With nine days in Indonesia, you can soak up the sun and fascinating Balinese Hinduism on a classic Bali and Gili Air trip or unpack your bags and base yourself in Ubud and Sanur for a relaxing culture and beach-filled Bali vacation. Discover ancient traditions on a tour of South Sulawesi, with four nights in Rantepao and two days relaxing on the white sands of Bira. If wildlife, virgin jungles, and a massive supervolcano lake sound like your thing, opt for a nature-packed excursion of Sumatra.

Itinerary #1: Discover Bali: Ubud, Seminyak & Gili Air

Perfect for first-time travelers to Indonesia, this beach and culture-filled itinerary ticks off the highlights of Bali and Gili Air. Discover the rice terraces of Ubud and embark on a VW Safari Tour before spending three days relaxing on the tiny island of Gili Air. Finish your trip in Seminyak, home to trendy shops, beautiful beach bars, and vibrant sunsets.

Sunset over rice terraces in Bali
Sunset over rice terraces in Bali
Day Highlights Overnight
Day 1 Arrive in Bali, Transfer to Ubud Ubud
Day 2 VW Safari Tour, Kintamani, Mt Batur, Tegallalang & Bali Swing Ubud
Day 3 Monkey Forest & Ubud Temples Ubud
Day 4 Transfer to Gili Air via Padangbai Gili Air
Day 5 Free Day on Gili Air Gili Air
Day 6 Free Day on Gili Air Gili Air
Day 7 Transfer to Seminyak via Padangbai Seminyak
Day 8 Explore Seminyak Seminyak
Day 9 Depart Bali  

Welcome to Bali! Greet your driver at the airport and settle in for a drive through the terraced rice fields to Ubud, where you'll shake off any jet lag with a wander through the town's historic temples. Next, a full-day vintage VW convertible safari takes you from the Tegallalang Rice Terrace and the iconic Bali Swing to the volcanic village of Kintamani. On your last day in Ubud, you'll have time to visit the Sacred Monkey Forest, walk through the charming elephant door at Goa Gajah, and learn more about the Hindu religion at the holy springs of Tirta Empul before leaving Bali for the tiny island of Gili Air.

The following two days are yours to take in the many splendors of Gili Air, including snorkeling and scuba diving in warm, clear waters and watching the sun sink into the ocean with a cocktail in hand. Refreshed, you'll speed boat back to Bali and continue to the buzzing town of Seminyak. A world apart from the quiet inland of Bali, Seminyak is filled with unique shops and colorful restaurants and comes alive at night with trendy nightclubs. Spend your final day relaxing to the sound of waves until it's time to make your way to Denpasar Airport for your flight home. Learn more

Itinerary #2: Winter in Bali: Temples, Countryside & Beaches

Soak up the sun and learn about Balinese culture on this slower-paced Bali-focused itinerary. With four nights in both Ubud and Sanur, you can unpack your bags and enjoy day trips to Sidemen, Nusa Penida, and the Bukit Peninsula while having plenty of time to relax in between.

A beach-side swing in Bali
A beach-side swing in Bali
Day Highlights Overnight
Day 1 Arrive in Bali, Transfer to Ubud Ubud
Day 2 Ubud Volkswagen Safari Tour Ubud
Day 3 Day Trip to Sidemen: Local Culture & Customs Ubud
Day 4 Explore Ubud's Temples  Ubud
Day 5 Transfer to Sanur via Sukawati Market Sanur
Day 6 Day Trip to Nusa Penida & Lembongan, Snorkeling Adventure Sanur
Day 7 Bukit Beach Tour & Kecak Dance Show Sanur
Day 8 Jimbaran Sunset Cruise & Barbecue Dinner Sanur
Day 9 Depart Bali  

After arriving at Denpasar Airport in Bali, you'll immediately head for the hills and spend your first four nights in the culturally-rich town of Ubud. Known as the spiritual heart of Bali, Ubud presents the perfect mix of relaxation and discovery. You can browse Ubud Market, wander among rice paddies at Tegallalang Rice Terrace, and discover the beautiful Hindu temples of Gunung Kawi Sebatu and Tirta Empul. Take a day to head deeper into rural Bali and embrace the simple way of life in Sidemen, then visit the magnificent temples of Pura Besakih and Pura Kehen.

