Top 5 Things to Do in Canggu, Bali

While backpackers looking to party flock to Kuta to spend a hazy night gouging themselves at Sky Garden, and yogis looking to eat, pray, love may find themselves physically and spiritually in Ubud, I found myself instead in a next upcoming hotspot of Bali – Canggu.

Full of cute cafes, fun bars, trendy shops, and decent surfing waves, Canggu is attracting a beautiful crowd looking to escape the cluster of neighboring Seminyak and Kuta. The town is much more mellow, dotted with lush, green rice patties, along cobblestone roads filled with surfers on scooters. It has a small town feel with all the luxurious amenities.

Scooters through Canggu Shortcut, Bali, Indonesia

Scooters through the “famous shortcut” in Canngu, Bali

Here’s our top 5 things to do in Canggu during your visit in Bali:

Eating heathy and local around Canggu

Good coffee and beautiful, bright nalu bowls (Bali’s answer to acai bowls!) are reason enough to make your way to Canggu. Like other places in Bali, there are plenty of affordable healthy eats – it’s probably one of the easiest places to be vegan throughout all of Asia. Some of my favorite haunts include Crate for nalu bowls, quinoa salads and peanut butter shakes from Peloton, a matcha green tea latte and sweet potato toast from Avocado Cafe, and poke bowls with large chunks of freshly caught tuna at Poke Poke. If you’re looking for something more local, there are plenty of Warungs (local food stalls) including my personal favorite, Warung Heboh where it’s buffet style and you pay by item rather than weight which means you can pile heaps on for a cheap and filling meal!

Coffee, desserts, avocado toast at Crate, smoothies, juices, salad at Peloton in Canggu, Bali, Indonesia

From left: Coffee and desserts and avocado toast at Crate; Smoothies, juices and salad at Peloton in Canggu, Bali.

Party, drink and live band in Canggu

While Canggu’s nightlife may be a bit more subdued than in other parts of Bali, you can still have a great out and get up early to surf, depending on how many Bintang beers you’ve had the night before. One of my favorite places to drink has to be Pretty Poison in Canggu. Open Tuesday, Thursday and Saturday, there’s an emptied out swimming pool in the back where skaters show off their tricks to an adoring and attractive crowd sipping on their beers and cocktails. Other must visits include Old Mans, which turns into a party after dark, live rock band included on Friday nights, and Deus, a restaurant/bar/motorcycle shop with a big backyard that gets filled to the brim on Sundays as visitors sway to the live reggae band. There’s also free tacos and tattoos on Tuesday. For a fun day party, Finn’s Beach Club is a trendy and affordable alternative to the more popular Potato Head Beach Club, while the Lawn by Old Man’s Beach is a cheap and great place to curl up on a bean bag. and buy a beer while chatting with the friendly staff who occasionally break out their guitars to serenade lucky guests.

Live Band on Friday nights at Old Man's in Canggu, Bali, Indonesia

Live Band on Friday nights at Old Man’s in Canggu, Bali

Chill with spa and massages at Canggu

If you’re still feeling stressed or just simply looking to pamper yourself, there are a few good places for massages, facials, and other spa treatments in Canggu. While prices may vary, Goldust is a popular spot that comes highly recommended. While it’s a bit pricier than other places in Canggu, the bit of extra cash you spend goes a long way in terms of luxury. Always #TreatYoSelf, especially when on holiday.

Goldust, best spa and massage in Canggu Bali, Indonesia

Goldust, best spa and massage in Canggu, Bali

Shopping at markets in Canggu

If you’re looking to take home something unique and fashionable from Bali, Canggu has a decent amount of boutiques and markets filled with trendy goodies. Old Man’s Market which occurs on the last Saturday of every month is a top hit with fashionistas. There’s also a Sunday market by People’s Café with clothes and jewelry made by local artists. And nothing is better than bringing home a bathing suit, the perfect souvenir to remember your wonderful time in Bali.

