Sunday, August 31, 2008

Off the Beaten Path

Tired of the same old travel? Check out some of the Indonesian trip options offered by American operator Remote Lands. Making kites (a Balinese tradition) with an actual local prince and his family. Or spending time at the island's Franciscan orphanage. Or for the particularly adventurous, maybe some "tow-in" surfing off the coast of Sumatra, in the Mentawai Islands. You're towed into a wave by a Jet Ski (popularized in the documentary film Riding Giants), letting you catch bigger waves than you ever thought possible.

But for coupled travellers, here's one that can't be beat: A wedding on the island of Borneo, in an Iban tribal village. Ceremonies extend through the night, accompanied by the tuak drink of fermented rice water; the groom sports a headdress of feathers, the bride a crown of silver, and arrive together on a bamboo raft. And what about the delicate issue of your first night as an official union, you might ask? After a tribal blessing, you retire to a private chamber in the village longhouse.

Look into their menu of custom vacations at their website,

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