If you asked me six months ago why I wanted to visit Indonesia so badly, my immediate response would have been, “BALI!” I fell in love with the notion of sipping on fresh pressed juices and doing yoga to my heart’s content a few years ago when I first read Eat, Pray, Love. It wasn’t until I began researching Indonesia until I realized there is so much more than just Bali and Ubud.
One of the cities that has captured my interest is Bandung. This beautiful town holds some of the most stunning natural sites in all of Indonesia, making it a must stop for nature lovers. Bandung is also nicknamed the “Paris of Indonesia” for its art deco-style buildings and cosmopolitan allure – talk about the best of both worlds!
While there are quite a few reasons I’ve made Bandung a must-see on my next trip to Indonesia, I’ve decided to narrow it down to a few. In no particular order, here are my top 5 things I’m eager to do in Bandung! P.S. If you’re interested in sharing the love, please PIN the above image to your favorite Pinterest travel board!
1. Experience Bandung’s cultural history
As a massive music lover, I enjoy learning about unique instruments used throughout the world. One of the coolest sounding ones I’ve come across is the angklung. It’s made entirely of bamboo tubes, each of them carved differently to create a resonant pitch. It’s totally fascinating and dates back to ancient times, when Indonesia’s Sudanese tribes used it to call out to the rice goddess to give fertility to plants. Each tube is meant to symbolize human life and instills the notion that we must all work together in order to prosper as a society.
Tourists can attend Saung Angklung Udjo, a center striving to keep the tradition alive, and catch a live performance each day. Needless to say, I’ll be there.
2. Visit Kawah Putih
This gorgeous site literally translates in Indonesian to “white crater” and is located about 50 kilometeres south of Bandung. While the turquoise water may look magical and inviting, it’s been said that it’s far too sulphuric to swim. I for one don’t mind a bit of stench for a view like this, so count me in!
3. Rest my head at the Grha Ciumbuleuit Guest House
Not only is the Grha Ciumbuleuit Guest House in a great location, the property itself is lovely. The modern, minimalist hotel is perfect for families, couples or solo travelers exploring all Bandung has to offer. Guests can treat themselves to local or Western fare, bask in the sunshine or read a book by the outdoor pool, relax in the sauna and get pampered in the on-site spa or work off the extra calories in the Grha Ciumbuleuit Guest House gym. Families traveling through will also be pleased to learn there is a playground for little ones to play, too. A win for everyone!
4. Observe the geothermal activity at Tangkuban Perahu volcano
Folklore has it that the volcano was formed over a quarrel regarding two lovers. One thing is for certain, this natural structure is one of the most popular sites in West Java. It’s located about 30 kilometers outside of Bandung and offers some of the best views in the area. Visitors can either hike or take a ride up to the crater’s edge, allowing optimal viewpoints for the boiling mud and hot springs. Vendors sell eggs cooked on the hot surface, making for an extremely unique and adventurous snack.
5. Relax at a green tea plantation
Guys, I love tea. I have a bit of an obsession with Chinese Oolong and green teas. I drink either one each day and will never pass up the opportunity to taste freshly harvested tea. A therapeutic walk through a tea plantation sounds just about right, but more adventurous travelers have the opportunity to paraglide, mountain bike or go horseback riding through the lush, green mini forests. How gorgeous is this view?!
Do these pictures evoke the same feelings of wanderlust for you as they do for me? If you’re anything like me, you’ll be looking into flight prices immediately. You can browse Traveloka.com to find extremely cheap and/or promo deals for flights and hotels. It’s an excellent resource if you’re looking for a bit of bliss in your life. Plus, who doesn’t like to save money for future travels?! Have you been to Bandung? Let me know in the comments below!
Disclaimer: This post was written in partnership with Traveloka.com.