Indonesia is the largest archipelago and the fourth most populous country in the world. Consisting of five main islands; (Sumatra, Java, Kalimantan, Sulawesi, and Papua) with 33 provinces, 30 smaller archipelagos, it has a total of 17,508 islands of which about 6,000 are inhabited. It stretches 5,150 km between the Australian and Asian continental main-lands is composed of two Greek words: “Indos” which means Indian and “ne-sos” meaning islands. The capital city of Indonesia is Jakarta.
Climate wise, Indonesia is distinctly tropical, the east monsoon from June to September brings dry weather while the west monsoon from December to March is moisture-leaden bringing rain.
The transitional period between these two are interposed by occasional rain showers, but even in the midst of the west monsoon season, temperatures range from 21 degrees C (70 F) to 33 degrees C (90 F) except at higher altitudes which are much cooler. Heaviest rainfalls are recording in December and January. Humidity is between 60 - 100%
Language and Dialects
There are more 583 languages and dialects spoken in the archipelago. There normally belong to the 350 different ethnic groups of the population. Bahasa Indonesia is the National language, written in Roman script on European orthography. In all tourist destination areas English is the number one foreign languages fairly spoken and written.
51 National Parks
A unique marine biodiversity hot-spot, the Wallacea region with 28,000 flora species from tiny rare orchids to giant Rafflesia flower, 3,500 species animals, including the endangered orang utan’s of Sumatra and Borneo, the unique giant lizard of Komodo, the horned Java Rhinoceros and the last tigers of Sumatra.
Fish features prominently in the diet as fresh, salted, dried, smoked or a paste. Coconut is found everywhere and besides produced for cooking oil milk the juice from the white meat – is an ingredient for many dishes. Spices and hot chili peppers are the essence of most cooking, and in some areas they are used generously such as in west Sumatra and North Sulawesi. Each Province or area has its own cuisine, which vary in the method of cooking and ingredients. The Javanese cuisine is probably more palatable to the general taste and consists of vegetables, soybeans, beef, chicken and other varieties. The Sumatrans generally eat more beef compared to the other regions. West Sumatra particularly is known for its Padang restaurant found nationwide. Beside the hot and spicy food, these restaurants are known for their unique style of service. Further to the east, seafood features on the daily diet, either grilled or made into curries. In Bali, Papua the highlands of North Sumatra and North Sulawesi pork dishes are specialties. Pork is usually served in Chinese restaurants or non - Moslem regions.
There is a wide variety of tropical and sub – tropical fruits and vegetables all year round. Coffee and tea plantations are plentiful, growing on several islands and served everywhere from fine restaurants to small village stalls. These are several breweries which produce local beer. Bali produces “brem” which is a rice wine, whereas Toraja has its “Tuak “which is also known in North Sumatra. Most common nationwide are “Sate” (skewered grilled meat), “gado-gado” (vegetable salad with a peanut sauce), “nasi goreng”, (fried rice served at anytime) and “bakmi goreng” (fried noodles).
Travel Formalities and Useful Hints
All travelers to Indonesia must be in possession of passport valid for at least six months from date of arrival and have proof (tickets) of onward or return passage. Immigration authority will provide Free Tourist Visas for a period of 30 days to nationals from these countries on the basis of reciprocity. The countries are Thailand, Malaysia, Singapore, Brunei, Darussalam, the Philippines, Hong Kong SAR, Macao SAR, Chile, Morocco, Peru and Vietnam.
Visa on Arrival (VOA)will be given to the citizens of Australia, Argentina, Brazil, Denmark, Canada, Finland, France, Germany, Great Britain, Hungary, Italy, Japan, Norway, Poland, South Africa, South Korea, Switzerland, New Zealand, Taiwan, the United Arab Emirates and The United States of America, Austria, Belgium, India, Ireland, Kuwait, Luxemburg, Maldives, Egypt, Oman, Portuguese, Qatar, the people of Republic China, Russian, Saudi Arabian, Spain, Bahrain, Bulgaria, Cambodia, Cyprus, Estonia, Greek, Iran, Ireland, Laos, PDR, Liechtenstein, Malta, Mexico, Monaco, Nederland, Suriname, Sweden.
Visa on arrival is valid for 30 days and maybe extended by under permission of Indonesia under Conditions as follows. A natural disaster happens in the place that is visited by the tourist. Then if the tourist get sick or got an involved in accident during the visit
Other nationals must apply for a visa at Indonesia Embassies or Consulates in their home country. In addition, the visa can not be replaced with any other of immigration letters. Some conditions apply; please visit www.indonesia.com for further information.
Entry ports where visa on arrival may be issued are the Soekarno – Hatta airport in Jakarta, Ngurah Rai airport in Bali, Sultan Syarif Hasim airport in Pekanbaru, Tabing airport in Padang, Juanda airport of Surabaya and the Sam Ratulangi airport in Manado. While authorized seaports are Batam, the Sekupang, Batuampar, Nongsa, Marina, Teluk Senimba, Bandar Bintan, Talani Langoi and Bandar Sri Udana Labon in the Riau Archipelago, Sri Bintan Pura in Tanjung Pinang, Belawan port and Sibolga in North Sumatra, Yos Sudarso Tanjung Perak in Surabaya, Teluk Bayur of Padang, Tanjung Priok at Jakarta, Padang Bai and Benoa in Bali, the port of Jayapura, Bitung and Tanjung Balai Karimun, Tanjung Mas in Central Java, Tenua and Maumere in East Nusa Tenggara, Pare-Pare and Soekarno Hatta port in south Sulawesi.
Perumahan Griya Bumi Asih Blok B No.5 Jl. Raya Sawangan - Kembes - Minahasa - North Sulawesi - INDONESIA