Islands of Indonesia

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Islands of Indonesia

Comprising over 17,000 islands, Indonesia is the world's largest archipelago, and therefore it comes as no surprise that this country has innumerable island destinations to visit. From lush, green ra (Read More)inforests, to smouldering volcanoes, to pristine white-sand beaches, Indonesia offers everything to its visitors. The islands of Indonesia caters to everyone, from the party-animal to the solitude seeker, from the beach-bum to the adventure junkie, from the culture buff to the foodie, there is something for everyone to enjoy!

Here is the list of 22 Islands of Indonesia

1. Bali

Bali
4.5 /5 View 277+ photos

Known For : Tanah Lot Uluwatu Bali Swing

Clearly the most famous islands of Indonesia, Bali is the best place for any tourist who needs a week of absolute relaxation, fragrant cuisine, scenic beauty, and a galore of culture and tradition. With its elaborate temples, endless coastline, scenic coral reefs, waterfalls and retreats, Bali is indeed, a place of leisure and idyll, and simultaneously, a place for the adventurous and the explorers. Bali also has an international airport. 

Best Time: April, May, June and September

300 Bali Attractions

2. Lombok

Lombok
4.3 /5 View 33+ photos

Known For : Selong Belanak Beach Kuta Lombok Pink Beach

Located east of Bali, Lombok is a more laidback and slow-paced alternative to Bali's raucous disposition. Promoted as "an unspoiled Bali", Lombok is what people expected Bali to be before it became crowded and a mainstream travel destination. Blessed with some of the best surf breaks in the world and pristine beaches, this island of Indonesia is quickly earning its own reputation as a world-class surfing and beach destination.

Best Time: Dry season (May to Septembert)

33 Lombok Attractions

3. Nusa Penida

Nusa Penida
4.2 /5

Known For : Kelingking Beach Atuh Beach Diamond Beach

The largest of the three Nusa Islands, Nusa Penida is chock-full with dramatic cliff-faces, pristine beaches, and dive sites that offer some of the best snorkelling, scuba diving, and surfing. Known for preserving the endangered bird Bali Starling, the famous attractions in this island of Indonesia are the Crystal Bay sand beach and the  sunset panorama from the island. Boats regularly move from mainland Bali to the three Nusa Islands, with Nusa Penida being the last stop.

Best Time: May - September

27 Nusa Penida Attractions

4. Sumatra

Sumatra

Blessed with rugged tropical terrain, ancient rainforests, and smouldering volcanic formations, Sumatra is the world's sixth-largest island. Sumatra houses some of Indonesia's richest oil fields, coal, gold and silver reserves. It remains iconic for its national parks, soft sandy beaches, coffee and rubber plantations, extravagant mosques, historical monuments, and dormant volcanic hills to trek and surf spots. Sumatra's glamorous capital city, Medan, is among Indonesia's most significant economic hubs.

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5. Java

Java

Dotted with volcanic mountains, unspoilt rainforests, cosmopolitan cities and pristine coasts, Java Island is home to some of Indonesia’s busiest culture and eco-tourism destinations. Java is Indonesia’s heartland of performing arts, royal ceremonies, tea farming and batik handicrafts. From Dutch-colonial towns like Kota Tua, West Java’s surfing spots, to Jakarta, Java spells great adventure through its active volcanoes, snaking rivers, ancient temples, reefs, beaches, hills and markets.

6. Nusa Lembongan

Nusa Lembongan

Nusa Lembongan is one of the three islands located in the south-east of Bali. This picturesque beach paradise untouched by commercialism and remains a top draw for visitors aspiring for a bit of solitude. The area around Nusa Lembongan has an abundance of marine life, including colourful corals that are perfect for diving and snorkelling. Nusa Lembongan is stunning with clear, blue water exciting the nature lovers as do the glorious golden sunsets.

