Discovering the Colonial Heritage of Menteng

Jakarta isn’t all skyscrapers and modern marvels. Tucked away in the city lies Menteng, a neighbourhood brimming with colonial charm and historical significance. Here, time seems to slow down as you wander through leafy boulevards lined with grand old houses, each whispering tales of a bygone era.

A Rich Heritage Unveiled

Menteng’s story intertwines with Jakarta’s own. The area’s development began in 1810 under Governor-General Herman Willem Daendels, initially as part of Batavia’s expansion. Fast forward to 1910, and Menteng underwent a remarkable transformation. Inspired by the concept of a ‘tuinstad’ or garden city, Dutch architect P.A.J Moojen meticulously designed the neighbourhood. Today, Menteng stands as a testament to this vision, offering a tranquil escape amidst the urban sprawl.

An Exclusive Address Through the Ages

From its inception, Menteng was envisioned as an exclusive enclave. In 1910, the Dutch government transformed it into a residential haven for politicians, high-ranking officials, and the Dutch upper class. The architectural grandeur of the houses reflected the social standing of their residents.

Even after Indonesia’s independence, this locale retained its elite status, becoming the preferred address for state officials. Interestingly, this prestigious neighbourhood played a role in shaping the life of a future world leader – Barack Obama spent some of his childhood years (1969-1971) in Menteng!

Colonial Architectural Gems

Those staying in the heart of this area at properties like The Grand Mansion Menteng by The Crest Collection will be transported back in time. History buffs based at an executive Menteng apartment will delight in exploring landmarks like the Bappenas Building (National Development Planning Agency), the Bouwploeg Building, and the charming Saint Theresia Church. Don’t miss St. Paul’s Protestant Church (GPIB Paulus), while a stroll through the verdant expanse of Suropati Park, established during Dutch rule, adds another layer to your exploration.

More Highlights to Discover

Image via Wikimedia Commons – Photo by CEphoto, Uwe Aranas, Jakarta Indonesia National-Museum-09, CC BY-SA 3.0

While colonial architecture takes centre stage, Menteng offers a diverse cultural experience. History seekers can delve deeper at the Formulation of Proclamation Text Museum and the National Museum of Indonesia (Museum Nasional Indonesia). Art enthusiasts can explore the Tugu Kunstkring Paleis and the Bartele Gallery. Broader Indonesian history comes alive at the Tugu Proklamasi, a landmark commemorating the nation’s independence proclamation, while Tugu Tani (Heroes Monument) is also of interest.

Explore the Fascinating Indonesia

Indonesia, a land of vibrant culture and stunning landscapes, boasts an array of breathtaking destinations. From ancient temples to scenic coastlines, here are five places you can’t miss:


Island Paradise: Nestled in the Lesser Sunda Islands, Bali is an icon of natural beauty. Explore its terraced rice fields, idyllic beaches, and rich cultural heritage. This enchanting island offers a perfect blend of tradition and modernity.


Temple Marvel: Experience the grandeur of Borobudur, the largest Buddhist temple globally and a UNESCO Heritage Site. Dating back to the 8th century, its intricate architecture and layered design are awe-inspiring.


City of Contrasts: Bandung, a city adorned with rice fields and volcanic peaks, is a hub of culture and development. Its European ambiance, set amidst Indonesian landscapes, makes it a unique and bustling destination. You can also enjoy a pleasant stay at a stylish hotel in Braga, Bandung, such as the Kimaya Braga Bandung by Harris as you explore the city.

Komodo National Park

Where Apex Predators Roam: Discover the remarkable Komodo National Park, home to the rare Komodo Dragons. This protected area also teems with diverse wildlife and vibrant marine ecosystems, making it a haven for nature enthusiasts.

Lake Toba

Lake Toba
Lake Toba – Image via Flickr

Nature’s Wonder: Lake Toba, a colossal crater lake, presents a sight to behold. With an island almost the size of Singapore at its heart, this Southeast Asian gem offers serene waters surrounded by breathtaking landscapes.

