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Wednesday, Jul 9, 2014

Travel

Explore Indonesia's budget Maldives

The Jakarta Post/ANN | Wednesday, Jul 9, 2014

Diving in the Togeans: The underwater world is mind-bogglingly diverse, with over 50 unique species of corals and colorful, funky fish swimming around.

What is it about the Maldives that makes them so lucrative?

No doubt a large part of the answer is the white-sand beaches, the serenity, the turquoise water and amazing dive spots.

The islands are indeed the ultimate paradise on earth, but a rather pricey one as well.

In Indonesia, there is a place where the beaches and landscapes are just as stunning, but come at a fraction of the cost.

Hidden in the Gulf of Tomini off the Central Sulawesi coast, this place can compete with the Maldives and Seychelles, and probably score higher in some categories.

Here are just a few reasons why the Togean Islands should be your budget alternative to the Maldives.

STUNNING SCENERY AND NATURE FOR LESS THAN S$30 A DAY

Would you like to wake up each day and step right out onto the beach? To see gorgeous sunsets over turquoise water each and every day?

Accommodation around the Togeans is more than affordable. On Kadidiri, you can spend a night in one of the luxurious beach bungalows at Paradise Dive Resort for just 250,000 rupiah (S$26).

A supply of fruit and unlimited coffee and tea are included in the price. Then there is the private terrace with a stunning view of turquoise water.

Another dreamy getaway can be found on Pulau Katupat. Spacious rooms with three meals of fresh fish and seafood start from 200,000 rupiah a day.

Jaw-dropping coral reefs for snorkelling and spectacular scenery come free.

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