A Thousand Years of Healing Arts
Sink into the table and allow skilled hands to go to work. Discover the relaxing and restorative properties of massage arts perfected over a period of a thousand years, and blended from the world's great healing traditions. The islands of Indonesia are world-renowned for touch therapies, ranging from soothing administrations that promote a sense of wellbeing and calm to intense treatments that enhance circulation, restore posture and realign the bodies’ energies. And if beauty is the goal, equally effective traditions born from the spice trades and the traditions of the royals are used to refresh the skin with nourishing herbs, oils and emollients.
- Best for: Everyone, spa travellers, culture experiences and beaches
- Best season to visit: Year round
- Weather: Indonesia has a tropical climate with two seasons, wet and dry. Most regions, the dry season spans from May - Sep, with rain from Oct - Apr. Indonesia straddles the Equator. Areas near the coast remain in the 80s during the day
Spa and Wellness in Indonesia:
The islands of Indonesia have long been cultural crossroads that blended healing traditions from the Middle East, India and the Orient, including both Ayurvedic and Chinese medicine. For centuries, the island of Bali was recognized as the epicenter of the region's massage arts, which evolved into specialized disciplines for both therapeutic and aesthetic enhancement. Today, these traditions combine with additional international influences to inspire a diverse range of therapies.
Spa and Wellness in Indonesia Tips:
There are two primary types of massage therapy performed in Indonesia. The most common are Pijit, which uses medium to strong kneading and repetitive squeezing movements that provide relaxation and toning. Urut massage is more technical and often more intense, incorporating pressure point massage, acupressure and reflexology to treat specific conditions and promote healing.
Best Places for Spa and Wellness in Indonesia:
The Lantana Spa on Sanur Beach combines traditional Balinese massage with contemporary techniques and treatments. At the Spa at Siladen, body rituals based on ancient recipes use a combination of local Indonesian spices to heat and restore the body. Pasung Spa draws on ancient arts that tap the healing power of aromatic essential oils distilled from plant extracts and flowers. Tucked into a beachside palm grove on a remote island, the Spa at Wakatobi Resort delivers soothing relaxation in a spectacular natural setting.
What to Pack for Spa and Wellness in Indonesia:
Wear light and loose fitting clothing that allows the skin to breathe. Sandals or comfortable clogs that can be slipped off easily. A carry bag will keep personal items organized through the process of disrobing and dressing. Carry a water bottle and stay well hydrated.
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Passport and/or Visa Requirements
U.S. citizens require a valid passport to enter Indonesia. The passport must be valid for 6 months beyond the date of entry into the country. Two blank pages are required for the endorsement page stamp upon entry, which is a full-page stamp. This stamp acts as your visa which is valid for a 30-day stay for tourists. There is no charge for the stamp. There is a departure tax of 200,000 IDR approximately $16 U.S. which is paid at the airport upon departure.
There are no immunizations required by the Indonesian government. Please, check with your doctor or visit the website of the Center for Disease Control at www.cdc.gov for a listing of immunizations recommended for travel to Indonesia.
Culture and Customs
Indonesia is a nation of islands, and of blended cultures. Centuries of maritime trade have spread influences of Indian and the Far East, but individual island groups have also developed their own traditions and languages. The region is home to more that 300 distinct native ethnic groups, and 742 different languages and dialects. One trait that is common to all of these disparate communities is a tradition of hospitality and acceptance for travelers. The attentive service lavished on guests of resorts and liveaboards is not an affectation, but an integral element of a national psyche that take pride in playing the welcoming host. Equally apparent is a sense of tolerance, which allows the traditions of Hinduism, Buddhism, Confucianism, Islam and Christianity to co-exist. Indonesia is also a land of contrasts. Jakarta's steel and glass towers soar to heights of more than 1,000 feet in one of the most modern commercial centers in the region. A thousand miles away, islanders living in traditional villages still observe local traditions of ancestor worship and animism such as Kebatinan. And then there is the food. Indonesian cuisines are among the most vibrant and flavorful in the world, mixing intense spices and subtle overtones that draw from the culinary traditions of India, Holland, the Middle East, China, southeast Asia, Polynesia and Melanesia. Equally savory is the lively street food scene, where the rich aromas of bakso or gila fill the air.
Electricity, Phone and Internet Access
Electrical current is 230 volts, 50 Hz. The standard outlet is a two pin round socket. If your appliance is not labeled 100-240 Volt, 50-60 Hz input, you may need a step down transformer as well.
Check with your cell phone provider for international plans which may include text, data and voice. WiFi is available at most hotels, restaurants and cafes. The internet speed is slower, so in some cases, streaming and large file transfers might not be an option.
Tap water in Indonesia is largely not safe for drinking. Sealed bottled water is advisable and available for purchase.
Language & Currency
The official language is Indonesian Bahasa. English is widely understood and tourist resorts. There are over 300 languages spoken in Indonesia, with most Indonesians being bilingual in their local dialect as well as Bahasa Indonesia. Many Indonesians are multi lingual, also speaking English, Chinese and Japanese.
The currency is the Indonesian Rupiah (IDR) or recognized locally as Rp. Money may be exchanged at money changer offices which usually offer the best rate, with banks offering the next best rate and exchanging at hotels is often not the best rate. Money changers prefer newer undamaged bills and may refuse damaged currency. ATMs are available and credit cards are accepted at most resorts. Traveler's checks are not recommended.
Indonesia spans three time zones. Western Indonesia Time called Waktu Indonesia Time (WIB) including Java, Jakarta and Sumatra are 7 hours ahead of Greenwich Mean Time (+7 GMT). Central Indonesian Time or Waktu Indonesia Tengah (WITA) including Bali, Sulawesi and Lombok are 8 hours ahead of Greenwich Mean Time (+8 GMT). Eastern Indonesian Time or Waktu Indonesia Timur (WIT) including Irian Jaya is 9 hours ahead of Greenwich Mean Time (+ GMT). Indonesia does not observe daylight savings time.
Location, Size and Population
The Republic of Indonesia is a nation of islands in southeast Asia that lies between the Indian and Pacific Ocean. The name Indonesia is derived from the Greek words “indus” (India) and “nesos” (islands) and is the world's largest archipelagic nation with over 18,000 islands. It is bordered by the nations of Papua New Guinea, East Timor, and Malaysia and encompasses over 735,000 sq miles.
Approx. 260 Million people (2016).