Jewelry shopping at Sunday's Market in Canggu, Bali, Indonesia

Jewelry shopping at Sunday’s Market in Canggu, Bali

Surf at the trendiest spot in Canggu

Of course, no trip to Canggu would be complete without surfing. While Canggu is a becoming a trendy spot amongst beautiful sun seekers, it’s first and foremost a town for surfers. You can take a cheap lesson or rent boards in various sizes right by the beach. The best surf spot for beginners would be Old Man’s beach, while Echo Beach and Berawa are also nice for more seasoned riders. While it’s not exactly empty, the water isn’t as crowded as other neighboring areas.

Surfing babes and new friends at Canggu, Bali, Indonesia

Surfing and new friends at Canggu, Bali – what else do we need?

With its burgeoning popularity, new hot spots for eating, partying, drinking, shopping and massaging are likely to pop-up in this little slice of paradise. What’s your favorite places and things to do in Canggu? Do share with us!

-> Find the best hotel deals in Canggu *

Related articles:
Top 10 Things to Do in Ubud, Bali
Top 10 Things to Do in Kuta, Bali
Top 10 Things to Do in Seminyak, Bali

Top 10 Things to Do in Bintan Island

Bintan Island that forms a part of the Riau Archipelago in the South China Sea is a perfect getaway for friends and families in Singapore with its wide array of things to do. A 45-minute ferry ride will transport you to a world of white sandy beaches, clear blue sea, great Indonesian cuisine, and a bevy of outdoor activities.

The ferry ride also adds to the most important part of a holiday – the journey. And all the more because it is so convenient. There are multiple rides a day from Tanah Merah, Singapore to the three ports in Bintan: Badar Bentan Terani, Tanjung Pinang – the capital, and Bintan Lagoon Resort. The last one is perfect if you are booked into this particular resort, like I was, as the ride takes you directly there. But if you want to add a road trip to the journey, get off at either of the former two ports and take a car to your resort. I’m glad I took the Bintan roads one-way as they were spectacular.

Drive from the port to Bintan Lagoon Resort, Indonesia

Drive from the port to Bintan Lagoon Resort. Photo by author

While there’s plenty to do on the island, here’s my personal top 10 things to do in Bintan Island for you to pick from:

Immerse in history and culture
 at Senggarang Village

The history of a new place has always appealed to me. It’s like hearing the story of a faraway time and then seeing the evidence for real. Bintan, though a small island, is steeped in rich historical and cultural stories, especially due to its strategic placement on the Indo-China trade route. While being pivotal to Malay support system, the island also became home to many Chinese migrants who came in large numbers and settled here. Senggarang Village is the first Chinese establishment. The quaint village is a mixture of houses of different styles and architecture, and shops in sheds. Being an open community, the doors of most houses are left ajar and you can sneak a peek into the lives of these people. One of the nice things to do here is to take a charming walk along the village, which has quite a few temples, Banyan Tree Temple being one of the most interesting ones.

Getting there:
Located just outside the capital of Bintan Island, Senggarange Village is easily accessible via small ferry rides, locally known as Pongpong, which will get you to the other side for Rp5000-10,000 for a single ride.

Fishing village at Bintan Island, Indonesia

Fishing village at Bintan Island. Photo by Frank Starmer

Get the best shopping bargain in Tanjung Pinang

I found Bintan’s capital, Tanjung Pinang – a small and friendly town – to be a great hub for trying out local food, picking up souvenirs, and learning about the island’s culture. Shopping in this town is quite affordable as the wares are mostly local and handmade. While the concrete shops offer a diverse range of electronic goods, dried food items, and antiques, the street peddlers provide the best bargains with their colorful display of Javanese batik cloths, gems, local artefacts, and handcrafted toys.

If a shopping mall is your thing, head straight to the newly constructed Plaza Lagoi mall located in Lagoi Bay. Spread over almost 1,000 sq. meters, the contemporary retail space houses over 60 shops catering to fashion, Indonesian gifts, artefacts, and convenience stores.

Play golf at resorts and clubs

Bintan is definitely a golfer’s paradise and it is one of the top activity to do here. It has four spectacular golf courses – two in Bintan Lagoon Resort, one in Laguna Bintan Golf Club, and one in Ria Bintan Golf Club. The Bintan Lagoon Resort by far boasts the most luxurious ones: the Jack Nicklaus (Sea View) course and the Ian Baker-Finch (Woodlands) course. Since I stayed at this resort, I could indeed see the golf courses in all their glory. Ria, on the other hand, gives Bintan Lagoon stiff competition as golfers flock to this resort which boasts of having all 27 holes at its Ocean and Forest courses designed by the ace golfer, Gary Player.

