Volcanoes & Temples of Indonesia

15 days
from
$2,015 USD
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Traveller ratings
4.5 / 5 from 2 reviews >
Trip code: 
AOJ
Ways to Travel:
Guided Group, Tailormade Adventures
Activity:
Culture & Discovery Holidays
Min age:
16
Group size:
6–16

Delve into central Indonesia's rich culture and admire some of its most spectacular volcanoes.

Rice paddies give way to luxuriant jungles which coat towering volcanoes. Ancient Buddhist and Hindu temples bear witness to old and still vibrant cultures and traditions. The longest archipelago in the world made up of over 17,500 beach-fringed tropical islands, this is Indonesia. We journey through the geographical and spiritual heart of the country as we make our way through Muslim Java, Hindu Bali and Lombok, taking in spectacular ruins, active volcanoes, village life and palm-fringed beaches.

Highlights

  • Ancient Borobudur and Prambanan
  • Watching the sun rise over Mt. Bromo
  • Balinese enthralling culture
  • Laid back Lombok

Key information

  • 7 nights standard hotels, 5 nights comfortable hotels, 2 nights basic hotels (where there are no other options)
  • Travel by minibus, ferry and speedboat
  • Some long drives on good roads

What's included

  • All breakfasts
  • All accommodation (see below)
  • All transport and listed activities
  • Tour leader throughout
  • Flights from London (if booking incl. flights)

What's not included

  • Travel insurance
  • Single accommodation (from 380)
  • Visas or vaccinations
  • Optional Rinjani Trek

Responsible Travel

At Exodus we believe in the power of Responsible Travel.

Every time we travel, we are part of a global movement that creates jobs, builds more sustainable societies, encourages cultural understanding and safeguards common natural and cultural heritage. To learn more about what Responsible Travel means to Exodus click here… 

Itinerary

  • Day 1

    Start Yogyakarta.

    Today is a free day and land only passengers can arrive at any time. The group flights should arrive in the afternoon. Yogya, as the city is commonly referred to, is an ancient city which, a thousand years ago, was the centre of the Mataram Kingdom. Today it is Java’s cultural and traditional heart and is renowned for its batik, ballet, drama, poetry and music.
    Duta Garden Hotel or similar

    Meals included: Breakfast
  • Day 2

    City tour; afternoon visit of Prambanan.

    This morning we explore Yogya by becak (bicycle rickshaw) and visit the Sultan’s Palace. Also known as Kraton, the palace constructed in the 18th Century is a fine example of traditional Javanese sultanate architecture. We continue to the ‘Taman Sari’ water palace and garden which was initially built with bathing pools for the Sultan’s harem.

    This afternoon we visit the 9th century Prambanan temple compound, consisting of 224 temples. The Hindu temple complex is stunningly beautiful, and devoted to the gods Brahma, Shiva and Vishnu. It is the wealth of its sculptural details that these temples are known for, the most famous being on the inner wall of the balustrade, of the Ramayana epic.
    Duta Garden Hotel or similar

    Meals included: Breakfast
  • Day 3

    Explore the temples of Borobudur.

    Today we drive to Magelang 1.5hrs away where we visit one of the greatest Buddhist monuments in the world, Borobudur. Scholars disagree on exactly when it was constructed but many speculate it dates back to between the 7th and 8th centuries. They do agree, however, that a huge workforce must have laboured to move and carve the 55,000 cubic metres of stone and that construction took about one hundred years. The temple was abandoned, probably when the population converted to Islam in the 15th century, and over time it was blanketed by volcanic ash from nearby Mt. Merapi, and then covered in thick jungle growth, until the British rediscovered it in the 1800s.

    Continuing to the village of Candirejo, we get to experience local life with a horse cart ride. Known as dokar, the horse cart takes us through this peaceful, charming village with its small lanes lined with traditional houses. We stop to see local activities such as making cassava crackers, playing the gamelan (traditional instrument) and harvesting and drying vanilla and chili.

