Think Indonesia is Just Mountains & Beaches? 16 Hidden Gems of the Country You Should Know About!

Think Indonesia is Just Mountains & Beaches? 16 Hidden Gems of the Country You Should Know About!

If you think that golden-sand beaches and picturesque highlands are the only attractions Indonesia has to offer, you couldn’t be more wrong! With a whopping 17,508 islands within the country, they’re bound to be hidden gems right?

From its super friendly and culturally unique people to majestic man-made structures, Indonesia has it all and thanks to AirAsia, they’re all just one direct flight away from Kuala Lumpur too. I mean, just check out these places below weh!


1. Stand in awe of Danau Kaolin, Belitung island 

Source: Travellerindokece

Once a mining area, Danau Kaolin has now transformed into a scenic lake known for its bright blue waters and white mineral deposits!

What to expect:

  • Take incredible photos amidst the blue and white backdrop no matter what angle you snap from.
  • Trick your friends into thinking you’re in Antarctica during the dry season as the lake water will recede and causes the white mounds to look just like floating icebergs!
  • Enjoy the soft white sand between your toes or just sit by the lake and take in the breathtaking beauty.

Perawas, Tanjung Pandan, Belitung Regency.

Source: GoSumatra

2.  Visit Sunda Kelapa, the harbour that made Jakarta the capital it is today

Source: Jakarta.ku

Located in Ciliwung river, this harbour holds huge significance in the history of Jakarta as this is the original port which flourished and made the city the megapolis it is now! Today, the old port accommodates traditional wooden sailing ships serving inter-island freight service in the archipelago.

What to expect:

  • These traditional two to three-masted sailing ships called pinisi are lined up neatly at Sunda Kelapa harbour with beautiful colours painted over their sides.
  • The pinisi is the largest Indonesian traditional vessel after the disappearance of the Javanese giant djong last seen in the 17th century.
  • Take pictures with the backdrop of the pinisi for that gorgeous Instagram shots to leave your friends in envy.
  • There are also fishing boats docked at the harbour where you can pay around IDR50,000 to IDR 100,000 (approximately RM15 to RM30) for a ride throughout the river!
  • Marvel at the gorgeous sunrise and sunset around the bay while you’re on the fishing boats.

Ancol, Pademangan, North Jakarta City, Jakarta, Indonesia

Source: endruw_art

Source: endruw_art


3. Get dressed in traditional royal outfits at Maimun Palace, Medan

Source: datasiswa

Built by Sultan Ma’mun Al Rashid Perkasa Alamsyah in 1887, this Deli Sultanate palace in downtown Medan has a total of 30 rooms on its 2,772 sqm land.

What to expect:

  • An awe-inspiring architectural style that is a cultural-mix of Malay, Islamic and Mughal heritage.
  • Once inside, you’ll be awed by its interior that boasts a Spanish-Italian influence.
  • Take pictures of yourself wearing traditional royal Malay Deli costumes or even sit on the throne of the Sultan and his queen!
  • The royal collection of jewellery, antiques and gifts presented by other countries’ royals are also on display here.

Jl. Brigjen Katamso, Medan

Source: Dewaayuswatini

Source: nativeindonesia


4. Dance and play music like a local in Setanggor Village, Lombok

Source: Jakarta Post

Located just 9 kilometres from Lombok International Airport, this is the perfect place to learn about the colourful Lombok culture. In the village, there are tons of activities to do which are either agricultural, textile, spiritual or even educational in nature!

What to expect:

  • Blend in with the locals and see how they traditionally farm and cultivate crops such as dragon fruits and more.
  • Ride on cidomos, a Lombok small horse-drawn carriage, to move around between tourist hotspots.
  • During night time, enjoy a river cruise on top of a raft while eating local delicacies. All while listening to traditional Lombok flute music drifting over the waters!
  • You can even contribute to the local society by being an English teacher to the Setanggor children! How cool is that?
  • A certified Halal tourism spot, visitors can join in the traditional oration of local tales called memaos, where a group leader will recite naskah lontar, a palm-leaf manuscript, or learn how to recite the Qur’an properly with local orators.

Setanggor Village, West Praya District, Central Lombok Regency, West Nusa Tenggara

Source: Jakarta Post

Source: Alexbalitour


5. Be awed by Taman Sari Water Castle, a majestic remnant of the Yogyakarta Sultanate

Source: Guideku

Source: paketwisata

Built in the 18th century, this gorgeous complex was a site of a former royal garden to the Sultanate of Yogyakarta. In 1995, it was listed as part of the World Heritage Site under UNESCO.

