Indonesian Islands & Culture | Mountain Travel Sobek

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Indonesian Islands & Culture

Trip Length 14 days

From $5,295

  • Step back in time on this faraway adventure and discover the amazing islands of Sulawesi and Sumba, where primitive cultures practice age-old rites
  • Encounter flying foxes and infamous Komodo dragons in ruggedly beautiful Komodo National Park
  • Sail, swim, and snorkel through crystalline waters and dazzling reefs—and get an inside view of Indonesia from local expert guides

Islands by their very nature are distinctive, each with their own identity and mystique. Nowhere is that more true than in Indonesia, where the islands are as unique as they are numerous. There’s stunning Sulawesi, where the Toraja practice their elaborate funeral rites, and Kalong, where flying foxes take wing by the thousands at twilight. There’s untouched and enigmatic Sumba, and beautiful Bali with its serene temples. On this amazing journey, you’ll experience all that and more, including two days of sailing the azure seas near Flores and hiking the wildlife-rich forests of Komodo National Park. With plenty of unscripted interaction with the locals and ample time to explore, this adventure is a cultural immersion that you’ll never forget.

Day 1: Arrival in Jakarta

Arrive in Jakarta, the heart of Indonesia! An MTS representative will greet you at the airport and transfer to your hotel for some well-deserved rest after a long voyage. Enjoy a welcome dinner at the hotel.

  • Dinner
  • Accommodation:FM7 Transit Hotel

Day 2: Jakarta - Makassar - Toraja

After breakfast, we’ll transfer back to the hotel for our flight to Makassar, a city of two million inhabitants and the center of trade in the Celebes Sea—the gateway to the East Indonesian islands. Once in Makassar, we’ll travel seven to eight hours by car along the Transulawesi Road, through the traditional villages of the Bugis people, renown sea traders since their arrival here in the 16th century. We’ll have a chance to see their stilt water villages and their famous double-mast sailing ships called phinisis. On the last leg of our drive, the road climbs into the dramatic peaks and verdant valleys of the Sulawesi Mountains to Tana Toraja, one of the most beautiful regions in the whole archipelago. Once we’ve arrived in Rantepao, the capital of Toraja, we’ll head straight for our hotel after an epic day of travel.

  • Breakfast/Lunch/Dinner
  • Accommodation:Heritage Toraja

Days 3-4: Tana Toraja

Over the next two days, we’ll visit the Tana Toraja, a region celebrated for its mystical landscape and fascinating local culture. While Christianity is predominant here, the region’s animist traditions are still very much alive in a religion they call Aluk Todolo, or “the way of the ancestors.” We’ll have the chance to visit traditional villages, with their distinctive boat-shaped Tongkonan homes, and see the Torajan people go about their daily lives at colorful markets. We’ll see the stone graves and the wooden effigies of the deceased (known as Tau-Tau) and, between May and August, we may be invited by a family to observe their funeral rituals.  There will be optional trekking to Palipu village in Buntu Lobo to see children performing the traditional dance of Toraja accompanied by a bamboo orchestra.

  • Breakfast/Lunch/Dinner
  • Accommodation:Heritage Toraja

Day 5: Lokomatam Trekking

After breakfast at the hotel, we’ll transfer to Lokomatam, the starting point of our trek in the region of Sapan, passing one beautiful landscape after the next with traditional houses, bamboo forests, and lush rice fields. We’ll enjoy the local Toraja cuisine, as we picnic on the side of the trail overlooking the valley. During the day you’ll learn about the importance of coffee! Dutch colonists first introduced coffee to Toraja in the 16th century and, ever since, coffee aficionados consider Toraja’s coffee as one of the best the entire world. The coffee is grown in mountain plantations and is roasted using traditional methods. Locals like to enjoy it in a glass with lots of sugar and/or condensed milk, which they refer to as “mud coffee.”

  • Breakfast/Lunch/Dinner
  • Accommodation:Heritage Toraja

Day 6: Rantepao - Makassar - Denpasar

This morning, we’ll set out for a drive back to Makassar, where we’ll board our flights for a leisurely overnight stay in Denpasar–Bali’s lively capital. Enjoy a wonderful mix of modern and traditional Balinese culture, and a relaxing evening at the hotel.

