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HomeFar East Holidays & ToursIndonesiaThe Highlights of Sumatra
Indonesia, Sumatra | 11d/8n:

The Highlights of Sumatra

Highlights of this tour:

Bukit Lawang, Gunung Leuser National Park, the Bohorok River in a traditional canoe, Lumbini Park, Berastagi, Batak Karo villages, Lake Toba, the island of Samosir.

This package holiday includes the following:

  • Return flights from the UK to Medan
  • 8 nights at 2–4-star hotels
  • 8 x breakfast
  • Local, English-speaking guide on excursions and tours
  • Travelling in a car or minibus with air conditioning
  • Emergency hotline staffed 24/7 throughout your tour
  • ATOL certificate included

Comprehensive package of excursions included:

  • Hiking in Gunung Leuser National Park – known for its orangutans
  • The highland area Berastagi – known for its passion fruit and the Batak Karo people
  • Indonesia’s highest waterfall Sipiso-piso
  • The world’s largest crater lake, Toba
  • Round tour of the island of Samosir
  • Anai Waterfall
  • Admission fees to the sights and attractions mentioned

Our promise to you:

  • The top highlights along this travel route
  • A well-constructed travel itinerary. No time wasted & world class logistics
  • Guaranteed price, with no hidden surcharges
  • Departure guarantee – Tour requires minimum 2 participants
Single room supplement £200
Discounts for large groups
The price is based on 2 people
Choose this tour because:

Sumatra is the largest island in Indonesia, boasting wonderful nature and culture. Tropical rain forests, rivers, waterfalls, picturesque paddy fields located on terraces on the steep slopes, and lush, volcanic landscapes with mountains, crater lakes and deep gorges make up the landscape of this former Dutch colony.

On this tour, you experience Gunung Leuser National Park and its orangutans and canoe on the Bohorok River in a traditional canoe. The tour also takes you to the Berastagi highlands with a visit to Lumbini Park before you visit Lake Toba and the island of Samosir. Along the way, you visit the fascinating traditional villages where you gain insight into the villagers’ culture and rural life with ox-drawn carts and crafts.

Detailed Itinerary
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Day 1: Flights from the UK
Day 1: Flights from the UK

Departure day, where you will fly to Medan with connecting flights along the way.

Day 2: Arrival in Medan
Day 2: Arrival in Medan

You land in Medan, which is the capital of Sumatra and the country’s third largest city with more than two million inhabitants. On your arrival at the international airport Kuala Namu, you go through immigration and receive your visa before collecting your luggage. Your guide is waiting for you in the arrivals hall, holding up an Asia Tours sign, and you are driven to your hotel where you will spend the night.

In the afternoon, you go on a city tour to see the city’s magnificent buildings, including the Sultan’s palace Maimun, the Grand Mosque and the Chinese temple, Vihara Gunung Timur. You are then shown around Kesawan, Medan’s old town.

Overnight stay Hotel Polonia 

Day 3: Medan – Bukit Lawang
Day 3: Medan – Bukit Lawang

After breakfast, you are picked up and driven to Bukit Lawang, which is around 100 km west of Medan. On the way, you stop at a rubber plantation where you learn how natural rubber is extracted. The closer to Bukit Lawang you get, the more dominant the rainforest that surrounds the city. On your arrival at Bukit Lawang, you check in, and then the rest of the day is at your leisure.

Bukit Lawang is a pleasant little town bordering Sumatra’s rainforest, which is part of the Gunung Leuser National Park, located on the Bohorok River. The park has one of the world’s richest ecosystems and is one of only two remaining habitats of the endangered Sumatran orangutan. The forest is also home to langurs, gibbons, macaques, wild boars, peacocks, giant squirrels and flying squirrels, among other animals. The rarest include tigers, leopards, Sumatran elephants and Sumatran rhinos, and you will need more than a little luck to see them.

Overnight stay Bukit Lawang Ecolodge 

Day 4: Bukit Lawang
Day 4: Bukit Lawang

Today, one of the absolute highlights of the tour awaits you, as you are going out in search of the rainforest’s endangered orangutans.

After a hearty breakfast, it’s time for a walk along the riverbank, and you cross the Bohorok River in a traditional canoe before continuing on foot into the lush rainforest. From here, you set off on a three-hour hike, where you discover Sumatra’s unique flora and fauna. You have a local guide and a ranger with you, who help locate the wildlife.

The afternoon is at your leisure to enjoy Bukit Lawang’s stunning surroundings. You might, for example, want to cross the bridge and visit the village where you can sense the authentic, local atmosphere. By the river, you can watch the women of the village washing clothes and the local children playing and bathing.

Overnight stay Bukit Lawang Ecolodge 

Day 5: Bukit Lawang – Berastagi
Day 5: Bukit Lawang – Berastagi

This morning you will be taken to Sumatra’s inner highlands Berastagi, which are located in an area dominated by the volcanoes Sinabung and Sibayak. Along the way, you make a stop at Sembahe River. On your arrival at Berastagi, you visit Lumbini Park, which offers a beautiful view over the mountain landscape and the evergreen nature. The park is especially well known for its beautiful gold pagoda, which is Indonesia’s highest and a copy of the Shwedagon Pagoda in Myanmar. You then visit Berastagi’s colourful fruit market, where you can sample the excellent passion fruit. Before you reach the hotel, you stop at Guandaling Hill, where on clear days you can see the area’s active volcanoes.

