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Our trip to Indonesia was one of our most memorable adventures!

We frolicked through the mountains and highlands of the Java region, ooh’ed and aaah’ed at the ancient temples of Prambanan and Borobodur, stood at the crater of an active volcano, explored off-the-beaten-path beaches, and got up close and personal with sharks, turtles, and other underwater creatures.

Oksana & Max on a tea plantation in Indonesia

Mt Bromo at sunrise. East Java, Indonesia
Enjoing our time at Borobudur without the crowds. Java. Indonesia
Enjoying our time at Borobudur without the crowds. Java. Indonesia

We couldn’t believe that it took us so long to finally spend some time in this beautiful country.

2 Weeks in Indonesia: Max & Oksana in Yogyakarta, Java. Indonesia
Taking a break from exploring Yogyakarta, Java

Unlike its neighbours, Thailand, Cambodia and Vietnam, Indonesia doesn’t always make it onto the backpackers S.E.A. itinerary.

It certainly wasn’t at the top of our travel wish list when we first started exploring S.E.A. For us it wasn’t the lack of sights or amazing experiences that held us back from visiting Indonesia, it was the fact that Indonesia is HUGE.

Its 18,110 islands, 6,000 of them inhabited, made planning our trip to Indonesia that much more intimidating.

2 Weeks in Indonesia: Komodo National Park from above. Diving in Komodo
Overlooking Komodo National Park with just a few of Indonesia’s 18,110 islands in the background

But now that we’ve had a chance to experience Indonesia for ourselves, we are ready to share our suggested itinerary with you!

Borobudur, Java, Indonesia
Borobudur, Java, Indonesia

2 Weeks in Indonesia Itinerary

If 2 weeks is all you have to experience the best of Indonesia, come to terms with the fact that you just won’t see everything. The country is too vast and is full of too many amazing experiences to cram into 2 weeks.

But we promise you can still see and do a ton!

Yogyakarta, Java – 2-3 days

Jakarta will be a lot cheaper to fly into, but if you are short on time, don’t be tempted to add it to your itinerary. It’s not worth the stop.

Taman Fatahilah - main square in Old Jakarta. Java, Indonesia
Taman Fatahilah – main square in Old Jakarta

Head straight to Yogyakarta and plan to stay for 2-3 days. Affectionately known as Jogja, Yogyakarta is on the island of Java and is widely considered to be the cultural heart of the whole of Indonesia. From cultural landmarks to mountains, forests and waterfalls, Jogja is an amazing starting point for your 2 weeks in Indonesia.

Top Yogyakarta Attractions

The biggest attractions in Yogyakarta are the Borobudur Temple and Prambanan Temple and while seeing both in one day will be a bit exhausting it’s not impossible.

Plan to visit Borobudur at sunrise and Prambanan at sunset, then spend the second day checking out the city of Yogyakarta.

For a green way to explore the area, consider taking a Yogyakarta Bike Tour. With the help of a local guide, you’ll ride along picturesque rice fields to the Borobudur Village or through the Yogyakarta countryside. Both tour options give you the chance to meet with the locals and learn about traditional village life.

2 Weeks in Indonesia: Jalan Malioboro, the most popular street in Yogyakarta. Central Java. Indonesia
Jalan Malioboro, the most popular street in Yogyakarta. Central Java
2 Weeks in Indonesia: Borobudur Temple at sunrise. Java Indonesia
Borobudur Temple at sunrise. Java Indonesia
2 Weeks in Indonesia: Candi Sewu, Central Java. Indonesia
Candi Sewu, an 8th-century Mahayana Buddhist temple located 800 meters north of Prambanan in Central Java

Other Things to do in Yogyakarta

Visit Jomblang Cave

Bask in the heavenly light on a Jomblang Cave Tour. If you fancy some action and adventure, then this private tour will be right up your street. You’ll rappel down into the cave, some 59 metres (193.5 feet) and then explore the tunnels of this magnificent underground wonder.  

Jurang Tembelan, Pine Forest, and Timang Beach

This 12 hour day trip takes you on a tour of the best tourist spots in the south of Yogyakarta. First stop is the cliff top viewpoint of Jurang Tembelan where you’ll feel like your sailing on a sea of clouds. From there, you’ll head to the magical and beautiful Pine Forest before heading to the shores of Timang Beach. If you can, make it more sustainable by sharing the tour with a couple of other travellers.

Where to Stay in Yogyakarta

Stay close to the city center, near Jalan Malioboro (Malioboro Street), so you are within walking distance to restaurants and other attractions.