    Return to Yogya late afternoon.
    Duta Garden Hotel or similar

    Meals included: Breakfast
  • Day 4

    Train ride through Central Java and on to Batu.

    Today is a long day. We get up very early this morning in order to catch our train for a 4hr train journey past Central Java’s volcanic scenery to Mojokerto. From here we visit nearby Trowulan, site of the former capital of the Majapahit Kingdom who ruled Java for centuries. We visit the archaeology museum and the temples of Candi Bajang Ratu and Candi Tikus. Continue to Jombang for a late lunch before transferring (4hrs) to the Hill Station of Batu along a scenic mountain road around the western slopes of Mt. Arjuna via Pare.
    Kampung Lumbung Hotel or similar

    Meals included: Breakfast
  • Day 5

    To Bromo Volcano; Sand Sea exploration.

    As we leave Batu, our first stop is the Cuban Rondo Waterfall where we will take a short, easy walk. Continuing to Malang we visit a local market before heading north towards Bromo via Pasuruan and Probolinggo (please be aware that the market is primarily a flower, bird and live fish market, however Indonesian attitudes to animals means that some of the animals are not kept in the best conditions which may be distressing to some people). At Sukapura we switch to a local shuttle for the final leg of our journey. Our hotel is spectacularly located on the edge of the Tengger crater. The ascent of the volcano is usually the highlight of every visit to Java. The rest of the afternoon is free and there may be time to start exploring the Sand Sea by foot. This is a great time to visit as the Sand Sea is practically devoid of all people.(drive about 6.5hrs)
    Lava View Hotel or similar

    Meals included: Breakfast
  • Day 6

    Sunrise over crater; to Kalibaru.

    An early rise (3.00 am) will ensure we have enough time for the jeep ride to the sunrise viewpoint. The view of Bromo and the Semeru volcano in the back is fantastic (despite the crowds), made even better when the slowly rising sun reveals an amazing moon-like landscape. After sunrise we cross the Sea of Sand and climb 246 steps up to the cone of Mt Bromo where you can see smoke rising from the crater. We get back to the jeep and drive back to the hotel for breakfast. We rejoin our bus in Sukapura for the 6hr drive along the north coast to Kalibaru. We stop along the way for a late lunch near Jember and the final leg of the journey takes us through forests and mountains. Kalibaru, on the eastern tip of Java, is beautifully surrounded by coffee, cacao and rubber plantations.
    Margo Utomo Hotel or similar

    Meals included: Breakfast
  • Day 7

    Plantation and village walk; optional Ijen visit.

    This morning we visit the area including some of the plantations such as cacao, coffee, pepper and rubber, and learn about their growing and harvesting. The morning tour is concluded with a coffee tasting session. The afternoon is free.

    Those who want can opt to visit Ijen Volcano (optional extra). Heading off after breakfast, the drive by 4WD to the start hike takes about 2.5hrs. The hike starts from Paltuding at 1,850m and takes about 1.5hrs (3kms) up to the crater rim at 2,368m. Along the way you may cross local men carrying sulphur loads weighing up to 70kgs on their backs. From the top you can enjoy views of the steaming, acidic crater lake. We return the same way. Please note that the trail down to the ‘blue fire’ is considered too dangerous.
    Margo Utomo Hotel or similar

    Meals included: Breakfast
  • Day 8

    To Ubud in Bali, via the Royal Family Temple, Taman Ayun.

    We drive about 2hrs to the harbour where we will cross the narrow straits between Bali and Java by ferry (about 40mins). We will follow the West coast of Bali before heading into the centre of the island and the town of Ubud (4.5hrs). On the way we visit Taman Ayun, the royal family temple. Ubud itself is the cultural heart of the island and religious traditions are an important part of life here.
    Bhuwana Ubud Hotel or similar

    Meals included: Breakfast
  • Day 9

    Visit Hindu temples of Tirta Empul and Gunung Kawi; free afternoon.

    This morning we go on a tour visiting two ancient and important temples: Gunung Kawi and Tirta Empul.11th century Gunung Kawi is set amidst lush rice paddies and features ten rock-cut ‘candis’ (shrines) carved into the cliff-face. They combine elements of Hindu and Buddhist temple attributes and are accessed via numerous stairs.

