Volcanoes & Temples of Indonesia

Resort:Volcanoes & Temples of Indonesia
Operator: Exodus
Destination: Asia, Indonesia, South East Asia
Price From: £2599.00


Explore Central Indonesia’s temples & volcanoes in Java and Bali.

Rice paddies give way to luxuriant jungles which coat towering volcanoes.
Ancient Buddhist and Hindu temples bear witness to old and still vibrant
cultures and traditions. The longest archipelago in the world made up of over
17,500 beach-fringed tropical islands, this is Indonesia. We journey through
the geographical and spiritual heart of the country as we make our way
through Muslim Java and Hindu Bali, taking in spectacular ruins, active
volcanoes, village life and palm-fringed beaches.


* Ancient Borobudur and Prambanan
* Watching the sun rise over Mt. Bromo
* Lesser visited northern Bali


Day 1
Depart London

Depart London

Day 2
Start Yogyakarta

Today is a free day and land only passengers can arrive at any time. The
group flights should arrive in the afternoon. Yogya, as the city is commonly
referred to, is an ancient city which, a thousand years ago, was the centre
of the Mataram Kingdom. Today it is Javas cultural and traditional heart
and is renowned for its batik, ballet, drama, poetry and music.

This evening there will be a welcome briefing with your tour leader followed
by an optional group dinner.
*Duta Garden Hotel or similar*

Day 3
City tour; afternoon visit of Prambanan

This morning we explore Yogya by becak (bicycle rickshaw) and visit the
Sultans Palace. Also known as Kraton, the palace constructed in the 18th
century is a fine example of traditional Javanese sultanate architecture. We
continue to the Taman Sari water palace and garden which was initially
built with bathing pools for the Sultans harem.
This afternoon we visit the 9th century Prambanan temple compound, consisting
of 224 temples. The Hindu temple complex is stunningly beautiful, and devoted
to the gods Brahma, Shiva and Vishnu. It is the wealth of its sculptural
details that these temples are known for, the most famous being on the inner
wall of the balustrade, of the Ramayana epic.
*Duta Garden Hotel or similar*

Day 4
Explore the temples of Borobudur

Today we drive to Magelang 1.5hrs away where we visit one of the greatest
Buddhist monuments in the world, Borobudur. Scholars disagree on exactly when
it was constructed but many speculate it dates back to between the 7th and
8th centuries. They do agree, however, that a huge workforce must have
laboured to move and carve the 55,000 cubic metres of stone and that
construction took about one hundred years. The temple was abandoned, probably
when the population converted to Islam in the 15th century, and over time it
was blanketed by volcanic ash from nearby Mt. Merapi, and then covered in
thick jungle growth, until the British rediscovered it in the 1800s.
Continuing to the village of Candirejo, we get to experience local life with
a horse cart ride. Known as dokar, the horse cart takes us through this
peaceful, charming village with its small lanes lined with traditional
houses. We stop to see local activities such as making cassava crackers,
playing the gamelan (traditional instrument) and harvesting and drying
vanilla and chili.
We then return to Yogya late afternoon.
*Duta Garden Hotel or similar*

Day 5
Train ride through Central Java and on to Batu

Today is a long day. We get up very early this morning in order to catch our
train for a 4 hour train journey past Central Javas volcanic scenery to
Mojokerto. From here we visit nearby Trowulan, site of the former capital of
the Majapahit Kingdom who ruled Java for centuries. We visit the archaeology
museum and the temples of Candi Bajang Ratu and Candi Tikus. Continue to
Jombang for a late lunch before transferring (approx. 4 hours) to the Hill
Station of Batu along a scenic mountain road around the western slopes of Mt.
Arjuna via Pare.
*Kampung Lumbung Hotel or similar*

Day 6
To Bromo Volcano; Sand Sea exploration

As we leave Batu, our first stop is the Cuban Rondo Waterfall where we will
take a short, easy walk. Continuing to Malang we visit a local market before
heading north towards Bromo via Pasuruan and Probolinggo (please be aware
that the market is primarily a flower, bird and live fish market. However,
Indonesian attitudes to animals means that some of the animals are not kept
in the best conditions which may be distressing to some people).

