SEVENSEAS Marine Conservation & Travel Issue 11, April 2016 - Page 61

It is quite unfair to say "here’s Indonesia and map, have fun." Each corner of each of those thousands islands deserves a minute if not an entire day. But a quick zip though one of the most culturally and biologically diverse places on the planet is still an adventure of a lifetime. Just one pice of advice: make friends. it might be the easiest place on earth to do so. I have emails and contact info in my phone from people I never would have imagined hanging out with. For me the REAL Indonesia wasn't the monuments, it wasn't the beaches, it was zipping on the back of Ahmed's motorbike in the pouring rain of Jojakarta, it was hearing stories of Uluwatu with Mad'e while we sat on a cliffside, and it was walking in the surf with Linda (below) while she told tales of her family and growing up on Lombok. That was my Indonesia and that is how we should all approach travel and conservation. With a smile and a "hello."

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