Co-founder Sam embarks on his ‘favourite rant,’ why Indonesia makes for a spectacular holiday destination. From its stunning volcanic landscapes to azure water to beguiling culture to colonial influences, he argues there’s so much to the country that is largely overlooked.
“The problem is that I’ve been to all of the countries you cover”, said one of our best customers whilst discussing where she would go next with her travelling companion and us at our offices in Clapham. “What about Indonesia?”, I replied, to which she said “Sorry, but it just doesn’t appeal as a holiday destination”.
I was back on my favourite rant: Indonesia is probably the most incredible, varied and beautiful country in the world. The 13,000 or so islands (17,000 depending on where you read it – a lot anyway) contain probably the widest variety of scenery found in any country on earth.
Indonesia is a cultural melting pot and contains elements and echoes of most of the world’s great civilisations and the people are extra-ordinarily ethnically, linguistically and culturally diverse. From the rich culture, beauty and dramatic scenery of Java, to diverse Sulawesi, West Papua, Komodo National Park, the Gili Isles and the wild west of Sumatra and so on and so forth, there is way more to Indonesia than just Bali.
Bali itself evokes different reactions. Many people think of Bali as a separate entity and it does indeed feel very distinct from Java, its larger and more populous neighbour. Bali has been slightly tarred with the brush of mass Australian tourism and there is no doubt that over-development has scarred southern Bali and the area around Kuta in particular. Bali is such a wonderful island though, and it’s very easy to get away from bars and nightclubs of Kuta and to a more peaceful timeless world.
I could go on and on now, but needless to say, we’re pretty passionate about Indonesia as a destination here at ETG HQ. It is the one place that we seem unable to get our clients excited about en mass and we have been scratching our heads about how to change that. We wondered if it had an image problem: one person said that he was thinking more of wildlife, culture and dramatic scenery so was thinking of South America. Whilst we have nothing against South America (honestly!) Java definitely ticks those boxes – in spades – as do a lot of other places in Indonesia.
We’ve got lots more pictures of hotels which we’ll feature soon. We think that Indonesia and Bali in particular, has the best characterful boutique hotels in Asia, and by extension, quite possibly the world. They really are amazing in their range, uniqueness, calm and sheer quality. Talk to us if you’d like to find out if you agree with me by booking your consultation with one of our Indonesia holiday experts.