Example Itinerary

Exotic Wildlife and Volcanic Landscapes of Sumatra

Duration
14 days / 13 nights
Price Per Person
From $4,400
Interests
Wildlife, Trekking
Destinations
Indonesia
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Explore the exotic island of Sumatra as you embark on this thrilling 14-day journey throughout the world’s sixth largest island. Visit the island’s ancient sites, wander through its charming villages, and take in the verdant forests and breathtaking landscapes. Hop on the open road to distant and hidden corners of the mysterious island by car, taking you far off the tourist trail. You will drive from Medan to Gunung Leuser National Park, Lake Toba, Samosir Island, Sipirok, Bukittinggi, Ngarai Sianok, Lake Maninjau, Padang, Kersik Tuo, Mt Kerinci, and Kersik Tuo, catching dazzling views, looking for rare wildlife, and chatting with friendly locals along the way.

This itinerary is an example. It’s designed to inspire you and provide you with thoughtfully curated ideas. You can choose to do this exact itinerary or completely personalize it. All trips are 100% bespoke.

Highlights

  • Native Mega Wildlife: Search for rare orangutans and even rarer tigers in Gunung Leuser National Park.
  • Padang Cuisine: Among the most popular food in maritime southeast Asia, Padang cuisine is ubiquitous Indonesia, Malaysia, and Singapore. Try these famed foods, whose signatures are use of coconut milk and spicy chili, in its hometown.
  • Primitive Lands: The peaceful Lake Toba surface belies its violent history. It is the caldera of an ancient supervolcano whose largest eruption altered human history millions of years ago. Here a remaining village illustrates the remnant megalithic culture of the local area.

Day-by-Day

Day 1 Gunung Leuser National Park

Touch down in Medan, the capital of North Sumatra province, where you’ll be greeted and escorted to your vehicle. From here, you’ll watch Sumatra’s lush natural scenery go by on the 3.5-hour drive to Gunung Leuser National Park. Check in to your room at the Bukit Lawang Eco-Lodge upon arrival. Relax this evening and settle in to your new setting.

Day 2 Medan

Wake up bright and early this morning, and step into the wilds of Gunung Leuser National Park. As you trek through the thick throngs of jungle, keep your eyes peeled for the rare Sumatran Tiger and Sumatran Orangutans, as this is one of their few remaining natural habitats. This afternoon, you’ll drive back to Medan, and check in to your room at the JW Marriott.  

Day 3 Lake Toba

After breakfast, take a scenic drive to Lake Toba. Situated on the site of a supervolcano, Lake Toba is the largest volcanic lake in the world. The eruption at this very site some 77,000 years ago was the largest eruption of the past 25 million years, and, according to some theories, its effects drastically altered human history and the current genetic makeup of the world. The seven-hour drive will be broken up with memorable stops at fruit markets, charming villages, waterfalls, and more. A 45-minute boat journey will be the final leg, taking you to Samosir Island, located within the lake. Check in to your hotel, the Toledo Inn.

Lake Toba

Day 4 Lake Toba

This morning, you’ll explore Lake Toba’s largest volcanic island, visiting Ambarita Village to learn about the remnant megalithic culture of Batak Toba. Visit the goosebump-inducing stone courtroom, where those found guilty were decapitated after sentencing. Next, it’s on to Simanindo Village, where you’ll be entertained by a folk-dance presentation from villagers young and old. Before you return to the hotel, stop by Tomok Village and check out its Batak Chieftain Mausoleum. 

Day 5 Sipirok

Check out of your hotel this morning and drive down a winding road to Sipirok. The scenic nine-hour drive will take you past the majestic Bukit Barisan mountains, and you’ll stop en-route to check out a traditional Batak village, pineapple farm, local market, and sulphur hot springs. Upon arrival, you’ll check in to your room at Torsibohi Hotel.

