Category archives: Indonesia

Hidden Paradise: The Derawan Islands, Indonesia

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Quite surely, most of you have never heard of this beautiful place, but the Derawan Islands in Indonesia have taken my heart by storm. Not as famous as other destinations in Indonesia, they still have a lot to offer. They are located just off the east coast of Borneo (also named Kalimantan by the locals) and comprise dozens of islands. I visited four which a[...]

Diving with mermaids in Bali

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Wouldn’t it be great if mermaids really did exist? One of my favourite films growing up was Disney’s ‘The Little Mermaid’ and the idea of floating around in a fantastical, underwater kingdom and basking on exotic shores has probably contributed to my usual choice of travel destination. Keep your mountains and deserts – take me to the coast! Plus they had som[...]

An adventure to Borobudur

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I used to think only a small and insignificant handful of things could successfully drag me away from the beautiful beaches of South East Asia. Sizzling street food… Half price cocktails… Some sweet reggae music after all of the above… But it turns out I'm also a sucker for a bloody good temple. Not to be confused with a Shirley Temple. They’re rubbish. M[...]

The Act of Killing: The Dark Past of Indonesia

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With the Oscars coming up, our thoughts tend to evolve around whether Leonardo DiCaprio will finally be awarded for his great performances, or if rom-com sweetheart turned serious actor Matthew McConaughey will win the race. Does Gravity really deserve Best Film? And can Cate Blanchett's outstanding performance compensate for an otherwise mediocre film? And [...]

6 ways to while away the day in Ubud, Bali

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Soul need a little soothing? Happen to be in South East Asia? Well, the town of Ubud could be the destination for you. Considered by many to be the cultural heart of Bali, Ubud pumps with art and activity. The Bintang swigging surfers of the coast are replaced by Bintang swigging artists, poets and spiritual searchers and from the moment we stepped off the b[...]

Through the eyes of... Hengki Koentjoro

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Indonesia was always a place that had beautiful landscape that blew my mind: Stunning beaches, hypnotic rainforests, mysterious temples, hidden waterfalls… it is a tropical paradise that was immense to explore and backpack about in. I swear my camera hardly left my face as I attempted to capture scene upon scene of terrain, but as usual, it never looked as g[...]

The Sacred Monkey Forest in Ubud, Bali

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Imagine strolling through a lush, green forest, engulfed in a sea of leafy tree branches hanging low to the ground. You can hear water gushing in the distance and the air smells sweet of exotic flowers. As you round a corner, you are suddenly standing in an open space. But you are not alone. Around you, there are more than 50 monkeys sitting on the paveme[...]

Bali: memories of a paradise fit for the gods

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There is no real way to capture or understand the enchantment of a Balinese immersion. There is something subliminal and sacred about the way all the elements of Balinese life flow together. Yes, even those scary ass dogs. At the present moment I have a few friends heading to Bali, and as the January rain pours down here in San Francisco, I wish so badly[...]

Learning Bahasa Indonesian in Paradise

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When traveling to foreign countries where the language is literally so foreign, I found many tourists speaking LOUDER and s.l.o.w.e.r to the locals in a bizarre attempt to get understood. It seriously annoys me every time I see a traveler rudely turn their back to the waiter/market stall owner, throw up their hands and announce to their partner, “He just doe[...]

How to climb a volcano

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Usually, when on holiday, I like to fully dedicate my time to a cherished eat - sleep - surf routine, which, in the past, has been proving a great way to enjoy my time off. This time, however, my dear friend Minna dared me to break the cycle and get active. After a couple of days at the beach, she did some research on local stuff to do and eventually deci[...]