Blogs from Java, Indonesia, Asia


Asia » Indonesia » Java » Kalibaru May 16th 2023

The fruit falls near the tree… ~ Indonesian Proverb HE SAID... Today we were travelling east from Mount Bromo to Kalibaru – by road. We checked out of the Grand Whiz Hotel, clambered into the back of a minibus and left the volcanic Bromo region at 10:30am. The descent was slow, as we were dropping from a high altitude. We eventually levelled on flat land, turned onto a busy road and sped towards Kalibaru. We stopped at a petrol station around midday for a short break, picked up some fried banana chips from an IslamicMart (attached to the petrol station) and then continued our eastward journey. We passed affluent villages with old colonial homesteads and dwellings. We passed less affluent villages with basic dwellings and evident poverty. We passed sugar cane plantations, tobacco plantations, rice fields, ... read more
fried chicken with green chillies
koi fish pond
margo utomo eco resort

Asia » Indonesia » Java » Bromo Tengger Semeru May 15th 2023

If there is smoke, there must be fire… ~ Indonesian Proverb HE SAID... Today we were travelling south from the Seloliman Nature Reserve to Mount Bromo– by road. We organised our packs, dropped our keys and left the Seloliman Ecolodge in the early afternoon. We had a three-hour drive to Mount Bromo ahead, and it was great to be travelling in a large minibus with a little more room than normal. We crawled over rough rural roads on our way out of the nature reserve, passing a noisy local wedding along the way. The narrow streets gave way to wider and smoother roads once we turned onto a major thoroughfare. As we sped along the highway, the scene playing out on either side of the minibus was all too familiar – rice fields stretching for miles, ... read more
grand whiz hotel bromo
fried wheat noodles
waiting for sunrise

Asia » Indonesia » Java » Seloliman May 14th 2023

Tigers die because of their stripes… ~ Indonesian Proverb HE SAID... Today we were travelling east from Yogyakarta to the Seloliman Nature Reserve– by rail and road. After spending our final morning exploring the leafy neighbourhood of Brontokusuman (where our eco-focused hotel was located in Yogyakarta), we wandered back to our comfy room, grabbed our packs and checked out of Greenhost Boutique Hotel at 10am. We jumped into a taxi and headed to Yogyakarta’s train station, where we’d arrived three days earlier in pouring rain. We made our way through the passport / ticket checkpoint and settled in a couple of spare seats in the crowded waiting area. Two young Javanese girls were sitting with their parents in the seats opposite us, and they were fascinated by Ren. When they asked for a photo, Ren happily ... read more
yogyakarta train station
yogyakarta train station
seloliman ecolodge

Asia » Indonesia » Java » Yogyakarta May 13th 2023

The shadow should be the same length as the body… ~ Indonesian Proverb HE SAID... Today we were continuing to explore the atmospheric city of Yogyakarta. When we woke at 5am, Ren was feeling drained. The previous afternoon had been difficult, as she had started to feel unwell during our walking tour of Yogyakarta. Rehydration tablets helped a lot, as did an early night with extended sleep – despite being broken. However, Ren was resolute in her determination to take the day by the horns. She hadn’t travelled all this way to spend the day in a hotel room. She was going to continue exploring this bohemian city, and nothing was going to stop her. I headed down to Greenhost Boutique Hotel’s breakfast area around 6am. The buffet was expansive, but it was not overly exciting ... read more
bike ride
bike ride scenery
making tempeh

Asia » Indonesia » Java » Yogyakarta May 12th 2023

Beautiful day, a gift for the traveller… ~ Indonesian Proverb HE SAID... Today we were exploring the atmospheric city of Yogyakartaand its surrounds. We woke early and aimed to fuel-up with a big breakfast, but time was against us, so I opted for a more moderate spread of cornflakes, black rice porridge with coconut milk, omelette with hot chilli sambal, mini croissants, tea and apple juice. I also sampled a health juice, but it wasn’t pleasant at all. To be honest, this was a fairly ordinary breakfast buffet, which surprised us, as we had become very fond of Greenhost Boutique Hotel, our accommodation in Yogyakarta for the next few days. Our first activity of the day was a tour of the Borobudur Temple, and we needed to get there before the tourist hordes swarmed the place, ... read more
borobudur temple
borobudur temple
borobudur temple

