had a Wayan who was great and took us on several day trips (all day) for about $40USD

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Balinese_name

I wish I could find the name of the restaurant in Ubud where we went for the suckling pig. Its had lovely floor seating with pillows etc.


« Last Edit: April 04, 2016, 08:05:12 AM by szmaine »

MajorTom

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Re: Indonesia Trip - Seeking Travel Recommendations
« Reply #12 on: April 05, 2016, 05:21:23 AM »
I agree with the recommendations to avoid the South east of Bali- the Kuta/Seminyak area- which is generally pretty awful, polluted, crowded, and full of drunken bogan Australians behaving badly.

Ubud is nicer, however still fairly crowded. The best time I had in Bali was hiring a scooter and getting lost out in the hills for the day- I eventually found 2 schoolgirls on a scooter who offered to lead me back to Ubud as the sun set, but man were they crazy fast! Beware of the road conditions! Good fun though.

Lombok was far less touristy than Bali and was great for cruising on scooters through monkey-filled forests, but your schedule probably would t permit getting over there and back.