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Exotic Delights of Java + Bali - President's Trip

12 days

Natural Wonders + Enduring Traditions
Hosted by Bob Drumm for only 16 Guests | Apr 20-May 1, 2020

Our Distinctive A+R Style

+ Thrill to two of the greatest sunrise experiences in the world… At the 9th-century temple complex of Borobudur and over Mt. Bromo.
+ Exclusive culinary tours and hands-on cooking classes reveal the unique flavors and traditions of both Javanese and Balinese cuisines.
+ Meet a Kris maker and learn about the physical, historical and even spiritual qualities of the unique curved-blade dagger of Java.
+ Expertly guided and gently paced excursions are a delightfully intimate way to experience Bali’s rural villages and verdant beauty.
+ Enjoy a private cultural discussion with the curator of the Sukarno Museum at his countryside villa.
+ Sit down to the 8-course farm-to-table Degustation Menu at Aperitif, where modern gastronomy and traditional Indonesian flavors harmonize artfully.

c Visit 3 UNESCO World Heritage Sites 

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Day
1

Apr 20, 2020: FastTrack VIP Arrival in Yogyakarta, Java

Amanjiwo - Borobudur, Java *

You’ll be warmly greeted at your arrival gate and personally assisted through immigration, baggage claim and customs formalities. Then meet our driver for the scenic journey to Magelang where you check in to Amanjiwo. Settle in to your lavish ultra-spacious suite and take in the breathtaking views of Borobudur and the surrounding valley from your private walled garden. This evening, we’ll gather for a Welcome Dinner.  Meals D

Day
2

Apr 21, 2020: Sunrise at Borobudur + Living Traditions of Java

Amanjiwo - Borobudur, Java *

Arise early this morning for an unforgettable sunrise experience at Borobudur c; built in the 8th and 9th centuries, it is a masterpiece of Buddhist architecture. Witnessing the sun rise over this vast complex is truly one of the most sublime experiences you will ever have! After touring Borobudur, we’ll come face-to-face with an older, but very much living tradition. With roots going back to the Bronze Age, the distinctive curved-blade Kris recognized today is said to have originated in East Java sometime in the 14th century. Spending time with a master Kris-maker, we’ll delve into the physical, historic and even spiritual qualities of these beautiful daggers. After lunch, the rest of your afternoon and evening are free to enjoy as you wish. Meals B+L
 

Day
3

Apr 22, 2020: Bugisan Village and Prambanan Temple

Hyatt Regency Yogyakarta - Yogyakarta, Java *

After a leisurely breakfast, we’ll visit the Twin Temples of Candi Plaosan. With both Hindu and Buddhist elements, their blend of styles recalls a romantic story that our engaging guide will share. We’ll explore the village of Bugisan by ox cart, spending time with residents to enjoy some snacks and learn about their cottage industries - from the baking of Emping, a popular Javanese snack, to the preparation of Jamu, an old herbal remedy still used throughout Indonesia. They’ll also teach us about Gamelan, the ancient ensemble music of Indonesia. After touring Prambanan c, Indonesia’s largest and most finely preserved Hindu temple complex dedicated to Lord Shiva, we’ll continue to the Hyatt Regency Yogyakarta where Regency Club Rooms have been reserved for our group.  Meals B+D

Day
4

Apr 23, 2020: Sultan’s Palace + Our Javanese Culinary Experience

Hyatt Regency Yogyakarta - Yogyakarta, Java *

At the 18th-century Sultan’s Palace, we’ll discover a vast complex, more like a walled city, that’s home to nearly 25,000 people with their own market, cottage industries, schools and mosques. At the heart of this lavish complex is the stunning Golden Pavilion. From here, traditional rickshaws take us to Taman Sari to admire gardens, pavilions and pools built centuries ago for the pleasure of the Sultan and his harem.
 