Overnight stay Grand Mutiara 

Day 6: Berastagi – Lake Toba - Samosir
Day 6: Berastagi – Lake Toba - Samosir

Today, the tour continues to Lake Toba and the island of Samosir. You are picked up from the hotel after breakfast and driven to Parapat via the Japanese road, with several stops along the way. You visit the traditional Batak Karo village of Dokan, where you can experience the old traditional houses, which make a home for up to 6 families. Buffalo horns are hanged at each end of the rooftops. Originally, these were intended to protect the occupants against evil spirits, and served as a status symbol. Over time, they have become a reminder of traditions past.

You drive on to Indonesia’s highest waterfall Sipiso-piso, which is 120 metres high, and the old royal palace, Rumah Bolon, which affords stunning views of Lake Toba. The lake is 100 km long, 30 km wide and 505 m deep, making it the world’s largest crater lake.

Afterwards you visit the old royal palace of the Batak Simalungun.

The tour continues to Pematangsiantar, passing scenic tea plantations along the way. On your arrival at Parapat, a ferry is waiting to sail you out to the island of Samosir, a gem in the middle of Lake Toba – a trip of around 45 minutes. You arrive at your hotel in the afternoon, where the rest of the day is spent at you leisure.

Overnight stay Tabo Cottages

Day 7: Samosir
Day 7: Samosir

After a hearty breakfast, you go on a tour of the island. The day will provide a good insight into the Batak Toba villages’ traditions and way of life. The first visit of the day is to the village of Ambarita, which in olden days was the execution site and meeting place of the ancient Sialagan kings. Today, the village is known for its stone tables and chairs. After the visit, you continue to the village of Simanindo, where you will discover the traditional Batak Toba dance, Sigale-gale, and the village’s Batak museum, formerly the home of Rajah Simalungun – a Batak king with 14 wives. The museum has a small but interesting collection of brass kitchen utensils, weapons, Dutch and Chinese porcelain, sculptures and Batak carvings. Afterwards, you visit the old Sidabutar kings’ tomb in Tomok. You return to the hotel in the afternoon.

Overnight stay Tabo Cottages

Day 8: Samosir
Day 8: Samosir

The day is at your leisure to explore this beautiful island. You can choose to relax or go on a combined bike ride and hike, which you can arrange on site. This tour starts at Tomok and takes you past green paddy fields and plantations. You stop at the village of Garoga, where you meet the smiling inhabitants and see their traditional houses. You can park your bicycle and hike down to a small waterfall with a local guide, a tour of about 45 minutes. From Garoga, you  cycle on through small villages, passing various plantations where chilli, cocoa, peanuts, beans, etc., are grown. The tour ends at Ambarita, and you cycle back to the hotel where you can enjoy the rest of the day.

Overnight stay Tabo Cottages

Day 9: Samosir – Medan
Day 9: Samosir – Medan

You are picked up from the hotel and driven to Padang via the Anai Valley where you will see the Anai waterfall, which is 25 metres high. You are then driven to Medan, where you spend the night before heading home to British climes. The drive to Medan takes between 6 and 7 hours.

Overnight stay Aryaduta Hotel, Medan 

Day 10: The journey home begins
Day 10: The journey home begins

You are picked up from the hotel and driven to the airport, from where you fly back to the UK with connecting flights along the way.

Day 11: Arrival back home
Day 11: Arrival back home

You land in the UK after a fantastic holiday.

Combination options after your tour
Extension to Ubud and Munduk, 4 nights
Extension to Ubud and Munduk, 4 nights

Per person in a double room:  + £720
Per child under 12: + £720
Single room surcharge (when two or more travelers): + £220


If you have not yet had your fill of exploring the beautiful nature of Indonesia, you have the opportunity to extend this trip with a fantastic tour to the “Island of the Gods”, Bali, where you stay in the green highlands of Ubud and Munduk.

Ubud is often referred to as Bali’s cultural centre. The lush highlands with green paddy fields, deep gorges and rushing rivers also attract artisans and creative souls. This is also where you will find some of the most spiritual temple processions in Bali. It’s hard not to fall a little in love with Ubud!

Even further north lies Munduk, which is surrounded by the most beautiful scenery, with untamed jungle, lakes and ancient trees. It is all waiting to be explored on an exciting hike, canoe trip and visit to local villages and local temples, where the body is cleansed of bad energy.

You can also choose to purchase the following excursion:

Overnight stay Anumana Hotel  / Puri Lumbung Cottages 

Beach holiday extension in Seminyak, 5 nights
Beach holiday extension in Seminyak, 5 nights

Per person in a double room: + £435
Per child under 12: + £435
Single room surcharge (when two or more travelers): + £149


Round off your tour with a wonderful beach holiday in Seminyak, located on the outskirts of Kuta.

Seminyak is known for being Bali’s hippest and most exclusive beach resort, offering everything from legendary massage treatments to trendy beach clubs and surfing. If surfing is not your thing, just enjoy the beach, relax at the hotel’s pool, shop to your heart’s content at all the cool stores, or immerse yourself in Seminyak’s gallery scene. End the afternoon with a walk along the sea front or at one of the town’s laid back beach clubs, where you can sit back in a soft beanbag and bury your feet in the sand as you prepare for the beautiful sunset over the Indian Ocean. In the evening, you can eat your way through Seminyak’s array of good restaurants, finishing off with a colourful cocktail at one of the town’s trendy bars.

Overnight stay Seminyak Paradiso Hotel 

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