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We will start our Sumatra trip visiting the city of Medan, where we will discover the authentic urban Indonesia, including the ruined Dutch colonial buildings, the Sultan’s Palace and the street food stalls that come to life as the sun goes down.
We will continue our Sumatra trip adventure towards Bukit Lawang. About 100 km northwest of the capital, Bukit Lawang is a riverside town on the edge of Mount Leuser National Park. In addition to primates, the park is home to hundreds of species of other mammals and birds, most of them rare or endangered. A private guide is essential during the visit, both to help us locate the orangutans in the dense jungle and to protect the delicate ecosystem. During our tour, we will do a walking route through the jungle interior admiring the native nature and fauna.
The adventure will continue visiting the Brastagi volcanoes and exploring the surroundings of Lake Toba. Located in northern Sumatra, Lake Toba is the largest volcanic lake in the world. We cross to the island of Samosir, which is in the middle of the lake, and will travel by car to visit some traditional villages and enjoy the special charm that characterizes this small island.
We will continue our trip towards Sipirok, along the way, we will visit several local plantations, a traditional market and we will bathe in some hot springs. We will address Bukittinggi to learn about some of its traditions and visit the Sianok canyon.
On the way to Kersik Tuo, we will stop at the twin volcanoes, bathe in a waterfall, and visit a tea plantation. We will make several routes on foot inside the impressive Kerinci Seblat National Park, where we will have the opportunity to enjoy the wonders hidden around Lake Gunung Tujuh . In Bukittinggi, visit the paddling hot springs of Semerup, the historic mosque and Lake Kerinci . Our last destination in this Sumatra trip will be the City of Padang, where we will end this great adventure.
Upon your arrival at the new Kuala Namu International Airport, Medan, your guide will be waiting for you with a sign with your name to take you to your hotel in an air-conditioned car.
Welcome to our Sumatra trip to discover the sixth largest island in the world famous for its rugged tropical terrain, wildlife and fiery volcanoes. The rest of the day will be free to visit the center of Medan on your own or rest at your hotel.
Accommodation: Le Polonia Hotel or similar
After your breakfast at the hotel, we begin the tour of the city of Medan visiting some of the most interesting places such as; the Grand Mosque, the Sultan’s Palace and the Chinese temple. After this visit, we continue our journey by car to reach Bukit Lawang.
Along the way, we will stop at the rubber and palm oil plantations. It will be a journey of about 4 hours while we will see what the local life of Sumatra is like until we reach the jungle area of Butik Lawang. Upon arrival, we will check-in at the new hotel.
Accommodation:Bukit Lawang Cottage or similar
Today after breakfast, we will start our trekking to the jungle to explore the nature of Gunung Leuser National Park and see the orangutans in the wild.
We will be in the place that houses more amount of tropical Flora and Fauna than in any other place in Indonesia such as Thomas leaf monkeys, long-tailed macaques, gibbons, black gibbons and other types of flora and fauna of the rain forest.
After a further trekking further into the jungle, we returned to the hotel. (Total duration of the trekking is about 3 hours). The rest of the afternoon will be for you and you can take advantage to enjoy the nature of Bukit Lawang or go visit the town.
Accommodation: Bukit Lawang Cottage or similar
Our Sumatra trip adventure continues. After breakfast, our compass heads towards Brastagi, a city and sub-district of Karo located at the junction of the main route linking the Karo Highlands of North Sumatra to the coastal city of Medan. The main attraction of the city are the two active volcanoes, Gunung Sibayak with its hot springs and Gunung Sinabung.
On our trip, we will have a stop at the Sembahe River and we will pass by Sibolangit, famous for its two-color blue lagoon. Upon arrival in Brastagi, we visit Batak Karo, the traditional Peceren village, the traditional fruit market, Batak Karo Church and Gundaling Hill.
Did you know that in North Sumatra, the Toba people affirm their identity as “Batak”, while other “Batak” explicitly reject that label, preferring the place to specifically identify themselves, such as “Simalungun”, “Karo”, etc.? In the afternoon, check-in at the hotel and rest.
Accommodation: Grand Mutiara Hotel or similar
After breakfast we will go to Parapat. During the trip we will find many impressive points. Among them, the impressive Sipiso Piso Waterfall, Bolon House (or Long House: it is the traditional house of North Sumatra), the former palace of the Batak Simalangun Kingdom and finally the wonderful view of Lake Toba (the largest lake in Indonesia).
We will go up to Simarjarunjung. Upon arrival in Parapat we crossed to Samosir Island, it is the only island that is located in the middle of Lake Toba. Upon arrival in Samosir, check in at your hotel and the rest of the time will be for you.
Note: Up to 6 people, we will cross to Samosir by car. More than 6 people by ferry.
Accommodation: Toledo Inn or similar
As always, before we start our visits, we have breakfast. Immediately afterwards, we will do the excursion around Lake Toba. We do it by car, visiting the many traditional towns of Batak Toba: the town of Ambarita. In Ambarita, we find the stone chair and table of the ancient palace of King Sialagan.
The next town is Simanindo. Those of you who want to dance can dance because there we can see traditional dance as well as the museum. After visiting Simanindo, the next destination is the Tomok village. In Tomok you can find the ancient tomb of King Sidabutar. Along our way, we will make stops. This time, we will do it in a school to see various activities of the children, visiting a town where people traditionally make manual weaving. Other stops are scenic spots, like graves. In the afternoon we return to the hotel.
Accommodation: Toledo Inn or similar
After our breakfast, we will cross back to Parapat. It is a small city in the province of North Sumatra that is located on the shore of Lake Toba. Upon arrival in Parapat, we continue to Sipirok, another small town in North Sumatra. Along the way, we will stop at a tropical pineapple, clove, and coffee plantation. We will visit the traditional market in Balige Sigur-gur and the Sipoholon hot springs.
