Category Archives: Indonesia

The Best Temples on Java Island

The overcrowded island of Java, the center of the country’s economic and political power, offers some of the best examples of Hindu and Buddhist architecture all over Indonesia. From among the hundreds of temples that show the power and architectural quality reached by the kingdoms that ruled Java from the 7th to the 16th century, I have drawn up a list with the main points of interest.

The map presents all the temples and by clicking on the markers you can have a brief description. Each temple has a bunch of resources that give you the chance to analyze it better and to arrive there well prepared.

You can use the comments to suggest any links that you may have come across that might be useful to add the the existing list.

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Prambanan Temple a pearl in the heart of Java

Prambanan Temple masterpiece of Hindu art

A masterpiece of Hindu art

Today it is time to talk about one of the most beautiful temples all over the island of Java in Indonesia. Located only 17 km northeast of the city of Yogyakarta. Easily accessible through one of the many (too many) travel agencies that dot the backpackers neighborhood in Yogyakarta. A better option is renting a motorbike and visiting Prambanan and other temples in the area by yourself.



The complex was built between the end of the 7th century and the beginning of the 8th century, when Java was ruled by the Buddhist Sailendras in the south and the Hindu Sanjayas in the north. Continue reading

The best bookstores in Southeast Asia

If you are still in love with the day after day more threatened paper book, you might be interested in visiting one of the following bookstore through Southeast Asia.

The bookstore chain Kinokuniya is unbeatable in Thailand, Malaysia and Singapore with a huge amount of titles covering every topic. Don’t be too excited though, the prices of the books are the same you can find in the West. Most of the stores have a small cafeteria far from cheap of course. Monument Bookstore reign in Cambodia, Laos and Myanmar. Fahasa has different branches in Ho Chi Minh City and in the main cities all over Vietnam. Continue reading

East Timor Visa Application Authorization in Kupang

If you are travelling overland towards East Timor (Timor Leste) you must have the “Visa Application Authorization“, a document which will allow you to obtain the East Timor visa at the border.

I personally met people who went to the border without the Visa Application Authorization document and they had to come back to Kupang, which is roughly 300 km east.

The procedure to obtain the Visa Application Authorization is Continue reading

Departure Tax from Indonesian airports

An update about the Departure Tax from the Indonesian airports.

Prices are based on what I had to pay on August 1st 2013 (Bali-Jakarta and Jakarta-Dubai),

Departure Tax for international flights 150.000 RP

Departure Tax for domestic flights from Bali 40.000 RP

Departure tax for domestic flights from Ende airport on Flores Island  10.000 RP

Please use the contact form in case the prices displayed above have changed or if you know the Departure Tax from other Indonesian airports.

Last updated: August 30, 2013 at 2:36 am

Guest House Grand Jitra in Bengkulu

Grand Jitra Guest House exteriorBengkulu on the west coast of Sumatra island is an ideal place to break up the long journey between interesting places like Tanjung Setia in the south and Padang in the north.

Grand Jitra hotel is the best place to rest after the innumerable bends on the road. With the options suggested by Lonely Planet I did not have too much luck. The “boutique hotel” Splash was full and prices were crazy (588.000 RP for the standard) staff not exactly friendly. Another attempt in Hotel Samudera Dwinka with a much friendlier staff and more reasonable prices but with the same result “sorry sir we are full”. Continue reading