Choosing your honeymoon destination can be a daunting task. Lucky for us, we have plenty of beautiful spots to choose from that's close to our shores. And if you're looking for a destination that's relatively near and somewhat more affordable but no less beautiful, why not consider Indonesia? This vast country is chock full of incredible spots. Whether you're looking to relax by the beach or explore exotic locations not many have been to, read on to find out the best honeymoon places in Indonesia!
1. Belitung Island
Belitung Island is part of Bangka-Belitung province in South Sumatra. It caught the eye of the region when it was featured in the film adaptation of the acclaimed Indonesian novel, “Laskar Pelangi” (Rainbow Troops). You don’t have to be a fan of the movie, though, to enjoy Belitung. There are excellent beaches and snorkelling opportunities at Belitung and its surrounding islands, such as Pulau Lengkuas.
Getting to Belitung is pretty easy nowadays, with direct flights available from KL and Jakarta, and it takes less than 2 hours to get there (only an hour if you're coming for Jakarta), making it an easily accessible escape away from hustle and bustle of the city! Many visitors take advantage of the various beautiful islands in the province by going for island-hopping excursions, though that's not all you can do here. Visit Danau Kaolin (or Kaolin lake), a former mining area that's become famous for its light blue waters that starkly contrast against hills of white sands. You can also take a day trip to Pulau Lengkuas to have fun on the beach, visit old Dutch forts and visit the picturesque lighthouse. Read on to find out more about the charms of Belitung
The best time to visit Belitung is from April to September, during the dry season. As weekends tend to see a lot of locals coming from Jakarta, plan your trip during weekdays for your best bet at escaping the crowds.
You can't think of honeymoon spots in Indonesia without thinking of Bali. This island is one of, if not the most popular tourist destination, for locals as well as foreigners.
Bali is a much-loved destination for a variety of reasons. Between the vast array of accommodations available (including beautiful villas that just scream romantic
), the awesome sunsets by the beach, rich cultural attractions and the scenic inland areas, there's plenty for visitors to enjoy. And not to forget the food - Bali has numerous halal and Muslim-friendly eateries
where you can indulge in yummy meals. Check out this list for more must-do activities in Bali
Even if you've visited Bali before, you shouldn't rule out a second visit for your honeymoon. The island is large enough such that most people aren't able to fully cover all the different areas waiting to be explored. Beyond the popular Kuta area, there's plenty to uncover in areas like Ubud, Nusa Dua, Jimbaran, or Sanur. Bali is also filled with plenty of photogenic spots that are now a must-visit for those looking to up their Instagram game. Visit the now-famous fields of Tegallalang, or stop by Wanagiri to take some beautiful couple photos.
For more reasons on why Bali is perfect for your honeymoon, read this
3. Raja Ampat
Next on our list is a place off the beaten path that's increasingly capturing the attention of many, Raja Ampat. This regency is an archipelago of over 1,500 small islands located in the West Papua province and is home to some of Indonesia's most stunning scenery. It's not a straightforward trip to reach Raja Ampat - visitors usually fly from Jakarta to Sorong (about a 4-hour flight) and from there, take a ferry to Waisai (about 2 hours away). But the journey will be so worth it! Alternatively, if you're coming from Singapore or KL, you could also fly to Makassar, then take another to Sorong before taking the ferry to Waisai.
Raja Ampat is known for being a diver's paradise, so if you're a couple that likes to dive or snorkel, you must take advantage of the many different dive spots available throughout the area. But besides the beautiful underwater marine life that can be found in Raja Ampat's waters, it's an amazing place explore, boasting scenery unlike any other place you can find in Central Java or Sumatra. There are now many accommodations scattered across the various islands (popular areas to stay include the Waigeo, Kri, Arborek and Pam islands), ranging from humble abodes to more upscale offerings, but it's a general consensus that Raja Ampat is a place to disconnect and put your phone away - perfect for you and your partner to focus on each other.
Raja Ampat has a much more religiously diverse population, split between Muslims, Christians, as well as those that practice indigenous beliefs. Generally, halal food is easiest to find in the town area of Waisai (which is on Waigeo) and it may be difficult to find on the smaller islands - it's best to check with the accommodation you're booking on whether halal food is provided.