Asia » Indonesia » Java » Yogyakarta May 11th 2023

Don't stand on the dew until the sun reaches its highest… ~ Indonesian Proverb HE SAID... Today we were travelling north (then southeast) from Pangandaran to Yogyakarta– by road and rail. A violent thunderstorm had erupted the previous evening and continued throughout the night, only subsiding around 5am. Each thunderclap shook the hotel, as if a bomb had exploded just above our room. Luckily, we could anticipate each thunderclap. We left the curtains to our room open, and the night sky would turn white with each flash of sheet lightning – then the thunder would explode a few seconds later. We settled in Sunrise Beach Hotel’s large airy breakfast area around 7am and enjoyed a substantial breakfast, as we would not be stopping for a meal until dinner. I enjoyed cornflakes, yoghurt, fresh pineapple, fresh dragon ... read more
indonesian buffet breakfast
sunrise beach hotel
pangundarun street life

Asia » Indonesia » Java » Pangandaran May 10th 2023

The firm tree does not fear the storm… ~ Indonesian Proverb HE SAID... Today we were exploring the coastal township of Pangandaran. We woke early and tried to capture the sunrise (in photographic form) from our tiny ground floor terrace at the aptly named Sunrise Beach Hotel, but the humidity was so high that the lenses of our cameras immediately fogged over. Regardless, it was a beautiful sunrise over the hazy Indian Ocean that stretched to the southern horizon, and whose rhythmic waves were washing ashore just across the busy road from our room. We walked to the hotel’s breakfast area (that was puzzlingly located beside a large swimming pool), and the kids were already in hyperdrive – running, jumping, screaming and splashing. As I watched them enthralled in play, I saw a familiar face from ... read more
pangandaran beach
pangandaran beach
sunrise beach hotel

Asia » Indonesia » Java » Pangandaran May 9th 2023

The sea becomes the shore, the shore becomes the sea… ~ Indonesian Proverb HE SAID... Today we were travelling east (then southwest) from Jakarta to Pangandaran– by rail and road. I woke at 5:30am, prepared our packs and headed down to Yello Harmoni Hotel’s breakfast room at 6:30am. After hydrating with hot tea, I opted for a simple breakfast (cornflakes and sultanas), as it was a little too early for a hearty affair. After reluctantly checking out of the comfortable, quirky and very welcoming Yello Harmoni Hotel, we jumped into a taxi and crawled through Jakarta’s narrow and busy roads to the bustling Gambir Train Station. We grabbed our tickets, boarded our train, settled in our assigned seats and left Jakarta just after 9am. There was a lot of well-kept foliage along the initial section of ... read more
fried rice with eggs in spicy sauce
our train compartment
view from train

Asia » Indonesia » Java » Jakarta May 8th 2023

Head can be heated, but the heart must stay cool… ~ Indonesian Proverb HE SAID... Today we were continuing to explore the bustling city of Jakarta. Wide awake at 5:30am and feeling completely refreshed, we immediately jumped into the day. We may have been a bit too eager. When we arrived at Yello Harmoni Hotel’s expansive dining area for breakfast at 6am, the place was devoid of front-of-house staff. However, food dishes were trickling in (thanks to the kitchen staff), so we decided to settle at a table with city views and help ourselves to the meagre buffet offerings. I went for a simple option – cornflakes and sultanas, along with hot tea. We had a long day of walking ahead, and we were heading out into Jakarta’s morning humidity at 8:30am, so we didn’t have ... read more
chicken congee
gado gado with peanut sauce
candra naya mansion

Asia » Indonesia » Java » Jakarta May 7th 2023

Asking questions is the only way to learn… ~ Indonesian Proverb HE SAID... Today we were arriving in the bustling city of Jakarta. We touched down at Soekarno Hatta International Airport in Jakarta around 6:45pm. We’d been travelling for hours, but the flight from Sydney to Jakarta comprised less than eight of those. It was a smooth flight and we felt great on arrival. Unfortunately, it was a slow journey through customs. We’d pre-prepared and printed our visas, thinking it would allow us a seamless path through the formalities, but nothing could have been further from the truth. ‘Snail pace’ is my best descriptive term. We even managed to select the slowest moving line, so we were the very last people from our flight to clear customs. It took the best part of an hour. It ... read more
view from hotel room
nasi kuning
nasi goreng

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