  • Breakfast/Lunch/Dinner
  • Accommodation:Novotel Bali Ngurah Rai Airport

Day 7: Denpasar - Sumba

Our journey continues today with a flight to Sumba, a unique and enigmatic island where the building of megalithic tombs remains a living tradition. Upon arrival, we’ll transfer to the hotel and enjoy lunch at a local restaurant. This afternoon, we’ll visit the villages of Prai Ijing, Tarong, and Waitabar, whose tribal people believe in blood sacrifice and regularly sacrifice animals to the gods. Step back in time to an ancient world as you wander through the villages and marvel at the incredible megalithic tombs, dotted among the houses and lush vegetation. After visiting the tombs, we’ll have time to explore the local market and thatched-roof cottages at Waikabubak before heading back to our hotel for the evening.

  • Breakfast/Lunch/Dinner
  • Accommodation:Watukaka Resort

Day 8: Wanukaka Valley Trek

After breakfast at the hotel, we’ll journey overland through the Wanukaka Valley. Arriving at a local village, we will embark on a 90-minute hike descending through the national park to a magnificent blue lagoon at the base of a waterfall. Sheer cliffs rise 600 to 900 feet around the waterfall, providing an awe-inspiring backdrop. Feel free to jump off the rocks and swim in the clear water.  We'll enjoy a picnic and feel completely removed from the world.

  • Breakfast/Lunch/Dinner
  • Accommodation:Watukaka Resort

Day 9: Tambolaka - Denpasar

Today, we’ll fly back to Denpasar, Bali, and enjoy a hearty Balinese lunch together after checking into the hotel. The afternoon is free to unwind or explore the beaches and boutiques of Seminyak. Your guide will be on hand to help organize any activities.

  • Breakfast/Lunch/Dinner
  • Accommodation:The Breezes Resort

Day 10: Denpasar - Labuan Bajo - Rinca

We’ll depart Bali for the island of Flores, where we’ll set sail for Rinca Island, the largest island in Komodo National Park. The boat ride consists of just over two hours, taking us through pristine waters and curious dolphin pods, and past beautiful islands. Park rangers will guide us along the trails as we track the legendary (and deadly) Komodo dragon—one of the largest lizard species in the world! Along the way, we’ll also spot deer, wild buffalo, long-tailed macaques, wild pigs, and numerous species of birds. Later, we’ll travel to Kalong Island, where thousands of flying foxes take flight from the mangroves at dusk. Tonight, we’ll have the chance to stay onboard a traditional Indonesian boat. Lunch, dinner and sleeping accommodations aboard our boat.

  • Breakfast/Lunch/Dinner
  • Accommodation:Traditional Indonesian Boat

Day 11: Komodo Island - Labuan Bajo

After breakfast, we’ll sail to Komodo Island and take a trek in Komodo National Park.  We'll visit the river bed where the dragons used to be fed fresh goats. A local ranger will guide us through the nature reserve and answer all of our questions about the Komodo dragons. We’ll then return to the boat and head for Pink Beach to swim and snorkel through its unspoiled coral reef and spot its abundance of fish; then, we’ll proceed to Manta Point, where, if weather permits, we’ll snorkel among its famous manta rays! We’ll enjoy lunch on-board, and then sail back to Labuan Bajo this afternoon. Dinner and overnight will be at the hotel.

  • Breakfast/Lunch/Dinner
  • Accommodation:Plataran Komodo Resort

Day 12: Labuan Bajo - Denpasar - Ubud

After breakfast, we’ll go to explore the cave of Batu Cermin, also known as “Mirror Rock.” The limestone cave is large at 75 square meters and contains slow-forming stalactites, stalagmites and tunnels, colonies of bats and timid spiders. Some parts of the tunnel are narrow and dark while some are dappled with sunlight. (Ask your guide for tips on getting the best photographs!) Later, we’ll head out to visit the local market before our driver takes us back to the airport for our flight to Denpasar, Bali. Once we arrive in Bali, we’ll transfer to our exquisite hotel in Ubud. If time allows, we recommend taking advantage of their luxurious spa!

