Indonesia is a beautiful country located on the territory of several thousand islands in Southeast Asia.
It plays the role of a natural bridge between Asia and Australia.
Beautiful scenery, warm climate and amazing biological diversity have made Indonesia beloved tourist destination for visitors from all around the world.
Wild and untouched equatorial jungles contrast with the ultra modern multi million cities with tall skyscrapers and modern architectural facilities.
When to Visit Indonesia?
Temperatures in Indonesia are pleasant throughout the year, but the problem is too heavy rains.
In most of the year practically rain almost every day.
Rains are usually intense, but short and 30 minutes later the sun shows again.
Dry season lasts between June and October, although in this part of the year the weather is also comparatively wet.
The same applies for Bali – the dry season lasts from June to October.
Perhaps the biggest advantage of Indonesia is that generally keep out of the path of hurricanes.
However, this does not prevent from sudden tropical storms that bring heavy rains to ruin your plans for spending time outdoors, especially during the rainy season.
What Clothes to Wear?
Prepare in your luggage very light summer clothes.
Here is always very warm, so warm clothing is needed only if you plan to climb at high altitude in one of the many mountains.
What will be most necessary is an umbrella or raincoat because of the heavy rains.
It is appropriate to note that for some people might be difficult to acclimated here.
This is particularly true for vulnerable people and those who travel by some colder northern countries.
The equator crosses Indonesia throughout its length.
This is one of the few countries in the world which are located in the equatorial climate zone.
Only the southern part of the territory falls within subequatorial climate zone.
The capital Jakarta falls in the southernmost parts of the country and therefore into the subequatorial climate zone.
Located on the island of Java, this vibrant megalopolis has a very hot climate throughout the year.
Temperatures range from 29 to 36°C.
There is a pronounced rainy season which lasts from November to May.
During the most humid month – January, rainfall can approaches to about 400 mm.
Rainy season coincides with summer in the Southern Hemisphere.
Minimum night temperatures rarely fall below 24 – 25°C.
Otherwise most of the country falls within the equatorial climate zone.
Typical equatorial city in Indonesia is Balikpapan.
It is located on the east coast of Borneo (Kalimantan).
Here temperatures are usually between 28 and 30°C.
Precipitations also vary weakly. They are much more evenly distributed over the year compared with the capital.
Range from 150 to about 250 – 300 mm. Rainfall appears suddenly and without warning.
Humidity is very high and that makes otherwise pleasant temperatures to feel like a much higher.
Although that in the equatorial parts of Indonesia rain almost every day, the sun here is in abundance.
Even in the cloudy and rainy days it finds a way to break through the clouds.
Interestingly, here the rains are short and even when it rains, after 20-30 minutes everything is over.
Another interesting detail about the local climate is that in Indonesia almost never happens to blow wind.
It is known that the equatorial regions are among the most calm in this respect of the planet.
Prices in Jakarta
Prices in Jakarta are low compared with major cities of Europe, America or Australia.
In the capital Jakarta everything is much more expensive than in the countryside and yet the cost of living here is similar to that in most countries of Eastern Europe.
Of course there are goods and services that are much more expensive or cheaper, but we talk summarizing.
For example, in Jakarta it is possible to pay 20 euros for a sumptuous dinner for two at the restaurant, which is a good price compared to big cities of Europe and America.
Transportation is also at affordable prices including taxis.
The Beaches of Indonesia
Indonesia offers a huge variety of beaches ranging from the bright white to dark brown nuances.
The majority of the beaches in Indonesia are brownish.
The reason is the volcanic origin of most of the islands of Indonesia.
But there are also beaches which are white as a snow.
Some of the most beautiful white beaches in Indonesia are located on the small territory islands Palau Bangka, Gangga and nearby miniature paradise – Lihaga.
Here the sands are fine and bright and close to the shore of the islands there are magnificent coral reefs.
This unknown paradise is located north of the island of Sulawesi, which is one of the most popular in Indonesia.
Many people come to Indonesia because of its stunning scenery.
The country is known as one of the best places in the world for practicing of safari.
Here you will find unprecedented biodiversity.
Most of the territory of Indonesia is covered with impenetrable rain forests.
Here is inhabited by species such as orangutans, monkeys, deer, Asian elephants, birds of paradise, Javanese leopards, Javanese rhinos, tigers and what not.
And the places from which you could choose are so numerous that it could become a serious problem to choose one.
Some of the most popular safari destinations are the islands of Java, Sumatra, Kalimantan and New Guinea.
And what about the thousands of other smaller islands with marvelous nature such as Komodo for example?
Indonesian cuisine is considered to be one of the most exotic.
Suffice it to say that in this southern country almost every dish is prepared with coconut milk.
