12 Best Tips For An Authentic Indonesia Visit
If you are a real foodie, chances are that you will need to make the most out of your tours and explore everything that the country you are visiting has to offer. Not only the scenery and the feel, but also the food and the culture.
In case Indonesia has been on your travel bucket list for a while, chances are that you will need to plan your journey with what you would like to explore in mind. Below you will find a few tips on how to get started with having the time and culinary experience of your life.
Stay with the Locals
One of the cheapest and most engaging ways of visiting Indonesia and finding out about the country is staying with the locals. There are plenty of ways you can do that; get a local guide to arrange your trip, find people you already know in the country, or get yourself invited through an online group.
You can only experience the real lifestyle and food customs of the country if you sit around locals’ table.
Save Money Booking Around the Monsoon
If you would like to have the best value for your money, you will have to choose the right time to fly and stay. If you choose your dates at the end or the beginning of the Monsoon season, you might get lucky with the weather and make the most out of your budget, too.
There are plenty of things to do that don’t involve trekking, and – if the locals can get used to the wet weather – you will be able to cope with the rain.
It might be a good idea to stay longer and book a trip that takes you to different areas in the country, while seeing various cultures. You can set up your base in Jakarta, and go on different trips that will allow you to see more of the countryside and how people live in smaller places.
There are great value accommodation across the capital, such as sewa apartemen harian bulanan available for short term rental. If you are a keen foodie, you wouldn’t want to go for an all inclusive package, anyway.
To cut your costs even further, and to get close to locals and the essence of Indonesia, you might want to sign up for a volunteering program abroad.
You will not only get the feel of the country, but also make friends for life, There are plenty of great ways you can find volunteering programs, depending on what you are interested in.
You might volunteer for a charity, a wildlife organization, or an international research group, and get your accommodation and your language tuition provided.
Become an Apprentice
You might not have thought about becoming an apprentice in an Asian country, but it will really give you a new perspective on life.
Make sure that you are researching the opportunities and get the chance to learn the language, new skills, and mix with people who were born in Indonesia. They can help you navigate your way through the food map of the country, and recommend dishes you should try, such as Indomie, Pempek, or Siomay.
Visit Remote Areas
To connect with nature and make the most out of your time in Indonesia, you cannot just focus on the big city life. Take your time to visit remote areas and make the most out of your cultural and gastronomic journey.
However, you will also have to make sure you stay safe on your journey. Either book a tour or get company, so you can experience the country lifestyle and how people live, love, and make a living. Connect with traditional food customs and don’t forget about the religious festivals.
Try Street Food
If you would like to try some of the weirdest food eaten in the world, you might want to try the famous street food of Indonesia. There is a huge tradition of eating on the go and picking up delicious treats while shopping in Asia, and it is an experience you will never forget.
You might find hundreds of small stalls in the market where you can try different dishes for pennies all night. It is like a sushi bar, but without the carousel of plates. You can choose your favorite and take a notebook to remember their names for your food diary.
Get a Private Local Tour
To get insider tips on what to do and which dishes to try, you might book a private tour. Instead of getting one online, you can contact local travel agents, who will be able to create a custom itinerary with your preferences in mind.
The cost of transport is pretty low in Indonesia, and the more remote the area you are visiting is, the better prices you will get on accommodation. It is worth to have a local guide by your side.
Go Vegan for a Few Days and Book a Yoga Retreat
To go on a spiritual and culinary journey, you might want to book a religious retreat. You can practice yoga, mindfulness, or just meditate and get close to nature.
There are plenty of Buddhist retreats and holistic healing centers in Indonesia where you can get close to your true self and find out the secrets of your soul. Going vegan is optional, but you might be able to take the pressure of your digestive system for a couple of days and make the most out of your body’s ability to heal itself.
Learn the Skills
Once you have chosen your favorite food in Indonesia, you might want to try and recreate them at home. That is why you should think about going on a cooking course held by local authentic chefs.
No matter if you are interested in the latest creations of Asian chefs or the traditional dishes and the stories behind each, you will find the right cooking class in Jakarta where you will be taught by the people who are speaking good English and have experience passing on their skills.
Learn about the Religion and Traditions
Learning about the food traditions of the country you are visiting might not only help you learn new skills, but also introduce you to a new world view and belief system.
It might be a good idea to learn about the religious traditions of the country and the different legends and religious beliefs surrounding the dishes. There are traditional food items for every celebration and religious festival, so you might want to hang out for longer to learn about the ingredients, origins, and the myths.
As the culinary culture of Indonesia is seasonal, you might want to spend a few months to get the full picture.
Whether you would like to cut the cost of accommodation, or to share the experience, you can take friends with you to your food tour. They might have a different taste and take on the food you can try, but having company will make you feel more secure, and you will have someone to discuss the culture, reflect on the food, and hang out with.
If you are planning a trip to Indonesia this year, you will need to make the most out of your trip and experience the culture, the traditions, and learn how food is made in this colorful country. Plan your visit ahead of time, and take a friend to have someone to share the experience with.