I've asked elsewhere and a few people I know that have traveled through Southeast Asia - most seem to think that Indonesia should be avoided for now, especially since they aren't friendly to Westerners.
In all cases Thailand was Recommended over Indonesia
Sorry, but I cannot believe what I just read. Where else have you asked- what forum??
The people you have spoken to who are they?
Seems like the advice you are getting is from quite ignorant people or you are just being a troll.
For your information Westerner visitors are at the top of the social scale in the Indonesia culture- they will invite you to a wedding and make YOU guest of honour ove rthe bride and groom.
I can speak of this because it has happened to me on many occaisions on my visits.
I have been travelling in Indonesia 8 times now since 1997 and have never never had any problems and I am a single woman who travels alone, cannot speak the language and I have the most wonderful experiences there.
And after reading your post I am now wondering why I have been able to send out over 500 emails of information ( free itineraries and maps on Indonesia)- Aceh, Sumatra, Java, Bali Lombok) since 1st February this year in answer to all the emails I have received from about 450 travellers going to Indonesia from Mid Feb till end of this year.
I would say you have been very ill informed.
Pamela. ( heading back to Bali on 26 th Oct for 11 days and planning 8 months in Indonesia in 2010.)
Have a read of this recent trip report to Indonesia very detailed very informative.
[ Edit: Edited on 11-May-2009, at 05:26 by pPamela ]
Andy I have to say I’m with Pamela on this one Bali is amazing and have always found the people off Bali friendly and very accommodating.
Here is another positive story of an Australian family who recently spent their holidays in Indonesia namely Bukit Lawang in Northern Sumatra.
Thanks for the comments Pamela / Frankie!
Pamela, I thought it was strange which is why I'm still making sure what I'm hearing makes sense. Thanks for the links. Bukit Lawang looks pretty amazing - I would love to do something like that but not sure if I convince my friends to do it. We'll see I've emailed to see what their thoughts are on it.
Great to see you reply and to know you are genuine.
If you need information at any time as well as maps just send me a Private Message with your email and I will send on to you. I am currently working with about 10 different travellers in the world wanting info' about Indonesia.
Agree Bukit Lawang is fantastic and tangkahan even better to contrast.
Amazing places really friendly people.
One of the travellers I am in contact with, has been in Indonesia for 3 weeks and is riding his motor bike through Indonesia and he is continually amazed at the friendliness and kindness of the people- the Batak in North Sumatra and the Minangkabau in West Sumatra.
So even if you chose to do it by yourself you would meet others on the road and have a ball. I have loads of contacts/friends in Bukit Lawang and could put you in touch with the best people there and suggest great accomodation.
[ Edit: Edited on 14-May-2009, at 04:26 by pPamela ]
The others are absolutely right. I've been to both Thailand and Indonesia, and I have to say Indonesians are the friendliest people I have ever met! It's incredible how much a smile is appreciated there.
I hope you do choose Indonesia over Thailand. I feel that it has everything Thailand has to offer and it hasn't been corrupted by tourism.
Good luck convincing your friends!
Thanks MA for another endorsement for Indonesia.
Indonesia is truly an amazing country and in my words The Hidden Gem of South-East Asia.
Sad to know so many travellers do so called 'South East Asia' trip and never step foot in Indonesia.
They have NO IDEA what they are missing out on.
Sorry for the late reply but caught up with work etc. Anyway, would you have any recommendations on what to check out if you were only spending there 5 days or so?