Later this afternoon, our special culinary tour finds us in a small family-run restaurant and a bakery – learning to prepare Java’s traditional Lotek salad and sampling a variety of specialties, both sweet and savory. Of course, we’ll feast on Gudeg; once reserved for the Sultan’s family, this local favorite is a jackfruit stew simmered for hours with teak leaves and coconut milk. Our evening ends behind the Sultan Palace, an area that comes alive at night with illuminated pedi-cabs and residents out to enjoy some music in the fresh air.  Meals B+L+D
 

Day
5

Apr 24, 2020: By Rail to Mojokerto + Onward to Bromo

Plataran Bromo - Pasuruan, East Java *

After an early breakfast, we’ll head to the station to embark on a scenic rail journey that will take us into East Java. On arrival in the lively town of Mojokerto, we’ll continue to Plataran Bromo. Nestled in the lush highlands, our enchanting resort offers magnificent views of the surrounding hills and their tapestry of plantations and farms. You’ll have time to relax and enjoy this idyllic setting before we gather for dinner.  Meals B+D
 

Day
6

Apr 25, 2020: Sunrise over Bromo + Fly to Bali

The Viceroy - Ubud, Bali *

Named for Brahma, the Hindu God of Creation, Mount Bromo is an active volcano in the middle of a vast crater known as the Sea of Sand; part of the Tengger Massif, a smoldering volcanic complex, it’s an other-worldly landscape that knows no parallel! The day begins early as we set out by jeep and then on a short walk along the slopes of Mt. Penanjakan; as we near the summit, we’ll have a breathtaking view as the sun rises over Mt. Bromo - and the four other volcanoes that rise up from the Sea of Sand!
 
Then we’ll drive to the base of Mt. Bromo where a 45-minute walk takes us right up to the rim: Standing above the crater, there is only a short concrete barrier separating you from the steam that rises from the darkness below. The air is thick with sulphur vapors and the roar emanating from deep inside the Earth is something you will never forget!
 
After breakfast, we drive to Surabaya and fly to Denpasar. On arrival, we’ll be escorted to the luxurious Viceroy Bali for a 4-night stay in Ubud, a charming highland town revered as the artistic and cultural heart of the island. Set amidst lush tropical hills, your lavish villa offers more than 1,600 square feet of indoor and outdoor space - including an infinity edge pool overlooking the verdant valley.  Meals B+D
 

Day
7

Apr 26, 2020: Balinese Culture Comes to Life

The Viceroy - Ubud, Bali *

To provide you with a truly intimate experience of Balinese life and culture, we’ll divide into two groups of just 8 guests each. Over the next two days, each group will have a chance to enjoy both of these specially planned activities:
 
One group will enjoy our Babi Guling Feast. Starting at the residence of Bapak Enong Ismail, curator of the Sukarno Museum, you’ll enjoy a brief cultural talk and then watch as his neighbors prepare Bali’s classic roast pork feast. Then tour some of the nearby temples before returning to Ismail’s home where your Babi Guling has been roasting to perfection. Served with a variety of Indonesian side dishes, this unforgettable meal is enlivened by the company of your host and the friendly locals who helped in its preparation.
 
Our other group will embark on our adventure in Subak Guliang, described in detail below.
 
Meals B+L

Day
8

Apr 27, 2020: We Switch Groups

The Viceroy - Ubud, Bali *

If you didn’t do it yesterday, today you’ll enjoy the Babi Guling Feast described above. Those who already experienced this activity will embark on an adventure that starts in the quiet farming village of Subak Guliang, known for its uniquely Balinese homes. You’ll spend time with local famers and school children, learning about their daily life and Bali’s unique social system; known as Subak and centered on the island’s water temples , it’s both a philosophy and a way of life that cooperatively manages their most precious natural resource. After an alfresco lunch, this excursion also visits Pura Kehen, one of the island’s most beautiful temples.
 
Tonight, we’ll all regroup to enjoy the 8-course farm-to-table Degustation Menu at Aperitif, a stunning restaurant that blends modern gastronomy with traditional Indonesian flavors.
 