Each of these destinations embodies Indonesia’s diversity and natural splendor. Whether you seek cultural immersion, historical exploration, or nature’s marvels, Indonesia has something unforgettable for every traveller.

Trip Ideas in Indonesia for New Year Adventures – Exciting Escapades Across a Vast Nation!

As the new year beckons, Indonesia emerges as a thrilling destination, promising diverse experiences for every type of traveller. Embark on a journey that transcends the ordinary at the destinations below each with its own unique allure.

Foodie Discoveries in Bandung

Bandung, nestled amid tea plantations and volcanoes, stands tall as West Java’s culinary capital, offering a gastronomic delight for travellers in the New Year. Those based at properties like Kimaya Braga Bandung by Harris can easily delve into the vibrant street food scene and savour delectable Sundanese cuisine; key dishes include Nasi Timbel, featuring steamed rice wrapped in a banana leaf, and a scrumptious cake called Kue Balok. Stay at such a hotel in Braga Bandung and enjoy the city’s colonial architecture, historical landmarks and shopping hubs on your culinary adventures as well.

Zul Rosle from Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, Food Sundanese Restaurant, Jakarta, CC BY 2.0

Explore Beautiful Bali

Bali, a haven of natural and cultural treasures, beckons intrepid travellers, high-spenders, and budget-conscious explorers alike for unforgettable escapades. Sun-kissed beaches, fun water sports, ancient temples, lush paddy fields, and vibrant nightlife await those spending time here. Destinations such as Kuta, Sanur, Seminyak and Jimbaran provide coastal bliss while the capital, Denpasar and Ubud located more inland, offer cultural experiences with something new to uncover on each visit.

City Adventures in Jakarta

For those who revel in city exploration, Jakarta is an ideal holiday destination. Beyond the towering skyscrapers, it has a historic Old Town area called Kota Tua which transports one back to colonial times. Roam the vibrant streets, where the city’s pulse is felt through its diverse offerings. Head to attractions like the Jakarta History Museum, soak up the lively culture in Glodok Chinatown, visit top sites like the neo-gothic Roman Catholic Cathedral and enjoy flavour-filled culinary offerings in Kemang.

Visit Tourism Villages Around Yogyakarta

Travel to the outskirts of Yogyakarta and immerse yourself in the old traditions and rituals of Java found in various tourism villages. Gain insights into Javanese culture at Nglanggeran Village and discover the artistry of wayang puppet theatre in Widosari Village. Don’t forget to also marvel at the magnificent Borobudur Temple in Central Java; this UNESCO World Heritage Site, dating from the 8th and 9th centuries, offers a historical journey that complements the captivating culture found in the surrounding villages.

Kayaking In Bali

Bali, renowned for its enchanting landscapes, is not just a haven for beach bums but also a paradise for water adventurers. Kayaking in Bali presents a unique opportunity to explore its coastal wonders and river landscapes.

Spectacular Scenery

Kayaking is one of the best things to do in Tabanan, gliding through crystal-clear waters with the backdrop of Bali’s lush landscapes is a wonderful sensation. Tabanan’s coastline boasts volcanic black sand beaches, traditional fishing villages, and stunning vistas, providing a visual feast as you navigate the waters.

Ayung River Adventure

Ayung River Adventure
Ayung River Adventure – Image via Flickr

Kick off your kayaking adventure with the Ayung River, one of Bali’s most breathtaking waterways. As you paddle through the heart of the island, you’ll be surrounded by lush greenery and stunning landscapes. With Class II and III rapids to navigate, the Ayung River offers the perfect mix of thrill and tranquillity. Whether you’re a seasoned kayaker or just starting, you’re sure to fall in love with this gorgeous spot. A day trip from

East Coast Bali Expedition

If you’re looking for a peaceful getaway, consider exploring the East Coast of Bali. You’ll find plenty of hidden gems, from quiet coves to secluded beaches and stunning coral reefs. Kayaking enthusiasts will especially love this area, as it offers a calm and serene environment away from the crowds of popular tourist destinations.