7. Gili Trawangan

Gili Trawangan
4.5 /5

Known For : Relax at the Beach in Gili Trawangan Snorkelling in Gili Trawangan Swim With Sea Turtles in Gili Trawangan

Located just off the northeastern coast of Lombok and to Bali's west, Gili Trawangan is a part of the Gili Island archipelago comprising Gili Trawangan, Gili Meno, and Gili Air and more than 20 other smaller islands. It is also the most developed and tourist-friendly among them. The largest of the Gili Islands, because of its tourism-centric infrastructure and fantastic marine biology, it has blossomed into the ideal place to go freediving, scuba diving, and snorkelling.

Best Time: May - September

16 Gili Trawangan Attractions

8. Komodo Island

Komodo Island
4.0 /5

Madura Island, also called Pulau Madura, is an island off the north-east coast of Java in Pattaya. It has varying topography such as rocky cliffs and sand-dune beaches in the north and shallow beaches and lowlands in the south. Madura Island of Indonesia is the land of gorgeous waterfalls, large caves, historic temples, and small islands that are perfect for water sports making it a great destination for history buffs and water-sports junkies who’d like to discover new waters

Best Time: September to November

9. Padar Island

Padar Island
3.5 /5

Padar Island is the third largest island in Komodo National Park, located in between its two sibling islands- Komodo Island and Rinca island. Padar is surrounded by beautiful rugged hills that offer a splendid panoramic view. It is a perfect place for hikers that love a challenge. The hike up Padar hill is an activity that is one of the most popular things to do on Padar Island. This island in Indonesia is also home to one of the world's only pink beaches. 

Best Time: April to November

10. Gili Gede

Gili Gede
4.2 /5

Gili Gede lies on the southwest coast of Lombok and is small, rugged, and isolated from the other parts of Indonesia. The island is vastly popular as a surfing destination, with Desert Point being renowned as one of the best surf spots in the world, with one of the longest left-handed surf breaks being found here. Gili Gede is also a snorkeller's paradise, and with its crystal clear waters and teeming marine life, it offers a fantastic experience of interacting with marine life.

Best Time: May to September

11. Batam

Batam
4.0 /5 View 223+ photos

Known For : Barelang Bridge Nagoya Hill Shopping Mall Water Sports in Batam

Located just off the eastern coast of Sumatra, nuzzled up against the Singaporean coast, Batam is one of the most picturesque islands in the Riau Archipelago, and also one of the most modernised islands in Indonesia. Its proximity to Singapore also makes it one of the most visited weekend getaway destinations for residents that are looking for a retreat. Batam consists of three principal islands, Batam, Rempang, Galang, and other smaller islands.

Best Time: May to September.

15 Batam Attractions

12. Gili Air Island

Gili Air Island
4.2 /5

Known For : Scuba Diving in Gili Air Swings in Gili Air Sunset in Gili Air

Gili Air, which is among the three Gili Islands in Indonesia, is the island closest to Lombok and offers the best of both worlds - be it peaceful travelling or party hopping. This island of Indonesia temples to waterfalls, to beachside shacks, to secluded surf spots, along with cosy cafes and nightlife hubs. Besides these, you can go fishing, horse-riding, water skiing, and wakeboarding, and there is also a surf break to the south of the island for the experienced surfer.

Best Time: June to September

15 Gili Air Attractions

13. Gili Meno

Gili Meno

Gili Islands is a trio of small islands just off the coast of Lombok in Indonesia. Gili Meno happens to be the centrally placed island of the three and is exceedingly small in size measuring just two kilometers in length with a width of one kilometer. The natural locale has not been developed fully as yet and attracts hordes of tourists seeking solitude amongst natural surroundings. Gili Meno is a top draw for honeymooners as well as tourists aspiring for adventure.

14. Nusa Ceningan

Nusa Ceningan

Famous as one of the most popular holiday destinations of Bali, the Nusa Ceningan Island also forms part of the Nusa Islands. Standing amidst the sea waters, the Island is blessed with hoards of attractive places comprising of beaches, resorts, cliffs and the famous ‘Blue Lagoon’. While the scenic beauties popping of the Nusa Ceningan Island makes it an ideal place for nature photographers, and for activities such as Underwater Scootering, Ziplining, Snorkelling, and Scuba Diving.