Being a spectator, I would take in the sights of the rolling green courses against the blue skies while sipping on a cool cocktail. Simply looking at the soothing landscape would take away all stress and elevate my holiday mood.

Golfers at the Bintan Lagoon Resort, Indonesia

Golfers at the Bintan Lagoon Resort. Photo by author

Indulge in spa and massages

Speaking of de-stressing, the one and only thing that can completely relax you is a great spa treatment. If you’re from Singapore where massages and spa treatments don’t come cheap, this is the place to completely unwind and indulge in a luxurious Balinese body massage or even a Thai massage. Most resorts offer a range of treatments to soothe the body and mind, where you would be paying for the ambience as well as the service.

A little exploration in and around the island and I found that you could get cheaper massages in the local spas near Pasar Oleh for as much as Rp500,000 for a 90-minute body massage, although you may have to compromise on the ambience.

Eat fresh and highly affordable seafood/local food

Sebung Village, the sleepy little village near Sebung River, actually serves the best seafood in Bintan. I binged on everything from lobsters, prawns, mussels, freshly caught fish, crabs, and more. Fresh, delicious, and highly affordable, the seafood gets served in restaurants built on stilts that offer you a beautiful view of the mangrove river at the same time.Additionally, the capital, Tanjung Pinang, has an active night food bazaar called Akau, where you will find a wide range of delicious local snacks to satisfy the taste buds. One must-eat item on your list should be the ‘otak otak’, which is basically fish meat cooked Indonesian style and comes wrapped in coconut leaves.The resorts also lay out quite a buffet but, of course, for a higher price. If you happen to stay at the Bintan Lagoon Resort, don’t forget to try their Wasabi Prawns.

ATV ride at the Bintan Lagoon Resort, Indonesia

ATV ride at the Bintan Lagoon Resort. Photo by author

Try out some outdoor activities like ATV

Being an island destination, Bintan does not disappoint where water sports are concerned, you will find plenty of things to do. As most resorts face the beach, you can easily avail these activities in the water sports centers. November to March are ideal for boogie boarding, wind surfing, and long boarding as the north-easterly winds give the water that perfect swell that is a surfer’s delight. On the other hand, April to October sees calmer waters that make it ideal for jet skiing, water skiing, and, of course, diving and snorkelling.

On land, you can try your hands at ATV rides, mountain biking, and adventure treks. Your resort will help you with bookings and transfers. I had the best time in Bintan Lagoon Resort with ATV and Segway rides. You can also hire bikes and cycle within the huge resort, but since I didn’t have time, I’ve left that to my next visit.

Visit the Bintan Elephant Park

Eight Sumatran elephants run the show here. They are trained to perform delightful tricks like 360-degree turns on their hind legs and then jiving to some disco music. The show timings are at 10:00 hours Monday through Thursday, and at 10:00 and 15:00 hours Friday through Sunday. Tickets are priced at S$34 per adult and S$28 per child.

Greetings from a Sumatran elephant, Indonesia

Greetings from a Sumatran elephant. Photo by Nonprofit Organizations

The park also lets you interact with the gentle giants – you can feed them and learn about their living habits, behavioural patterns, as well as dietary habits. You can ride on their backs and take a tour through the forest, which is a one-of-a-kind experience. It would be best to avail the combo packages for ride and show, which range from S$34-39 for adults and S$25-31 for children, depending on the duration of the rides. Located in Lagoi, it’s an easy ride from your hotel as the concierge will be only too happy to book the transfers.

Sunbathe and dip in clear blue sea at Trikora Beach


The local beach lies along the eastern shores of the island and is a perfect spot for sunbathing or dipping in the sea. I found the on-rent cabanas dot the beach a good enough way of relaxing for a mere Rp2000 (SGD 0.20) for the entire day. The sea boasts of three different hues of blue on a clear sunny day, and you get lovely local food in the beach shacks. My beach sauntering led me to a fishing village close by, marked by the fishermen’s stilt houses built to catch/breed fish, locally known as ‘kelongs’. While it’s interesting to watch the fishermen concentrate on their chores, there’s another section that’s busy making boats from the scratch. Though camera-shy, these people are quite friendly and have a ready smile for tourists wandering close to them. In addition, close to the beach lies the Santa Maria Cave, which is home to a Mother Mary statue atop a half globe. It was apparently built by a Dutch priest in the 18th century that still sees people gathering there every Sunday to pay their tribute.