  • Greenhost Boutique Hotel, an eco-friendly hotel in Prawirotaman, Yogyakarta that offers plenty of modern amenities that don’t cost the environment. It also retains a lot of connection to the local culture and tradition. The rooms, 96 in total, are carefully designed with environmentally-friendly wood scraps and recycled packing materials.  And not only that; there’s also a creative farming area that grows the freshest produce used in the hotel’s restaurant to get that true earth-to -table dining experience.
  • Yabbiekayu Eco-Bungalows are located in just 15 minutes south of Yogyakarta in the little village of Tembi. The bungalows are eco-designed, constructed from 100% recycled timber and sustainable materials from the recycling center.  They use organic food in their own on-site restaurant, grown in their own “edible landscape” garden, provide biodegradable soaps and shampoos, and are dedicated to a number of green initiatives in the local community. There are 5 different bungalows and a treehouse, each with a different design but all with a touch of luxury.
  • Benetta House is a quirky little homestay B&B accommodation, located right in the heart of Yogyakarta. The homestay is a great way to support the local community and get a feel for the day-to-day life in Indonesia. Benetta House is run by Silva and her mother, with her mother doing all the cooking for breakfast– you’ll be well fed for sure!

Click here to check prices and availability at the Greenhost Boutique Hotel for your travel dates!

Greenhost Boutique Hotel. Photo via Greenhost Boutique Hotel
A creative farming area at the Greenhost Boutique Hotel. Photo via Greenhost Boutique Hotel

READ NEXT: THERE IS MORE TO YOGYAKARTA THEN BOROBUDUR AND PRAMBANAN

Malang, Java – 2 days

From Yogyakarta, hop on an overnight train and make your way to Malang.

This is the second largest city in East Java and the gateway to the stunning Mount Bromo and the Ijen Crater which sits amidst a landscape of volcanic cones and a beautiful turquoise coloured sulfur lake.

Malang has much to offer, with plenty of beaches, temples, tea plantations, beautiful waterfalls and so much more. It’s well worth a spot on your 2 week itinerary in Indonesia.

2 Weeks in Indonesia: Max & Oksana at Mt Bromo at sunrise. East Java, Indonesia
Mt Bromo at sunrise. East Java
2 Weeks in Indonesia: Turquoise sulfur lake of Ijen Crater. East Java, Indonesia
Turquoise sulphur lake of Ijen Crater. East Java
Sunrise over Ijen Plateau, East Java. Indonesia
Sunrise over Ijen Plateau, East Java. Indonesia

Top Malang Attractions

Malang serves as a great getaway to Mt Bromo and Ijen Crater. If your itinerary allows for it, plan 2 individual trips to see Mt Bromo and Ijen Crater from Malang, as each one is easily organized as a day trip with a VERY early start.

But if you are short on time, join a combined Mt Bromo and Ijen Crater 1N/2D Tour that will take you to both attractions and give you an option to be taken to the Gilimanuk ferry port in the western tip of Bali Island and onwards to Kuta, Bali.

But beware, the trip from the ferry across to Kuta is a long one (6-7 hrs), so it might make more sense to grab a tour that returns to Surabaya and fly from Surabaya to Bali instead.

Other Things to do in Malang

Rent a bike

If you have a few more days to spare, it’s worth hanging around Malang for a day or so. It’s a quiet green city surrounded by charming towns and tree plantations. A perfect place to rent a bike and get lost in the countryside.

Go Whitewater Rafting

Mt Bromo offers more than just hiking opportunities. Bromo Eco Tourism offers adventure packages like this Songa Rafting tour. The 3-night, 4-day tour includes a trip to the Madakaripura Waterfall, spectacular views from Mt Bromo viewing points at sunset and sunrise, the Ijen crater, homestays, and whitewater rafting on the Songa River.

Visit the Rainbow Village

Jodipan was once a run-down slum which the government was ready to give up on and relocate all of its residents. But, a group of students had a colourful plan to bring life (and tourists) to this part of Malang.

Their idea brought together a local paint distributor and local artists to transform the village into a vibrant, multi-coloured masterpiece! Visiting this odd little village rainbow offers some amazing photo opportunities and is also a great way to help support the local community.

Visiting tea plantations outside of Malang, Java
Visiting tea plantations outside of Malang, Java

Where to Stay in Malang

The town is small and easy to explore on foot. We recommend staying at the Helios Hotel, for its good location and a great rooftop bar.