What To Pack For Kayaking In Bali

Ensure you’re well-prepared for your kayaking adventure. Pack essentials like a waterproof bag to keep your belongings dry, a hat to shield against the tropical sun, and, of course, a reliable sunscreen. Wear comfortable, quick-drying clothes and don’t forget your water shoes. Bringing a reusable water bottle is not only eco-friendly but also essential for staying hydrated during your journey.

Discovering Bintan Through The Years

Bintan, a tropical paradise nestled in the Riau Archipelago of Indonesia, is a hidden gem that beckons travellers with its pristine beaches, lush rainforests, and cultural mosaic. Located just a stone’s throw away from Singapore, this enchanting island offers a perfect escape from the bustling city life. Bintan is renowned for its stunning coastline, water sports, and a wealth of luxury resorts that cater to both adventure seekers and those in pursuit of relaxation.

A Once-Flourishing Trading Port

Centuries ago, Bintan held a prominent position as a bustling trading hub in Asia, drawing merchants from various corners of the world, including China, the Middle East, and India. These traders convened on the island to engage in commerce, with Indonesian merchants procuring spices from neighbouring islands, while foreign counterparts, notably the Chinese, brought goods such as tea, porcelain, and silk to Bintan. Owing to its strategically advantageous location, Bintan quickly evolved into a thriving nexus for both local and international traders.

The Struggle for Control

In the lead-up to its independence, Bintan underwent occupation by three different colonial powers: the British, the Dutch, and the Japanese. During the 18th century, the English East India Company took control of Bintan as an ideal port for maritime commerce. By 1911, Bintan came under Dutch colonial rule. The Japanese seized Bintan in 1942 as part of their regional expansion. It was only after Indonesia secured its independence in 1945 that Bintan was incorporated into the Riau province. This complex history has left an indelible mark on the island’s heritage and cultural tapestry.

The Transformation into a Tourist Hub

Situated just an hour’s ferry ride from Singapore, Bintan became the focal point of the Indonesian government’s ambitious endeavour to establish itself as a prominent tourist destination in the western region of the country. During the 1990s, a substantial influx of funds poured into Bintan, a vital development considering the island’s reliance on foreign investments for its economic growth – making it the focus of such additions to architecture as a Britain family terrace.

Bintan Today

Bintan – Image via Flickr

In the present day, Bintan’s economy is significantly reliant on tourism. Its strategic proximity to regional urban centres such as Singapore, Jakarta, and Johor Bahru has propelled Bintan into the limelight as a prominent international tourist hotspot – with brands like The Residence Bintan appearing on its shores. Visitors, hailing from both domestic and international origins, are captivated by the island’s natural splendour and rich cultural history and heritage which made Bintan emerge as a destination replete with top-tier, world-class resorts and leisure amenities.

A Solo Traveller’s Guide to Bintan Indonesia

Bintan Island is a hidden gem located in the Riau Islands Province of Indonesia. With its pristine beaches, crystal-clear waters, and lush forests, it’s an ideal destination for solo travellers seeking adventure and relaxation. Here’s a guide to help you make the most of your solo visit to Bintan Island.

Exploring Bintan Island

Bintan Island is home to numerous attractions, including the Pasar Oleh Oleh Bintan market where you can buy souvenirs and the Bintan Mangrove Discovery Tour where you can explore the island’s mangrove forests by boat. In addition to these, the island also boasts several historical sites like the Banyan Tree Temple and the Trikora Beach War Memorial.

Getting Around Bintan Island

There are several ways to get around Bintan Island, including renting a car, hiring a taxi, or taking a shuttle bus. For those who prefer a more adventurous mode of transportation, renting a motorbike or bicycle is also an option. Additionally, some resorts offer transportation services to and from the ferry terminal, making it easy for travellers to get to their accommodation.

Outdoor Activities

Bintan Island is a paradise for outdoor enthusiasts. Visitors can go hiking, biking, or kayaking through the island’s lush forests and rugged terrain. The island’s beaches are also perfect for water sports like surfing, stand-up paddleboarding, and jet skiing. For a more relaxing activity, visitors can try fishing, yoga, or meditation.

