10 Fascinating Facts About Indonesia You Didn’t Know

Facts about Indonesia: Amazing View of Broken Beach

Indonesia is a country full of culture, history, and beauty. With over 17,000 islands, it is one of the most diverse and unique nations in the world. But did you know that Indonesia is also home to some amazing and incredible facts? From its diverse wildlife to its history and culture, there are so many cool and interesting things to learn about this fascinating country. Here are 10 fascinating facts about Indonesia that you may not have known. From its unique culture and language to its wildlife and economy, get ready to explore the incredible world of Indonesia!

Children laughing in the rice fields together
Photo by Robert Collins

The Official Name of Indonesia

The official name of Indonesia is Negara Kesatuan Republik Indonesia (The Unitary State of The Republic of Indonesia). This country is made up of 34 Provinces and 4 Special Regions (the Capital Territory of Jakarta, the Territory of Papua, Yogyakarta, and Aceh). Indonesia is an East Asian country located between the Indian and Pacific oceans. It shares borders with Papua New Guinea, the Solomon Islands, and East Timor. The capital city of Indonesia is Jakarta, which is also the largest city in the country with a population of over 10 million.

The Largest Muslim Population in the World

Approximately 88% of Indonesians are Muslim. The country is also home to large Hindu and Christian populations. About 9% of the population is Christian and about 5% is Hindu. Given the large Muslim population, many assume that Indonesia is a strictly Islamic country. However, Indonesia is a secular state and the country’s constitution guarantees religious freedom for all. Indonesia’s official name, the Unitary State of the Republic of Indonesia, reflects the country’s diverse religious composition.

Poster that says Blah Blah Blah
Photo by Nick Fewings

More Than 700 Languages Are Spoken in Indonesia

Over 700 distinct languages are spoken in Indonesia, making it one of the most linguistically diverse nations in the world. The most widely spoken language, with about 33 million speakers, is Indonesian. This language is a standardized form of Malay. While Indonesian is the official language of the country, over half of all Indonesians speak a non-Indonesian language. With all of the distinct languages spoken throughout the country, many Indonesians also speak English, which is the most popular second language in the country.

Indonesia’s Economy is the 16th Largest in the World

Indonesia’s economy is the 16th largest in the world, with a gross domestic product of $1.04 trillion. The country’s economy is made up of a vibrant combination of agriculture, manufacturing, and services. While the majority of the population lives in rural areas, the majority of the GDP comes from the more urban areas in Java and Bali. Given its proximity to other powerful Asian economies, Indonesia has the potential to become one of the most powerful countries in the region.

Facts about Indonesia: Amazing View of Broken Beach
Photo by Kimberly McNeilus

Indonesia Has an Incredible Amount of Biodiversity

Indonesia is home to an incredible amount of biodiversity. In fact, the country contains about 17% of the world’s biodiversity. This makes Indonesia the third most biodiverse nation on the planet! Indonesia’s biodiverse forests are home to over 10,000 different species of flowers. The country’s diverse forests are also home to an incredible variety of wildlife, including orangutans, Komodo dragons, and over 300 species of birds.

Indonesia Was the First Country to Ban Smoking in Public

In a surprising move in 2003, the Indonesian government banned smoking in public. The legislation also banned smoking in indoor public places such as hotels and restaurants. At the time, the law was the toughest anti-smoking law in the world. While smoking is not banned in all public places, the law has significantly reduced the amount of smoking in Indonesia.

facts about indonesia: Komodo Dragon
Photo by MAKY_OREL

Indonesia is Home to Some of the World’s Most Dangerous Animals

While many people associate Indonesia with its incredible biodiversity, others know it for its dangers! Indonesia is home to some of the world’s most dangerous animals. These include the saltwater crocodile, the various species of venomous snakes found in the country, the Asian black bear, and the orangutan. The saltwater crocodile is the largest reptile in the world. It is also the most dangerous animal in Indonesia. These giant crocodiles are responsible for an average of 80 deaths each year in the country.

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The Hottest Spot on the Pacific Ring of Fire

The Pacific Ring of Fire, also known as the circum-Pacific belt, is the world’s largest earthquake belt. It runs from Chile to Japan and Southeast Asia. Indonesia has roughly 130 active volcanoes and has daily quakes of four or fewer. It is the most seismic area on the Ring of Fire due to its population density. Many Indonesians live dangerously close to active volcanoes where rumblings are frequent as a result of their population density.

Rafflesia Flower
Photo by Colin + Meg

Indonesia is Home to the World’s Largest Flower

The Rafflesia is the world’s largest flower and it is found in Indonesia (especially on the island of Sumatra). This incredible flower can grow up to 1 meter in diameter and weigh up to 10 kilograms! These gorgeous flowers bloom only once, and they produce no leaves or stems. Instead, they grow in the ground like parasitic fungi.

See this gorgeous flower by taking a short tip to Sumatra. Prices start from $588 for 5 days!

The Indonesian National Sport is Pencak Silat

Pencak silat is the official national sport of Indonesia. This martial art is one of the most popular sports in the country. The sport is also very ancient; in fact, one of the earliest forms of Pencak Silat has been dated back to the 10th century! Pencak silat is a full-contact sport that combines both striking and grappling techniques. This martial art is practiced all over the world, but it remains especially popular in its home country.

Woman traveller holding a map while sitting in front of a car
Photo by Leah Kelley


These fascinating facts about Indonesia showcase the amazing diversity and uniqueness of this East Asian country. From its incredible biodiversity to its unique and rich cultural heritage, there is so much to discover about this fascinating place! From its great food and beautiful weather to its amazing wildlife and vast landscapes, there’s a lot to love about this fascinating country.