Indonesia was my absolute fav. Even it started a bit strange and unexpected, I still have great memories of it 😁
‘Yesterday was our most strangest day since we are travelling. We will literally wing everything in the next few days as we are in a place where no westerns coming…..So, from the beginning.We landed yesterday from Kuala Lumpur to Jakarta and then we had a connected flight to Jambi City which is literally in the middle of Sumatra. The reason we wanted to fly here was to climb mount Kerinci which is the highest mountain in Indonesia but little we knew,its very far from here. We only found out when we landed,we are in a place for no westerners. Don’t get me wrong people aren’t nasty or rude, they are actually extremely helpful and nice but the amount of stare we get when we walk on the street is more than in the last 7 weeks all together. People even taking photos of us,waving,smiling,some says hi,some look at us strangely. There are no others. Just us…even we booked a 2star hotel (which is more like 1star or no star), there are only Asians. After we realised our mistake to fly here -we should have flown to Pedang- we checked online (at least there is internet) and it says there should be a bus from here takes us to a place called Kersik Tuo where we could start the climb. As soon as we got the infos we went out to find a tour office, or something similar. On the map I saw something so we headed there. Soon we found out, there is no office. I had the idea to go into the big hotels -still no westerners- and ask there as our receptionist didn’t speak in English I thought,maybe here. I was right. They gave a us an address of an office that does tours. As it seemed to be far, she called us a taxi. And from that moment he turned into our private taxi driver. He took us to the office but after a very long and painful conversation, it turned out,they didn’t actually have any info. The taxi driver had an idea to take us to the bus station where the bus goes from to see if they have anything. Off we went, and of course again,no one speaks in English. The taxi driver was extremely cute,he tried very hard. He helped us understand what the woman said at the station and again after a fairly long and actually pretty funny conversation in 2 different languages, we finally booked our bus ticket to a town called Sungai Penuh which is about 1 hour from the town Kersik Tuo by an other bus. The only thing is, we are not sure where the bus takes us exactly. On the paper it says SPN. That could mean Sungai Penuh and something with ‘N’ but that also could mean anything….we won’t find out as I tried to ask but the answer I got,”yes yes bus”. They know where we are heading so hopefully we won’t get lost. We read about both places, there should be some people in Sungai but as the bus is about 10 hours there from here,we travel overnight which means we will get there in the early morning,so again we are not sure how we will find the next bus. Will our bus take us to the other bus or just leave us in the middle of nowhere? We don’t know..we just hope it takes us to the next bus..
About mountain Kerinci: it’s summit is at 3805m, it takes a day and a morning to finish the climb up,so we could end up watching the sunrise from the top. It’s not going up in a spiral,it’s a straight ONLY uphill climb -not sure if we are ready for that-, it has 3 stops and we would camp on the 3rd stop and leave to the summit in the early morning. The mountain is an active volcano,last erupted in 2009. So it should be fine ☺️ From the top we can see the big crater. The climb takes about 2.5 – 3 days depending on the strength we have to climb it. It isn’t an easy climb and the weather doesn’t make it easier. It could be hot at the bottom,rainforest in the middle than freezing at the top so we need to have different layers. Apparently there are Sumatran tigers in the jungle as well… Going down takes a day. As it’s in a national park, we can not go just ourselves, we do have to hire a guide who takes us there. So it probably wouldn’t be that cheap but we really want to do it. Let’s hope we can get there first without any problem.
About prices. So Indonesian rupee is: £1 = 16,500IDR.
Accommodation was expensive to compare our budget, it was 250,000IDR/ night. Food can be as much as 40,000IDR (in a small cafe) or also 140,000IDR (Pizza Hut)
But ticket to the small village cost 150,000/person. Taxi was first 25,000IDR as that’s the minimum no matter where you go,even for a 5 mins ride and then it turns the meter on so second time we payed 80,000IDR. We are back to motorbikes,they are everywhere. I feel that the more developed a country,the less bikes you have there.I also think, this is the country of donuts! They are everywhere here! They were in every corner of Jakarta airport and now they are in Jambi City as well. Normally I’d be extremely happy for it and that would be my dream place, but recently I had some stomach issues so I try to keep bad food away for a little while. People are generally nice and helpful. The secret, always smile at them and they smile back. As I said here we are more like a monkey in the circus, everybody wants to see us. It feels flattering but also very uncomfortable. In all honesty,even though I like to see the ‘real’ deal, I can’t wait to leave from here. I’m not sure if I’ll have any internet in the next few days,so if I will disappear,that is the reason. I’ll text my family just to know we are still ok and as soon as I have internet,I’ll write the whole experience down.Wish us luck.☺️’