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The Ultimate Sumba Island Travel Guide: Everything You Need to Know to Get There

Updated: Apr 18

Beautiful landscape in Sumba island with horse

Sumba Island, part of the Lesser Sunda Islands, lies in eastern Indonesia. This island stands out for its unique cultural tapestry, rugged savannahs, and breathtaking beaches, setting the stage for an unparalleled getaway.

A visit to Sumba Island is more than a holiday; it's an immersion into a world where ancient traditions thrive amidst natural wonders. From its majestic waterfalls to the traditional villages and ceremonies, Sumba offers the authenticity and rest you've been searching for.

What is the ideal weather in Sumba Island?

For the weather in Sumba Island, The ideal time to explore Sumba is during the dry season, from May to September when the weather is favorable for outdoor adventures and cultural explorations.

Prepare for your trip with essentials such as light clothing, sunscreen, a hat, insect repellent, and sturdy footwear for trekking. Remember your camera to capture the island's stunning vistas.

How to Get to Sumba Island

Embarking on a journey to Sumba Island, nestled in the eastern part of Indonesia, presents an adventure into a realm of unspoiled natural beauty, unique cultural heritage, and breathtaking landscapes. To reach this hidden gem, travelers typically fly into one of two main gateways: Tambolaka Airport (TMC) located in West Sumba, or Umbu Mehang Kunda Airport (WGP) in East Sumba. These airports serve as the primary entry points to the island, connecting it with the broader Indonesian archipelago and beyond.

Flight Connections to Sumba Island

From Within Indonesia

Both Tambolaka and Umbu Mehang Kunda Airports are well connected with major Indonesian cities such as Bali (Denpasar) and Jakarta. Regular flights are available from these hubs, provided by local airlines including Garuda Indonesia, Wings Air, and NAM Air, among others. Bali, being closer and a popular international transit point, offers more frequent services to Sumba compared to Jakarta. The flight from Bali to Sumba typically takes about 1 to 1.5 hours, making it a convenient option for travelers looking to explore the island’s rugged beauty.

International Connections

For international travelers, the journey to Sumba often begins with a flight to either Bali's Ngurah Rai International Airport (DPS) or Jakarta's Soekarno-Hatta International Airport (CGK). From there, visitors can catch a connecting flight to Sumba. It’s advisable to allow some buffer time between connections, especially during peak travel seasons, to accommodate any schedule changes or delays.

Visa and Entry Formalities for Indonesia

Visa Requirements

Most visitors to Indonesia, including those heading to Sumba Island, need to comply with the country’s visa requirements. Indonesia offers visa-free entry for nationals from 169 countries for stays of up to 30 days, ideal for short-term tourists. This visa-free entry is non-extendable and cannot be converted into a different visa type. For longer stays or for nationals from countries not on the visa exemption list, there are several visa options available, including the Visa on Arrival (VoA) and the Social/Cultural Visit Visa. The VoA can be purchased at designated entry points in Indonesia, including Bali and Jakarta airports, and is valid for 30 days with a possible one-time extension for another 30 days.

For those with a penchant for sea travel and time to spare, reaching Sumba Island by boat presents an adventurous alternative to air travel. This option not only offers a glimpse into the maritime lifestyle of the Indonesian archipelago but also allows for an immersive journey through some of Indonesia's most scenic waters. The sea routes to Sumba originate from several nearby islands, primarily Flores and Sumbawa, providing a unique pathway to the island for those keen on exploring the Indonesian seascape.

Sea Routes to Sumba Island

From Flores

The most common sea route to Sumba starts from the island of Flores, particularly from the port town of Aimere. Boats from Aimere frequently set sail to Waikelo Port in West Sumba. This journey provides a picturesque voyage across the Flores Sea, offering views of volcanic islands and an opportunity to experience life on the Indonesian seas.

From Sumbawa

Another route to consider starts from Sape Harbor on the eastern tip of Sumbawa Island. From Sape, ferries make their way to Waingapu Port, the largest town in East Sumba. This route traverses the Sumba Strait, a stretch of sea known for its strong currents and deep waters, making for an exhilarating sea voyage.

How can I navigate inside Sumba Island?

Upon landing, car rentals and shuttle services are available to transport you to your accommodation. For a more authentic experience, consider hiring a local guide to navigate the island.

For those staying at the Sumba Beach Eco-Resort, getting around is made convenient with their personalized pickup service. Guests can arrange for a pickup directly from either Tambolaka Airport (TMC) or Waingapu Airport (WGP), ensuring a seamless transition from the air to the serene environment of the eco-resort. This service is particularly beneficial for those new to the island or seeking a hassle-free start to their vacation.

For shorter or specific journeys around the island, taxis present a viable option, though they are less common outside major towns or tourist areas. Given the island's rural nature, taxis are best used for direct trips from airports to accommodations or for visiting nearby attractions. Rates are generally higher than other local transport options and should be agreed upon before the journey begins. For those looking to explore further afield or access more secluded spots, the eco-resort shuttle services or a private driver arranged through the resort might offer a more tailored and convenient experience.


Embarking on a journey to Sumba Island, discerning travelers will find their sanctuary at the 50 Hectares Private Eco Resort Anna Villas by Sumba Beach. This exclusive retreat offers luxurious accommodations that are in perfect harmony with the surrounding nature, ensuring an unparalleled experience of comfort and seclusion. With its commitment to delivering an all-inclusive experience, guests are invited to indulge in the epitome of luxury amidst the breathtaking beauty of Sumba Island. Here, every detail is carefully curated to provide an unforgettable stay that seamlessly combines the allure of raw natural beauty with the utmost in luxury living.


FAQs About Travelling to Sumba Island

What is the currency of Sumba Island?

  • The currency used on Sumba Island, as in all of Indonesia, is the Indonesian Rupiah (IDR).

Are there ATMs available on Sumba Island?

What languages are spoken on Sumba Island?


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