At Sukapura we switch to a local shuttle for the final leg of our journey.
Our hotel is spectacularly located on the edge of the Tengger crater. The
ascent of the volcano is usually the highlight of every visit to Java. The
rest of the afternoon is free and there may be time to start exploring the
Sand Sea by foot. This is a great time to visit as the Sand Sea is
practically devoid of all people (drive about 6.5 hours).
*Lava View Hotel / Cemara Indah Hotel Bromo or similar*

Day 7
Sunrise over crater; to Kalibaru

An early rise (3.00 am) will ensure we have enough time for the jeep ride to
the sunrise viewpoint. The view of Bromo and the Semeru volcano in the back
is fantastic (despite the crowds), made even better when the slowly rising
sun reveals an amazing moon-like landscape. After sunrise we cross the Sea of
Sand and climb 246 steps up to the cone of Mt Bromo where you can see smoke
rising from the crater.

Once back at the jeep, we drive back to the hotel for breakfast. We rejoin
our bus in Sukapura for the 6 hour drive along the north coast to Kalibaru.
We stop along the way for a late lunch near Jember and the final leg of the
journey takes us through forests and mountains. Kalibaru, on the eastern tip
of Java, is beautifully surrounded by coffee, cacao and rubber plantations.
*Margo Utomo Hotel or similar*

Day 8
Plantation and village walk; optional Ijen visit

This morning we visit the area including some of the plantations such as
cacao, coffee, pepper and rubber, and learn about their growing and
harvesting. The morning tour is concluded with a coffee tasting session,
followed by a free afternoon.
Those who wish can opt to visit Ijen Volcano (optional extra). Heading off
either in the early hours (for sunrise) or after breakfast (if not going for
sunrise) the drive by 4WD to the start hike takes about 2.5 hours. The hike
starts from Paltuding at 1,850m and takes about 1.5 hours (3km) up to the
crater rim at 2,368m. Along the way you may cross local men carrying sulphur
loads weighing up to 70kgs on their backs. From the top you can enjoy views
of the steaming, acidic crater lake, before returning the same way. Please
note that the trail down to the blue fire is considered too dangerous.
*Margo Utomo Hotel or similar*

Day 9
To Pemuteran in Bali, via Pulaki Temple

The drive to the harbour takes about 2 hours and is followed by a crossing of
about 45 minutes to Bali (though depending on schedules we may be waiting 30
minutes-1 hour for the ferry to depart). As Bali is one hour ahead we should
arriving at Gilimanuk harbour late morning. Our destination for today is only
a short drive away but we first visit the Pulaki Temple. This Hindu shrine is
situated in front of a hill overlooking a beautiful beach. The temple is
guarded by a troop of Longtailed macaques who, according to local lore,
protect the temple from bad influences.

From here we continue to our beach-front hotel in Pemuteran on Balis north
coast. The rest of the day is free to relax, enjoy the beach, snorkel amongst
the Bio-Rock garden in the waters just off the beach (a series of cement and
wire sculptures and formations placed in the bay to encourage the growth of
coral), or make use of the spa.
*Adi Assri Cottages or similar*

Day 10
Optional Menjangan Snorkelling; to Ubud

This morning is free with the option of going on a snorkelling trip to
Menjangan Island off the north coast of Bali, part of the West National Park.
The reefs around the island are reputed to be the best in all of Bali. The
excursion includes some time snorkelling around the coral gardens as well as
a short walk on the island itself where you may see some deer.