  • Breakfast/Lunch/Dinner
  • Accommodation:Maya Ubud

Day 13: Ubud

After breakfast, we’ll transfer to Bali’s Taman Ayun Temple, the royal temple of the Mengwi Empire built in the 17th century. This complex of temples offers a stunning example of Balinese architecture. Consisting of several buildings on an island in the middle of a river, the “Garden Temple in the Water” (as it is translated), was built to symbolize the mythological home of the gods—a very sacred place. Later, we’ll continue on to see the lush rice terraces of Jatiluwih and then on to Ulun Danu Bratan, a temple situated on a beautiful mountain lake. We finish the day touring Tanah Lot, another gorgeous temple built along the coast and a fantastic place to take in a memorable sunset before leaving tomorrow! Tonight, we’ll gather together for a farewell dinner.

  • Breakfast/Lunch/Dinner
  • Accommodation:Maya Ubud

Day 14: Ubud - Departure

Say goodbye your fellow travelers and transfer to the airport for your flights home.

  • Breakfast

May 21, 2018 - Jun 03, 2018

Jul 16 - 29, 2018

pricing

2018 Prices

$5,295 (5-12 members)
$830 internal airfare
$2,100 single supplement

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FM7 Transit Hotel — Jakarta


Heritage Toraja


Maya Ubud


Novotel Bali Ngurah Rai Airport — Denpasar

The Ngurah Rai Airport is an excellent four-star hotel option for those connecting through Denpasar. Its location just steps away from the terminal makes it easy and accessible, and its amenities provide travelers with the comforts they expect. Before or after a long transfer, guests can unwind at the lounge, swim up to the outdoor pool bar, and enjoy 24/7 access to a variety Asian and Western cuisine.

Plataran Komodo Resort — Labuan Bajo

The Plataran Komodo Resort sits on a private beach, miles from the bustle of civilization. Cottages populate the property, complete with chic interior and exterior designs which fit in seamlessly alongside the waterfront. Surrounded by coral reefs and waters full of diverse marine life, the wonders of the natural world are just a few steps or swimming strokes away. The spa offers a variety of treatment options using a combination of local herbs, detoxification, and stress-relieving massage techniques. Guests consistently enjoy a variety of healthy food with a menu suitable to fit dietary requirements, and fantastic service from the caring resort staff. The Plataran Komodo Resort is a tranquil seaside oasis that is sure to provide relaxation, excellent service, amidst tremendous natural beauty.            

The Breezes Resort — Seminyak, Bali

The Breezes Resort stands just a few steps away from the water in the vibrant town of Seminyak. Seminyak Beach, known for having one of the most beautiful sunsets in Asia, is readily accessible. The resort offers a variety of amenities to help travelers relax including a four-tiered swimming pool complete with a swim-up sunken pool bar. Offering a unique selection of refreshments and cool water, this hangout is a fan favorite for the lucky guests of the Breezes Resort. The onsite spa offers authentic Balinese treatments that encourage relaxation and rejuvenation. Additionally, the hotel has a tennis court, cinema, gym, beach restaurant, fun bar, and an activities desk with a very personable staff.

Traditional Indonesian Boat


Watukaka Resort — Sumba

The Watukaka Resort has a special motto, “Feel the Nature” and invites guests into an oasis of tranquility, far away from civilization. Located about an hour south of Komodo, between the Indian Ocean and the Sulu Sea, this impeccably designed resort is set amidst a dramatic “superb yet savage landscape” and offers relaxing accommodations with friendly service. Experience a variety of massage techniques at its onsite spa and emerge from this island paradise with an improved sense of vitality. Overall, the Watukaka Sumba Resort is the perfect place to enjoy a peaceful beachside retreat.        

