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Top 10 Wonders of Indonesia

Top 10 Wonders of Indonesia

Indonesia is a cluster of volcanic and tropical islands speckled along the ring of fire, which splits the Indian and Pacific oceans and straddles the equator. More than 17,000 islands make up a star-studded landscape home to volcanoes, jungles, lakes, grasslands, mangroves, exquisite coral gardens and even snow-capped mountains. With such a spellbinding variety of flora and fauna, Indonesia is an Eden of natural wonders just waiting to be explored. In this article, we take a look at ten of the finest natural wonders that this magnificent garden has to offer.

Top 10 Wonders of Indonesia

Indonesia is a cluster of volcanic and tropical islands speckled along the ring of fire, which splits the Indian and Pacific oceans and straddles the equator. More than 17,000 islands make up a star-studded landscape home to volcanoes, jungles, lakes, grasslands, mangroves, exquisite coral gardens and even snow-capped mountains. With such a spellbinding variety of flora and fauna, Indonesia is an Eden of natural wonders just waiting to be explored. In this article, we take a look at ten of the finest natural wonders that this magnificent garden has to offer.


1. Mount Bromo

Located in the Bromo-Tengger-Semeru National Park beside Mount Semeru in East Java, Mount Bromo remains one of the most active volcanoes in the world. Standing at 2,329 metres tall, Bromo is the most iconic and most hiked mountain in all of Indonesia. The main cone sits smouldering inside the massive Tengger caldera, covering an area of 10km and surrounded by the Laut Pasir (sea of sand); a desolate plateau of fine black volcanic sand and rock. Trekking across the vast rippling plain or traversing on horseback, travellers can get a unique panoramic view of a spectacular natural wonder. Visiting Bromo is an experience that is truly out of this world.


2. Lake Toba

At over 1,145 square km and with a depth of 450 meters, Toba is the largest lake in Southeast Asia and one of the deepest in the world. This awe-inspiring natural wonder in the heart of Sumatra is also home to some incredible scenery, winding mountain roads, historical treasures and fascinating cultural traditions. Situated 900 metres above sea level in the midst of volcanic peaks, the endless blue waters of Lake Toba fill a crater that was created by a series of huge eruptions around 75,000 years ago. Today, it remains one of the most breath-taking natural wonders to be found in Indonesia.


3. Rafflesia

Rafflesia; named after the British adventurer and discoverer of Singapore, Sir Stamford Raffles; is the largest flower in the world. This huge red and speckled five-petaled flower has a diameter of up to 106 cm, and weighs as much as 10 kg. It takes 21 months to fully mature and then flowers for only 5-7 days in the privacy of remote jungle clearings in Bengkulu, Sumatra. The stamen and pistils fuse together into a central column, producing a corona, or crown, in the shape of a ring. Aside from its colossal size, Rafflesia is known for its stomach-turning smell – a pungent aroma of death and carrion that attracts flies from miles around to act as pollinators for the seasonal flourish of this spectacular forest giant. This macabre perfume is also how the plant has acquired its nickname, ‘the corpse flower.’


4. Raja Ampat

Raja Ampat is a living library for the world's coral reefs and a haven for marine life. The water is so clear and the coral so pristine, the area actually acts as a nursery for marine animals, re-stocking the Indian and Pacific Ocean populations of many species. Home to turtles, manta rays, sharks, seahorses, tuna and trevallies, alongside 540 types of corals, more than 1,000 types of coral fish, 13 mammal species and 700 types of mollusc, Raja Ampat is without doubt one of the most extraordinary natural wonders in the world.


5. Kelimutu National Park

On the eastern island of Flores, three volcanic lakes sit atop the summit of Kelimutu, greeting the sunrise with a shimmering and shape-shifting kaleidoscope of natural colours. Two of the deep crater lakes regularly change colour, caused by the concoction of minerals found in their waters Kelimutu's third lake remains an ever-present and iridescent shade of turquoise, glowing like a jewel in Kelimutu's sparse lunar landscape.


6. Green Canyon

Tucked away at the end of a labyrinth of winding mountain roads and jungle paths in West Java, Green Canyon snakes its way through the rocky valleys separating Pengandaran and Batu Karas. Here, rainwater from the forested highlands has made its way to the sea for thousands of years, carving deep ravines into the rock. This has created the spellbindingly beautiful natural wonder of Green Canyon; a serpentine stretch of bubbling streams, white water rapids and lazy pools, all framed by stunning rock formations, hanging vines and dense jungle foliage on both sides. Visitors to Green Canyon can fully immerse themselves in nature, with rafting, trekking and body surfing trips available.