Day 6 Bukittinggi

Drive inland to the heart of Sumatra today. The 10-hour drive to Bukittinggi may be long, but picturesque views of mountains, rivers, valleys, and traditional villages will keep your interest. You’ll make stops at a lovely waterfall, botanical garden, school, and even a monument marking the equator. Check in to your room at either Royal Denai or Pusako Hotel for a good night’s rest. 

Bukittinggi

Day 7 Bukittinggi

This morning, step into Sumatra’s great outdoors with a three-hour hike through Sianok Canyon, ending at Koto Gadang village. From here, you’ll be driven back to Bukittinggi. In the afternoon, you have the option to either spend time with local residents at a family home, where you’ll dine on traditional Padang food, or you may explore the colonial sites of Bukittinggi at your own leisure.

Day 8 Bukittinggi

Set out for a scenic three-hour drive to Lake Maninjau, one of West Sumatra’s three crater lakes. Its crystal waters are ideal for a refreshing dip. If you’re feeling up to it, you have the option to take a hike along the way from Puncak Lawang, down the hill to the hotel, or you may return via minivan. You may enjoy the rest of the day at your leisure.

Day 9 Padang

Back on the road this morning for a drive to Padang, capital of West Sumatra province. You’ll take the coastal route, stopping at the lovely Artha beach for a rest. Once in Padang, take a sightseeing tour of Padang beach and the city’s colonial Chinatown. Check in to your room at Pangeran Beach Hotel and relax for the evening.

Day 10 Kersik Tuo

This morning, hit the road and drive seven hours to Kersik Tuo, a village perched on the edge of a national park. You’ll make stops along the way at the Twin Lakes, Lake Diatas, and Lake Dibawah, as well as a waterfall and tea plantation, where you can chat with local workers. Check in to your room at Subandi Homestay upon arrival in Kersik Tuo.

Kersik Tuo

Day 11 Mt. Kerinci

Start early this morning and begin a challenging and rewarding trek up Mt Kerinci. The trek up Southeast Asia’s highest active volcano will take six to eight hours. You’ll set up camp over 10,000 feet above sea-level and sleep under a magnificent blanket of stars.

Day 12 Kersik Tuo

Rise early this morning and watch as the sun rises above the horizon, painting a vivid and beautiful landscape across Sumatra. Hike three to four hours more to reach the mountain’s summit, upon which you will be standing on the world’s 33rd highest peak. Next, it’s time for the downward journey, which takes approximately six hours. You’ll overnight once again in Subandi Homestay.

Day 13 Padang

You’ll start your day with sightseeing in Sungai Penuh, where you can see sulphur hot springs, an ancient mosque, and Lake Kerinci. It’s an eight-hour drive to your next destination, a journey which is broken up by a stop at the picturesque Bungus beach for a swim in its calm waters. Relax tonight at Pangeran Beach Hotel.

Day 14 Departure

Enjoy your final morning in Padang at your own leisure, relaxing at your hotel until it’s time to be transferred to the airport to begin your journey either home or to your next exciting destination.

TERMS AND CONDITIONS

Price is based on double or twin hotel room occupancy and includes accommodation, transfers, car/driver, English-speaking guide, activities and entrance fees, breakfasts and some casual lunches while touring. Flights and optional special activities will be quoted separately. Most personal expenses, including dinners, alcoholic beverages, spa treatments and gratuities can be paid on the spot while traveling. Prices may vary depending on season, choice of accommodation and other factors.

Why Remote Lands?

Exclusively Asia

With Remote Lands you'll travel with people who have made Asia the solitary focus of their own lifelong adventure. As our guest, you'll discover Asia on a journey that is completely, authentically your own, adapted from our own remarkable experiences and adventures over the years.

With Remote Lands you'll travel with people who have made Asia the solitary focus of their own lifelong adventure. As our guest, in the continent that our north American founders Catherine and Jay have adored and explored for decades, you'll discover Asia on a journey that is completely, authentically your own, adapted from our own remarkable experiences and adventures over the years.

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