Trikora Beach at Bintan Island, Indonesia

Trikora Beach at Bintan Island. Photo by Adamina


Getting there:
To get to Trikora, there are two options: you can reach it from the south via Tanjung Pinang main port or approach it from north from the Bintan resort area. The former is the preferred and, more importantly, pocket-friendly option. It’s more than an hour’s ride either way. Once you reach the capital’s ferry station, you can grab a taxi to the beach, or if you’re feeling adventurous, hop on behind the bikes of the ready takers outside the ferry station. You can also hire bikes from there for the day. But make sure you settle on an agreeable price first before they ‘take you for a ride’.

Solve the mystery of the Snake River Temple

This 300-year-old temple is by far one of the most interesting places in Bintan. Also known as Sungai Ular Buddhist Temple, the Snake River Temple is accessible only by boat from Tanjung Pinang and looms up suddenly at the mouth of the Sungai Ular or the Snake River. The structure has a mysterious aura surrounding it, and its walls are covered with paintings of the horrors and torture methods of Chinese hell.It is also a popular destination for Chinese pilgrimage, and the ride is made interesting by the winding river lanes through the mangroves that instill in you a sense of adventure. If paganism and traveling off-the-beaten-track are what fascinates you, this one’s worth a look.

White sand beach at Bintan Island, Indonesia

White sand beach at Bintan Island. Photo by Thomas Timlen

Marvel at the Grand Mosque at Penyengat Island

A short boat ride from Tanjung Pinang, the Penyengat Island houses the then-ruler Raja Haji’s formidable stone fortress. Amid the tombs that dot the entire island, the citadel stands right in the middle and offers a spectacular panoramic view of the entire island. Take your selfies and family clicks at this viewpoint. Some of the tombs belonged to people who helped shape the history of this place e.g. the Bugis Princess who received the island as her dowry and the poet whose work somewhat forms the basis of modern Bahasa Indonesia. The highlight of the island, however, is the Sultan of Riau Grand Mosque which was built with a curious mix of egg white and lime as cement.

Sultan of Riau Grand Mosque at Penyengat Island, Bintan, Indonesia

Sultan of Riau Grand Mosque at Penyengat Island, Bintan. Photo by Achmad Rabin Taim

I found Bintan Island absolutely delightful, with its beautiful palm-fringed beaches, delicious seafood, great shopping spots, rich cultural heritage, the quaint little temples, and smiling, friendly faces. Easy accessibility is yet another advantage for this value-for-money getaway. So for the next short holiday, drop by the beautiful Bintan island. It certainly won’t disappoint and you will find yourself busy with all the activities it has to offer. I’ll definitely be going back one more time.

Related articles:
Bintan Island: Popular weekend trip from Singapore
Top 10 Things to Do and Must See in Batam Island
Batam vs Bintan Island – Which is better for weekend trip from Singapore?

10 Tempat Wisata yang Wajib Dikunjungi di Bandung

English Version: Top 10 Things to Do and What to See in Bandung

Bandung merupakan tempat yang terkenal di Indonesia dan pasti tidak asing bagi wisatawan yang berkunjung ke Jawa. Banyak warga lokal yang merekomendasikan Bandung untuk berbelanja, wisata kuliner dan menikmati suasananya yang sejuk. Bandung menjadi tujuan akhir pekan yang populer bagi mereka yang ingin menghindari keramaian dan hiruk pikuk kota Jakarta. Banyak wisatawan mengatakan mereka memiliki pengalaman terbaik menjelajahi Indonesia di sini.

Di tempat ini anda dapat menemukan makanan dengan harga murah dan lezat, barang-barang dijual murah dan bermacam-macam, dan juga terdapat tempat wisata yang penting bagi Indonesia. Oleh karena itu tidak mengherankan jika seluruh Bandung berkembang menjadi industri pariwisata, jadi datang ke sini dan bersenang-senanglah.