7. Jayawijaya Mountain

Believe it or not, you can even find snow-capped mountains in Indonesia. This stunning natural wonder in Papua is home to seven individual summits, each one blanketed in a permanent shroud of snow. Located in Laurentz National Park, Papua, Jayawijaya is a fantastic destination for hiking and, as one of the highest points in all of Indonesia, offers up some staggering views.


8. Tanjung Puting National Park

This enormous park in central Kalimantan is more than 4,000 sq km of tangled and steamy jungle, with winding rivers offering up wildlife encounters at every turn. Rustic but comfortable teak river boats travel up the Sungai Sekoneyer river, which flows through the park and stops at orangutan feeding stations. On board, travellers delve further and deeper day by day into the wild. Kingfishers and regal hornbills add a flash of colour along the river's banks, along with more than 200 other species of birds native to the area. As many as eight species of monkey – including the curious proboscis – call the park home, whilst each turn in the river may also reveal a crocodile sunning itself on the banks or slipping stealthily into the dark and mysterious waters of the river.


9. Menjangan Island

Menjangan Island is a part of the West Bali National Park and is home to many species of flora and fauna, including monkeys, deer, wild pigs and numerous birds indigenous to Bali. The island is a must for any visitor to Bali interested in marine life, snorkelling or diving; twelve different dive sites offer up crystalline waters, sheer walls, caves and a spectacular drop off. In addition to some of Bali’s best snorkelling and diving, Menjangan is also home to some eco projects, resorts and a small temple called Pura Gili Kencana, which is well worth a visit. The whole island can be circumnavigated in just a couple of hours, but with so many idyllic spots and so much captivating nature all around, it’s easy to dwell longer on this laid back little island.


10. Komodo National Park

The islands of Komodo National Park are spectacular, rusty red volcanic outcrops with steep hillsides of sun-blasted rock, surrounded by immaculate coral gardens, mangroves and tropical shores. In addition to the world-famous dragons, the park is home to a rich diversity of birdlife, along with flying foxes, fruit bats, wild horses, long-tailed macaques, palm civets, boar and snakes. An Eden for wildlife of all kinds, plus a great place for trekking, spotting, swimming and diving, the park is home to 260 species of coral and 70 different sponges, along with sea turtles, dolphin, sharks and over 1,000 documented species of fish. Many boat trips are available to connect the surrounding islands or to simply explore the glorious seas stretching out towards the horizon all around.


1. Mount Bromo

Located in the Bromo-Tengger-Semeru National Park beside Mount Semeru in East Java, Mount Bromo remains one of the most active volcanoes in the world. Standing at 2,329 metres tall, Bromo is the most iconic and most hiked mountain in all of Indonesia. The main cone sits smouldering inside the massive Tengger caldera, covering an area of 10km and surrounded by the Laut Pasir (sea of sand); a desolate plateau of fine black volcanic sand and rock. Trekking across the vast rippling plain or traversing on horseback, travellers can get a unique panoramic view of a spectacular natural wonder. Visiting Bromo is an experience that is truly out of this world.


2. Lake Toba

At over 1,145 square km and with a depth of 450 meters, Toba is the largest lake in Southeast Asia and one of the deepest in the world. This awe-inspiring natural wonder in the heart of Sumatra is also home to some incredible scenery, winding mountain roads, historical treasures and fascinating cultural traditions. Situated 900 metres above sea level in the midst of volcanic peaks, the endless blue waters of Lake Toba fill a crater that was created by a series of huge eruptions around 75,000 years ago. Today, it remains one of the most breath-taking natural wonders to be found in Indonesia.


3. Rafflesia

Rafflesia; named after the British adventurer and discoverer of Singapore, Sir Stamford Raffles; is the largest flower in the world. This huge red and speckled five-petaled flower has a diameter of up to 106 cm, and weighs as much as 10 kg. It takes 21 months to fully mature and then flowers for only 5-7 days in the privacy of remote jungle clearings in Bengkulu, Sumatra. The stamen and pistils fuse together into a central column, producing a corona, or crown, in the shape of a ring. Aside from its colossal size, Rafflesia is known for its stomach-turning smell – a pungent aroma of death and carrion that attracts flies from miles around to act as pollinators for the seasonal flourish of this spectacular forest giant. This macabre perfume is also how the plant has acquired its nickname, ‘the corpse flower.’


