Welcome to Timor-Leste

Get an insight into Timor-Leste's dark history in Dili’s museums, then venture out of the capital. Hike to jungle caves, wander through misty mountain village markets, and sip local coffee on the terrace of grand Portuguese pousadas. Bump along diabolical roads, stopping for photos of the seascapes as you grip the cliffs along the coast.

Strap on a snorkel and marvel at the pristine reefs that fringe the north coast and Ataúro, or delve deeper with dive companies that are proud to show off sites with superlative reef fish biodiversity. Trailblaze your way through this amazing country, and find out what everyone else has been missing.

Top experiences in Timor-Leste

Recent articles

Timor-Leste activities

$86 Tours & Sightseeing

Half-Day Dili Cultural Tour

You’ll start your guided half-day Dili tour with an easy walk through Largo de Lecidere Park, along shaded pathways as you pass by the local fruit markets until you reach the Gembel Art Collective. Here you’ll have time to browse the exhibition hall and even meet the local artists all working on-site.  From there, you’ll jump on a microlet — the minibuses that are the preferred local form of public transport. You’ll ride alongside locals who are going about their day and who are always surprised to see a “Malay” (foreigner) — don’t be surprised if a few locals want to practice their English on you and tell you all about themselves!  The next stop on our Dili tour will be the PNTL (National Police Memorial) that honours the 12 police officers who were killed during 2006 Dili crisis. You’ll then take a short walk along the busy Vila Verde Road to the Dili Cathedral, before hopping on your next microlet ride. From there, it’s on to Dili’s main street, Comoro Road, and the Manleuana local markets. Here you’ll find hundreds of traders selling everything from fresh produce to plants, clothing, crafts and household items. Spend some time browsing the market, where you’re free to grab a cold drink or snack at one of the many stalls serving the locals.  Take another short walk to a local school, where you’ll get the chance to chat with some students learning English. Help them practice their conversation skills before hopping on the next microlet that’s eagerly awaiting.  Head for Timor Plaza, Dili’s newest feature on the skyline and the city’s only western-style shopping centre. There’s a great photo opportunity here as you head up to the fifth floor and take in the panoramic view of the city and harbour.    Then, back on the roadside you’ll flag another microlet that’s heading back toward the CBD. Travel along the waterfront on the Dili Esplanade that’s lined with foreign embassies and government offices.  The last stop will be in the historical Motael area, where you’ll walk past sites such as the Farol Lighthouse, the Dili Massacre Memorial, the Motael Church, the Statue of Integration, the Government Palace, and the Casa Europa.

$65.25 Day Trips & Excursions

Full-Day Tour of Dili

Meet your guide between 8am and 8:30am at your accommodation in Dili, then take a seat in your vehicle to begin your 7-hour tour. First, head to the Australian World War II Memorial and Museum in Dare and learn how the Timorese people supported Australian soldiers against the occupying Japanese forces between 1942 and 1945.Afterward, visit sites of interest including the Santa Cruz cemetery — infamous as the site of the Santa Cruz massacre of 12th November 1991 — and the Xanana Cultural Centre, which showcases a collection of photographs and paintings of Timorese resistance fighter and politician Xanana Gusmão. Here, visit the East Timorese Resistance Archive and Museum for a 40-minute guided tour, and gain insight into Indonesia’s troubled occupation of the region.Following a delicious Timorese buffet lunch, visit alocal craft market where women practise the traditional arts of fabric- and basket-weaving. Along the way, discover top sites of interest such as the National Parliament and the popular Chega! Exhibition — standing for truth and reconciliation in East Timor.Head east along the coast to the Cristo Rei of Dili statue — widely considered among the city’s top attractions. Here, choose to either explore the gardens or follow the Stations of the Cross to the top for panoramic views.When your time at the Cristo Rei of Dili statue comes to an end, return in comfort to your accommodation in Dili to conclude your tour.

$1426.44 Multi-day & Extended Tours

8-Day Timor Explorer Tour

This 8 day gives travellers the full Timor Leste experience starting out with a  Dili City Tour. Exploring East Timor’s laid-back capital of Dili, which has sprung to life since independence in 2002. Departing Dili we travel east along the spectacular ocean road stopping for some crocodile feeding in Metinaro, arriving in Baucau, Timor-Leste’s second largest city. Taking a walking tour of the “Old Town” exploring the Portuguese influenced town.  Then on to the 7 Tunnels built by the Japanese during WW2 arriving in Loihuno, set amongst the forests, waterfalls, resistance hideouts, and  the Mundo Perdido (“Lost World”) Mountain Range.  We take a short trek up to limestone caves continuing on to the tiny seaside village of Com on the fringes of the Nino Konis Santana Marine & Terrestrial National Park, and Jaco Island, visiting the ancient cave paintings at Iii Kere-Kere and the numerous stone sarcophagi and animistic shrines throughout the  Los Palso district. Travelling back to Dili and onto Atauro Island in the Wetar Strait well known for dolphin and whale activities,  Island time now kicks in.The Island is alive with soft coral and tropical sea life. Spend a leisurely by the pool with a cocktail and have a relaxing massage or select on of our more active options exploring the amazing underwater world of Atauro Island. We travel back to Dili, were you have the choice to explore more of the city and do some shopping or enjoy the beach and café strip before departing Dili in the morning.This tour is all inclusive with twin/double accommodation, meals, transport, local guides, diving options and speed boat transfers

