Travel Alert Status
Level 2: Exercise Increased Caution
UTC+7 (12 hours ahead of Washington, DC, during Standard Time)
note: Indonesia has three time zones
The tropical climate varies with location, season, and altitude. Jakarta lies in the lowlands. Spanning the Equator, Indonesia experiences no real seasons. However, a wet season begins in November and lasts until March, followed by a dry season from April to October. Days and nights each last 12 hours.
The tropical climate and rich soil support abundant flora and fauna. Mangrove swamps and marshes flourish along the coast; tropical rain forests cover most of the terrain up to 3,000 feet; and abundant subtropical vegetation, such as oak, pine, and hardwoods, thrives at higher altitudes. The abundant forest cover and favorable climate have stimulated a diverse animal life.
Many endangered and unique animals, such as singleâ€‘horn rhinoceroses, orangutans, saltwater crocodiles, Komodo "dragons," Sumatran tigers, giant monitor lizards, and anoa, the pygmy buffalo of Celebes, still find a home in Indonesia. Many species of snakes, insects, and birds abound.
Indonesian rupiah (IDR)
The official language is Indonesian (a variety of Malay). However, some 300 other languages are also spoken in the country. One of them, Javanese is the most common with more than 70 million speakers. More than half the population speaks some Indonesian or Malay. Because Dutch was the official language until 1942, some older adults still speak it. English is the leading international language and is taught as a second language in the schools (after Indonesian). Ethnic languages are taught in special classes.
Bahasa Indonesia (official, modified form of Malay), English, Dutch, local dialects
Javanese 45%, Sundanese 14%, Madurese 7.5%, coastal Malays 7.5%, other 26%
Independence Day, 17 August (1945)
5 00 S, 120 00 E
Southeastern Asia, archipelago between the Indian Ocean and the Pacific Ocean