Selamat datang! (Welcome!) The official language of Indonesia is Bahasa Indonesia (literally, “the language of Indonesia”), which unifies the world’s fourth most populous country—comprised of 18,000 islands and inhabited by 350 ethnic groups speaking 750 native languages and dialects. Bahasa Indonesia, a standardized version of Malay, is one of the most widely spoken languages in the world, after Mandarin Chinese, English, Hindi, Spanish and Arabic.
Indonesian Fun Facts
In the Indonesian language, repeating a word twice makes it plural. “Babi” means “a pig”; “pigs” is “babi-babi.” If you repeat the verb “balik,” which means “to return,” like “balik-balik,” it means “to go back and forth.”
Barong and Rangda: In Balinese culture (Bali is a small island off the coast of Java and home to the country’s Hindu minority), the dance of Barong, the lion-like king of spirits, and Rangda, his nemesis the demon queen, symbolizes the eternal battle between good and evil.
Bali, one of Indonesia's most famous islands. Photo submitted by Ryan Tjandra.
Komodo Dragons, the largest species of lizard, are found only on the Indonesian islands. Photo submitted by Diah.
Satay - skewered and grilled meat, typically served with a sauce - originated in Java, Indonesia. Photo submitted by Widya.
A Rumah Gadang house in Padang, West Sumatra, Indonesia. Rumah Gadang are traditional houses of Minngakabau society, one of many cultural groups living in Indonesia. Photo submitted by amalia sholiha.
Indonesian and the Livemocha Community
- Indonesians are learning English on Livemocha over 5x more than they are learning any other language. The next two most popular languages for Indonesians to learn on Livemocha are Japanese and Korean
- Brazilians are learning Indonesian on Livemocha more than people from any other country. After Brazilians, almost equal numbers of Indonesians and Americans are learning Indonesian on Livemocha
- Indonesian speakers on Livemocha live primarily in Indonesia but a large number also live in the United States, Australia,and Malaysia.