The best time to visit Indonesia
The best time to visit Indonesia is generally considered to be the dry season months between April and October. The weather is still humid, but there is a lot less rain.
This is also the peak tourist season, so if you want to avoid the crowds and steeper accommodation prices, you may prefer to travel to Indonesia at a different time of year. The good thing about Indonesia's year-round tropical climate is that even in the wet season you can still expect warm weather, bright blue skies and plenty of sunshine in between the monsoon showers.
Although Christmas falls in the middle of the low (wet) season, it's usually one of the busiest times to visit Bali because of the number of Australians who take their holidays at that time of year. Australian school holiday dates also have an affect on airfares and accommodation availability.
It is important to note that the dry season is also the Muslim fasting period of Ramadan, which falls on different dates every year depending on the moon.
During this fasting month restaurants either close during the day or cover the windows (it is considered polite to refrain from eating publicly during this time) and night clubs tend to close around midnight, if they open at all.
Make sure to check the current calendar year for the exact dates of Ramadan before travelling to Indonesia.
Indonesia's World Heritage Sites
- Borobudur Temple Compounds, a famous Buddhist temple in central Java dating from the 8th and 9th centuries.
- Cultural Landscape of Bali Province: the Subak System as a Manifestation of the Tri Hita Karana Philosophy, a site consisting of 5 rice terraces and their water temples.
- Prambanan Temple Compounds, the largest temple compound dedicated to Shiva in Indonesia dating back to the 10th century.
- Sangiran Early Man Site, a key site to understanding human evolution.
- Komodo National Park, home of the world famous Komodo dragons.
- Lorentz National Park, which is the largest protected area in Southeast Asia.
- Tropical Rainforest Heritage of Sumatra, a site consisting of 3 parks that aim to conserve the distinctive and diverse biota of Sumatra.
- Ujung Kulon National Park, where you can find the largest remaining area of lowland rainforests in the Java plain as well as the nature reserve of Krakatoa.
Indonesia's Average Annual Temperature
Indonesia's Average Annual Rainfall
Indonesia has two distinct seasons: the dry season and the rainy or 'monsoon' season.
The dry season is from April until October in most of the country, while the wet season is from November until March. Bringing a light rain jacket with you is a good idea, even if you come during the dry season.
Generally the weather is quite humid and hot all year round. Mountain areas have more of an alpine climate with slightly lower average temperatures.
- January 1 - New Year's Day
- January 3 - The Prophet Muhammad's Birthday
- February 19 - Chinese Lunar New Year's Day
- March 21 - Bali's Day of Silence and Hindu New Year
- March | April - Good Friday
- May 1 - International Labor Day
- May 14 - Ascension Day of Jesus Christ
- May 16 - Ascension Day of the Prophet Muhammad
- June 2 - Waisak Day (Buddha's Anniversary)
- July 20 - Idul Fitri Day 1
- July 21 - Idul Fitri Day 2
- August 17 - Indonesian Independence Day
- September 24 - Muslim Day of Sacrifice (Idul Adha)
- October 14 - Muharram/Islamic New Year
- December 25 - Christmas Day
Why travel to Indonesia?
Indonesia is an island paradise with a diverse offering of accommodation options ranging from luxurious spa retreats to family friendly resorts to tropical rainforest treehouses. The Indonesian island of Bali is probably one of the most famous beach destinations in the world, and see for yourself why it's commonly called 'the island of the gods'.
Things To Do
- Relax on a beach in Bali
- Visit the world famous Hindu temple compounds
- Join a safari tour to track down wild tigers and orangutans in the tropical Sumatran rainforest
- Party the night away in the nightclub metropolis of Jakarta
- Go bargain hunting in the markets
- Enjoy a relaxed retreat in a luxurious private villa or beach resort
- Brush up on the local laws and customs before you travel.
- Pack long-sleeved, loose, light-coloured clothing to help stay comfortable in Indonesia's hot, humid climate.
- Protect yourself from mosquitoes and sunburn.
- Don't hire a motorcycle or moped unless you are an experienced rider with a valid licence.
- Indonesians love fresh juices so you'll find plenty of those available! If you want to sample a local favourite, try the avocado with chocolate syrup!
The Republic of Indonesia is huge!
Consisting of 13,466 islands and more than 108,000km of beautiful beaches, it is also home to the second largest tropical rainforests in the world and an abundance of flora and fauna.
So make sure to pack a beach towel, check that your travel insurance for Indonesia is up-to-date, and enjoy the islands of wonderful Indonesia.
Indonesian Travel Highlights
The cultural and ethnic diversity you will find in Indonesia is almost unimaginable: over 300 distinct ethnic groups call these islands home, and each one has a distinct history, culture and way of life.
As a result, every time you hop from one island to the next, it feels almost as if you are visiting a new country!
Most travellers to Indonesia flock to the island paradise of Bali, which is so beautiful that it's commonly known as the 'Island of the Gods'.
To call Bali paradise is no understatement: you find beautiful beaches with some of the best surf in the world, friendly people, a stunning visual culture, world-class diving, and many religious and spiritual sites.
Make sure you visit the amazing Hindu temples here, which are both extraordinary and unique to this part of the world. Balinese temple design is a unique art form of the island and a very involved subject of study.
As one of the world's top tourist destinations, you will find ample opportunities for shopping, for relaxing on various beaches while enjoying cocktails or to join in one of the many local cooking classes.
Also, no trip to Bali is complete without having attended at least one surf lesson! The waves around Bali are world famous and with its warm tropical waters, it’s the perfect place to join the tribe of surfers that flock here.
Sumatra is the most western island in Indonesia, and boasts spectacular national parks and tropical rainforests.
The Tropical Rainforest Heritage of Sumatra is a recognised UNESCO Heritage Site and one of the main attractions is the endemic Sumatran Orangutans.
If you get extremely lucky, you may even spot one of the rarest creatures on Earth: the critically endangered Sumatran Tiger.
Apart from Orangutans and Tigers, you can also spot dolphins off the coast, go diving near Sabang, surf some world-class waves, or use Sumatra as a springboard to one of the most famous surfing destinations in the world: the Mentawai islands.
The island of Borneo lies north of Bali and is an adventurer's dream. There is a lack of infrastructure here, but you will find true wilderness in a 130 million year old rainforest that is largely uncharted and a hugely biodiverse area.
Borneo is also famous for the floating market in the city of Banjarmasin, and one of the rare places in the world where headhunting was once practiced.
Make sure to have up-to-date Indonesia travel insurance before going adventuring in the jungle!
Java forms the heartland of Indonesia, and the island is also the political and economic hub of the country. There are quite a few UNESCO sites on the island, most notably the breathtaking Buddhist temple of Borobudur.
On Java you will also find the bustling city of Jakarta, home to:
- Presidential Palace, and the
- Java Jazz Festival that happens in March.
Indonesia offers an astounding amount of natural wonders and beauty to its visitors, combined with a wonderfully friendly culture and some very good food.
Bali is gorgeous and a must see for everyone, but do make sure to visit some of the other islands as well, in order to really get a good picture of what Indonesia is all about.
For more information on Indonesia, visit the Indonesia Tourism Website.