Food and Nightlife

Seafoods in Bintan
Seafoods in Bintan – Photo by Jerry Shen on Unsplash

The Island is known for its delicious seafood, which is a must-try for visitors during their stay at any Bintan Island resort the likes of The Residence Bintan. The island has many restaurants serving fresh seafood dishes, including grilled fish, prawns, and squid. After a day of exploring the island, solo travellers can head to one of the island’s bars to unwind and socialize with other travellers for a more relaxing time.

Fun Things to Do in Jakarta at Night

Whether you’re into dancing, chilling at a rooftop bar, shopping for souvenirs, or sampling delicious street food, Jakarta has got something for everyone; here’s what you can enjoy in the city after the sun has set!

Jakarta at Night
Jakarta at Night | Image by iqbal nuril anwar from Pixabay

Dance Till Dawn at Nightclubs

If you’re looking for a place to dance the night away, Jakarta has got you covered. There are plenty of nightclubs around the city that cater to different music tastes, from EDM to hip-hop and everything in between. Most of these venues, within easy reach of properties like Oakwood Suites Kuningan Jakarta, have killer sound systems, epic light shows, and some of the best DJs in the world spinning the tunes. Some of the most popular clubs to head to are X2, Dragonfly, and Colosseum.

Embark on Bar-Hopping Escapades

If you’re not in the mood to take to the dance floor, the city has some great bars where you can sit back, relax, and enjoy a drink or two. The rooftop bars are particularly popular because they offer stunning views of the city skyline including Cloud Lounge and Henshin which are easy to access from Kuningan-based luxury apartments. Jakarta also offers plenty of laid-back places too where you can grab a beer and hang out with the locals. Check out spots like Basque and Camden Bar for a more casual vibe.

Shop Till You Drop at Night Markets

If you’re a shopaholic, you’re going to love Jakarta’s night markets. They’re open until relatively late at night, so you can browse the stalls and shop to your heart’s content; don’t forget to bargain (politely of course!) for discounts. One of the most popular night markets is Pasar Baru, where you can find everything from clothing and jewellery to electronics, souvenirs, and yummy food. The Pecah Kulit Night Market and the Santa Night Market are worth checking out too.

Enjoy Some Exotic Foodie Adventures

Jakarta offers some truly delectable street food which is the perfect complement to your nightlife experiences. You’ll find street food vendors on almost every street corner as well as at night markets selling all kinds of delicious snacks and meals; highlights include bakso (meatball soup), nasi goreng (fried rice dish), gado-gado (vegetable salad with peanut sauce), chicken satay and pempek (fish cake). Some dishes can be pretty spicy, so if you’re not used to it, start with something mild and work your way up.

Things to do in Bali

Bali is a beautiful Indonesian island that is known for its stunning beaches, lush green forests, and unique cultural traditions. Whether you are looking for adventure, relaxation, or a little bit of both, Bali has something to offer for everyone. In this blog, we will explore four things to do in Bali that you shouldn’t miss.

Visit the Temples

Bali is famous for its ancient temples, which are a significant part of the island’s culture and religion. Some of the must-visit temples include Tanah Lot, Ulun Danu Beratan, and Uluwatu. Tanah Lot is a beautiful temple perched on a rock formation in the ocean and offers a stunning sunset view. Ulun Danu Beratan is a temple located on the shores of Lake Beratan, and it is a popular spot for photographers. Uluwatu is another temple located on a cliff, and it offers spectacular ocean views.

Explore the Beaches

Bali is home to some of the most beautiful beaches in the world. From the famous Kuta Beach to the secluded Sanur Beach, there is a beach for every type of traveler. If you are looking for a party atmosphere, head to Kuta Beach or Seminyak. If you want to escape the crowds, head to Nusa Dua or Sanur Beach. You can also try your hand at surfing at some of Bali’s famous surf spots like Uluwatu, Padang Padang, or Bingin Beach.

Hike a Volcano

Bali is home to two active volcanoes, Mount Agung and Mount Batur. Hiking up Mount Batur to watch the sunrise is a popular activity among tourists. The trek is moderate, and it takes around two hours to reach the summit. Once you reach the top, you can enjoy the stunning views of the sunrise over the Bali Sea.