4. Raja Ampat

Raja Ampat is a living library for the world's coral reefs and a haven for marine life. The water is so clear and the coral so pristine, the area actually acts as a nursery for marine animals, re-stocking the Indian and Pacific Ocean populations of many species. Home to turtles, manta rays, sharks, seahorses, tuna and trevallies, alongside 540 types of corals, more than 1,000 types of coral fish, 13 mammal species and 700 types of mollusc, Raja Ampat is without doubt one of the most extraordinary natural wonders in the world.


5. Kelimutu National Park

On the eastern island of Flores, three volcanic lakes sit atop the summit of Kelimutu, greeting the sunrise with a shimmering and shape-shifting kaleidoscope of natural colours. Two of the deep crater lakes regularly change colour, caused by the concoction of minerals found in their waters Kelimutu's third lake remains an ever-present and iridescent shade of turquoise, glowing like a jewel in Kelimutu's sparse lunar landscape.


6. Green Canyon

Tucked away at the end of a labyrinth of winding mountain roads and jungle paths in West Java, Green Canyon snakes its way through the rocky valleys separating Pengandaran and Batu Karas. Here, rainwater from the forested highlands has made its way to the sea for thousands of years, carving deep ravines into the rock. This has created the spellbindingly beautiful natural wonder of Green Canyon; a serpentine stretch of bubbling streams, white water rapids and lazy pools, all framed by stunning rock formations, hanging vines and dense jungle foliage on both sides. Visitors to Green Canyon can fully immerse themselves in nature, with rafting, trekking and body surfing trips available.


7. Jayawijaya Mountain

Believe it or not, you can even find snow-capped mountains in Indonesia. This stunning natural wonder in Papua is home to seven individual summits, each one blanketed in a permanent shroud of snow. Located in Laurentz National Park, Papua, Jayawijaya is a fantastic destination for hiking and, as one of the highest points in all of Indonesia, offers up some staggering views.


8. Tanjung Puting National Park

This enormous park in central Kalimantan is more than 4,000 sq km of tangled and steamy jungle, with winding rivers offering up wildlife encounters at every turn. Rustic but comfortable teak river boats travel up the Sungai Sekoneyer river, which flows through the park and stops at orangutan feeding stations. On board, travellers delve further and deeper day by day into the wild. Kingfishers and regal hornbills add a flash of colour along the river's banks, along with more than 200 other species of birds native to the area. As many as eight species of monkey – including the curious proboscis – call the park home, whilst each turn in the river may also reveal a crocodile sunning itself on the banks or slipping stealthily into the dark and mysterious waters of the river.


9. Menjangan Island

Menjangan Island is a part of the West Bali National Park and is home to many species of flora and fauna, including monkeys, deer, wild pigs and numerous birds indigenous to Bali. The island is a must for any visitor to Bali interested in marine life, snorkelling or diving; twelve different dive sites offer up crystalline waters, sheer walls, caves and a spectacular drop off. In addition to some of Bali’s best snorkelling and diving, Menjangan is also home to some eco projects, resorts and a small temple called Pura Gili Kencana, which is well worth a visit. The whole island can be circumnavigated in just a couple of hours, but with so many idyllic spots and so much captivating nature all around, it’s easy to dwell longer on this laid back little island.


10. Komodo National Park

The islands of Komodo National Park are spectacular, rusty red volcanic outcrops with steep hillsides of sun-blasted rock, surrounded by immaculate coral gardens, mangroves and tropical shores. In addition to the world-famous dragons, the park is home to a rich diversity of birdlife, along with flying foxes, fruit bats, wild horses, long-tailed macaques, palm civets, boar and snakes. An Eden for wildlife of all kinds, plus a great place for trekking, spotting, swimming and diving, the park is home to 260 species of coral and 70 different sponges, along with sea turtles, dolphin, sharks and over 1,000 documented species of fish. Many boat trips are available to connect the surrounding islands or to simply explore the glorious seas stretching out towards the horizon all around.