A place that has become synonymous with Raja Ampat and is often cited as a must-visit place is the Piaynemo islands. Located about 2 hours away from Waisai, this cluster of islands has become famous for its lookout point which offers an incredible view of the islets scattered across azure waters.
Need more reasons to visit Raja Ampat? Read this
Next on our list is Lombok, Bali's neighbouring island that's come up as a place to visit in its very own right! Often described as less crowded and cheaper than Bali, Lombok may just be the spot for you to a more tranquil honeymoon.
Credit: Qunci Villa, Lombok on Facebook
In terms of accommodations, Lombok has its fair share of pool villas and beachfront resorts
that would make for the perfect post-wedding escape. It's also home to the impressive Mount Rinjani (the second-highest volcano in Indonesia!) which is not only a beauty to behold but could be an amazing bucket list item to check off your list as a couple by trekking it together (it takes anywhere between 2 to 4 days to summit the volcano). If that doesn't sound appealing, you can opt to go island-hopping instead. Lombok is near the Gili Islands, which has stunning beaches and plenty of dive/snorkel spots so you can get your fill of sea activities.
Another advantage of Lombok is the fact that in contrast to Bali, Lombok has a predominantly Muslim population, meaning halal food and Muslim-friendly amenities are even easier to find.
5. Labuan Bajo (Flores Island)
Next on our list is Labuan Bajo, the gateway to Komodo National Park, home of the Komodo dragons. Labuan Bajo is a town located on the western tip of Flores Island in the East Nusa Tenggara province. Many people come to Labuan Bajo in order to visit the Komodo National Park (which in itself includes not just Komodo Island but also the smaller Padar and Rinca islands), Kelimutu (a volcano that has beautiful crater lakes) or to see the lifestyle of the Manggarai people, the indigenous people that live in the area.
Many people are drawn to Komodo island to see the Komodo dragons in the flesh.
While the government previously announced plans to close Komodo Island (only Komodo Island and not Padar or Rinca islands) for a year in 2020, the decision has been reversed. We understand that while visitors are still allowed to visit Komodo Island, there may be certain restrictions on the number of visitors allowed as well as potential plans to charge higher fees to see the komodo dragons, though this has not been confirmed yet at the time of writing. If you're planning to see the komodo dragons, it's best to double-check the fees and pre-book your trip with reputable operators to help ensure entry.
One of the most iconic sights associated with Labuan Bajo is probably the viewpoint from the hiking trail on Padar island. Visitors that come to Padar island (usually as part of a tour package through the Flores islands) will hike up Padar Hill to reach a summit point that offers a fantastic view of the island. It's no walk in the park to get there (be sure to bring water and wear comfortable shoes!) but the scenery certainly makes up for it.
Our contributor Hakim travelled to Labuan Bajo sometime back and detailed more amazing things to do in Labuan Bajo plus useful tips from his experience
to help you have a great trip! Check out this article too for a further handy guide to the Komodo Islands
6. Gili Trawangan
Gili Trawangan is one of three islands that are collectively known as the Gili Islands (the other two are Gili Meno and Gili Air). Gili Trawangan is the largest of the three and has become a destination in its own right, one which would be perfect for your honeymoon! While those who stay in Lombok and also Bali can and often do make the journey to the Gili islands to island hope, dive or snorkel, an increasing number of people are opting to stay at one of the resorts on Gili Trawangan itself. Visitors typically fly to Lombok before taking a taxi to Bangsal, from which they'll travel by boat to Gili Trawangan. Alternatively, those who come from Bali can travel by speedboat from there too (it takes about 1.5 to 2 hours).
The Gili islands are generally very small (Gili Trawangan is only about 3km long!), so don't expect extensive commercial offerings. Instead, it offers a simple, more chill vibe that could be just what you need for your honeymoon! Spend your time exploring Gili Trawangan from end-to-end. You can bike across the island, travel to the other to Gili islands, go diving, snorkelling, or simply laze by the beautiful beaches. Don't forget to snap photos of the awesome sunsets you're bound to see, or at one of the many beach swings that have now become famous on Instagram.