What to expect:

  • There are 4 distinct sections to the complex which include a large artificial lake with islands and pavilions in the west, a bathing complex in the centre, pavilions and pools in the south, and a smaller lake in the east.
  • Suffering substantial destruction during the British invasion in Yogyakarta in 1812, only the central bathing complex is well preserved.
  • Today, the area surrounding Taman Sari is occupied by a settlement called Kampung Taman which is known for their batik and traditional craft painting traditions.
  • There is also a remnant of an underground mosque called Sumur Gumuling that is accessible via an underground tunnel from Taman Sari.

Wisata Taman Sari Jalan Tamanan, Patehan, Kecamatan Kraton, Kota Yogyakarta, Daerah Istimewa Yogyakarta

Source: kha.meysasi

Source: phimeno


6. Take in the indescribable view at Bukit Holbung, Lake Toba

Source: samosir_visit

Bukit Holbung is a hill located near the village of Huta Holbung in Samosir, the island within an island in North Sumatra. A short 10 to 15 minutes hike, this hill is famous among locals and tourists alike!

What to expect:

  • Picturesque greeneries, magnificent mountains and the crisp air.
  • This is also a popular camping spot if you want to enjoy a beautiful night under the starry sky!
  • It’s also known as the “Teletubbies Hill” due to its similarities to the landscape in the popular kids’ TV series!
  • Pulau Samosir is just less than a two hours drive away from Silangit Airport, which has direct flights from Kuala Lumpur via AirAsia.

Dolok Raja, Harian, Samosir Regency, North Sumatra, Indonesia.

Source: samosir_visit

Source: samosir_visit


Gosh, I can feel my wanderlust levels going off the charts weh! With AirAsia, they’re all just a short trip away from Malaysia as well, which makes them all the more tempting. ?

AND we’re not done yet either! Here are TEN MORE jaw-dropping places you should consider for your next trip!

7. Go on an adventure at the majestic sea of sand in Bromo, nearby Surabaya

Source: Globalcastaway

Source: journeyera

Bromo Tengger Semeru National Park, East Java.


8. Visit Kilometre Nol, Aceh where the borders of Indonesia officially starts

Source: befreetour

Source: idntimes

Iboih, Sukakarya, Iboih, Sukakarya, Kota Sabang, Aceh.


9. Take a stroll through the colourful Kampung Pelangi in Semarang

Source: daftartempatwisatadunia

Source: libur

Jl. Wonosari III, Randusari, Kec. Semarang Sel., Kota Semarang, Jawa Tengah.


10. Go cliff jumping in Nusa Lembongan, Bali

Source: mytravel

Source: quebec_travellers

Jungutbatu, Nusapenida, Klungkung Regency, Bali.


11. Be a real-life cowboy at De’ranch, Bandung

Source: merahputih

Source: playworld

Jl. Maribaya No.17, Kayuambon, Lembang, Kabupaten Bandung Barat, Jawa Barat.


12. Visit the magical Dream Park in Harau Valley 

Source: jendeladunia16

Source: travellingyuk

Jorong Lubuak Limpato Jorong Lubuak Limpato, Tarantang, Kec. Harau, Kabupaten Lima Puluh Kota, Sumatera Barat.


13. Visit the vast tea plantation in Pagar Alam, Palembang

Source: Pohtektoes

Source: pohtecktoes

Jl. Soekarno Hatta, Gn. Dempo, Pagar Alam Sel., Kota Pagar Alam, Sumatera Selatan.


14. Brave your way through Bantimurung Sky Bridge in Makassar

Source: berita

Source: idntimes

Kalabbirang, Bantimurung, Maros Regency, South Sulawesi.


15. Visit the Betang traditional houses in Pontianak

Source: artmedia_studiopro

Source: tripadvisor

Rumah Adat Betang, Jl. Letnan Jendral Sutoyo Kelurahan, Parit Tokaya, Kec. Pontianak Sel., Kota Pontianak.


16. Take a dip in spectacular waterfalls in Padang

Source: ulfarabani

Jl. Koto Baru, Indarung, Kec. Pauh, Kota Padang.

Source: gokayu

Okay, these places are AMAZING! We’re not sure about you but Indonesia is definitely super high on our travel list thanks to its awesome geography and unique culture! More so considering a visit to these places is super easy and affordable because:

AirAsia can fly us directly to ALL SIXTEEN Indonesian destinations listed above with promo fares starting from just RM49 (all in one way member fare)!

Awesome! For more information on available flights to Indonesia and other awesome deals from AirAsia, click here.

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