Indonesia has several claims to fame. It’s the one-time home of a young Barack Obama. It’s home to Bali – one of the most famous tropical hotspots in all of southeast Asia. It has the largest Muslim population of any nation in the world. But something you likely didn’t know: it is also home to a staggering range of colourful natural features.
If you like colour in your nature, Indonesia has no shortage of them. Here are just a few:
Rainbow eucalyptus trees
These amazingly colourful eucalyptus trees look like they’ve been painted by humans. But in fact, the tree’s bark is shed at different times throughout the year with the inner bark initially showing a bright green colour. This changes colour with exposure to the elements, changing to various shades of blue, purple, orange and maroon over time. The only eucalyptus tree to naturally grow in the northern hemisphere, it grows to 1.8 metres wide and more than 61 metres tall.
At the pinnacle of Kelimutu, a volcano in central Flores island, is a series of lakes that look too surreal to be true. There are three lakes, each with its own distinct shade of colour: blue, green and red. The colours, which vary from time to time, are believed to come from chemical reactions resulting from the minerals in the lake and triggered by volcanic gas activity. They look a lot like watercolour paints ready for a giant paintbrush to take a dunk.
Blue Stone Beach, Pink Beach and black-sand beaches
Even the beaches have their own distinct colours. There are numerous black-sand beaches along the southern coast of Bali, the result of volcanic rocks on the northern and western coastlines of the island. Because black absorbs sunlight, the sand and environment can be uncomfortably hot, but the beaches are still a striking sight.
Pink Beach – locally called Pantai Merah – has a mixture of white and red sand formed from pieces of foraminifera, a marine protozoan with calcareous shells, and is one of only seven of its kind in the entire world. It’s accessible via Flores’ Labuan Bajo and yet is in a remote area on Komodo Island, making for a very romantic spot. The Blue Stone Beach (Nanga Panda Beach) on Flores Island is equally charming, covered in striking turquoise stones.
These and many more colours in Indonesia can be seen on one of Nezasa’s Indonesian itineraries.