    Tirta Empul is a place where Balinese Hindus come to bathe in the holy waters and wash bad spirits away.

    Our next stop is Kintamani which, weather permitting, offers fantastic views of Bali’s tallest volcano, Mt. Batur. We have lunch before continuing to another viewpoint at Tegalalang looking out of the rice terraces. Returning to Ubud the rest of the afternoon is free to explore on your own.
    Bhuwana Ubud or similar

    Meals included: Breakfast
  • Day 10

    Visit Klungkung Palace; to Candidasa.

    We continue our journey east stopping along the way. Our first stop is at Klungkung where we will visit the fomal court of justice. Paintings of heaven and the underworld are painted on the ceilings and were used to dispense punishment in the old days. From here we continue to Goa Lawa temple, an important temple for the Balinese. Beautiful black lava stones were used for its constructions and it is located by the sea in front of a cave which is home to thousands of bats. Finally we continue to Cadidasa on the east coast of the island.
    D'Tunjung Hotel or similar

    Meals included: Breakfast
  • Day 11

    Rice paddies walk; optional beach time.

    A short drive will bring us to the starting point of a walk along irrigated rice paddies belonging to the village of Tenganan. The walk takes about 2.5hrs and the last half-hour is quite steep downhill towards the back gate to the village. Tenganan village is known for its ceremonies and double ikat weaving.

    Our bus will be waiting at the front gate of the village and will take us back to Candidasa. This afternoon we have the option to drive a short 20mins to an idyllic white-sand beach where we can relax, swim and stroll or enjoy a drink at one of the local food stalls.
    D'Tunjung Hotel or similar

    Meals included: Breakfast
  • Day 12

    To Senaru in Lombok.

    We drive about 20 minutes to the ferry harbour of Padangbai. From here the fast boat takes us in about 2 hours across the Lombok strait to the Norh West coast of Lombok Island. We will then drive along the North coast of the island to Senaru (about 2hrs plus a stop for lunch). Senaru is located on the foot of Rinjani Mountain with rice fields spread all the way down to the coast and on the edge of tropical rain forest. Our hotel, this evening, is basic.
    Pondok Senaru Hotel or similar

    Meals included: Breakfast
  • Day 13

    Panorama walk; to Senggigi (optional overnight hike up Rinjani).

    Led by local women guides, we have an easy half-day walk (4-5hrs) exploring the foothills of spectacular Rinjani volcano (3700 meters high). Starting near the border of Gunung Rinjani National Park, our route follows old pathways through shady bamboo groves and village gardens before entering a wide, open landscape of rice terraces and palms. Following a winding irrigation channel we reach the lush rainforest of the famous Sendang Gila Waterfall Reserve. The local people believe that a refreshing bath behind these thundering falls can cure any disease. Along the way, we learn about various tropical plants and our guide explains their various uses. We may come across cheeky long tailed monkeys and, with a bit of luck, may even spot the rare ebony leaf monkey.

    Passing small hamlets where age-old traditions are practiced, we will gain insight into colourful village life of the Sasak people. There is always something interesting happening here as we meet local people and admire traditional houses.

    Make sure you bring your camera as the views are simply spectacular! On a clear day you may even catch a glimpse of Bali’s famous Gunung Agung volcano rising high above the blue waters of the Lombok Strait. Each turn of the track offers new vistas as finally Rinjani - the sacred mountain of the Sasak people - emerges majestically above rice terraces and rainforest. This natural and cultural diversity makes the Senaru Panorama Walk an unforgettable Lombok experience.

    In the afternoon you will drive to Sengiggi (2.5hrs).

    Optional 2-day Rinjani Volcano trek

    Day 13 (Day 14 Ex-London) After registering at the Rinjani Trek Centre in Senaru we start our ascent of Mt. Rinjani. Our path takes us through tropical forests rich in local flora, birds and butterflies. Along the way we can hope to see orchids and even, with a bit of luck, catch site of ebony leaf monkeys. The last couple hours are out of the forest and through pastures. The climb can be quite steep and good fitness is required.