  • Djoglo Luxury Bungalow Hotel is a great option for those looking for a little bit of pampering and R&R while in Malang. The bungalows are spacious, stylish and have all the amenities you could ever need.
  • If you are looking for a more budget-friendly option, then the INNI Homestay provides a great location, comfort, and a hearty Indonesian breakfast.
View from Kampong Tourist Hostel, Malang, Java. Indonesia
View from Helios Hotel, Malang, Java. Indonesia 

READ NEXT: CHASING THE BLUE FLAME: OUR HIKE TO THE HEART OF IJEN CRATER

Ubud, Bali – 2 days

We won’t be the only ones to tell you not to waste your time in Kuta. Unless you are looking to get drunk with a bunch of 18-year old Australians (sorry Aussies, you know we love you and your country, but you really do get out of hand when you come to Kuta), there is absolutely no reason for you to stop here.

Take a bus from Kuta directly to Ubud for a more cultural Bali experience. The surrounding village communities specialize in crafts, textiles, jewellery and woodcarving. If you want to pick up a few souvenirs and support local businesses, then this is the place.

Spend 2-3 days in Ubud, enjoying the town itself and the various day trips/activities available nearby.

2 Weeks in Indonesia: Rice paddy fields in Bali, Indonesia
Rice paddy fields in Bali, Indonesia
Street in Ubud, Bali
Street in Ubud, Bali

Top Ubud Attractions

Take a Balinese Cooking Class

Learn how to make authentic Balinese dishes with this unique tour. The Balinese cooking class at an organic farm includes a trip to the local food market to select fresh ingredients before heading to the cooking school where you’ll be shown how to prepare traditional meals from scratch. It’s a unique experience that will allow you to take your skills home with you to relive and enjoy for years to come.

Visit Tegallalang Rice Terraces

An Ubud e-bike tour is the best way to explore the natural wonders, history and culture of the region. It’s greener than a driving tour and you’ll see much more in just a few hours than you would by foot. The local guide will lead you through villages, monkey forests, past temples, coffee plantations and onto the rice fields and Tegallalang rice terrace.

Explore Ubud’s Waterfalls

Ubud is surrounded by lush green jungles hiding some magnificent waterfalls. On this walking tour, you’ll have the chance to take a refreshing dip at Tibumana Waterfall, discover the hidden Tukad Cepung Waterfall, and take in the amazing views at Tegenungan Waterfall. Just remember to pack the insect repellant!

Where to Stay in Ubud

Most people stay in the heart of Ubud, close to restaurants and shops, but we think that if you stay just 1km outside of the main town center, you’ll experience a whole other side of Ubud.

  • We fell in love with the beautiful eco-boutique hotel Bambu Indah and would highly recommend it as a place to stay, or at the very least, a place to stop by for dinner. The resort combines the best of Balinese antique architecture and design, with modern and sustainable practices in a luxury environment.
Natural Pool at Bambu Indah. Photo courtesy of Bambu Indah
Natural Pool at Bambu Indah. Photo courtesy of Bambu Indah

They also serve the best traditional cuisine available in Bali made with homegrown ingredients and unique recipes!

  • Other accommodation options in Ubud include Prashanti Yoga Retreat and Eco-Hotel. Located just ten minutes from downtown Ubud on foot. The hotel is built from natural sustainable bamboo and rooms are cooled with strategically placed fans.
  • If you prefer something a little more simple but equally comfortable then Suka’s House B&B is a perfect choice. It’s located right in the heart of Ubud but is still quiet enough to get a good rest. Enjoy the garden and the swimming pool!

Lombok/Gili Islands – 3 days

From Ubud, make your way to Lombok. With pristine beaches, majestic mountains, stunning volcanoes, and rich marine life, it’s the perfect stop to take a breather on your 2 week Indonesia itinerary.  

Here you have a choice of spending a few days relaxing on Gili Islands or exploring the lesser-known and quieter Kuta, Lombok area.

2 Weeks in Indonesia: Beautiful beach in Kuta, Lombok. Indonesia
Beautiful beach in Kuta, Lombok

While Gili Islands tend to be a more popular choice for travelers, we recommend escaping the crowds and enjoying the peace and quiet of Southern Lombok instead.

If you are staying in Kuta, hire a scooter and explore the area and the nearby beaches at your own pace. There are dozens of beaches.