After lunch we depart the coast and head into the interior of the island. We
visit Ulun Danu Temple, an important Hindu Shiviaite water temple located on
a small jut of land within the calm waters of Lake Beratan. When the water
levels are high (mostly during the rainy season), this 17th century temple
looks as though its floating on the lake. From here we continue to
Balis cultural and traditional heartland, the vibrant town of Ubud.
*Sahadewa Resort or similar*

Day 11
Free day in and around Ubud

Ubud gets its name from the Balinese word ubad (medicine); the town was
originally important as a source of medicinal herbs and plants, but these
days is known for its artistic community, awash with artists’ workshops and
art galleries. Ubud’s history can be traced back to the 8th century, when a
Buddhist priest came to Bali from Java, he meditated at the confluence of the
two Wos rivers at Campuan, just west of the modern day town centre. A shrine
was established and later expanded by Nirartha, a Javanese priest who is
regarded as the founder of Bali’s religious practices and rituals as we know
them today. When Ubud became a Dutch protectorate at its own request, the
colonialists interfered little, allowing the traditional arts and culture of
the area to remain relatively unchanged.

From the 1930s onwards, western artists and intellectuals arrived furthering
the local art scene, amongst them Charlie Chaplin and H.G. Wells. Ubud is
still a haven for literati, glitterati and art collectors.

Today is a free day to explore Ubud, wander around Monkey Forest, take in
some of the museums, visit some of the temples, do a spot of shopping or sit
in cafes and watch the world go by.
*Sahadewa Resort or similar*

Day 12
Rice terraces and temples of central Bali

Our first stop today is at one of Balis famed rice terraces at Tegalalang
before continuing on a tour visiting two ancient and important temples:
Gunung Kawi and Tirta Empul. The 11th century Gunung Kawi is set amidst lush
rice paddies and features ten rock-cut candis (shrines) carved into the
cliff-face. They combine elements of Hindu and Buddhist temple attributes and
are accessed via numerous stairs.
Tirta Empul is a place where Balinese Hindus come to bathe in the holy waters
and wash bad spirits away.
From here its on to the village of Kintamani located on the caldera rim of
a huge, ancient volcano. This is the best spot, weather permitting, for views
of Mount Batur, the active volcano towering over Lake Batur. Upon arrival,
the rest of the day is free.

*Hotel Segara or similar*

Day 13
Mt Batur; on to Sanur

For those who wish to do the optional sunrise hike to the top of Mt. Batur
(see money section for prices), the day starts at around 4am for the short
transfer to the start of the trail. After meeting the local guides and
getting a safety briefing we start the hike to the summit. The 2km hike takes
about 2 hours and goes through jungle before reaching a windswept rocky
pathway devoid of almost all vegetation. Whilst not too challenging the walk
is a sustained 2 hours+ uphill along mostly fairly steep trails and a
reasonable physical condition is needed.

Reaching the summit (1717m) a hot drink and simple breakfast keeps us
occupied as we wait for the sun to rise over Mt. Rinjani on neighbouring
Lombok (which can be seen on clear days).

After the sunrise, head back down via a small steep path on the western slope
of Mt. Batur and stop off at a 2nd crater from the 2001 eruption. Lower down
the trail is the youngest 1999 crater with a smoking cone. We observe the
lava field surrounding the volcano and trek across a black lava sea of sand
to the finishing point from where we return to the hotel to rest. The whole
excursion normally takes 5-6 hours.

Those not wanting to do the optional Mt. Batur hike still get to experience
the volcano as we head on a 2-3 hour walk starting from the rim of the Batur
Caldera and descending through black lava fields. We learn more about the
Batur Geopark and take in some of the regions panoramic views. We depart
the hotel for this walk around 7:30am and are back by about 10:00am for
breakfast (having had a small refreshment along the way).

After lunch, we check out and make our way to the southern Bali beach resort
town of Sanur stopping at Goa Lawah Temple on the way.

*Taksu Sanur Hotel or similar*

Day 14
Free day in Sanur

We end our two-week exploration of Java and Bali with a well-deserved day on
the beach in Sanur. This popular resort is more relaxed than some of the
other beaches in southern Bali but still offers a number of activities as
well as just unwinding and enjoying the restaurants and cafes. As well as
relaxing, maybe with a final massage, there are numerous optional activities
both on the water and inland, these can change so will be discussed with you
in Bali.

*Taksu Sanur Hotel or similar*

Day 15
Depart Bali

Those on the group flights will be taken the short distance to Denpasar
Airport in time for their flight home.

Day 16
Arrive London

Arrive London