  • Step back in time on this faraway adventure and discover the amazing islands of Sulawesi and Sumba, where primitive cultures practice age-old rites
  • Encounter flying foxes and infamous Komodo dragons in ruggedly beautiful Komodo National Park
  • Sail, swim, and snorkel through crystalline waters and dazzling reefs—and get an inside view of Indonesia from local expert guides

Islands by their very nature are distinctive, each with their own identity and mystique. Nowhere is that more true than in Indonesia, where the islands are as unique as they are numerous. There’s stunning Sulawesi, where the Toraja practice their elaborate funeral rites, and Kalong, where flying foxes take wing by the thousands at twilight. There’s untouched and enigmatic Sumba, and beautiful Bali with its serene temples. On this amazing journey, you’ll experience all that and more, including two days of sailing the azure seas near Flores and hiking the wildlife-rich forests of Komodo National Park. With plenty of unscripted interaction with the locals and ample time to explore, this adventure is a cultural immersion that you’ll never forget.

DAILY itinerary

Day 1: Arrival in Jakarta

Arrive in Jakarta, the heart of Indonesia! An MTS representative will greet you at the airport and transfer to your hotel for some well-deserved rest after a long voyage. Enjoy a welcome dinner at the hotel.

  • Dinner
  • Accommodation:FM7 Transit Hotel

Day 2: Jakarta - Makassar - Toraja

After breakfast, we’ll transfer back to the hotel for our flight to Makassar, a city of two million inhabitants and the center of trade in the Celebes Sea—the gateway to the East Indonesian islands. Once in Makassar, we’ll travel seven to eight hours by car along the Transulawesi Road, through the traditional villages of the Bugis people, renown sea traders since their arrival here in the 16th century. We’ll have a chance to see their stilt water villages and their famous double-mast sailing ships called phinisis. On the last leg of our drive, the road climbs into the dramatic peaks and verdant valleys of the Sulawesi Mountains to Tana Toraja, one of the most beautiful regions in the whole archipelago. Once we’ve arrived in Rantepao, the capital of Toraja, we’ll head straight for our hotel after an epic day of travel.

  • Breakfast/Lunch/Dinner
  • Accommodation:Heritage Toraja

Days 3-4: Tana Toraja

Over the next two days, we’ll visit the Tana Toraja, a region celebrated for its mystical landscape and fascinating local culture. While Christianity is predominant here, the region’s animist traditions are still very much alive in a religion they call Aluk Todolo, or “the way of the ancestors.” We’ll have the chance to visit traditional villages, with their distinctive boat-shaped Tongkonan homes, and see the Torajan people go about their daily lives at colorful markets. We’ll see the stone graves and the wooden effigies of the deceased (known as Tau-Tau) and, between May and August, we may be invited by a family to observe their funeral rituals.  There will be optional trekking to Palipu village in Buntu Lobo to see children performing the traditional dance of Toraja accompanied by a bamboo orchestra.

  • Breakfast/Lunch/Dinner
  • Accommodation:Heritage Toraja

Day 5: Lokomatam Trekking

After breakfast at the hotel, we’ll transfer to Lokomatam, the starting point of our trek in the region of Sapan, passing one beautiful landscape after the next with traditional houses, bamboo forests, and lush rice fields. We’ll enjoy the local Toraja cuisine, as we picnic on the side of the trail overlooking the valley. During the day you’ll learn about the importance of coffee! Dutch colonists first introduced coffee to Toraja in the 16th century and, ever since, coffee aficionados consider Toraja’s coffee as one of the best the entire world. The coffee is grown in mountain plantations and is roasted using traditional methods. Locals like to enjoy it in a glass with lots of sugar and/or condensed milk, which they refer to as “mud coffee.”

  • Breakfast/Lunch/Dinner
  • Accommodation:Heritage Toraja

Day 6: Rantepao - Makassar - Denpasar

This morning, we’ll set out for a drive back to Makassar, where we’ll board our flights for a leisurely overnight stay in Denpasar–Bali’s lively capital. Enjoy a wonderful mix of modern and traditional Balinese culture, and a relaxing evening at the hotel.