Lombok, Indonesia
Lombok, Indonesia

If you have more time, you can take a 3Day/2Night trip to hike Mt Rinjani. The trips can be organized from Kuta, Lombok and offer a unique experience suitable for any outdoor adventure lover.

The town of Kuta in Lombok is an ideal place to organize any trips or onwards travel in Lombok
The town of Kuta in Lombok is an ideal place to organize any trips or onwards travel in Lombok

Top Lombok Attractions

Take a Bike Tour with a Difference

There aren’t many city bike tours where you have to take your bike on a boat! But this 6-Hour City and Countryside Biking Tour will take you to some remote spots that require that extra mode of transport! The tour kicks off with Lombok’s city sights before exploring village life, taking in a 100 meter  (329 feet) high hanging bridge, a traditional boat ride, temples and spectacular views!

Camp on the Crater Rim of Mount Rinjani

How about a bit of wild camping with a Mount Rinjani 2-Day Trek to Senaru Crater Rim? The trek includes all accommodation, equipment, food and water, entrance fees, waterfall tour, insurance AND a certificate (upon request) as a keepsake for your experience!

Gili Trawangan, Air & Meno Island: Snorkelling Day Trip

In Lombok, the underwater scenery is just as impressive as on land. Take a full-day snorkelling trip to the Gili Islands and marvel at the rich marine life including sea turtles, clownfish, surgeonfish, sunburst butterflyfish and colourful corals. The good thing is that should you book and the weather not be in your favour, you can cancel up to 24 hours in advance with a full refund.

Where to Stay in Lombok

If you opt to spend your time in Gili Islands, consider staying at the following:

  • Gili Eco Villas, a beachfront getaway powered by solar energy, featuring furnishings made from recycled teak wood. As the name suggests, this place is all about eco-friendliness and relaxing villas. The gorgeous location of Trawangan brings the shoreline of the beach and the fresh sea air to your doorstep – quite literally! The classic teak wood rooms are gorgeously decorated using local products and embrace the sea views.
Gili Eco Villas. Photo via Gilli Eco Villas
Gili Eco Villas. Photo via Gilli Eco Villas
  • Those skipping Gili Islands may want to stay at the Rinjani Beach Eco Resort, located in Northwest Lombok. Here you can enjoy the charm of living in an authentic bamboo bungalow with stunning views of the Gili Islands and the volcano in Bali.
Rinjani Beach Eco Resort. Photo via Rinjani Beach Eco Resort
Rinjani Beach Eco Resort. Photo via Rinjani Beach Eco Resort
  • Lombok Eco Homes – choose from a bamboo villa or bungalow and experience the wild beauty of south Lombok. The accommodation is made with sustainable natural materials, is solar-powered, and has water and waste recycling. The bungalow sleeps up to 3 people, overlooks two amazing beaches and even has its own rooftop terrace. The villa has two-levels, sleeps 6, with an outdoor terrace, and a stone oven.
  • Ila Homestay– Perfect for an overnight or two, the Ila Homestay is run by a husband and wife team. It located close to the Rinjani National Park and a few minutes walk to a traditional village.

Flores/Komodo National Park – 2-3 days

Fly to Flores, into Labuan Bajo, it’s not only the largest airport on Flores but it’s also where the boats depart for Komodo National Park, where you’ll definitely want to visit for world sights and a chance to see the mythical Komodo dragons.

If you are an experienced diver, consider joining a Liveaboard in Komodo National Park for an opportunity to experience some fantastic dive sites and a chance to dive with oceanic manta rays, sharks, turtles and an abundance of other marine life.   

2 Weeks in Indonesia: Diving in Komodo National Park
The underwater world of the Komodo National Park

If you don’t have your diving certification or are still new to diving, consider doing a day-trip to the Komodo Islands instead. You’ll get a chance to see some amazing marine life and can choose to dive or snorkel, PLUS, you’ll be able to get up close and personal with the Komodo Dragons too.

If you have more time, go beyond Labuan Bajo! There are also hot springs, volcanoes and crater lakes waiting to be explored in the area.

READ NEXT: 7 BEST DIVE SPOTS TO SCUBA DIVE IN INDONESIA

Diving in Komodo National Park

Komodo dragons on Rinca Island. Komodo National Park
Komodo dragons on Rinca Island. Komodo National Park
Komodo National Park, Indonesia
Komodo National Park, Indonesia

Other Things to do in Flores Indonesia

Explore Batu Cermin Cave

Batu Cermin means ‘mirror rock’ in Indonesian and it’s easy to see why! Bathed in sunlight which bounces off the slick rock, the cave becomes the stage for a spectacular light show. The rock formation is located near Labuan Bajo and offers some amazing panoramic views over Flores and the nearby islands.