Meals B+L+D

Day
9

Apr 28, 2020: The Beauty of Central Bali

The Viceroy - Ubud, Bali *

The gently descending roads from the mountain village of Kintamani are a delightful way to take in island landscapes – including Mt. Batur and a deep blue crater lake that both lie within the 7-mile wide Batur Caldera. Stopping to engage with villagers, discovering the iconic rice terraces of Tegalalang, and browsing in a colorful market also highlight our morning. If you wish, you can make a part of this journey by bicycle!
 
After lunch at Kafe ARMA, we’ll visit Pura Gunung Lebah, an 8th-century temple set in a lush forest. Our guided walk along the famed Campuhan Ridge Trail finds us winding our way above two river valleys. In the distance, the towering silhouette of Mt Agung provides the backdrop for breathtaking views of small outlying villages surrounded by rice fields. Tonight, we’ll dine at Manisan.  Meals B+L+D

Day
10

Apr 29, 2020: Balinese Cuisine + Culture

Soori Bali - Bali, Indonesia *

As we did before, dividing groups over the next two days gives us all a chance to enjoy special activities that have been uniquely planned for just 8 guests.
 
One group will travel to Belayu for our Culinary Experience. Join a village family for coffee and conversation - and learn firsthand about Canang Sari, the daily offering ceremony practiced by Balinese Hindus. Then journey through the lush countryside, visiting Taman Beji Temple and continuing to the ancient town of Mengwi where a resident chef will meet you for a fascinating tour of the lively and colorful market. A hands-on cooking class at his villa ends this unique excursion. If you wish you can make the journey to Taman Beji Temple and Mengwi on a bicycle.

Our other group will experience the Spirit of Belimbing excursion, described in detail below.
 
After our excursions, we’ll all check in to the luxurious Soori Bali for a 2-night stay along a pristine stretch of the island’s southwest coast. This evening’s dinner features fine Indonesian cuisine inspired by the Majapahit Empire that rose to power in the 13th century. An enthralling performance of the music and ceremonies of the era enhance this theatrical dining experience. 
 
Meals B+L+D

Day
11

Apr 30, 2020: We Change Groups Again

Soori Bali - Bali, Indonesia *

If you didn’t join our Culinary Experience yesterday, you’ll have a chance to do so today. Our other 8 travelers will join our Spirit of Belimbing excursion. Delight in a pleasant walk through the coffee and cacao plantations that surround the quiet village of Belimbing. With our engaging guide, you’ll also learn about the many other crops you’ll see being planted and tended - in terraced rice paddies, vegetable gardens, and fruit orchards. This walk ends at a secluded waterfall; regarded as sacred, a Hindu priest will be here to offer a blessing to those who come.
 
After our excursions, we’ll all have some free time this afternoon to enjoy the oceanfront setting and amenities of our luxury resort. This evening, we’ll gather together for our farewell dinner at Ombak, a casually elegant, beachside restaurant with enchanting sunset vistas.
 
Meals B+L+D

Day
12

May 1, 2020: Tanah Lot Temple + Departure… Or Travel on to Komodo National Park

After breakfast and check out, we’ll visit one of Bali’s most iconic landmarks. Set on a rocky spur surrounded by the sea, Pura Tanah Lot is one of Bali’s most venerated sea temples. During low tide, the temple is visited by island residents who come to drink and cleanse themselves in the fresh water spring at the base. At high tide, Tanah Lot presents a wondrous site surrounded by breaking waves.

From here, continue to Denpasar Airport for your homeward journey. Or continue with Bob Drumm on our 4-day adventure featuring Komodo National Park. With a luxury hotel and naturalist-guided excursions, we’ll encounter the largest lizard on Earth! Meals B

Extend Your Trip

In Search of the Komodo Dragon

4-day Post-Tour Extension from $1799

Travel on with Bob to explore the wildlife of Komodo National Park. Exploring on land and undersea, our encounters with native species and marine life will be highlighted by awe-inspiring encounters with the largest lizard on the planet.