Berikut ini kami merangkum 10 Tempat Wisata yang Wajib Dikunjungi di Bandung:

Bandung city, Java, Indonesia

Bandung city, Java, Indonesia

Kegiatan yang Harus dilakukan di Bandung

Belanja di Pusat Pertokoan

Saya tidak melebih-lebihkan di sini, tidak ada yang kembali dari Bandung dengan tangan kosong. Terutama jika anda pergi ke factory outlet di Jl Riau atau Jl Dago, anda akan menemukan semua barang berkualitas seperti pakaian, sepatu, tas dan lainnya dari berbagai merek terkenal. Semua barang yang anda temukan di sini dalam kondisi baik, keluaran baru tapi dijual setengah harga.

SBelanja di Pusat Pertokoan, Bandung, Java, Indonesia

Belanja di Pusat Pertokoan

Melihat Matahari Terbenam di The Valley

Jika anda sedang mencari alternatif lain untuk makan di Bandung, anda dapat memilih The Valley untuk makan malam. Restoran spesialis makanan barat ini terletak di puncak bukit dengan panorama matahari terbenam yang menakjubkan. Makanan yang disajikan juga lezat, jadi anda bisa menikmati makan sambil melihat matahari terbenam di atas kota Bandung.

Wisata Kuliner di Kampung Daun

Kampung Daun merupakan salah satu restoran terbaik di Bandung, banyak turis datang ke sini untuk menikmati suasana santai dengan gubuk bambu, sungai dan air terjun. Makanan di sini cukup enak dan tempatnya luas serta harganya murah. Kunjungi Kampung Daun untuk menikmati masakan khas Indonesia di luar ruangan yang nyaman dan tenang.

Wisata Kuliner di Kampung Daun, Bandung, Indonesia

Wisata Kuliner di Kampung Daun, Bandung

Tersesat di Pasar Baru

Pasar Baru hampir seperti pasar-pasar lain di Indonesia, anda bisa tersesat di sini dan menemukan segala macam barang yang anda inginkan. Wisatawan datang ke sini untuk membeli kain dan souvenir. Harga di sini juga luar biasa murah terutama jika anda pandai menawar. Meskipun begitu, berhati-hatilah dengan barang-barang bawaan anda karena tempat ini benar-benar penuh sesak.

Menikmati Pertunjukan Musik di Saung Angklung Udjo

Menikmati pertunjukan musik tradisional di Saung Angklung Udjo adalah salah satu cara terbaik untuk mengeksplor budaya Indonesia. Selama 2 jam pertunjukan anda akan disuguhi pertunjukan budaya seperti wayang golek, tari topeng, permainan Angklung * dan anda dapat ikut menari bersama anak-anak kecil.

Saung Angklung Udjo, Bandung, Indonesia

Saung Angklung Udjo, Bandung

Berjalan-Jalan di Banjaran Kampung Sawah

Bagaimana mungkin anda datang ke Asia tanpa terpesona deretan sawah hijau yang indah. Tidak banyak orang yang tahu, Bandung benar-benar memiliki sawah dan beberapa sawah terletak di banjaran. Anda dapat bertanya pada penduduk sekitar dimana lokasinya dan pergilah ke sana untuk menyegarkan jiwa. Ada satu rupanya di Kampung Sawah Ciwidey!

Kampung Sawah di Banjaran Bandung, Indonesia

Kampung Sawah di Banjaran Bandung

Tempat-tempat yang Wajib Dilihat di Bandung

Kawah Putih

Pasti berada di daftar teratas tempat wisata yang harus anda kunjungi, danau cantik seperti dalam film akan memukau mata anda. Terletak di daerah pegunungan dan membutuhkan waktu sekitar 2 jam dari pusat kota Bandung. Walaupun berhawa dingin waspadalah dengan sengatan matahari karena langit benar-benar cerah di sini tanpa anda sadari. Kawah Putih merupakan danau sulfur yang berasal dari letusan gunung berapi. Anda dapat mengeksplorasi tempat ini dalam waktu 30 menit melaluiKawah Putih, Bandung Tour *.