Experience Balinese Culture

Bali – Photo by Jeremy Bishop on Unsplash

Bali is known for its unique cultural traditions, and it is worth taking the time to experience them. You can attend a traditional Balinese dance performance or visit a local village to learn about their daily life and customs. You can also try your hand at making traditional Balinese crafts like batik, wood carving, or silver jewelry.


If you’re looking for some relaxation, Bali offers many spas and wellness centres where you can indulge in a traditional Balinese massage or enjoy a soak in a hot spring. Even popular nature resorts in Bali the likes of Nirjhara offer spa treatments and holistic ayurvedic therapies. You can also take a dip in one of Bali’s many beaches, such as Nusa Dua or Padang Padang.

Discover the Beauty of Bandung: A Guide to Your Perfect Day Trip

As the country’s 3rd largest city, Bandung is not only West Java’s mountain stronghold, but a holiday hotspot for the masses. Here’s what day-trippers can do during a tour of this scenic hideaway.

Tangkuban Perahu
Tangkuban Perahu | Image by Affan Fadhlan on Unsplash

Marvel at the Cimahi Rainbow Waterfall

While the best time to gaze upon the Cimahi waterfall is during sunset when the light turns the cascade into a vertical rainbow, this towering natural wonder is stunning at any hour. Although the waterfall is known to double in size during the monsoon season, it is worth visiting the venue during the warmer months so that the hike up to the location is a more pleasant experience.

Hike Up the Tangkuban Perahu Volcano

No day tour of Badung would be complete without exploring the Tangkuban Perahu Volcano, which erupted for the last time in 2013. Those who are based at the FOX Harris Hotel City Center Bandung or any of the best hotels in Bandung must find a local tour operator for this volcanic tour even if the hike up to the crater’s lips is not that long.

Take a Dip in the Hot Springs

One of the best things to do in Badung is to enjoy a dip in the many hot springs in town. These hot springs are a result of the area’s volcanic heritage. Apart from the healing benefits of this warm dip, one can also unwind in style at either the Cibolang hot spring or the Sari Ater.

Uncover the Tea Estates

Don’t forget to stop by the many tea estates occupying Bandung where one can not only explore the tea plantations but also sign up for a factory tour. The tea estates close to Kawah Putih are especially captivating and ideal for long walks.

Top Experiences and Adventures in Indonesia You Should Definitely Try

Those with a passion for adventurous activities and thrilling excursions will find Indonesia meets their holiday needs. Let’s explore some of the most exciting experiences available in the country.

Mangrove Forest Tour

Ranked among the most rewarding things to do in Indonesia, exploring the mangrove forests occupying breathtaking Bintan is a must for those who wish to walk on the wild side with mangrove snakes staring back from branches above. There’s no better way to uncover the beauty of nature than embarking on this mangrove tour. Visitors based at The Residence Bintan and similar rests will find that it is one of the top things to do in Bintan.

Snorkelling in Kanawa

Image via Wikimedia Commons (Julie aka Piper from Southern Michigan, USA, Snorkelers watching fish, CC BY-SA 2.0)

Tipped to be one of the top snorkelling destinations in Indonesia, Kanawa offers tourists a glimpse of the coral gardens and the marine life occupying the Indonesian sea bed. Often compared to the exquisite underwater landscapes of Koh Phi Phi, Kanawa is a less crowded locale to engage in your favourite activity.

Ayung River Rafting

Those who head down to Ubud for a beach holiday can also sign up for a river rafting excursion of a lifetime. Taking rafters through the dense jungles of this tropical paradise, the rapids of Ayung River offer experienced and newbie rafters a fantastic challenge.

ATV Ride

ATV rides are not only accessible on the beaches of Indonesia and its pastoral villages but also in the country’s lush jungles. Travellers hankering for an off-road adventure will find that there’s nothing more engaging than driving down the rocky surfaces of Indonesia’s untamed wildernesses.