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Day
1

Fly from Bali to Flores Island

At the end of our Bali + Java adventure, we include your 1-hour flight from Denpasar, Bali to Flores Island. On arrival at Komodo Airport in the coastal town of Labuan Bajo, we’ll be met and escorted to the 5-star Plataran Komodo Resort & Spa overlooking Waecicu Beach. Settle in to your oceanfront villa and take the rest of this day to relax here in this extraordinary setting.
 

Day
2

Komodo National Park

This morning’s cruise takes us into the National Park where Komodo dragons are found in their natural habitats on several islands including Rinca and Komodo. Capable of growing to nearly 10 feet in length and weighing more than 140 pounds, this surprisingly agile, speedy  and prehistoric-looking creature is the largest lizard in the world. Accompanied by our expert naturalist guide, we’ll have several chances today to encounter Komodo dragons - as well as the islands’ other native wildlife including deer, buffalo  and wild pigs.
 
A shipboard lunch and time to snorkel in the turquoise waters off the pink sands of Pantai Merah Beach enrich this full-day excursion. Back at our luxury resort on Flores Island, your evening is free to relax and dine as you wish.  Meals B+L

Day
3

Batu Cermin Cave + Back to Bali

After breakfast and check-out, we’ll spend some time in the bustling morning market to experience a genuine slice of life on Flores Island. Then it’s on to Batu Cermin Cave where our visit has been timed to coincide with a unique natural phenomenon. When the weather is clear and the bright morning sun shines into the cave, the effect is mesmerizing. The cavern walls have a uniquely reflective mineral content and appear to shimmer in the light.
 
Then we’ll continue to the airport for our included return flight to Bali. On arrival in Denpasar, we’ll be met and escorted to the luxurious Belmond Jimbaran Puri, ideally situated along one of Bali’s most famous and beautiful beaches. After settling in to your spacious private cottage, the rest of this day is yours to indulge as you wish.  Meals B

Day
4

Departure

A short transfer brings you back to Denpasar Airport for your homeward flight.  Meals B

Discover Singapore Before Your Tour

3-day Post-Tour Extension from $899

This easy-to-add Pre-Tour Extension includes 2 nights lodging, 2 meals, guided exploration, and all on-tour transportation including a private car and driver.

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Day
1

Welcome to Singapore

Upon arrival at the airport, you’ll be warmly greeted and escorted by private car to the luxurious Fullerton Bay Hotel. This historic hotel is located in Singapore’s iconic Marina Bay area.
 

Day
2

Private Sightseeing

Begin your guided half day exploration of this multicultural city at Sultan Mosque in the historic Kampong Glam district.  Then explore this historic neighborhood with your guide as you navigate some of Singapore’s oldest and narrowest streets filled with local artisan shops. Later visit Chinatown and go inside the Sri Mariamman Temple, Singapore’s oldest Hindu Temple, before returning to your hotel. Be sure to try some of Singapore’s famous Chili Crab this evening, easily found in the Marina Bay area that surrounds your hotel.
Meals B
 

Day
3

Depart Singapore

Our private car and driver will be waiting to escort you to the airport for your flight to Yogyakarta.  Meals B
 

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Save $1,000 per couple + $500 solo on all of our Small Group, Small Ship and Private Journeys when you pay-in-full at time of booking.

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Available for Economy Class travel when you pay in full at booking by Nov 30, 2019 for any 2020-2021 departure. If you prefer Economy Plus or Business Class, take $1,000 off your companion’s airfare. Solo travelers enjoy $500 savings on air! Applies to new bookings made between Oct 1 and Nov 30, 2019 and cannot be combined with our ongoing pay-in-full discount. Any airline charges for advance seat assignments are not included. Cancellation penalties and other requirements and conditions may apply.