Sumatra’s main attraction is its astonishing natural beauty. But this isn’t any old natural paradise.
Awaiting you on this, the sixth largest island in the world, are
rugged hillsides, idyllic beaches, lakes, wildlife-filled jungles and
smouldering volcanoes whose wonders are hard to beat anywhere else in
the world. What’s more, no less than 25,000 square kilometres of
rainforest on the island are on the UNESCO World Heritage List so there’ll be infinite opportunities to explore and discover.
This is a perfect place for adventure activities: trek in the
numerous national parks (don’t miss Lake Toba, the world’s largest
volcanic lake), dive amid the clear waters of Pulau Weh or enjoy some of
the world’s best surfing off the Mentawai islands and Nias.
Spreading over three of Indonesia’s National Parks (Gunung Leuser,
Kerinci Seblat and Bukit Barisan Selatan National Parks), Sumatra’s
rainforests are nothing short of spectacular. They host fabulous Lake
Gunung Tujuh, the highest lake in Southeast Asia and massive Mount
Kerinci Volcano, in addition to smaller volcanic, coastal and glacial
lakes set within their lush forested surroundings.
The rainforests are home to half of the plant species of Sumatra.
Today it’s deemed important to protect what was once a vast area of
tropical rainforest which has been greatly reduced over the last 50
Sumatra’s 34 magnificent volcanoes
are as iconic as its rainforests. Noteworthy is Gunung Sibayak at 2,094
metres high, partly because it is easily accessed, making it ideal for
hiking (one of three trails); that is, if you are prepared for a 5 hour
round trip. You will need a guide if you are trekking alone or would
like to take the jungle route.
Gunung Kerinci in Kerinci Seblat National Park is the highest volcano
in Sumatra at some 3,805 metres high. Dominating the northern end of
the park, it offers fantastic views of the volcanic lake Danau Gunung
Tujuh and the surrounding mountains and valleys. Join a summit trek at
the entrance to the national park and a guided trip including overnight
camping will take you up to the glorious summit.
Padang Beach (Tapi Lauik or Taplau) is great for
strolling over white sands and enjoying spectacular coastal scenery,
including verdant hills and shady trees. The beach attracts a lively
crowd at dusk when wining and dining commences at the area’s various
About 20 kilometres south from Padang, the white, powdery sands of
Bungus Beach sparkle, backed by an emerald stretch of hills and lush
palm trees. Clear, warm waters wash up to the shoreline, gently sliding
back with vibrant colours. This beach is quiet, yet popular for
sunbathing, swimming, fishing, snorkelling and sailing or canoeing to
the nearby islands.
Across the bay from Padang city lies the famous island of Pulau
Pisang, one of many you can access off Bungus Bay. Expect the rugged
beauty of thick forests and abundant wildlife, along with isolated white
sands from which you can enjoy some snorkelling, turtle spotting or
watching wild gibbons that live on the island. Nearby is Tiger Beach, so
called for the mysterious tiger prints once found in the sand.
Another of nature’s wonders in Sumatra is its population of endemic
Sumatran Orangutan, which are smaller and rarer than the usual species
of orangutan from Borneo. They live in the wild in northern parts of the
island but perhaps the easiest place to see them is in the Gunung
Leuser National Park at Bukit Lawang.
Bukit Lawang’s famous orangutan centre
helps these primates readjust to the wild after captivity or
displacement due to rainforest clearing. Try to arrive for the
twice-daily feedings which provide a wonderful close-up view of the
Sources : https://www.staysure.co.uk/2016/10/exploring-sumatra-paradise-nature-lovers/