Tuesday, May 22, 2012

Semarang - Overview

The launching of this new route to the Indonesian city by Air Asia back in late 2011 piqued my interest and I managed to secure return tickets to Semarang for my May trip. This is how I first came to know Semarang, a quaint city up north of Central Java. Before that, I’m oblivious to the existence of this port city as I am to many places around the world.

Lawang Sewu, a beautiful and historic building in Semarang

I’m not the only one unaware of the city as there were close to zero foreigners in Semarang. We (I went with my roommate/coursemate of mine) barely came across Westerners throughout our stays, bumping only into one Frenchman, I presumed, at the airport, heading to Kuala Lumpur. The lack of foreign tourists makes this city much more unique and unspoiled. However, such anonymity undoubtedly would not last long as the city is prepping up for the upcoming Visit Central Java 2013.

Gereja Blenduk, another local landmark

Is 5 days 4 nights trip to Semarang enough? It depends, but personally, I’m had just the right amount of fun and sun exploring the city (not to mention that my thinning wallet cannot last any longer than planned). In fact, if you just solely go for the charm of the city, 48 hours to 72 hours would be perfect. You will come out all soaked up with the charms of the city as well as have your belly gained an inch or two what with the ridiculously good and cheap foods over there.

Bakso and mie ayam are some Indonesian delights at low prices

That is not to say that my trip was a drag. We went to explore the Buddhist complex, Borobudur, located in Mangelang, a small town about 2 hours bus ride from Semarang. The history of the monument is rich, dating back centuries ago. It takes hours to truly absorb the legacy of this UNESCO site.

At the top of Borobudur for sunrise

Many picturesque shots can be taken there

As usual, I refused to believe that I had to bide farewell to Indonesia. However, it will not be a long adieu for I’m all set to make a comeback next year.

At the top of observatory deck at Masjid Agung overlooking Semarang


Sharing is caring. A word of advice and a piece of information.

Air Asia has daily flight to Semarang, Indonesia from Kuala Lumpur since its first flight in early February 2012. It takes about two and a half hour to reach Semarang. For more information about the fare of the flight as well as the schedule, go to Air Asia's website here.


  1. Not much people want to visit there, that's why zero foreigner,
    you have special taste, good one!

  2. I've never been to Semarang. Anything to see or do there besides the food? I guess 3D/2N is enough? How do you travel from one place to another? They have taxis?

  3. alive: it's more like foreigners skipping the city, which is a waste. But come next year, Semarang will be a regular face in tourism map.

    foongpc: 3D/2N would do if you purely want to explore the city but you might as well extend a few days more to go to Borobudur or Prambanam which are well known UNESCO sites. if diving is your thing, you can consider going to Karimun Jawa, an archipelago of islands north of the city. I wish I had more time to go there but I didn't so I passed on that one...

  4. Even me myself don't know about this place. Thanks for the sharing and I would love to visit someday. So where will you heading next?

    Jeff, you are being tagged in one of my post. Hope you enjoy the fun. :D

  5. honestly i havent heard of semarang before. now that i know it's a great place to visit :)

    @ ohfishiee.blogspot.com

  6. Hey~ It's been a while since the last visit to your blog. :)

    Thanks for dropping by! :)

    Semarang... Some day. :)

    Meitzeu @ Blog

    Meitzeu @ Facebook

    Meitzeu @ Twitter

  7. Diana: Next stop, Ho Chi Minh City...

    Torres: I'll mail it to you next week, no worry...

    Fish: I guess the obscurity of Semarang is well known already...haha

    Meitzeu: Thanks for dropping by too...

  8. Borobudur is beautiful =) we wanted to see the sunset but the sky was so gloomy dat day =(

    so where r u visiting next in Indon?? =DD

  9. audrey, next year April...this time it's Yogyakarta...

  10. I was in Semarang too recently.. But spent most of my time in Karimunjawa island.. only had like half a day to spend in the city during the visit... Borobodur is beautiful.. It has always been in my list to visit.. Maybe next year.. Anyway nice blog :)

  11. I read about your trip to Semarang. I too wanted to visit Karimunjawa island but lack of time to do so...next year perhaps...