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Are you a travel expert? A been-there, done-that, Southeast Asia pro? Your next stop: Kalimantan Island in Indonesia. Shared with Malaysia and the tiny country of Brunei, it’s a playground for true adventurers. Hotels in Balikpapan, a town on the island’s east coast, are your home base for monkey sightings, mangrove walks and more. Plus, you’re just a jump across the Java Sea from Bali.
Eco-travellers and nature lovers should head 15 km north to Sungai Wain forest to trek through lowland woods and see sun bears and long-nosed monkeys—if you’re lucky. Those who prefer a clearer path can take a day trip to the Margomulyo mangrove forests, 40 km northeast. The wooden boardwalk takes you through Balikpapan’s “Secret Garden”, and you’ll still get the chance to see those funny-looking primates.
Beach bums who want a holiday with more seclusion than party-central Bali packages have come to the right place. You can kick back with a coconut and grilled corn on any beach in Balikpapan, but the one 10 km east in Manggar has the best vibe. When you’re done sunbathing, tuck into uber-fresh crab and prawns with rujak (chopped tropical fruits) and hot and sour sauce.
Balikpapan is served by Sepinggan International Airport (BPN), 10 km east of the city centre. Taxis in Indonesia are cheap and convenient, especially from the airport, so hop in and drop your bags at your Balikpapan accommodation. Cabs are great for exploring, too, but the rates won’t be set like airport taxis. Or you can hop on a minibus and really live like a local.
Ready for epic stories and pics that will impress all your dinner guests? You’ll soon be authoring your very own Jungle Book thanks to Wotif’s deals on Balikpapan hotels. We’ve got great deals on Bali accommodation too, to complete your Indonesia holiday with a little party time.
Hotels in Balikpapan start at AU$12 per night. Prices and availability subject to change. Additional terms may apply.