7. BintanCredit:Banyan Tree Bintan on Facebook
Bintan may not be the first place most people think of for their honeymoon, but this island located just an hour away from Singapore by ferry will surprise you! Bintan is filled with beachfront resorts that can easily give you the romantic escape you're looking for - check out places like Banyan Tree Bintan
, Club Med Bintan
, or Indra Maya Villas
that provide luxurious comfort you won't want to leave. If you're looking for more affordable options check out spots like Cassia Bintan
or Nirwana Resort Hotel
Check out Holiday Villa Pantai Indah
for some beautiful pool villas located near Lagoi Beach! We stayed here during our visit to Bintan and fell in love with the spacious villas.
Don't be fooled into thinking that you'll be relegated to just staying at the resort - Bintan actually has plenty to do (as we found out when we visited the island for ourselves
!). Visit Gurun Pasir Busung, a former sand mine that's become a popular photo spot thanks to its bright blue lagoons and sand dunes that make it look other-worldly. For a slice of local culture, take an excursion to Tanjung Pinang or visit nearby Penyengat Island that has a strong history tied to the former Malay sultanates of the region. You can even go on a tour of Bintan's mangroves along the Sebung River to see a totally different side of the island's natural landscape.
Not every couple wants to just lounge by the beach resort on their honeymoon. For those that love exploring cultural and historical sites or just exploring a new city, Yogyakarta (or Jogja) would be perfect. Home to the impressive Borobudur and Prambanan temple complexes, Yogyakarta is renowned for being a centre of arts heritage and education (there are many universities here and a corresponding large student population).
While the temples are a must-visit, you'll also have the opportunity to visit many of Jogja's other sights. Walk along the bustling Malioboro road to take in the ambience or go shopping for souvenirs to bring home. Indulge in one of many popular halal eateries to sample local food.
You can also sign up for a 4WD tour up to Gunung Merapi (an active volcano), or for those who love to a good photo op, take an excursion to Kalibiru National Park (though fair warning: they'll charge you to have your photo taken at one of the many platforms that overlook the beautiful valley and lake). Don't forget to also visit Timang Beach, which has become famous thanks to its gondola/cable cart that one can ride across swirling seas to the rocky outpost. For those that don't dare ride the gondola, there's a bridge you can walk across now too! Check out other thrilling stuff to do in Jogja
Rounding out our list is Sumba Island, a destination that is definitely up and coming. Located in the East Nusa Tenggara province (same as Flores Island), Sumba is a gem of (as of yet) mostly untouched beaches and beautiful waters that will blow you away. It's not for those looking for an easy, low-effort holiday, as this still largely undeveloped island means infrastructure and amenities aren't extensive. But for the adventurous couple, Sumba holds so much beauty for you to discover together. To get to Sumba, most international visitors will head to Bali, and from there take a flight to Waingapu airport located in the main town in Sumba.
Given Sumba Island's remote location, it's advisable to make your travel arrangements to the area through a reputable tour operator or one that specialises in the region.
For those that visit, you'll be rewarded by some incredible beaches, such as Mandorak beach. And while Sumba is relatively unknown to most of the world, it has become popular in a certain group of people - surfers! Surfers have come to experience the rolling waves that can be found off of Sumba's shores for years now, and they are even a prominent reason why the island is home to some upscale resorts, including the ultra-luxurious Nihi Sumba resort
Another fascinating side of Sumba is the local villages. Sumba has many hilltop villages where you'll find traditional houses with tall, thatched roofs, and you can also observe locals making traditional crafts. The locals, who are predominantly a local ethnic group called the Sumba, have lived in the savannah landscape of the island for ages and are known for historically being fierce warriors on horseback.
Indonesia is a treasure trove of incredible spots and breathtaking natural scenery that is calling to be discovered. And it would be an awesome place for a honeymoon, whether you're looking for a beach retreat, a chance to explore a new city together, or just want an escape to exotic locations to discover the unknown. It's time to start booking that unforgettable trip for two!