Traveler’s Story – Sepideh B.

Traditional_Village_Flores

Wise Steps Travel, 17.04.2019 

We thought the incredible journey of Sepideh B deserves to be shared with others. She did a very active version of a journey through Indonesia. On her birthday she watched the sunrise over the famous Mount Bromo which was particularly important, as her name literally means sunrise. Here is what she had to say about her customized solo trip through the beautiful archipelago.

Why did you choose to travel to Indonesia in the first place?

Watching a documentary movie named “The Act Of Killing” made me want to do some research on Indonesia. The more I read about the country, the more I wanted to go there and see it for myself. I have to say, wanting to see its natural landscape became the most important factor in making the decision.

Which Islands in Indonesia have you visited on your journey?

I visited Yogyakarta, Borobudur, Bromo & Ijen on Java island. Pemuteran, and Sanur in Bali, and then Maumere, Kelimutu, Bajawa, Ruteng, and Labuan Bajo in the island of Flores. 

Why did you choose to travel solo with a local tour operator and not as a backpacker?

 I knew I wanted to see & experience as much as possible over the course of 16 days, so it was important for me not to waste time & to use some proper help. A local tour operator helps you to avoid the mistakes & mishaps that will happen when you’re visiting so many places for the first time, in a short period of time, and don’t even speak the language.

What do you think is important when choosing a local tour operator?

I’d say clear communication is the most important factor for me. First of all, the travelers should be able to state exactly what their expectations are from the trip, and the company also should be able to answer and explain in detail, how they can help the travelers in meeting those expectations. 

Would you say there was a big difference between your imagination of Indonesia before the trip and your actual experience? If yes, can you describe shortly?

Yes, I’d say there was a big difference. Every place that I visited, turned out to be a hundred times more beautiful than what I had imagined, and this is not an exaggeration.

Did you experience any major challenges during your journey that you didn’t expect when booking the trip?

Thankfully no major challenges, the language barrier was at times a little difficult for me personally, but nothing to worry about, with some time & patience everything gets communicated in the end.

What were your top three personal highlights on this journey?

 It’s so difficult to pick only three! It’s more like 25 highlights for a 16-day trip. If I must pick three I’m going to write those that come to mind first.

  1. Seeing the three lakes in Kelimutu, and trekking to the village of Moni was one of the most magical experiences of my life.
  2. Trekking, and walking for a total of 12 hours in the mountainous area of Bromo was an out of this world experience, I absolutely loved it. 
  3. Snorkeling in the Komodo dragon national park would be my third pick, there are so many types of fish there, I spent hours watching them, I could go on for many hours more! 

How would you describe Indonesia in one sentence based on your experience?

Indonesia is of the most exquisite places in the world, that everyone should visit. 

Why do you think it is important to be responsible as a traveler?

It’s so important to be a responsible traveler. You are visiting a country and its inhabitants, you’re welcomed with open arms, I think it’s paramount to treat the place & the people with humility, and respect. 

Is there anything you would like to recommend to other travelers that are interested in visiting Indonesia?

I advise other travelers to do as much research as they possibly can, Indonesia is a very diverse country, there is so much to do, and so much to see, and so much to learn! Learn some Indonesian phrases, it goes a long way! And finally, prepare to be amazed in the best ways possible.

 

Thank you Sepideh for being a fantastic traveler and support to our social travel enterprise, it was a pleasure to have you!

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