Visit Bajawa

Bajawa is a hillside town in Flores, made popular by its rich vegetation and impressive volcanoes. Hike one of the active volcanoes in the region or enjoy the natural springs at Soa. There are plenty of local guides who will be able to organise a tour of the local area taking in all the best sights.

Take a Padar Island Hike

Padar Island is the third-largest within the Komodo National Park. It has a number of beautiful short treks offering some excellent photographic opportunities from the viewpoints, especially at sunrise and sunset.

Where to stay in Flores

There are lots of new developments in Labuan Bajo, so the hotel scene is getting more and more interesting every year. Bajo Komodo Eco Lodge is a great option for those looking an environmentally friendly stay.

  • BajoKomodo Eco Lodge uses solar power to heat the water in their buildings and features an extensive rainwater storage system. Their property has a restaurant on-site and offers 12 air-conditioned rooms filled with all the essentials to ensure an enjoyable stay.

  • Plataran Komodo Beach Resort– Just a one minute meander from Waecicu Beach, this hotel offers amazing sea views, a tropical garden, an on-site restaurant, and an outdoor pool if you get sick of the beach…unlikely!
  • Manulalu B&B– the best bit about this brand new B&B is the spectacular mountain views as you enjoy your breakfast. The rooms are spacious with huge, comfy beds and more of those mountain views from your own patio terrace.

READ NEXT: DIVING IN KOMODO NATIONAL PARK: PROS AND CONS OF A DAY TRIP VS A LIVEABOARD

With only 2 weeks to spare, that’s about all you’ll be able to cover during your stay in Indonesia. It’s a jam-packed itinerary but is one that allows you to see the majority of Indonesia’s main sights and attractions.

If You Have More Time…

If you have more time, consider yourself lucky. You have the luxury of slowing down your travel and being able to see more and do more at each one of these stops. Here are a few suggestions on how to extend your trip:

In Yogyakarta, give yourself an extra day to wander around the city

It’s a great place to pick up some souvenirs, try street food, come across a random street market, or strike up a conversation with a local “taxi” driver. Despite being one of the hot spots in Java, the city is not yet crowded with westerners, so there is space for you to meander and simply watch the locals go about their daily life.

Rows of becaks on Jalan Malioboro. Yogyakarta. Java. Indonesia
Rows of becaks on Jalan Malioboro. Yogyakarta. Java

Stop in Solo en route from Yogyakarta to Malang

It’ll break up your train journey and allow you to experience the beauty of this highly underrated town in the highlands and visit some tea plantations and temples that lie outside of it.

Check out the backstreet kampungs (neighbourhoods), the kraton (walled city palace), wander through the traditional markets, or visit the Museum Batik Danar Hadi.

Learning about tea at the tea plantation outside of Solo, Java. Indonesia
Learning about tea at the tea plantation outside of Solo, Java

Give yourself a few extra days in Malang

…to explore the town. Check out Malang’s night market, walk around the beautiful Dutch colonial-style neighbourhood or get out of town and visit one of Malang’s nearby Balekambang Beaches.

Malang, Java. Indonesia
Exploring the lesser-known areas of Malang, Java.

Spend extra time in Bali….

… exploring past Ubud and the party central Kuta. Visit the Bedugal Waterfalls in North Bali, soak in the Banjar hot springs, scuba-dive the Liberty Ship Wreck, or trek to the top of an active volcano Mount Batur or take a guided Mount Batur Sunrise Hike and Hidden Waterfall Tour. It’s an early start at 1:30 am, but well worth it! The 10-hour tour takes you from your hotel to the volcano to begin a 1.5-hour trek to the summit just in time for sunrise. You’ll then have a spot of breakfast before heading to the hidden waterfall of Kanto where you can have a refreshing swim.

If you’re more of a foodie than a hiker, then you can have an authentic Balinese Cooking Class. The half-day tour and activity takes you to the local market to shop for your fresh, organic ingredients, before a visit to a rice plantation, and then onto the village of Laplapan for your cookery lesson.

Statue in Ubud, Bali. Indonesia
Statue in Ubud, Bali. Indonesia

Climb Mt Rinjani in Lombok

We planned to do this trek right after climbing Ijen Crater and Mr Bromo, but were too exhausted from the other treks to embark on a 2 -day Mount Rinjani adventure, but we heard it’s an amazing experience.