    After hiking about 8hrs we reach the crater rim with sweeping views over lake Sagara Anak. On a clear day we can see as far as the Gili Islands, Bali and Mt. Agung. We can relax as our camp is set up and enjoy the sun set.

    Day 14 (Day 15 Ex-London) We start the day with, weather permitting, a glorious sunrise over the crater and Rinjani summit before retracing our steps and heading back down the mountain to Senaru. As we will be going downhill the hike takes less time than on the first day but can be quite hard on the knees.

    Upon arrival in Senaru we will transfer to Sengiggi where a nice shower and the rest of the group will be waiting.



    Please note that the trek may be cancelled if the weather conditions are deemed to be too severe for safety reasons. This is a challenging two days as the climb of over 2,600m is very steep and can be slippery.

    All camping equipment is provided but the sleeping bags tend to be quite thin and you may wish to bring your own from home. Porters carry camping equipment and food but if you want a porter to carry your personal belongings you will have to rent their services (please let your tour leader know in advance). See packing section for more information on what to bring. Your main luggage will be taken to Sengiggi with the rest of the group as you carry what you need just for the 2 days’ trek.
    Puri Saron Hotel Sengiggi or similar

    Meals included: Breakfast
  • Day 14

    Free day to visit Gili islands, relax on the beach or other optional activities.

    Today is a free day to relax or partake in the various activities or excursions on offer. Some possible options include taking a day-trip to the Gili islands, popular for their underwater treasures and where it is possible to snorkel right from the white sandy beach. There are also numerous fantastic dive sites accessible from Sengiggi or for those who prefer land to sea it is possible to arrange various excursions to local temples, markets or typical Sasak village.

    Those who have opted for the Rinjani trek will re-join the rest of the group this evening.
    Puri Saron Hotel Sengiggi or similar

    Meals included: Breakfast
  • Day 15

    End Lombok.

    This is the last day of the trip. Those on the group flights may have some free time before driving south to the International Airport (2hrs), depending on the flight departure time. Those on a Gili extension will be collected this morning.

    Meals included: Breakfast

Extend Your Trip

Gili Extension

Extend your adventure with our perfectly designed Gili extension.

Only a short boat ride from Lombok the Gili islands epitomise tropical paradise with white sand, palm trees and warm waters teeming with rays, sharks and all kinds of marine life.

Spend a couple days snorkelling, diving or just relaxing by the turquoise sea and taking in the atmosphere on Gili Air.

This is a 4 day extension; you will spend 3 nights in a 7Seas cottage right by the beach. The best place to jump out of bed and into the sea in the morning.

Please ask your sales consultant for more details.

Essential Info

Visas

Indonesia

Many nationalities, including British, can now get a visa free of charge upon arrival at Jakarta, Medan, Surabaya, Batam, Bali and Yogyakarta. Where a free visa is not available the cost is generally US$35. The Indonesian government may change the visa policy on short notice and start charging for the visas so be prepared to pay for a visa in case this happens.

Vaccinations

Indonesia

There are no mandatory vaccination requirements. Recommended vaccinations are: Polio, Tetanus, Diphtheria, Typhoid, Hepatitis A. Malaria prophylaxis is essential if your trip goes to Flores, Komodo, parts of Sumatra, Kalimatan or Sulawesi but not for Java, Bali or Lombok. and we suggest that you seek advice from your GP or travel health clinic about which malaria tablets to take. Dengue fever is a known risk in places visited. It is a tropical viral disease spread by daytime biting mosquitoes. There is currently no vaccine or prophylaxis available for Dengue, and therefore the best form of prevention is to avoid being bitten. We recommend you take the usual precautions to avoid mosquito bites. We recommend you take the usual precautions to avoid mosquito bites. Zika fever is a mosquito‐borne viral disease and a known risk in places visited on this trip. There is currently no vaccine or prophylaxis available and therefore the best form of prevention is to avoid being bitten. We recommend you take the usual precautions to avoid mosquito bites. For the latest information please visit our Zika Virus page.

