The Wildlife Of Indonesia

12th July 2019

Indonesia is an infinitely relaxing and beautiful destination and one which our very own Star Clipper will continue to visit throughout the summer of 2019 and 2020. Another great reason to explore this part of the world is the fascinating wildlife that lives here, adding an extra dimension to a holiday which is already sure to include some amazing sights.

So, if you’re thinking of sailing off into the sunset on a last-minute South-East Asia cruise, or you’re already planning your discovery of Bali and the surrounding islands for next year, here’s a look at some of the wildlife you can look forward to seeing.

Komodo Dragons

Komodo Dragon

The biggest and most ferocious animal you’re likely to come across on any trip to Indonesia is the endemic Komodo dragon, known around the world for its fierce desire to defend its territory. Looking like a relic from the Jurassic Period, these lizards are native to the island with which they share their name and can be seen roaming around the Komodo National Park.

Created to protect this fearsome species, the park is now a designated UNESCO World Heritage Site and looks after many more animals on land and in the surrounding marine habitats. You’ll get the chance to go in search of the dragons during your time here – accompanied by an experienced ranger, of course.

Barking Deer

Deer on Menjangan Island

Just off the coast of Bali is the small, uninhabited island of Menjangan. This patch of land is named for the so-called barking deer that swim here every spring to bask in the sun on the shore. These Indian muntjacs get this name from the fact that their alarm calls sound a bit like a dog barking.

You can reach Menjangan Island as part of a snorkelling excursion on which you’ll discover some of the other wildlife beneath the surface of the waves. This is actually one of the best spots in South-East Asia for diving and some people say it’s where it all started in Bali.

Foraminifera

Pink Beach Komodo

Rather than seeing these microscopic creatures themselves, you’re much more likely to see the results that they leave behind. When foraminifera leave a red-coloured pigment on the coral reefs off the coast of Komodo Island, small bits break off and mix with the sand. This results in the breathtaking sight of Pink Beach, one of the most beautiful beaches in the world.

Other than the sand being a vibrant shade of pink, which contrasts wonderfully with the turquoise of the sea, this is also another great spot for snorkelling.

Manta Rays

Manta Ray

As you can see, the islands of Indonesia are some of the best diving and snorkelling spots in the world. In particular, the waters around the Gili Islands are home to a wealth of sea life, including larger animals like manta rays, whitetip reef sharks and sea turtles.

Whether you’re an experienced diver or you’ve only got a few sessions under your belt, the chance to swim amongst manta rays is something that many have described as a life-changing experience.

Bali Starling

Bali Starling

As well as in the sea and on land, the islands of Indonesia have plenty going on in the skies and trees above. In fact, often the only sound you will hear is the gentle chirping of tropical birds in the background as you relax on the beach.

One species you may be lucky to see is the Bali starling, also called the Bali myna or Rothschild's mynah. Almost completely white, except for the tips of their wings and around their eyes, these beautiful birds are sadly critically endangered. If you don’t get to see one in the wild, the Bali Safari Marine Park is a great place to spend a few hours.


If you would like to learn more about our South-East Asia cruises, you can call the team on 0845 200 6145 or talk to an advisor using our online chat.

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