Kawah Putih, Bandung, Java, Indonesia

Kawah Putih, Bandung, Java

Tangkuban Perahu

Sekitar 1,5 jam dari Bandung, Tangkuban Perahu merupakan kawah yang terbentuk dari letusan gunung berapi di Indonesia yang harus anda kunjungi untuk pemandangan dari atas yang mengagumkan. Mungkin Tangkuban Perahu berada di urutan kedua setelah Kawah Putih tapi danau ini masih sangat layak untuk dilihat.

Villa Isola

Dibangun oleh seorang jutawan Italia dan terletak di bagian utara Bandung menghadap pemandangan kota Bandung bagian selatan.

Tangkuban Perahu, Bandung, Java, Indonesia

Tangkuban Perahu, Bandung, Java

Gedung Sate and the view

Dibangun dan digunakan oleh perusahaan-perusahaan Belanda, terkenal karena dekorasi satenya. Gedung ini memiliki 6 ornamen yang melambangkan 6 juta guldens. Saat ini Gedung Sate digunakan sebagai kantor Gubernur Jawa Barat. Beruntung, tempat ini dibuka untuk umum dan jangan lupa untuk melihat-lihat dan menikmati minuman di lantai atas sambil melihat keelokan kota Bandung.

Gedung Merdeka

Gedung lain berarsitektur gaya Belanda yang dibangun untuk bangsawan di masa lalu dan terkenal karena menjadi tempat berlangsungnya Konferensi Asia Afrika yang pertama. Walaupun tidak banyak atraksi di sini tapi layak untuk dikunjungi jika anda kebetulan berada di dekatnya.

Gedung Merdeka, Bandung, Java, Indonesia

Gedung Merdeka, Bandung, Java

Jadi, inilah 10 kegiatan terbaik yang ditawarkan Bandung dan tempat-tempat yang wajib dikunjungi. Anda akan kagum dengan bagaimana anda dapat bersenang-senang tanpa menghabiskan banyak hal, terutama bagi anda yang memiliki anggaran untuk backpaking di Indonesia, meskipun membawa banyak belanjaan itu cerita lain! Untuk informasi lebih lanjut anda dapat membaca petunjuk perjalanan ke Bandung.

Photo credits from top: Irwandy Mazwir, Azlan DuPree, Chen Wu, nomilknocry, firmatography, Irwandy Mazwir and MangAndri Kasep

Related Articles:
10 Tempat Wisata di Jakarta yang Wajib Dikunjungi
10 Tempat Wisata yang Wajib Dikunjungi di Yogyakarta
Top 10 Things to do in Java

Top 10 Fun Things to do for Free in Jakarta

Traveling in Jakarta and not wanting to spend any more money in the many tourist attractions along your travel here or elsewhere? Already seen and done all there is as a tourist? Thinking what else to do without using up your travel budget anymore?

Well good news, there are more to Jakarta than just traffic jams, eating, shopping and all the tourist attractions that you would need to pay for. You will be surprised that there is a lot of fun things to do in Jakarta that is actually free!

Here are Top 10 Fun Things to Do for Free in Jakarta for you:

Car Free day in Sudirman every Sunday
There will be no motorized vehicles on Jalan Sudirman every Sunday after the Jakarta government had decided to enforce this due to the success of the initial trial. Now every Sunday from 6am to 12pm, you can roam the street from Jalan Sudirman to Jalan Thamrin without any vehicles to hamper your activity. Many people come here for a run, where this 5km stretch will run from Monas in the north to Semanggi Cloverleaf in the south. Others come here for a family day out to enjoy walking around the golden triangle. At the same time, many opportunists opened up stalls selling local food and even coffee!

SJakarta Car-free day at Sudirman, Indonesia

Jakarta Car-free day at Sudirman. Photo by Brianna Laugher

After the car-free walk come and enjoy the National Monument Monas
Monas National Monument is well known and well loved by the people as it stood prominently in the center of Jakarta at Merdeka (freedom) Square park. This 137-meter monument is known stands magnificently against the backdrop of hustling and bustling Jakarta. You will get an interesting view and sort of an orientation of where you stand in this hectic city.