Eating and Drinking

All breakfasts

Food is cheap in Indonesia and you can generally avoid the spicier food if you wish. Western food is available in Yogyakarta and Bali, though it is well worth trying the local cuisine. Restaurants come in all shapes, colours and standards; expensive- restoran, standard- rumah makan and simple- warung. Quite often tea or water (aqua) is drunk with a meal. Beer is often not cold and coffee is unfiltered and usually very sugary.

Weather

Indonesia has an equatorial monsoon climate with the weather remaining similar throughout the year. It is hot and humid; temperatures range from 23-33ºC during the day and rarely drop below 20ºC at night. In the mountains temperatures are much cooler and on the coast sea breezes usually keep temperatures comfortable. In most parts of Indonesia the long rainy season falls between late October and early May, though rain occurs throughout the year. Rain tends to come in sudden tropical downpours.

Yogyakarta

Yogyakarta

Is this trip for you?

Indonesia is a massive country and whilst this tour focuses on Eastern Java, Bali and Lombok, there is still a considerable amount of ground to cover in just over 2 weeks but the itinerary is scheduled in such a way as to not feel too rushed and there are various activities scheduled every day. Most drives are reasonably short lasting between 2 and 5 hrs. There are, however, longer drives on including from Bromo to Kalibaru (8hrs) and Kalibaru to Ubud (6hrs). The longest day is from Yogyakarta to Batu, however it’s broken up by mixing modes of transport as we use a train as well as a bus and stop for some sightseeing along the way. The walks through villages and rice paddies are not strenuous and are accessible to everyone. If you wish to do the optional hike up Rinjani, however, please note that you need to be in good physical condition as this is a very challenging hike, though a highlight for anyone in good physical condition. Those who wish to get up for the sunrise over Bromo and for the Ijen optional hike will be getting up in the very early hours (around 3 or 4am). When travelling in some areas of the country, service may not be as fast or reliable as you are used to in other countries and Indonesian attitudes towards certain things such as animal welfare and food may differ from your own. That said, if you come ready for an experience the country's rewards will not fail to deliver.

Accommodation

Hotels

We use a mixture of hotels of varying standard. Most are ‘standard’ or ‘comfortable’ (3 star type hotels) but we do have 2 nights in ‘basic’ hotels, in Sanaru and Bromo, as options in these areas are limited. Those who chose to climb Mt. Rinjani will have a night’s camping (there is no single supplement available on the Rinjani trek).

Expert Blog Entries

The mountains will always draw us back to this majestic country: and now, with the return of a very special trip, the

  • Reviewed August 2016
    Glenn Bauman

    Invigorating Indonesia!

    A private trip to Java and Bali for a family of three. A wonderful blend of cultural and geographic highlights of this diverse country!

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    The visit to Tirta Empul in Bali where we were able to participate in the purification bathing with the local people. We felt welcomed and it was very special to be part of this important Balinese Hindu ritual

    What did you think of your group leader?

    We had wonderful leaders in Java and Bali. They did a great job of facilitating our trip, exposing us to the local culture and geography and providing enough, but not an overwhelming amount, of information about the activities and places we were seeing.

    Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    If possible, would recommend reversing the order of visit to the Bali Temples and go to Tirta Empul first and Gunung Kawi second. If possible, stay at the on site hotel in Borobudur and you must absolutely go on the sunrise visit to the temple. For the activities, if they ask you to get up early (i.e. 4:30AM, 5AM), do so, it is worth it!

    Is there anything else you would like to add?

    The local exodus team was extremely helpful in troubleshooting delayed luggage arrival. They were flexible and accommodating of our needs including the dietary needs of one of our family (vegan)
  • Reviewed July 2014
    david wood

    Java, bali and lombok

    The tour is called temples and volcanoes and it delivers that in spades. The sheer size, scale, beauty and power of nature coupled with the peace, spirituality and art and culture of these islands gave us a thoroughly enjoyable and interesting holiday.

