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Come with us to see the REAL Indonesia

An old man Orangutan in North Sumatra’s Gunung Leuser National Park near Bukit Lawang – part of our REAL North Sumatra and Java Tour


Restrictions imposed because of the COVID-19 pandemic mean Better Tours activities have been temporarily suspended. Our programs will resume once international flight restrictions and Indonesian Visa and other restrictions are eased. If you would like to be notified when our tours resume  then please drop us an email from our CONTACT page.

Safe, high interest, premium tours for discerning mature travellers

Truly ANOTHER experience of a lifetime

Yes, we say ANOTHER experience of a lifetime …. because if you have an inquiring mind it’s likely you have already notched up special and memorable adventures.

And if you haven’t, then after your first tour with us you will soon be out there looking for more … maybe even joining us once again to explore other regions of wonderful Indonesia.

We go to places and meet smiling people who are different, intriguing, refreshing, humorous, sometimes surprising, and, above all, warm, welcoming and interesting.

We explain and help you to understand and truly appreciate and respect the culture, the history, the society and the different outlooks, values and lifestyles.

We create opportunities for you to make connections with some of the Indonesian people you meet. They may even become realationships that endure for years to come.

We see all the big attractions and also wander off the beaten track – but not too far, because we have all worked hard enough and long enough to deserve comfort, security and safety.

But we will be exploring roads less travelled because that’s where the good stuff is … the REAL INDONESIA that most of the rest of the world is yet to discover or too nervous to seek out.

And we do it all safely, securely and in comfort!

Exploring Indonesia

This FREE, 10-part GUIDE tells you stuff you need to know to enjoy easy, safe independent or group travel in Indonesia with a minimum of fuss.

Wonders of Wonderful Indonesia in this Tourist Authority video

Student William Damario Lukito made this beautiful compilation  

So, welcome aboard. Charge your camera, punch your curiosity button and let’s read up, sign up and go enjoy seeing, experiencing, learning, absorbing, appreciating and having FUN!

New Places, New Faces

New places, new peoples and new experiences to inform and challenge – thoughtful tours for mature and thoughtful people.

Interesting and Fun

We don’t just look – we learn, we understand, we appreciate, and we respect. And we have plenty of FUN along the way.

Fully Escorted Comfort

Authentic adventure – with safety, security and comfort. Adventure doesn’t have to mean roughing it or taking silly risks.

Jungles and cascading streams, rare and fascinating wildlife, traditional villages, iconic natural and man-made wonders, rumbling volcanoes up close, vibrant and colorful cities, and warm and welcoming people – plus quality accommodation and FOOD!

That's the story of our REAL North Sumatra and Java Adventure ...

Mystical, beautiful and more than 1,000 years old – the Prambanan Temple complex is part of our North Sumatra-Java Adventure

Cosmopolitan Medan

Medan is a bustling, cosmopolitan commercial and business center and a regional economic powerhouse – it is big, boisterous, cluttered, crowded, noisy, heavily trafficked and often gritty and untidy, But  …

Bukit Lawang Orangutans

The name orangutan means “forest person” in Indonesian, a tribute to the intelligence, learning ability and behaviours of our gentle arboreal primate cousins. We see them in their natural habitat …

Cool & Beautiful Berastagi

Berastagi is where the well-to-do elites of colonial Medan spent weekends and holidays relaxing and enjoying the temperate climate – lush, beautiful and 4500 ft above sea level in the Taro Highlands …

Lake Toba - Natural Wonder

Lake Toba should rank up there with places like the Grand Canyon, Uluru, the Great Barrier Reef, Hainan Bay and the Niagara, Victoria and Angel (Venezuela) falls as one of the world’s great natural attractions …

Meet the Batak Community

A Batak word to remember  is “HORAS” – it’s the traditional catch-all Batak word of greeting loosely meaning “hello and welcome” and also used to say “good health” or “goodbye” (and “bless you” if you sneeze). You will hear it often …

Jakarta - the 'Big Durian'

It is impossible to consider you have seen the REAL Indonesia if your itinerary doesn’t include at least a brief visit to Jakarta – South East Asia’s massive and important megacity of more than 30 million people (and still growing) …

Bandung - City of Flowers

We pass roadside warungs (stalls) and small restaurants offering local foods, especially rabbit satés with a spicy peanut dipping sauce, a local specialty. Then we drive through sweeping vistas of lush and oh-so-orderly tea gardens – interest and beauty everywhere …

Java up Close by Train

In our age of budget airlines and constant hurry few visitors know of Indonesia’s superbly scenic train journeys. We experience two of them – the Argo Wilis from Bandung to Yogyakarta and the Sancaka Pagi  from Yogyakarta to Mojokerto …

Yogyakarta - Culture Capital

Yogyakarta exudes energy from a rich tradition of more than 1300 years of culture, history, empires, dynasties, conflicts, rebellions and spectacular achievements. For many it’s the intellectual, artistic and cultural capital of Indonesia …

Exploring a very Special City

Yogyakarta is a safe and easy place to enjoy independent exploring, either by yourself or with friends. This special city welcomes around 450,000 international visitors a year … there is almost always someone nearby who can help you make yourself understood, give you directions and answer questions …

Prambanan and the Ramayana Ballet

‘AWESOME’ will be the word that immediately springs to mind as you begin to explore the Prambanan Hindu temple complex near Yogyakarta. You will be asking yourself just who were these people who built and carved these ornate and beautiful structures more than 1,000 years ago? …

The Magic of Borobudur

Borobudur is more than just the world’s biggest Buddhist temple – it also is a special, iconic place with a fascinating story and an aura to match … Borobudur is now a UNESCO World Heritage site and Indonesia’s most visited tourist attraction. After you have been there you will understand why …

Surreal Other World of Mount Bromo

The mighty smoldering peaks belching clouds of smoke and surrounded by the swirling mists of a Mt Bromo sunrise illustrate thousands of brochures, articles and book covers. But no iconic photograph or words can substitute for seeing and experiencing the real thing close-up …

Malang - Charm & Surprises

Prized by the Dutch of the colonial era for its mild highland climate, leafy, historic Malang is consistently said to be Java’s most relaxed and charming city. It is famed already for it’s colonial buildings and broad avenues but it is now becoming widely noted for serendipitous surprises …

Surabaya - City of Heroes

To the Indonesian people Surabaya is Kota Palahwan – ‘The City of Heroes’ – for the sacrifices of its citizens and their inspirational role in the national struggle for independence. Their stand put Indonesia in the vanguard of new nations leading a wave of  de-colonization that changed the face of Asia …

Surabaya - a City Transformed

Surabaya is the influential capital of East Java and until little more than 100 years ago ranked as the largest and richest city in the Dutch East Indies. But it was also known for its grubby streets, poor facilities, traffic jams, corruption and more … until the transformation began! Now it’s a new-look place to visit …

The Kind of Hotels we Choose

At Better Tours Indonesia we try to choose beautiful lodgings with character, facilities, traditions or histories that make them special and memorable. Typically, they are among the best available places to stay in each location. We believe in COMFORT — Adventurous travel need not mean roughing it …

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Safe, high interest, premium tours for discerning, mature travellers