The Language and Dialects

There are about 583 languages and dialects spoken in the archipelago. There normally belong to the different ethnic groups of the population.
Some of the distinctly different local languages are: Acehnese, Batak, Sundanese, Javanese, Sasak, Tetum of Timor, Dayak, Minahasa, Toraja, Buginese, Halmahera, Ambonese, Ceramese, and several Irianese languages. To make the picture even more colorful, these languages are also spoken in different dialects.

Bahasa Indonesia is the national language which is akin to Malay, written in Roman script and based on European orthography. In all tourist destination areas English is the number one foreign language fairly spoken and writer, whereas some Dutch is till spoken and understood in the bigger cities and French increasing in its popularity at the better hotels and restaurants.

Photographs
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