The Top Secrets of Backpacking in Indonesia

Indonesia backpacking adventure


Be it that you have decided to go to Indonesia by backpacking for its culture or cultural events, or for its nature and sports, you have made a decision that is by far one of the best. This south-east Asian archipelago is a massive one. Indonesia has 18,110 islands and only one-third of them are inhabited. Besides its capital city Jakarta, Bali is a wonderfully rich destination for backpackers. 

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Backpacking for the Adventurous

Traveling in Indonesia can even mean luxurious (at a budget) yet rewarding. The fact that tourism being the lifeblood of Indonesia with the threats caused by the Bali bombing events, it has created a competitive industry for the long stay, home stays, hotels and even bed-and-breakfasts. Heavily discounted prices are all that kind of deals that you will be offered.

Natural Activities

Backpackers are adventurous people by nature. Rafting, bungy jumping, trekking, surfing, diving, snorkeling, golfing, hiking, mountain biking, horseback riding are just some of the activities you can do in Indonesia. There are many different types of transportations for backpackers as well. Such as airlines, ground transportations and cruises. Trekking is best through the jungles of Borneo. It is the third largest island in the world located north of Java Island, Indonesia.


Amazingly, Borneo is divided among three countries: Brunei, Malaysia and 73% is on Indonesia territory. Backpackers can trek and see the longest river of 1,143km in Indonesia called Kapuas. It can be found in West Kalimantan. If you like caves, Clearwater Cave (with the world’s longest underground rivers), Deer Cave (with 3 million bats) and amazing 100 metres high of guano (mainly the excrement of cave dwelling bats)!

Limitless Nature

The nature is limitless. Backpackers can enjoy the beaches, waves, lakes, mountains, forest, flora & fauna, and parks. If you are a backpacker, preparation makes a great difference to how fun your adventure in Indonesia can be. This I mean knowing the Indonesian culture, from their local people’s customs, their dances, music, performance arts, paintings, batik and sarongs, temples & festivities and national holidays.

Packing List for Backpacking in Indonesia

What about the packing list? Well, you must take these 16 items with you, at least. The first would be a sleep sheet (which is a very thin sleeping bag to protect you and keep you warm, clean, bug free and happy). If possible get a silk one with double the size as it is light, warm enough and big enough.

Don’t Forget

Backpacking tour in Indonesia in 2005


A travel journal or small notebook, toilet paper, extra passport photos, photocopies of passport, duct tape, sunscreen, marker pen, clothes line for laundry, safety pins, sink stopper to do your laundry, camping mirror, fishing line, sewing kit, small padlock with two keys and a compass.

Finally this post ends with one advice for the type of clothing to bring. Cotton material are best  for backpacking in Indonesia as it draws heat away from your skin to keep you cool. The humidity is much higher, hence do bring a thin cargo pants if you know you will be trekking in the jungle, protecting yourself from insect bites, leeches, ticks or possibly snake bites.

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