  • Breakfast/Lunch/Dinner
  • Accommodation:Novotel Bali Ngurah Rai Airport

Day 7: Denpasar - Sumba

Our journey continues today with a flight to Sumba, a unique and enigmatic island where the building of megalithic tombs remains a living tradition. Upon arrival, we’ll transfer to the hotel and enjoy lunch at a local restaurant. This afternoon, we’ll visit the villages of Prai Ijing, Tarong, and Waitabar, whose tribal people believe in blood sacrifice and regularly sacrifice animals to the gods. Step back in time to an ancient world as you wander through the villages and marvel at the incredible megalithic tombs, dotted among the houses and lush vegetation. After visiting the tombs, we’ll have time to explore the local market and thatched-roof cottages at Waikabubak before heading back to our hotel for the evening.

  • Breakfast/Lunch/Dinner
  • Accommodation:Watukaka Resort

Day 8: Wanukaka Valley Trek

After breakfast at the hotel, we’ll journey overland through the Wanukaka Valley. Arriving at a local village, we will embark on a 90-minute hike descending through the national park to a magnificent blue lagoon at the base of a waterfall. Sheer cliffs rise 600 to 900 feet around the waterfall, providing an awe-inspiring backdrop. Feel free to jump off the rocks and swim in the clear water.  We'll enjoy a picnic and feel completely removed from the world.

  • Breakfast/Lunch/Dinner
  • Accommodation:Watukaka Resort

Day 9: Tambolaka - Denpasar

Today, we’ll fly back to Denpasar, Bali, and enjoy a hearty Balinese lunch together after checking into the hotel. The afternoon is free to unwind or explore the beaches and boutiques of Seminyak. Your guide will be on hand to help organize any activities.

  • Breakfast/Lunch/Dinner
  • Accommodation:The Breezes Resort

Day 10: Denpasar - Labuan Bajo - Rinca

We’ll depart Bali for the island of Flores, where we’ll set sail for Rinca Island, the largest island in Komodo National Park. The boat ride consists of just over two hours, taking us through pristine waters and curious dolphin pods, and past beautiful islands. Park rangers will guide us along the trails as we track the legendary (and deadly) Komodo dragon—one of the largest lizard species in the world! Along the way, we’ll also spot deer, wild buffalo, long-tailed macaques, wild pigs, and numerous species of birds. Later, we’ll travel to Kalong Island, where thousands of flying foxes take flight from the mangroves at dusk. Tonight, we’ll have the chance to stay onboard a traditional Indonesian boat. Lunch, dinner and sleeping accommodations aboard our boat.

  • Breakfast/Lunch/Dinner
  • Accommodation:Traditional Indonesian Boat

Day 11: Komodo Island - Labuan Bajo

After breakfast, we’ll sail to Komodo Island and take a trek in Komodo National Park.  We'll visit the river bed where the dragons used to be fed fresh goats. A local ranger will guide us through the nature reserve and answer all of our questions about the Komodo dragons. We’ll then return to the boat and head for Pink Beach to swim and snorkel through its unspoiled coral reef and spot its abundance of fish; then, we’ll proceed to Manta Point, where, if weather permits, we’ll snorkel among its famous manta rays! We’ll enjoy lunch on-board, and then sail back to Labuan Bajo this afternoon. Dinner and overnight will be at the hotel.

  • Breakfast/Lunch/Dinner
  • Accommodation:Plataran Komodo Resort

Day 12: Labuan Bajo - Denpasar - Ubud

After breakfast, we’ll go to explore the cave of Batu Cermin, also known as “Mirror Rock.” The limestone cave is large at 75 square meters and contains slow-forming stalactites, stalagmites and tunnels, colonies of bats and timid spiders. Some parts of the tunnel are narrow and dark while some are dappled with sunlight. (Ask your guide for tips on getting the best photographs!) Later, we’ll head out to visit the local market before our driver takes us back to the airport for our flight to Denpasar, Bali. Once we arrive in Bali, we’ll transfer to our exquisite hotel in Ubud. If time allows, we recommend taking advantage of their luxurious spa!