Before arriving at Sipirok, we can enjoy nature walking on the banks of the Sarulla river, surrounded by rice terraces and seeing the villagers working and cultivating. Arriving in Sipirok, check-in at the hotel and rest of the day for you.
Accommodation: Tor Sibohi Hotel
Today we will leave Sipirok and continue the Sumatra trip towards Bukittinggi “high peak” (it is the core of the Minangkabau culture, located on top of a hill. Characterized by its endearing inhabitants, a relaxed atmosphere and fresh mountain air, Bukkittinggi is the ideal base for visit the surroundings of the mountainous lands of Minang).
During the trip, we will pass through the rainforests of Rimba Panti, and we will make a stop to see how the monkeys have fun picking up coconuts. We will visit the pepper, vanilla, cinnamon and cardamom plantations.
We must be prepared because today we will cross the equator line in Bonjol from the northern hemisphere to the southern hemisphere. In the afternoon we arrive at “Bukittingi” and directly check-in at the hotel.
Accommodation: Royal Denai Hotel
Already in Minangess lands, we will go to Minangkabau. Before arriving at our destination, we will pass Batu Sangkar and Tabek Patah. Along the way, we will also stop in Rao-Rao to visit a traditional village in Minangkabau where we will see how coffee is traditionally ground.
Arriving at Batu Sangkar, we continue to Pagaruyung to visit the duplicate of the Minangkabau Kingdom Palace and Museum. In the afternoon, we return to Bukittinggi by Padang Panjang and visit Pandai Sikat village to see traditional Minangkabau hand weaving and wood carving. We return to the hotel in the afternoon.
Accommodation: Royal Denai Hotel
After your well-deserved breakfast at the hotel, we will go to Kersik Tuo through Painan. Along the way, we will make a stop at Bungus Beach, passing the rain forest.
In the afternoon we will arrive at Kersik Tuo, the Kerinci Seblat National Park area, check-in at the hotel for a well-deserved rest.
Accommodation: Subandi Guest House or similar
After breakfast, by bus, we will go to Gunung Tujuh Lake in Kerinci Seblat National Park. The lake is huge, mysterious, located 1,995 meters above sea level and surrounded by primary forest and hills. Lunch will be served by the lake. The area is surrounded by the pristine lake known as the Sumatran tiger habitat, Sumatran elephants, primates, Sumatran endemic birds, as well as a research area for the “little man” living in the jungle around the lake.
Most of the day, we spend trekking exploring the surroundings of the park in search of animals, birds and exotic plants. We return to the hotel to rest and spend the night.
Accommodation: Losmen in Kersik Tuo
Today is a day in our Sumatra trip to enjoy the atmosphere around the Kerinci Seblat National Park area. Walking in the Kayu Aro tea plantation, exploring the river, having contact with local villagers.
Accommodation: Losmen in Kersik Tuo
After breakfast, we will visit the hot springs of Semerup, the old historic Mosque with its giant drum and Lake Kerinci. By car, we will drive to Bukittinggi via Painan. Stop at the Bungus beach. Upon arrival in Padang, we will have check-in at the hotel to rest.
Accommodation: Axana Hotel Padang
Today your Sumatra trip ends. You will have your free time in the city before moving to the airport to catch your flight to the next destination. End of our service. Terima kasih!
Our favourite time for travel in Indonesia is between April to October, although Indonesia is a great year-round destination, offering memorable experiences for all kinds of adventures. July to August are the peak summer months. In West to Central part of the weather is delightfully warm and it’s a popular time for travellers to visit for holidays, whilst if you wish to travel from October to April, the Eastern part Indonesia, like Banda and Raja Ampat, would be the best option.
If you wish to have a relaxing journey in Indonesia with less crowds, the shoulder months of April to June and September to October are ideal and slightly more economic. If you must travel in ‘high season’ but want to avoid the crowd, worry not, there are numbered of unbeaten track in Indonesia ready to be explored.
The tropics is a warm and often sweaty place, especially if you have Borneo or Sulawesi included in your travel. Check out our suggestion on What to Wear:
Depends on the type of travel, you may also need these in your What to Bring list:
Landtour and Trekking:
The city of Medan will welcome you who travel by air at the Kualanamu International Airport (KNO). Located in the Deli Serdang Regency, about 2 hours drive from Medan. The new Airport was opened in 2013 to replace the 85 years old Polonia Airport, that was getting too close to the city.
You can also get to Medan by sea from Penang (Malaysia). Passenger ships also operate between Medan and Jakarta.
We have classified our tours in 3 different classes. Always check which one suitable for your condition. If you have any doubt, you may consult to our travel expert.
Easy: Suitable for most people in good health. These trips can include short walk for days with around 2–3 hours in good paths and at low altitudes.
Medium: A reasonable level of fitness or technique is required, as these trips can require sustained endurance levels as the trip may include longer days of approximately 5-6 hours of activity or/and in higher altitudes, or snorkelling in strong current.
Hard: These trips are physically demanding and best suited for people with a high endurance level, good level of fitness and exercise regularly. Days can be long around 7-8 hours of activity, often at high altitudes, in remote regions and sometimes without a support vehicle nearby. Travellers may be required to carry their backpack, trip with trekking overnights without access to normal toilets or accommodations.
In Bukittinggi, we have a special one-day bike trip to visit town, rice fields, it can be as an optional tour for guests during their stay in Bukittinggi. For interested guests, the cost of a day of the bike tour is 200,000 IDR / Person.
A private speedboat adventure
Rivers less visited by tourists