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Indonesia Travel Information

Bali Beach Indonesia

Indonesia is perhaps one of the most interesting places to travel to; its culture, people, and the beautiful islands that make up this biggest archipelago in the world has been enough reason for tourists to take their wandering feet to one of South East Asia's most remarkable places. Below are some interesting facts may help you in your travel to the amazing archipelagic nation and in planning which Indonesia travel destinations to choose for your trip.

Indonesian Language

The official language of Indonesia is Bahasa; however, there are a lot of other dialects spoken. English is also widely understood in places like Jakarta and other tourist resorts.

Indonesia Currency

The official currency of Indonesia is Rupiah or abbreviated as IDR; it is divided into 100 sen. Foreign currencies can simply be exchanged at money changers, hotels, and banks in main tourist destinations; the US dollar is mainly the accepted currency. Travelers cheques (not always accepted widely) in US dollars are much advised, although cash often gives better exchange rate. The majority of major credit cards are acknowledged at restaurants, stores that cater to tourist trade, and hotels. ATM's are also available in major centers. It is always recommended for tourists to bring small change as it is frequently unavailable, as well as small denomination of notes and coins especially for bus fares, cool drinks, and temple donations.

Indonesia Time Zones

There are three time zones in Indonesia: GMT + 7 in the West, including Sumatra and Java; GMT + 8 in Central Indonesia, including Lombok, Sulawesi, and Bali; and GMT + 9 in the East, including Irian Jaya.

Electricity in Indonesia

Samsonite Travel Accessories Converter/Adapter Plug Kit w/pouch Black/Red - Samsonite Travel Accessories Travel Electronics The electrical current of Indonesia is generally 120/130 volts (50Hz). Various plugs are used including the UK three-pin style plug and European 'two-pin' style plug. If you need a universal adapter, we recommend the best customer-rated Samsonite Travel Accessories Converter/Adapter Plug Kit w/Pouch

Communications in Indonesia

Indonesia's international access code is +62; 001 or 008 followed the country code called is the outgoing code used in Indonesia (it is no longer necessary to dial zero first). Area or city codes are also used such as 21 for Jakarta and 36 for Bali. An operator-assisted call for international calls is 101. There are also local operators of mobile phones that use GSM networks, which also have roaming agreements to the majority of international operators. Internet cafes are also on-hand in major resorts and main towns.

These helpful facts may perhaps compliment your Indonesia knowledge and get you ready for an exciting visit and adventurous trip to Indonesia. So, get those bags packed, and make that next stop Indonesia.

Clothing: What to Wear

Indonesia is located in Southeast Asian region and is the world's largest archipelago. The nation is predominantly a Moslem country and much of the Muslim culture is well preserved especially in the rural areas. The tropical climate requires light clothing in Indonesia but it is customary for Muslim women to wear robes on their head especially when entering mosques.

Light fabrics are advised to protect visitors from the warm, humid climate. In non-formal occasions or when answering official calls, jackets or long-sleeve batik shirts may be worn for men. Clothing in Indonesia can be as diverse as its culture. While you need to be wearing light clothes in urban areas, light jackets or sweaters are recommended in mountainous areas.

Although clothing in Indonesia may be considered conservative, the beaches are an exception. Beachwears are allowed in beaches although Muslim women may still stay in their traditional clothing. Women are not allowed to flaunt their shoulders, arms, necks, and legs in mosques, temples, and other places of worship, which are considered inappropriate and disrespectful.

Traditional clothing in Indonesia consists of the sarongs paired with a "kebaya" for women (kebaya is a tight, long-sleeved blouse, which is low cut) on formal occasions. Women's hair may be tied up to a bun or attached with a fake hairpiece. Women in rural areas often wear sarongs; rarely do they wear shorts or jeans, and go on barefoot. They carry their babies in a long cloth wrapped down from their shoulders.

Visitors, however, can simply be themselves and wear comfortable clothing so long as they are decent. Most clothing in Indonesia adopts the western style of clothing like the shirt and jeans and some from well-off families can be as glamorous.

The famous traditional clothing in Indonesia is the batik -- a dyed cloth that features ethnic designs. It has become an industry over the years and is a source of income for local especially in the rural areas. The locals prepare a white cloth and sketches ethnic designs using wax. When the wax has dried, they dip the cloth in dye. The wax is then removed and print is outlined from it.

The country's urban hubs have supermarkets, department stores, and large shopping centers where you can shop for clothing in Indonesia, however, if you want to find bigger bargains, you can browse for souvenirs and other stuffs in local markets and shops clustering in the peripheries. You must be careful not to bargain if you don't intend to buy the item as you could end up upsetting the stall owner.

Food of Indonesia

As they say, "chart the country's cuisine and one can chart its history". This is very true for Indonesia being the world's fifth biggest country inhabited by two hundred fifty ethnic groups; the marvelous ethnic diversity paired with its "wave upon wave" cultural influence, has made the world of Indonesia food a pleasurable arena for culinary adventurers.

The native techniques of Indonesia food cooking and ingredients merged with influences of China, India, the Middle East, and Europe, as well as the products of the New World brought by the Portuguese and Spaniards even before the island was colonized by the Dutch, has transformed its cuisines into a haven for the palate.

The central and western Indonesia food, particularly their main meal, is normally cooked late during the morning, and eaten around midday; unlike the usual meal time hours, a lot of Indonesian families don't have a set meal time in which every family member are expected to be present, and so the majority of their dishes are cooked in such a way that it can last and still be suitable for eating even if left for hours at room temperature. These same foods are then re-heated for their final evening meal.

The staple diet of Indonesia food is nasi or rice, which is substituted with corn, cassava, sweet potato, and sago in some parts of the island. The spices of Indonesia food make its native cuisine exceptional; although almost all types of international cooking can also be found in Jakarta, the most famous being French, Korean, Japanese, and Italian.

Visitors should always keep in mind that Indonesia food is always highly spiced fitted to the taste of Indonesians. So look out for small, fiery hot green and red peppers on your food, including vegetable and salad dishes. One of the most excellent Indonesia foods is that of seafood which are highly featured on menus, including lobsters, prawns, oysters, squid, shrimps, crabs, salt and freshwater fish, and shark.

Coconut is a favorite ingredient for cooking; vegetables and fresh fruits like papaya, bananas, oranges and pineapple which are obtainable all through the year are also Indonesian favorites. Tourists who are visiting Indonesia for the first time should try out their national specialties such as Nasi uduk, rasirames, campur (rice dishes), Rijstafel (Dutch mixture of various fish, meats, curries, and vegetables), and Soto (soup dish with chicken, vegetables, and dumpling), to truly savor the real Indonesia food cooking.

Visitors "eating" their way through Indonesia have found it to be an enjoyable way to really appreciate the country's cultural crossroads, not to mention making them ache for one more "bite".

Travel Documents

valid passport with at least 6 months of validity beyond the duration of stay and two blank pages is required of American citizens to visit the country. An Indonesia Visa is not required for stays under 30 days for tourism purposes. 

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