Sumatra 12 day tour, Indonesia

“This twelve day tailor made tour introduces you to the magic of Sumatra – from otherworldly volcanoes to ancient sites to the tropical jungle that orangutans call home.”

Highlights

Padang | Sangkar | Bukittinggi | Ngarai Sianok | Sihepeng Botanical Garden | Sijornih Waterfall | Lake Toba | Samosir Island | Tomok | Brastagi | Orangutan Rehabilitation Centre | Banda Aceh | Pulau Weh

Description of Sumatra 12 day tour, Indonesia

This 12-night tour shows you the highlights of the beautiful Indonesian island of Sumatra. It is a magical place of rugged, mountainous terrain, smoking volcanoes, ancient historical sites and home to the welcoming Batak people.

The tour starts in Padang where you will be met by your English speaking local guide who will take you through their country. Your trip takes in ancient sites including the site of the Minangkabau Kingdom, Pagaruyung Palace, the famous clock tower of Bukittinggi, and Balige. You will be inspired by traditional craftsmanship including silver work and hand woven cloth; puppet show performances; lunch with locals and abundant fruit markets where you can sample local delicacies and fresh fruit drinks.

You'll also have plenty of time to enjoy the island's natural beauty with a trip to an orangutan sanctuary, a trek through the jungle, visits to several impressive waterfalls as well as the myriad of canyons, volcanoes and mountains you will pass through.

Finally, you will end your stay on the idyllic island of Pulau Weh where a snorkelling or diving experience is included. Enjoy the resorts facilities and relax for two nights before heading home.

Day-by-day experiences

Day 1:When you arrive at Padang’s Airport, you will be met and transferred to your hotel where you can enjoy the remainder of the day at leisure.
Day 2:After breakfast, you will drive to Bukittinggi, stopping at the enormous crater lake of Sangkar with its dramatic backdrop. Bukittinggi is the cultural home of the Minangkabau people. Surrounded by active volcanoes, often shrouded in mist, the town itself sits at 930m above sea level giving the air a refreshing coolness. (B)
Day 3:Explore the town and surroundings of Bukittinggi starting with the impressive canyon of Ngarai Sianok, which is riddled with caves and tunnels built by the Japanese during World War II. Next head to Minangkabau Museum to see an impressive collection of traditional costumes, weapons, sculptures and wood carvings and pay a visit to the town’s large clock tower ‘Jam Gadang’. Visit Fort de Kock, built by the Dutch in 1825, Lake Maninjau, another beautiful crater lake, and finish at Pandei Sikek, a village known for its silverware and woven cloth. (B, L, D)
Day 4:A day of beautiful scenery today as you drive past mountains, villages, rivers and valleys. You'll stop to see the pepper, clove and cinnamon trees at Sihepeng Botanical Garden and the beautiful Sijornih Waterfall before checking into your hotel in Padang Sidempuan. (B, L, D)
Day 5:After breakfast you will cross Lake Toba by ferry before checking into your hotel in Samosir and the rest of the day is at your leisure to explore. (B, L, D)
Day 6:Today you have a full day to explore Lake Toba and Samosir Island. You will have the chance to watch a traditional performance of called the tor-tor, or puppet dance. Enjoy lunch at a local restaurant before heading to Tomok to see the ancient tombs of the Batak kings. (B, L, D)
Day 7:Today you will visit a traditional longhouse, known as the dwelling of the ancient Batak Simalungun Kings, built around two centuries ago. You'll continue to Sipiso-piso Waterfall, an underground river which plunges from a cave into Lake Toba. After lunch you'll arrive in Brastagi, home to the Batak Karo people and wonderful fresh exotic fruits. (B, L, D)
Day 8:An early start to visit the Orangutan Rehabilitation Centre to watch as these majestic animals have their breakfast. You will then trek into the jungle to explore the wonderful vegetation and keep an eye out for the animals and birds which call it home. (B, L, D)
Day 9:This morning you will take a flight to Banda Aceh, before taking the ferry to Pulau Weh. Pulau Weh is a water lovers paradise with wonderful snorkelling and diving, magical reefs and relaxed beaches and resident turtles to spot. (B)
Day 10-11:Day at leisure to make the most of your beautiful surroundings. (B)
Day 12:Your guide will take you back to the pier for your return to the main island where you will be transferred to your hotel. (B)
Day 13:Enjoy the day at leisure before your return flight home. (B)

Travel Team

If you'd like to chat about this holiday or need help finding one we're very happy to help. The Travel Team.

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Departure information

This trip can be tailor made throughout the year to suit your requirements
Vouchers
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Responsible tourism

Sumatra 12 day tour, Indonesia

Carbon reduction

Your holiday will help support local people and conservation. We must also reduce CO2. Learn about the CO2 emissions of this holiday and how to reduce them.

Environment

Part of your trip includes a stay at an eco-lodge in Bukit Lawang which takes a leading role in protecting its surrounding rainforest. The lodges ae inspired by the environment and built predominantly with bamboo, a fast growing and sustainable resource. The kitchen uses fresh ingredients purchased from local farmers to ensure the provenance of the food and ensure guests are truly ‘eating local.’ Tinned foods are banned, particularly those that include palm oil - instead coconut oil and dairy butter are used. The lodge also has a program of re-use and recycling and waste water is filtered to ensure no pollutants can enter the river.

During your stay on Pulau Weh there are plenty of opportunities to explore the beautiful reefs and coral gardens which surround the island through diving and snorkelling. Your hotel can arrange for you to experience this with the help of a local dive school who work tirelessly to protect the reefs from destructive practices including reef bombing and shark fin fishing.

At the Orangutan Rehabilitation Centre you will have the opportunity to watch as these endangered animals enjoy their breakfast and learn a little more about the important work that the centre undertakes. By providing medical care and rehabilitation for orphaned orangutans and those who have been illegally kept as pets, along with important scientific research, the park is working towards increasing the orangutan population, educating local communities on their welfare and learning more about these fascinating creatures. Along with learning more, your visit and entrance fees all help to continue their work.

Community

Supporting the community plays an important part in your visit to Sumatra. You are accompanied throughout your trip by an English speaking local guide. As a visitor, you benefit from the inside knowledge and first-hand experiences being shown around by a local can bring and your guide and their family benefit from guaranteed employment.

On Samosir island you will be treated to a traditional dance called the tor-tor performed by local dancers and enjoy lunch in a local restaurant. As well as participating and having the chance to meet and speak to local inhabitants, anything you spend during your visit helps to boost their livelihoods.

Our ground agents, who are with you throughout the trip, take community matters very seriously especially focusing on helping underprivileged women gain an education and skills they need to create a living. Much of this is hospitality based as the tourism industry continues to grow in Sumatra. By booking this tour, you are contributing to their success.

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