    What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    really too many to mention but climbing above the clouds on Rinjani and arriving to view the volcano at sunset was moving.

    What did you think of your group leader?

    fantastic. caring, helpful and informative. she ensured that the group gelled and she wasn't just our leader but our friend.

Dates & Prices

An overview of flight options

Exodus is committed to making joining our tours as easy as possible, wherever you live. We generally only block book seats from London, but this certainly does not mean that you need to fly from there. Depending on the route and airlines available, there will usually be various options available for those who want to fly from their local airport.

This page aims to provide a useful overview of the options available to our clients. However, the best flight arrangements should be tailored to your personal requirements, so please contact our Sales team for expert advice.

 

What kind of options do I have ?

1. We can book for you: Flights from anywhere in the world - not via London  

Depending on the route, this may be direct or via an overseas hub like Amsterdam, the Middle East or elsewhere. On short haul routes there may be direct flights with low cost airlines, charter flights or scheduled airlines. Exodus can book most, but not all, of these for you. The most appropriate airline may be different to that which we use for the group flight from London, but many people now travel on different airlines and meet up with their fellow passengers at the destination.

Pros Cons
  • May be the most direct route
  • Often the extra fare compared to the London flight is minimal.
  • As you will be in the hands a single airline for your entire journey, the airline will be responsible for your bags and your connections.
  • You may not be able to join the group transfers. However, we can usually arrange private transfers, or book your flights to try and coincide with the group transfers. See notes on transfer arrangements below.

 

2. We can book for you: Connecting flights from your local airport to London

Exodus can book connecting flights to London so you can join the group flight there. Connecting times will be followed according to airline advice, or as requested by clients. There are two types of fares we can use for this option: a 'through-fare' or a 'published fare'.
 
a) A 'through-fare' is where you will be in the main airline's care throughout. You change planes, but your bags are checked all the way through to your final destination. 

b) A 'published fare' ticket is completely seperate from your onward ticket from London. It is usually cheaper than a through-fare but will need to be paid for and issued as soon as it is booked. This can be a problem if your tour has not yet reached minimum numbers. On 'published fares' neither airline is aware that you have connecting flights, so Exodus is responsible for timing your connection, not the airlines involved. The tickets are also usually non changeable and non refundable.

Pros Cons
  • Depending on the fare type, Exodus or the airline is responsible for flight connections.
  • Through fare tickets can be expensive.
  • On a published fare, tickets must be issued immediately; tickets on published fares can be very difficult to change if onward flight times change; bags are not checked though to your final destination.
  • Published fares are non-refundable.

 

3. Booking some or all of the flights yourself

You can also book connecting air travel yourself, either to London, or all the way to the start point. There may be certain airlines or routes we don't have access to, so this is always an option. However, if you make your own travel arrangements you become liable for any delays, cancellations or missed connections, and Exodus is not required to offer refunds if you have trouble reaching the start of your trip.

Pros Cons
  • You might find cheaper fares, or routes not available to Exodus.
  • You are responsible for any delays or missed connections, and the cost of the tour is not protected should you miss your flight be cancelled.

 

 Notes on transfer arrangements

Sometimes it is possible to travel on a different airline to the group flight from London. Where this is the case, we need to think about ensuring you meet up with the group with minimum extra cost and hassle.

  • On certain trips, it is easy to arrive on a different flight and still meet the group at the hotel with time in hand. We can usually arrange private transfers (at extra cost) or offer advice on taking a taxi to the start hotel.
  • On other trips (especially in Europe), the transfer meets the group flight and then travels some distance to the first night's accommodation. Where this is the case, our Sales team will try to arrange flights that arrive before (and depart after) the group. However, we do have to make it clear in your final documentation that if your flights are delayed, the transfer cannot wait for you. While Exodus or our local operators will do what we can to help you reach the start point of the tour, any additional costs must be paid by the client. 

 

Next steps? 

Call our Sales team on: 0203 733 0698

Email your query: [email protected]

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