$94.25 Day Trips & Excursions

Seloi Criek Village Explorer Tour from Dili

This 4x4 tour takes you into the heart of the coffee growing mountains of Timor Leste, stopping at the Australian/Timor War memorial in Dare, we visit the Memorial Museum and the Memorial School, meeting some of the local students who have benefited from this project. The next stop is in Aileu one of the small hillside towns and visiting memorials from WW2 and the later resistance fight against Indonesia. Take a stroll through the lively and colourful markets, showcasing locally made tais fabrics. You will have a special lunch from the hospitality training kitchen at the Project Montana HQ where you will be amazed at the outstanding community work they are doing with the disadvantage youth. A guided tour of the centre will be provided by one of their team members. After enjoying your break in the cool highlands, head across the mountains and down into to the agricultural village of Seloi Criek with its beautiful market gardens, rice paddies and lake that the village surrounds. You will stop at a number of locations in the area for photos and a chance to talk with the local villagers, before winding your way down the mountains into Dili traveling along the mighty Comoro River.

$74.57 Day Trips & Excursions

Full-Day Maubara and Liquica Tour from Dili

After being picked up from your hotel you will travel west along the esplanade through East Timor’s laid-back capital of Dili, which has sprung into life since independence in 2002. The city is nestled into the base of the surrounding hills, which are lush and green in the rainy season. You will pass by many historical buildings, monuments and religious places including the Farol Lighthouse, Statue of Integration and Dili’s oldest church, Motael.   You will arrive at the Tasi Tolu Peace Park (Tasi-Tolu literally means “three seas” in the local language) and refers to 3 salt lakes that comprise the Tasi-Tolu wetlands. The area is of national cultural significance being an important symbol of the struggle for Independence, and was declared a national park in 2000. The Tasi Tolu Alter is built in the shape of a traditional Uma Lulik or sacred house and was commissioned for the visit by Pope John Paul II where he celebrated mass in 1989. A large bronze statue of Pope John Paul II was commissioned by the Timorese Government 2003 in memory of his visit.  The next stop is the ruins of the Aipelo Military Command Post, which dates back to 18th Century and served as a prison, run by the Portuguese until 1959.  Travelling further west we arrive at the colorful seaside town of Maubara where the women are renowned for the production of hand woven, basketwork. Taking a break for morning tea in the Fort of Maubara, built by the Dutch in the 1850’s, a building that generated many disputes between the Dutch and Portuguese during that time. You will then you have free time to explore the craft markets along the seaside. Travelling back towards Dili, you will stop in Liquisa which is the closest district to the west of Dili, taking a 1.5 hour easy walking tour of the historical town with its Portuguese influenced architecture, visiting 12 sites that have been identified as significant cultural and historical sites. You will have lunch at the Black Rock Resort and enjoy a refreshing swim at the Black Rock Beach before returning to Dili.

$275.50 Day Trips & Excursions

Atauro Island Short Breaks

Enticingly close to Dili,  Atauro Island is directly north of Dili, 30kmacross the Wetar Strait. The 140-sq-km island, is just 1 hour by speedboat and we travel through the Wetar Straight well known for dolphin and whale activities. Once we arrive a shuttle service will collect us from the beach and take us to the Hotel, which is a unique, private island hideaway and home to a maximum of 16  guests at any one time. The breathtaking panoramas of the renowned tropical crystal clear waters and neighboring islands can be seen from the spacious verandahs of the hotel. Gentle winds carry the scent of tropical flowers and the warm, azure waters at our private beaches beckon youto relax. Your room will be one of only 8 private air-conditioned en suite rooms with a double or twin share configuration. (singles are also catered for). Rooms are spacious, wonderfully relaxing, and light spills in from windows that overlook the tranquil waters of the crystal clear ocean while gentle winds carry the intoxicating scent of tropical blossoms through the breezy interiors.Your package includes hotel transfers to the small boat harbour, lunch and dinner on the first day and breakfast and lunch on the second day. The cuisine, prepared with fresh seafood from local waters and fruits and vegetables grown on the island, is a culinary delight. The warm, shallow waters around Atauro Island are alive with soft coral and tropical sea life.  Take a leisurely dip in the water, or vigorously swim around our pristine private beaches.  Swim or float on the crystal clear waters or let one of our experienced guides take you away to a few favorite sites. For an added cost, the staff at the Hotel will assist you in organizing your island activities that include.·     Offshore Fishing·     Snorkeling·     Scuba Diving·     Dolphin & Whale Watching·     Trekking & Hiking·     4x4 tours·     Mountain Bike Riding·     Massage Therapy