This gives unusual tropical flavor of each dish whatever meat, vegetable or rice.
Here is the place to say that rice is one of the most common foods here, as in most of the countries in Southeast Asia.
It is attended as a supplement to every meal.
Interesting for Europeans is that in Indonesia is something completely normal to combine meat and fruit, as the dish becomes with a pleasant slightly sweet flavor.
This is unusual for western cuisine.
For example, in Indonesia the cooked meat can be garnish with apples.
The same goes for fish dishes. And do not forget to try the local green tea and coffee.
These are traditional crops in Indonesia and here they are much more than a drink.
Unfortunately this beautiful country often falls victim to the fury of the nature.
There are often earthquakes and erupting volcanoes.
One of the most catastrophic disaster, which happened in the modern history happened here.
On December 26, 2004 as a result of a powerful earthquake near by the coast of Indonesia rose a huge tsunami, which caused untold damages and claimed thousands of lives not only in the country, but along the entire coast of Indian Ocean.
The scale of the tragedy was immense, and from the power of the waves suffered even Africa.
Another terrifying upheaval is the volcanic eruption of Krakatoa in 1883.
We can not miss and floods, which usually bear behind the huge amounts of rainfall during the monsoon season.
Nature of Indonesia
This island country is covered in its biggest part by evergreen rainforests.
Indeed, local jungles are one of the places in the world with the greatest biodiversity along with the jungles of South America and equatorial Africa.
Only the southernmost subequatorial parts of the country are occupied by dry and rare woods and savannas.
In Indonesia there are many volcanoes. This country is a place where continental plates meet.
This causes not only significant volcanic activity, but also strong and frequent earthquakes.
Indonesia has beautiful beaches and indented coastline.
The landscape of the country is very diverse – ranging from humid coastal lowlands to high mountain ranges.
The highest peak in the country is Puncak Jaya.
It is located on the island of New Guinea in eastern Indonesia.
It rises to a height of 4884 meters.
The peak is very cold and covered with snow throughout the year.
But Indonesia offers not only beautiful forests and mountains.
Here you will find the richest diversity of corals in the world.
Intensive sunshine and stable temperatures throughout the year are particularly favorable for the development of coral reefs.
Geographic location, boundaries and size
Indonesia is situated on the territory of more than 18,000 islands in Southeast Asia.
This is the country in the world with biggest number of island.
Some of the larger and more famous islands of Indonesia are Borneo, Sumatra, Java, Sulawesi, Bali, Komodo, but there are thousands of others which are less popular, with no matter of their size.
It lies between 11° south latitude and 5° north latitude, i.e on both sides of the equator.
Occupies an area of 1,919,440 square kilometers, making it the 19th largest country in the world.
Indonesia borders with East Timor, Papua New Guinea and Malaysia.
The country is surrounded by oceans.
To the northeast lies the Pacific Ocean, to the southwest is the Indian Ocean.
Around the islands there are many seas – Celebes Sea, Arafura Sea, Timor Sea, Laut Java (Jawa), Laut Flores, Laut Sawu, Laut Banda, Laut Maluku, Laut Seram and so on.
Population and Culture
Indonesia has a population of about 246 million people.
The capital Jakarta has a population of nearly 10 million people, making it one of the largest cities in the world.
The official religion of Indonesia is Islam, making it the largest Muslim country on the planet.
Besides Islam, here are distributed and other religions, such as a small percentage of Christians, Buddhists, Hindus and so on.
Indonesia is diverse not only in religious terms, but also in terms of its ethnic composition.
Here there are hundreds different ethnic groups speaking hundreds of languages.
Most common languages are Bahasa Indonesia, which is an official language, English and Dutch.
Dutch language is left as a legacy of the Netherlands, under whose authority these lands were for many years.
Indonesia has a very fast growing economy.
This is one of the countries in Asia, which is believed to have the greatest economic potential, although today this island nation still has a long way ahead.
Today Indonesia is a country of contrasts, where the gap between rich and poor is still huge.
It belongs to the group of so-called developing countries.
Agriculture is of great importance for Indonesia.
Here are grown coffee, tea, tobacco, coconut palms and of course one of the most important crops in Asia – rice.
It is grown on special terraces, which are extremely popular part of the landscape in the country, and even rice fields are the first thing that one can imagine talking about Indonesia.
Plant-growing is much better developed than livestock-breeding.
This feature is typical for the biggest part of the tropical regions of the world.
Given that Indonesia is an island country and is located between two oceans is not surprising that the country has very well developed fishing industry.
Indonesia is very rich in minerals.
Particularly important are deposits of oil and natural gas.
This is one of the most important export commodities of the country.
Important commodity for export is also the rubber that is derived from a particular type of rubber tree.
Textiles and tourism are also important sources of incomes for the country.