Republic of Indonesia
Population: 255 million
Currency: Rupiah (IDR)
Language: Bahasa Indonesia
An Introduction to Indonesia
A vast, sprawling archipelago nation composed of over 17,000 islands, Indonesia is one of the most diverse countries in the world. With hundreds of ethnic and linguistic groups, it’s no wonder the country’s motto is “Bhinneka Tunggal Ika” (Unity in Diversity).
You may be surprised to find that it’s also the 4th most populous country on Earth, after China, India, and the USA. After enduring colonialism at the hands of the Dutch and occupation by the Japanese, Indonesia became an independent country in 1945.
A series of reforms came in the following decades, and in 2004 the people of Indonesia elected a president and vice-president for the first time.
It was love at first sight for us when we first visited the island of Bali back in 2012. Under the glow of the full moon during a Hindu ceremony, we decided to make full-time travel a priority, which eventually led to us creating this website.
Since then, we’ve spent 45 days backpacking from Java to the Gili Islands as part of our gap year. Our infatuation with Bali only grew on our return trip; so much so that we decided to move there. Sasha got a scholarship to study Indonesian language and culture, which allowed us to basically have a 9-month honeymoon in one of our favorite places. There’s lots more to this incredible country than Bali, so we also traveled around the islands of Lombok and Flores.
Bali is one of those places that just sucks you in. You fall in love with it and never want to leave! Unfortunately, your visa says otherwise. Never fear, because we’ve put together a guide on how to stay in Bali (semi) long-term to give you more time on the Island of the Gods.
Thanks to its location in the Ring of Fire, Indonesia is home to countless volcanoes. No trip here would be complete without at least one hiking trip up a volcano. The most popular is definitely hiking Mt. Rinjani on the island of Lombok. Check out our guide and videos to get an idea of what this adventure is like.
Planning your first trip to Bali and not sure which beach town to visit? We’ve got you covered with our Beginner’s Guide to South Bali. Get the scoop on Kuta, Legian, Seminyak, Canggu, and the Bukit peninsula here.
One of the most popular places to vacation in Indonesia, the Gili Islands are full of beautiful beaches, world-class dive sites, music festivals, and so much more. Explore all three of these tiny little islands with us, including a few episodes of our “Streets, Beats & Eats” series.
The world’s most populous island, Java is home to half of Indonesia’s people, the capital city, ancient temples, and volcanoes with blue fire, for starters. Explore this fascinating island with us through our guides, stories, and travel videos.
Bali Spirit Festival is a full week of yoga, dance, and music just outside the island’s cultural heart of Ubud. Get the scoop on this amazing gathering and how you can volunteer to save over $600 on a ticket price.
A great way to stay in Bali for a while and learn more about Indonesia is to enroll in the Darmasiswa Program. Believe it or not, this is a scholarship program with free tuition where you also get a stipend. That’s right – the government of Indonesia pays you to live in Bali. Don’t believe me? Read all about it and you’ll see.
Bali is a popular place to spend Christmas and New Year’s, especially for people from Down Under. Hotels go all out with holiday buffets, and the beach comes alive with music, fireworks, and a huge party to ring in the New Year.
We’ll have tons of other posts about Indonesia in the near future, so be sure to check back often. In the meantime, why not explore other parts of Southeast Asia? We’ve got awesome guides to both Vietnam and Thailand for starters.
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