  • Breakfast/Lunch/Dinner
  • Accommodation:Maya Ubud

Day 13: Ubud

After breakfast, we’ll transfer to Bali’s Taman Ayun Temple, the royal temple of the Mengwi Empire built in the 17th century. This complex of temples offers a stunning example of Balinese architecture. Consisting of several buildings on an island in the middle of a river, the “Garden Temple in the Water” (as it is translated), was built to symbolize the mythological home of the gods—a very sacred place. Later, we’ll continue on to see the lush rice terraces of Jatiluwih and then on to Ulun Danu Bratan, a temple situated on a beautiful mountain lake. We finish the day touring Tanah Lot, another gorgeous temple built along the coast and a fantastic place to take in a memorable sunset before leaving tomorrow! Tonight, we’ll gather together for a farewell dinner.

  • Breakfast/Lunch/Dinner
  • Accommodation:Maya Ubud

Day 14: Ubud - Departure

Say goodbye your fellow travelers and transfer to the airport for your flights home.

  • Breakfast
lodgings

FM7 Transit Hotel — Jakarta


Heritage Toraja


Maya Ubud


Novotel Bali Ngurah Rai Airport — Denpasar

The Ngurah Rai Airport is an excellent four-star hotel option for those connecting through Denpasar. Its location just steps away from the terminal makes it easy and accessible, and its amenities provide travelers with the comforts they expect. Before or after a long transfer, guests can unwind at the lounge, swim up to the outdoor pool bar, and enjoy 24/7 access to a variety Asian and Western cuisine.

Plataran Komodo Resort — Labuan Bajo

The Plataran Komodo Resort sits on a private beach, miles from the bustle of civilization. Cottages populate the property, complete with chic interior and exterior designs which fit in seamlessly alongside the waterfront. Surrounded by coral reefs and waters full of diverse marine life, the wonders of the natural world are just a few steps or swimming strokes away. The spa offers a variety of treatment options using a combination of local herbs, detoxification, and stress-relieving massage techniques. Guests consistently enjoy a variety of healthy food with a menu suitable to fit dietary requirements, and fantastic service from the caring resort staff. The Plataran Komodo Resort is a tranquil seaside oasis that is sure to provide relaxation, excellent service, amidst tremendous natural beauty.            

The Breezes Resort — Seminyak, Bali

The Breezes Resort stands just a few steps away from the water in the vibrant town of Seminyak. Seminyak Beach, known for having one of the most beautiful sunsets in Asia, is readily accessible. The resort offers a variety of amenities to help travelers relax including a four-tiered swimming pool complete with a swim-up sunken pool bar. Offering a unique selection of refreshments and cool water, this hangout is a fan favorite for the lucky guests of the Breezes Resort. The onsite spa offers authentic Balinese treatments that encourage relaxation and rejuvenation. Additionally, the hotel has a tennis court, cinema, gym, beach restaurant, fun bar, and an activities desk with a very personable staff.

Traditional Indonesian Boat


Watukaka Resort — Sumba

The Watukaka Resort has a special motto, “Feel the Nature” and invites guests into an oasis of tranquility, far away from civilization. Located about an hour south of Komodo, between the Indian Ocean and the Sulu Sea, this impeccably designed resort is set amidst a dramatic “superb yet savage landscape” and offers relaxing accommodations with friendly service. Experience a variety of massage techniques at its onsite spa and emerge from this island paradise with an improved sense of vitality. Overall, the Watukaka Sumba Resort is the perfect place to enjoy a peaceful beachside retreat.        

Dates and Pricing

May 21, 2018 - Jun 03, 2018

Jul 16 - 29, 2018

pricing

2018 Prices

$5,295 (5-12 members)
$830 internal airfare
$2,100 single supplement

Activity Level Moderate
Trip Length 14 days

From $5,295

Interested in this adventure? Take the next step and book it!

Got questions?

Call us at 1-888-831-7526
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Award-winning journeys recognized by Travel +Leisure

Award-winning journeys recognized by Travel +Leisure