Go even further!

Visit Sumatra for a chance to come face to face with the Sumatran Orangutans and other wildlife, dive in Raja Ampat, renowned as one of the top 5 dive sites in the world, or explore the land of the indigenous tribes of Baliem Valley in Papua.

Book Ahead

If your holiday is limited to just 2 weeks, we recommend booking all accommodation and transportation ahead of time to save the hassle of doing it on the road. Transportation options in Indonesia are plentiful with trains, busses, and private shuttles offering plenty of overland options. To compare prices and routes, we recommend using BookAway.com to find the best options for each leg of your journey!

READY TO EXPLORE?

Have a question in preparation for your Indo trip? Leave us a comment below and we’ll do our best to give you some advice.

52 thoughts on “2 Weeks in Indonesia: Our Suggested Itinerary”

  1. What route did you take back to leave the country? We are planning to head back to Mumbai, India after the trip. We want to skip Jakarta but direct flights to Yogyakarta are expensive! Flying directly to Denpasar means we would have to travel back to see Yogyakarta and Malang. Any tips are highly appreciated!

    1. We flew out of Denpasar, but when we flew into the country we had to go through Jakarta to find a cheap deal. You might just have to sacrifice a day to get yourself to Jakarta and catch a cheaper flight from there. Good luck!

  2. Thanks Oksana. From Mumbai, the flight rates for Denpasar and Jakarta are almost the same. We are debating between taking a u turn to visit Yogyakarta and Malang and getting to Labuan bajo to go to Komodo as well. Its getting a little complicated as we don’t know whether taking a flight from Yogyakarta to go to Labuan Bajo is a good and cheaper option than passing through Lombok (also saves us time) .

    1. We flew to LB from Bali and it was still expensive, i doubt it would be much cheaper to go through Yogyakarta, but worth a try. Komodo is definitely worth a visit!

  3. Jake Bersani

    Hi,

    This post helps my planning. Wondering, how much did you overall spend for the two weeks?

    Thanks!

  4. Hi There! Curious what kind of (somewhat professional) camera you recommend to take on a trip. Do you have any recommendations for an affordable option, and a more expensive option, that’s worth the extra $$?

  5. Thank you for sharing this amazing post with us, really useful will assists me to get more info about Bali. I’m going there for 2 weeks itinerary. I’ve already booked guided tour to Komodo island and diving in Tulamben via The Seven Holiday. What else can you recommend me to visit? Thanks!

    1. Happy to hear that you have found the post helpful. If you already have plans to travel to Komodo National Park we highly recommend taking a day to dive there! Tulamben is nice for diving in Bali, but diving in Komodo will blow you away! The dive sites there are some of the best in the world! We recommend Uber Scuba for day dive trips to the park. Enjoy your trip!

  6. Hi Oksana, this is a really good itinerary! We are planning a similar sort of trip to Indonesia so this is helpful. About organizing a trip to Bromo and coming from Yogya, and if we want to stay somewhere in Bromo, which (Malang, Surabaya or Probollingo) town would be the best option to travel to first to get to Bromo? Thanks!

    1. You can get to Mt Bromo from any of those towns. Probollingo is the closest one, so if you are looking for the quickest way to get to Mt Bromo, this is definitely it. Those staying in Malang and Surabaya will have to pass by Probollingo to get to Mt Bromo. Surabaya is the biggest city and is the easiest place to base yourself in if you want quick access to the airport before/after your Mt Bromo visit. We stayed in Malang and really enjoyed it there. Even though it was further away from Mt Bromo, it was a really nice town to hang out in for a few days. There were lots of tour companies offering trip to Bromo from there as well! Hope that helps!

  7. Hi, I was wondering how you suggest leaving the country. Will be flying from USA to Indonesia. Jakarta seems to be the cheapest, but the itinerary ends in Flores. Whats the best way to get back to Jakarta or do you have another suggestion instead of flying out of Jakarta that would be affordable. Thank you!

    1. You can try to look for flights from Bali, as that’s another popular hub. But you’ll have to fly there from Flores as well, there is really no other suitable alternative. We’ve read about 2-3 day ferries/boats that also go along that route but heard too many horror stories about ships sinking and safety not being up to par, so we choose to fly instead.

  8. Hello,,.
    i want to know abut the weather …
    i mean which weather is the best to visit Indonesia..?
    which month through out the year..
    Thanks

  9. Would you suggest booking the tours for the sunrise at the temples, and dives at the hotels or brebook them before we depart for indonesia?

