Monday, February 10, 2014

Travel: Batu, Malang, Indonesia

Last December, we got a chance to visit a new city in Malang, Indonesia, with our cousins. The place is called Batu. Quite a small, neat town in the mountains. The air was cool and fresh, similar to the weather in Cameron Highlands. We stayed in a three-bedroom villa at Jambuluwuk Hotel and Resorts. The place was clean and their breakfast selection was decent. 

The view from our villa

To go to Batu from Singapore, you need to fly to Surabaya first and then drive to Batu, 3-5 hours depending on traffic. This is where we went and what we ate while we were there:

1. Secret Zoo. They have an amazing varieties of animals and a big theme park. One full day here may not even be enough. Too bad it was pouring rain when we were there. We'll have to go there again when Elin is older.

2. Eco Green Park. Walking distance from the Secret Zoo. This park has water plays, a section for birds, insects, ducks, etc. They also showcases art projects made using old junks and trash. You can buy a pass that goes to both parks. This park is not as big as the Secret Zoo, but it can take at least 3-4 hours to finish the whole park and you may not have enough time to enjoy the Secret Zoo if you only purchase a one-day pass. We bought a one-day pass and went here first thinking we could finish this early enough then spend the rest of the day at Secret Zoo. We couldn't. I recommend a two-day pass if you have time.

3. Kampoeng Kidz. A wonderful and fun place to bring kids. They can feed the animals and pick their own veggies and fruits. Not to mention, the scenery is breathtaking!

4. Batu Night Spectacular. There is an amusement park and a lantern garden here. The amusement park was so crowded because it's very cheap to enter and you pay per ride. We went here just to see the lantern garden at night. Beautiful lights!

5. Ate Bakso Bakar Pak Mas (grilled meatballs). Local delicacy. Yum!

6. Ate at Khas Jawa. Everything was delicious and very affordable. Try their Rawon (beef/oxtail soup made with herbs and spices) and Nasi Campur (mixed rice with egg, green beans, beef, chicken, noodles, etc.)

7. Ate at Warung Bethania. Highly recommended for the food and ambience. You can order all kinds of Indonesian food here - fried fish with chili, oxtail soup, rawon, grilled marinated chicken, etc.