The second half of your trip brings you to the beachfront town of Sanur, known for its sleepy vibe. Enjoy a relaxing evening, as you'll head out early the next morning for a day of snorkeling in Nusa Penida and around Nusa Lembongan. Back on land, you'll beach-hop along the Bukit Peninsula, stopping at Padang Padang Beach and Thomas Beach, before watching the sunset at Pura Luhur Uluwatu Temple, sitting atop a 230-foot (70 m) cliff. Enjoy a morning on your own, then embark on an afternoon cruise near Jimbaran Beach and celebrate the conclusion of your adventure with a seafood barbecue on the beach. Learn more

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Itinerary #3: Indonesia's South Sulawesi & the Tana Toraja Tribe

Leave behind the trodden path and explore isolated landscapes on this nine-day South Sulawesi itinerary. Learn about ancient funeral traditions still practiced today in Rantepao and tour the floating villages of Sengkang on a motorized canoe, then spend your last two days between the beach and ocean in Biras.

Cultural demonstration in Sulawesi
Cultural demonstration in Sulawesi
Day Highlights Overnight
Day 1 Arrive in Sulawesi Makassar
Day 2 Transfer to Rantepao & Tana Toraja Rantepao
Day 3 Road Trip to Toraja Villages Rantepao
Day 4 Day Trip to Tinombayo, Palawa, Sadan & Bori Rantepao
Day 5 Day Trip to Marante & Siguntu Rantepao
Day 6 Transfer to Sengkang, Visit Floating Villages Sengkang
Day 7 Transfer to Bira via Kajang Village Bira
Day 8 Boat Trip to Liukang Island Bira
Day 9 Transfer to Makassar, Depart  

Your journey begins in Sulawesi's largest city, Makassar. Take in the new-age architecture and bustling streets, as tomorrow, your driver will take you into the highlands of South Sulawesi to Rantepao, your base, for four nights. Leave western culture far behind as you visit the villages of Lemo, Suaya, Kambira, Londa, and Kesu-Kesu and learn about their fascinating funeral ceremonies. Next, a day trip takes you to the terraced rice fields near Tinombayo and the crafty village of Sa'dan.

Before saying your goodbyes to Rantepao, learn about the erong (hanging coffins) on the limestone hills surrounding Marante and take in the rice paddies of Siguntu on a scenic nature walk. On your way to the floating villages of Sengkang, stop at Ke'te Kesu, the oldest village in the Sanggalangi district, then spend your evening onboard a motorized canoe tour. Continuing south through the countryside and isolated villages, you'll trade in terraces for the white sands of Bira. Spend a day relaxing on the nearby Liukang Island, then transfer to Makassar to catch your flight home. Learn more

Itinerary #4: The Wonders of Sumatra: Nature, Culture & Orangutans

Go in search of orangutans, take a boat tour to remote villages on an ancient supervolcano caldera, and wander the local markets of Bukittinggi on this nine-day Sumatra itinerary. Topped with visits to the bustling cities of Jakarta and Medan, this itinerary is perfect for those who want to see the wild side of Indonesia without forgoing their creature comforts.

Sumatran orangutan swinging between trees
Sumatran orangutan swinging between trees
Day Highlights Overnight
Day 1 Arrive in Jakarta, Optional Activities Jakarta
Day 2 Flight to Sumatra, Transfer to Bohorok Bohorok
Day 3 Orangutan Tour, Transfer to Medan Medan, North Sumatra
Day 4 Transfer to Samosir, Stop at Sipiso-Piso Samosir Island
Day 5 Tour Samosir Island Samosir Island
Day 6 Transfer to Padang Sidempuan Padang Sidempuan
Day 7 Scenic Road Trip to Bukittinggi Bukittinggi
Day 8 Bukittinggi Free Day Bukittinggi
Day 9 Transfer to Padang, Depart  

Begin your trip with a day in Jakarta, Indonesia's capital and largest city of over 10 million residents. Visit the Salamat Datang ("Welcome") Monument and take in the magnificent mosque of Istiqlal. After a flight to Medan and a five-hour drive, you'll trade in city streets for the jungle of Gunung Leuser National Park. A three-hour guided hike through the Sumatran rainforest showcases the incredible wildlife of the region, and fingers crossed, you'll spot the Sumatran orangutan in its natural habitat.

Rest up on your drive back to Medan and spend an evening exploring the city before traveling by car and boat to Samosir, an island on Lake Toba. Spend a day learning about the tribes and communities on a boat tour to Tomok and Ambarita, then leave the island behind and transfer to Padang Sidempuan. Settle in for a full-day road trip, stopping for a dip in the Aek Sijornih waterfall and to straddle the equator in Bonjol. Then spend the next day exploring Bukittinggi and the surrounding highlands until it's time to transfer to Padang, where you'll catch your onward flight. Learn more

More Great Indonesia Itineraries

Looking for more inspiration for your trip to Indonesia? Check out these other Indonesia itineraries, with outdoor adventures, cultural trips, and best-of tours to hit the highlights. 


Map of 9 Days in Indonesia - 4 Unique Itinerary Ideas
Map of 9 Days in Indonesia - 4 Unique Itinerary Ideas