    1. Leanna, it depends on how tight your itinerary is. If you are trying to squeeze a lot of activities into those 2 weeks and don’t have much spare time, then I would say definitely prebook trips in advance. But if you have some buffer room in your plans (we highly recommend this!), then it’s best to book on the spot. You’ll get a better deal than booking online, but the downside is that sometimes you may not be able to jump on a tour the same day and will have to wait to depart the day after.

  10. hi,

    Most helpful itinerary i found so far.
    Im going from Thailand to Indonesia and will do this itinerary.
    Any suggestions on tour company to do mount Bromo and Ijen crater going back to Surabaya?

    Thanks

  11. Hi Oksana,

    What a great itenerary! We are thinking to follow most of this (except of Flores..)
    And like your tip of getting out at Solo and experience the beautiful surroundings of the tea plantations!

    I was wondering, how did you guys get to the plantations from the city of Solo? Did you take a tour (from hostel/hotel) or did you go by yourself with taxi/bus and just wonder around?

    Thanks for the tips! :))) Really looking forward to our Indonesia trip!
    Xx

    1. Hi Sam,
      We rented a scooter and explored on our own. I think our hotel maybe pointed out the plantations on the map and then we just used Google Maps to navigate ourselves. We got lost a few times, but that was part of the adventure 🙂

  12. Hey guys,
    This is awesome! Thank you so much for all the info and details. Not sure if I missed this in your post, but after the 2 weeks, did you fly back to Jakarta and where did you go to next?

    1. We traveled by boat to Bali and then onwards to Lombok. The transfer was long and tedious, so having done it, we actually recommend that people fly from Java to Bali instead. If you book in advance you’ll be able to find decently priced tickets and save yourself a whole lot of time and hassle.

  13. Dear Oksana & Max,
    This is the best blog with so much of information taking care of every detail while traveling. LOVE IT! We are a couple traveling from Chennai (India) to Yogyakarta for 20 days. We took your advise on skipping Jakarta & we didn’t find anything interesting as well. We will be following almost the same itinerary you have mentioned above but a little relaxed as we have 5 days extra.
    We want to depart back to Chennai from Bali at the end of our trip. How can we adjust the itinerary without spending extra or going to & fro. Thank You!

    Regards,
    Komal & Prateek Singhi

    1. When you arrange your tours to Mt Bromo or Ijen, ask them if they organize transfers to Bali. We took a ferry ride over to Bali without having to backtrack to Yogyakarta. The ferry ride was good, but you’ll also need to get a taxi transfer from the ferry on the other side to the airport in Bali. It’s a long trip (4-5 hours if I rememember correctly) and the cost savings may not be worth it ( we didnt think so in the end), but it’s definitely an option.

  14. ANDRY from Cyprus

    hi there, great tips about Indonesia.
    Just want to ask you 2 questions:
    1. Is it safe to rent a small motorcycle in Bali? I used to own my own motorbike but I heard traffic is crazy and there are many accidents. do you think is better to rent a car or hire a driver?
    2. We will be in Bali for a week and then planning to visit Yogyakarta. So I really want to visit Bromo. Is it worth it or we should skip it and do Batur. Visiting Bromo means we need to get extra flight to Malang but Bromo looks amazing.
    3, In Malang can we find tours to Bromo on the spot or do we need to book in advance?
    4. Can we leave on the same day after visiting Bromo to go to Yogyakarta?
    thank you so much, you are an inspiration!

    1. Hi Andy,
      Here are our answers. Hope they help!
      1. Yes. We did. Drive with caution and always wear a helmet! The traffic is a bit intense, but you’ll get the hang of it.
      2. Definitely visit Mt Bromo. It’s a highlight you don’t want to miss!
      3. No need to book in advance, you can book them for the day you arrive or the following day when you arrive in Malang. Tours leave at 2am (i believe), so it is possible to arrive and leave for Mt Bromo the same day.
      4. Technically, yes. But you will need to take first get back to Malang or Surabaya and take a train to Yogyakarta from either Malang or Surabaya.