National Monument Monas, Jakarta, Indonesia

National Monument Monas. Photo by Victor Ulijn

Then pass by the Presidential Palace (Istana Negara)
This palace that is also known as the Merdeka Palace (Istana Merdeka) is located in between the veteran street and North Medan Merdeka street, facing National Monument at the south and Ciliwung River to the north. This neoclassic building from Dutch origin is used as the official residence of the President of Indonesia. The palace was renamed to Merdeka, which means freedom in Indonesian in 1948 when the country gained independence. This palace is a regal sight and would host various important state events like the annual Independence Day ceremony.

Fatahillah Square, Jakarta, Indonesia

Fatahillah Square, Jakarta. Photo by Brian Giesen

Check out Fatahillah Square (Taman Fatahillah)
Also known as the Old Batavia, this place is the historical part of Jakarta and located in Kotas. Fatahillah square was built during the Dutch Colonial times back in the 16th century as the heart of the walled city. It boasts many tourist attractions like the Jakarta History Musem and other colonial buildings. Walk around to take in the sights for free and also enjoy the many antics of the artisans and performers that entertain here on weekends. You may also sit around and absorb in the age-old culture of the place while enjoying the view of the fountain.

Chinatown, Jakarta, Indonesia

Chinatown, Jakarta. Photo by Jakob Montrasio

Wander around Chinatown
Chinatown, also known as Glodok, is made of narrow streets lined with malls and various stalls selling all kinds of things from antiques, laptops to food. Come here to enjoy with the flock of people the many good foods you can find here or simply find a place to sit down and have tea and people watch. There are also some beautiful Chinese temples as tourist sights to be enjoyed like the Da Shi Miao or the Vihara Dharma Bhakti temples.

Catch a bus ride around the city
Yes technically not free but the price is so ridiculously cheap at 4000 Rp it is almost as good as free. Take a bus ride around the city and have a good experience on this special bus ride that is known as Bus Istimewa, literally special bus. The name is due to the fact that the bus has its own special lane that only it can use while the rest of the millions of cars have to squeeze into the other lanes. If you do not want to be crushed by the many people that take the bus daily, try it on a weekend.

 Istiqlal Mosque, Jakarta, Indonesia

Istiqlal Mosque, Jakarta. Photo by Prayudi Hartono

Marvel at Istiqlal Mosque (Mesjid Istiqlal)
This amazing structure should be one of the top things to do in Jakarta even if it is not free, but here to top it off it is! Istiqlal Mosque is the largest mosque in Southeast Asia and has the highest capacity – up to 200, 000 persons maximum. This impressive building consists of four floors of beautiful sculptures and surrounded by balconies. World leaders around the world have come to visit this mosque themselves. It is located just next to Merdeka Square and Jakarta Cathedral.

Continue to Jakarta Cathedral

 Jakarta Cathedral, Indonesia

Jakarta Cathedral. Photo by Spidysg

This cathedral in Jakarta has its own unique architecture for a church, somewhat reminiscent of Notre Dame of Paris with its two tall spires. Jakarta cathedral dates back to Dutch colonial era. It opens 7 days a week for visitors or worshippers. Standing large and looming, it also brings peace and serenity and definitely worth a visit for a photo or two.

End the day with the bustling Pasar Baru (New Market)
Come here for a free walk down memory lane in Pasar Baru, enjoying the many local and family-run businesses here. You will be enticed with local goods, vintage fashions and knick-knacks. You will also find that you are spoilt with choices of good local Indonesian foods such as bakmi. Start walking from Metro Atom at Jalan H. Samanhudi and then walk towards the rear end which is the Jakarta Art center ( Gedung Kesenian Jakarta).

Or just join a Free Walking Tour
With free walking tours that, you will have a guide that will let you learn more insights into the past and present of Jakarta. These are usually what makes a walking tour worthwhile when you truly understand the places that you visit. Read about all the available walking tours in Jakarta and if you want to go straight to a Jakarta Free Walking Tour, you can find it here.

As you can see there are so many fun and free things to do in Jakarta that is possible despite the city’s crazy traffic and immensity in size. Do share if you know more fun and free things to do in Jakarta!

-> Check out budget hotels deals in Jakarta at Booking.com *

Related articles:
Top 10 Things to Do and Must Visit in Jakarta
Jakarta Travel Guide
Day Trip from Jakarta – Bogor
Top 10 Things to do in Java