15. Derawan Islands

Derawan Islands

The landscapes in Indonesia are so much more than lush rainforests and smouldering volcanoes. The country is replete pristine white-sand beaches, and with an archipelago of six islands, the Derawan Islands are a perfect escape for those who love beaches, caves and adventure. There are lavish resorts and hotels with spectacular views of the white-sand beaches. The abundant marine life of these islands makes every tourist go for a round of snorkelling or scuba diving in the seas.

16. Sumba

Sumba
3.7 /5

Known For : Waingapu Waikabubak

Sumba is a beautiful and untouched island which is situated to the East of the country; however, it amazingly distinguishes itself from the Northern volcanic part of Indonesia. The visitors that do make it to Sumba are usually surfers as Sumba has an amazing surf scene that remains under the radar. The clear ocean waters and the white sand beaches are great places to enjoy away from the noisy crowds.

Best Time: April to November

2 Sumba Attractions

17. Karimunjawa Islands

Karimunjawa Islands

An archipelago that consists of 27 islands that form a marine park, of which only 5 are inhabited by people, the Karimunjawa Islands are the archetypal castaway island paradise. A burgeoning tourism industry is beginning to take hold of these islands fringed by pearly white sandy beaches and is quickly becoming a popular destination amongst visitors to escape the over-commercialized and over-populated tourist hotspots of Bali and increasingly, the Gili Islands too.

18. Wakatobi Islands

Wakatobi Islands

An island group that consists of 4 islands that are situated to the southeast of Sulawesi, Wakatobi is fast gaining a reputation for being amongst the world’s premier destinations for diving and snorkelling. Its pristine beaches, unspoilt marine ecosystem that contains the second largest coral reef system in the world make it well worth the effort taken to get to this relatively remote part of Indonesia.

19. Weh Island

Weh Island

Also known as Sabang, after the largest town on the island, Weh is located north of Sumatra and is typical of the tropical paradise. Palm trees swaying in the wind, azure blue waters lapping up the white sand beaches of the island, Weh is popular amongst divers for the diversity of marine life that include manta rays, whale sharks, and dolphins. Ferries from Banda Aceh are usually the preferred mode of transport to and from Pulau Weh.

20. Sulawesi

Sulawesi

Comprising several long peninsulas radiating from a mountainous centre, Sulawesi Island is the crux of Indonesia’s Dutch colonial history. Listed as a UNESCO Marine Biosphere, the island is a geographical tapestry of epic coral reefs, tropical jungles, highlands, trekking and dive sites such as Bunaken National Park, Togian Islands and Wakatobi National Park. Sulawesi’s largest city is Massakar, home to Fort Rotterdam and Leang-Leang Historic Park.

21. Kalimantan

Kalimantan

Touted for its idyllic rainforests, resident orangutans, and traditional Dayak riverside longhouses, Kalimantan is an Indonesian island in Borneo. It is the world’s third-largest island. Kalimantan boasts museums, Islamic establishments and historical relics of Indonesia’s war-stricken history, bazaars and malls, turquoise ocean waters and reefs for snorkelling. Danau Sentarum National Park, Kakaban Island, Mahakam River, Pandaren Beach and White Mountain are Kalimantan’s most-visited destinations.

22. Raja Ampat Islands

Raja Ampat Islands

Raja Ampat Islands are an Indonesian archipelago comprising 1,500 smaller, primarily uninhabited jungle-covered islands. These islands are known among underwater enthusiasts for turquoise waters, beaches, lagoons, historic caves, and biodiverse coral reefs for snorkelling. Ancient rock paintings and caves can be found on Misool Island, while Pianemo Hiking Trail in a corner overlooks the entire island. Batanta, Waigeo, Arborek Village, Wayag and Salawati are Raja Ampat Island’s other main attractions.

Which of Indonesia's islands are you most excited about exploring? Tell us in the comments below!

This post was published by Joysurjya Hagjer

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