I travel to humble, inspire, and push myself. When I organize my trips, there are always three main components that I try to experience. The first is culture (
which is pretty broad). While traveling, I want to be able to experience the most culture I can from a country. This means learning about their history, picking up social norms, learning a few of words in their local language, and taking part in traditions and parties. The second main component is food. Y’all know that I love trying different and new foods anywhere that I go! Local dishes, street food, desserts, and even ingredients make up a big part of a country’s culture. Opening myself up to all these different aromas and flavors, allows me to experience a country a different way. I can’t say no to food while traveling, I HAVE to try everything!
The last big component is fashion and style. I am a sucker for clothes and trying to blend in to the local style scene in any country that I visit. Whether it is in Spain, Italy, Portugal, or wherever else, I am always people watching to see what women and men wear. I am fascinated by the textiles and colors that people use to express their culture, religion, and personal sense of style. One city that is currently intriguing me with their style is Bandung, Indonesia.
Bandung, Indonesia is the capital of West Java, Indonesia. It is the fourth largest city in the country, after Jakarta, Surabaya, and Medan. This major cultural hub in Indonesia is on my list of places to go to experience fashion, food, and plenty of culture. Before becoming independent in 1945, Indonesia was occupied by the Dutch for over 350 years. And afterwards, by the Japanese for a few years after World War II. I’ve read that while walking around Bandung, you can find many buildings with heavy influences on Dutch architecture!
The city is located about a two and a half hour drive from Jakarta, which makes it a favorite destination for a weekend getaway. Temperatures in Bandung are also cooler year-round, than temperatures in Jakarta. The city lies on a river basin, surrounded by volcanic mountains! Can you image the type of scenery that this place has to offer?! If you’re also a shopper like I am, you’re in luck, because prices are much cheaper in Bandung than they are in Jakarta. So, let the shopping spree begin!
Tourist Sites & Main Attractions
While shopping and visiting markets is one main thing I love about traveling and visiting different countries, it’s not everything that I do (
unfortunately). There are a few big tourist sites around Bandung to have amazing views of the volcanic mountains. Looking for a hotel in the area, visitors can look at Traveloka Hotel Deals to find hotels and flights within Southeast Asia. The Crowne Plaza Bandung offers guests spacious rooms and a comfortable area to relax after sightseeing all day!
About a two hour drive north of Bandung, visitors can see the active volcano, Tangkuban Perahu. This is where you can see the large volcanic crater and hear the folklore that surrounds the area. From what I’ve been researching the folklore sounds a lot like Oedipus! Scandalous!!
Kawah Putih is located about 50km south of Bandung, and home to a large “volcano” or crater lake. In this area, there is another popular folklore from villagers, that says animals try to avoid the lake. After further scientific research, this is due to the high levels of sulfur in the ground that make it dangerous for some animals to roam this area. The crater lake is safe now, but still has a potent lingering smell of sulfur.
The Distro Market is an area where individual designers and young entrepreneurs can sell their clothing. The urban fashion culture in Bandong is growing, where designers are now utilizing new media and technology to reach their audiences. In the Distro Market, you can find clothing from individual designers, indie music, and a heavy skateboarding scene! Although most of Indonesia is moving more towards factory made clothing, there is still the tradition of hand made textiles and craftsmanship. This can be seen with the traditional technique of batik.
Batik is a technique of wax-resist dying to cloth. It’s made by drawing designs or stamping with wax. The wax on the cloth resists the dyes and allows the artisan to create beautiful designs with various colors. They can either soak the cloth in one color and remove the wax with boiling water, or repeat the steps for multiple colors.
Batik is found in various countries, from Indonesia, Malaysia, Singapore, Bangladesh, and more. But, Indonesian batik is the most famous. It is made in the island of Java and in October 2009 was designated by UNESCO as a Masterpiece of Oral and Intangible Heritage of Humanity. This tradition from Indonesia is drawing me to visit this area! If I can come home with a batik garment, I will be happy!
What are your three main components that you want to experience while traveling?
*This post is in collaboration with Traveloka. All opinions are my own.