Java Holidays: An Overview

You'd think that the most populous island on the planet (135 million souls - and counting - on an island half the size of Great Britain) would be somewhere to avoid like the plague while on holiday. You'd be wrong. Sure, the capital Jakarta is probably worth a miss, but if you want to discover what makes Indonesia tick, then Java, the capital island, should feature on any holiday itinerary.

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Why we think you’ll love it

  • There are 45 active volcanoes on Java, and they are what makes the vegetation so lush
  • The Kaliklatak plantation is home to over 1,000 working on coffee, cocoa, rubber clove and spice plantations that made the island wealthy - stay here for an authentic Javan experience

Luxury Java Holidays: The Detail

Java's history - through centuries of Hindu and Buddhist imperial rule to the arrival of Islam and the later commercial exploitation of the Dutch East Indies - perfectly mirrors that of this nation comprising 17,000 islands in total. History alone makes Java a fantastic luxury holiday destination but there's more, so much more...

On arrival into Jakarta, and after you have adjusted to being surrounded by the capital's sheer volume of humanity, head as soon as possible to the surprisingly sparsely populated countryside. The scenery is wonderfully picturesque, with lush and extremely fertile (the main reason for the population explosion) green terraces taking advantage of all possible space. It's at this moment you'll notice what else populates Java in huge numbers - volcanoes. There are over 50 on the island, with 20 or so proving in recent years that they are far from dormant. As a backdrop to almost every view on the island, the summits can prove quite a menacing sight on the horizon but at sunset they are stunning with a wisp of smoke rising from the craters.

At least one volcano visit while holidaying on Java is a must, and touristy thought it may be, Mount Bromo is still worth exploration. Watching the sunrise over the caldera is hugely memorable, with dawn clouds spilling over the crater edge and the light changing across the four different peaks. After watching the sunrise from the crater rim, you can then head into the crater itself and then ride across to Small Bromo, the only active summit.

Away from the sheer natural beauty of the island, there are several cultural highlights including the stunning ten-tiered Buddhist temple of Borobodur, which has miraculously survived some 1,200 years of earthquakes and volcanic eruptions. Less fortunate but still worth a visit is the Hindu temple at Prambanan, which sustained a great deal of damage in a recent earthquake. The main temple is currently off limits, but the serene gardens surrounding the temple are still lovely.


Top picks for Java

Kura Kura

Kura Kura

Java

The Kura Kura Resort occupies its own 22 hectare island, dotted with swaying palms and set amid tropical gardens, crisscrossed with sandy paths. A retreat far removed from the bustle of Java, often the only sound heard will be the calls of the exotic birds that call the island home.

Where to stay

The Phoenix Hotel

The Phoenix Hotel

Java

Housed in a colonial building dating back to the early 1900’s, The Phoenix is full of character and is a fantastic base from which to explore Yogyakarta and the surrounding area.

Where to stay

Jiwa Jawa Resort

Jiwa Jawa Resort

Java

Perched high in the mountains of Pobolinggo, East Java, The Jiwa Jawa Resort is practically on Mount Bromo’s doorstep.

Where to stay

Plataran Borobudur

Plataran Borobudur

Java

Overlooking the rolling Menoreh hills, and the ancient Buddhist Stupa Borobudur, Plataran Borobudur is an eco-conscious, boutique resort nestled in the hills of Tanjungan Village.

Where to stay

Amanjiwo

Amanjiwo

Java

Located in the heart of rural Java, the mood at Amanjiwo certainly takes after its name – meaning ‘peaceful soul’.

Where to stay

MesaStila

MesaStila

Java

This chic and cheerful boutique retreat is by far one of the best out of a, let’s face it, pretty good bunch of places to stay in Indonesia. Encircled by volcanoes MesaStila sits in a coffee plantation in Losari, a place which is ripe in jungle and simply stunning scenery.

Where to stay

I've just sat down with the pack you sent. Just wanted to say that it is a great first impression of Original Travel

Kathryn

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