  15. Andry Apostolou

    Thank you soooooo much. Your advice was very helpful and it cleared the picture for us.
    I would like to ask you a few more things if its possible
    1. We have the option of either going to Malang or Surabaya by plane from Bali. Which would be more convenient for us in order to visit Mt Bromo? Malang seems closer but many people refer to Surabaya and then travellling to Probolinggo and the village of Cemoro Lawang.
    As I told you we would like to take a tour to get us to Bromo at night and get us back to the hotel to leave for Yogyakarta on the same day. So I would avoid public transport for Bromo.
    2. Do you know how I can find the trains schedule from Malang to Yogyakarta?
    3. Is it possible or advisable to do the Gili islands (the biggest one) on a day trip os shall we skip it and go to another island day trip around Bali?
    Thank you for your patience 🙂

    1. Andry,
      1. You can book tours from both Malang and Surabaya. Surabaya is actually closer and is a more popular route.
      2. We used tiket.com. It’s a local website for train, bus, and flight tickets.
      3. Not sure, sorry, we skipped Gili islands as they were too busy and touristy for our enjoyment. We choose to spend time on Lombok’s beaches instead.

      1. Cara Shields

        Amazing blog! What beach destination in Bali would you recommend? We are a couple in our young 30s. So looking for evening entertainment but not clubbing! Thanks!

  16. Hi.
    Your blog is great. I see that you have been to both Thailand and Indonesia. What would prefer for honeymoon in September. We are too much into beaches but would like few days to relax then explore the country. Any advise would aprreciative. Thank you.

    1. Both destinations are beautiful and would make for a great honeymoon trip. Bali is a popular destination for honeymooners in Indonesia (just don’t spend your time in Kuta beach!), as there is lots to do and see and plenty of honeymoon worthy accommodation options. Same goes for Thailand.. the beaches in Thailand are amazing, but there are lots of cultural experiences to add as well. It’s a tough choice to make!

  17. Hello! Thanks for all the awesome information , so helpful! My friend and I are going in a couple weeks …we are having issues with 1 part. How did you do the 1N/2D tour for Mt.Bromo and Ljen crater and spent 2 nights in Malang? I would think the overnight train from yogykarta on, say day 1, would then limit you for taking the tour that day (so that’s 1 night in Malang), then you have the tour on day 2 (so one night elsewhere for the tour) , then come back from tour and spend a 2nd night in Malang after the tour?

    We are just trying to figure out how that all worked with only 2 nights in Malang

    1. Jennifer, we spent 2 nights in Malang first and then went on to Mt Bromo and Ijen Crater. We didn’t do a tour, but arranged everything on our own. Got a drive to take us to Mt Bromo overnight, in time for sunrise, explored Mt Bromo for the day, then took another car to Banyuwangi, stayed overnight and from there took an early morning tour to Ijen. But you can arrange this as a tour from Malang. A lot of companies offer this tour bringing you back to Malang, but some also allow you to continue onwards to Bali as well (which is what we did). Does that make sense?

  18. Great itinerary! I am planning to go solo with this itinerary, do you think it is safe to go solo? Also, how does the transpiration inside the cities work? Last question, is visa and master card highly accepted? or should I carry cash?

    1. Hi Mitch, lots of travelers explore Indonesia solo and from our experience, it seemed like a very safe country. Trains and buses are the best forms of long-distance transport in Indonesia. Of course, you’ll have to take some ferry’s to get from one island to another or fly. Credit Cards are only accepted in large hotels and touristy restaurants. It’s always best to take out some cash from ATM upon arrival, as you don’t want to rely on credit cards.

  19. nicola ballestrin

    Hi There! i am planning with 4 more friends for a same trip in indonesia. we have 13 days(without international flights).Borobudur Temple and Prambanan Temple. Mt Bromo and Ijen Crater. Bali/Lombok/gilli/komodo
    wich place i should delete from the list and how many days for each place. i need your help!!!!!! Thanks

  20. Hi!
    Great blog
    We are planing a trip for September and this has been very helpful
    I was wondering if you could advice on how you went/ recommend going from Jakarta to Yogyakarta (Flight an option?) and Yogyakarta to Malang (is train the only option, if so where did you took? how did you buy tickets?)

  21. charlie che

    Hi.

    Great post to read and really insightful. My query i book a flight to Denspar not realising there was a airport in East Java. I now realise i would have to travel to East Java from Kuta back to Kuta and also include Ubud and Gili and possibly one other destination then ending the holiday in Kuta. All of this in 2 weeks. Is this posdible or am i being unreleastic ? Thanks

    1. Hi Charlie, it is possible to spend 2 weeks between Java and Bali. Java has really good train/bus services which make it easy to get around the island overland without flying too much. You can also get from Bali to Java by taking a ferry. Hope that helps!

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