Finally, the New Year is here! Let’s welcome 2018 by traveling and discovering more about the world. This time we’ll take you to a city in the tropical Indonesia. Welcome to Bandung, or in Sundanese (West Java traditional language), Wilujeng Sumping di Bandung! Also known as Paris van Java, Bandung is well-known for both its stunning cityscapes and natural scenery. To start off your journey in this vibrant city, let’s dine with a view at one of Bandung’s many halal restaurants and cafes!
1. Pinisi Resto
Located at the edge of Situ Patengang, a tourism site in Ciwidey, you can easily spot this restaurant. The word Pinisi itself refers to a traditional Indonesian sailing shop, hence why the restaurant decided to adopt the form of a wooden ark for the architecture of their restaurant. It turns out that a stranded ark in the middle of green hills is not a bad sight, not a bad sight at all.
Credit: @afiholle on Instagram
The highlight of the restaurant is of course the dock. On a warm, sunny day you can enjoy the stunning views of the Situ Patengang. If you look around, you can also take in the sights of tea plantations all around the area. Take your time and have a walk around to enjoy the mother nature.
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This two storey eatery serves classic Indonesian food as well as some light meals and drinks. Being surrounded by breezy hills like this definitely calls for a warm and soupy meal, but grilled and spicy food also sounds like a good idea. Worry no more, their Grilled Oxtail Soup is the best of both worlds!
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: If you don't feel like going home and want to stay longer, ask their staff to book a glamping (glamour camping) session for you at this site. But make sure you have prepared your cold wear because it tends to get suuuper cold at night.
Jalan Raya Ciwidey - Patenggang, Patengan, Rancabali
9AM – 8PM
2. Sierra Café and Lounge
If you don’t feel like driving too far from the city, but still want to enjoy the cityscapes of Bandung, this place is the right answer. Located in the neighbourhood of Tebing Keraton tourism spots in Bukit Dago, this is a perfect place to stop by and refuel while enjoying the panoramic views.
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The spacious outdoor area is surrounded by the cityscapes of Bandung. So, you can have your delicious lunch while enjoying the cool breeze from the hills. And of course, take some lovely pictures too!
Credit: @efisofian on Instagram
The dishes served here are unquestionably delicious. They serve Western food, Asian dishes, and traditional Indonesian delicacies. You can choose from US Sirloin Steak, Salmon Teriyaki Don, to Balinese Ayam Betutu. Don’t forget to finish it up with sweet dessert like their signature cakes or cold dessert. We’d go with their Brownie and Ice Cream that served with sugar floss on top. Yum! Some patrons have said that the restaurant has the most delicious and reasonably priced food in the neighbourhood. It’s no wonder that this place is quickly becoming every traveller’s favourite eating spot.
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: If you’re travelling with your spouse or partner, plan your visit in the evening. This place exudes romantic vibes at night, so a special candle light dinner sounds like a great idea!
Credit: @barunamarines on InstagramAddress:
Jl. Bukit Pakar Timur 33, Ciburial
10AM – 11PM
3. Lutung Kasarung
Have you ever wondered how it feels like to live like a bird? At this restaurant, you can have a tiniest glimpse of the experience by dining in a bird’s nest! Located inside the Dusun Bambu family leisure park, Lutung Kasarung offers you a unique experience with its hanging restaurant located smack in the middle of a forest!
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From outside, you can see hanging spheres decorated with branches and leaves, making it look just like a bird’s nest. These strange structures are actually the dining room for the guests! The exterior might seem a little rough around the edges (literally!), but don’t worry, the inside is as comfortable as a restaurant should be.
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Lutung Kasarung serves various kinds of dishes, from Sundanese food to traditional food from other parts of Indonesia like Pempek Palembang (South Sumatera). If you don’t feel like eating a heavy meal, give their light bites a try. Tempe Mendoan (deep fried soft-battered tempeh with sweet and spicy soy sauce) is one of the most favourite snacks in Indonesia.
Clockwise from top left: Mie Kocok, Chicken Rice, Pempek, Tempe Mendoan
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Everybody loves this place! So you might want to check for their busy hours prior your visit. Drop them a quick call to avoid getting stuck in the waiting line which can be up to three hours.
Jalan Kolonel Masturi KM 11 Cisarua, Bandung Barat
Mon, Tue, Thu, Weekend 9AM – 10PM; Wed, Fri 10AM – 10PM
4. Purbasari Restaurant
Another place to eat when you visit Dusun Bambu family leisure park is the Purbasari restaurant. Purbasari offers a different dining experience with their ‘lesehan’ style. Lesehan is the traditional custom to dine on the floor without chair. It’s also widely known as a part of Indonesia’s culture.
Credit: @dusun_bambu on Instagram
Some foods are best enjoyed lesehan way, especially Sundanese dishes. Traditionally, Sundanese dishes are known for their simplicity and lots of ‘lalapan’ (raw vegetable eaten with sambal). The simplest yet favourite Sundanese food served here is nasi timbel, which is plain white rice folded in banana leaves and served with fried chicken, fish, tofu, tempeh, and of course lalapan and sambal.
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The food is not the only reason that makes this place special. The dining rooms are actually wooden huts that float on a little lake. Every hut has its own terrace that face towards the lake that gives such a lovely sight for lunch time!
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: You can walk, or you can row your boat to the huts! Find the staff to assist you to take one of the boats to get to the dining hut.
Credit: @dyahajeng9900 on InstagramAddress:
Jalan Kolonel Masturi KM 11 Cisarua, Bandung Barat
Mon, Tue, Thu, Weekend 9AM – 10PM; Wed, Fri 10AM – 10PM
5. Orofi Café – Halal Food, Serving alcohol drinks
The title of Paris van Java seems to be not enough to tell how beautiful Bandung is. It seems like someone agreed with that and decided to give Bandung another vibe. You can drive up hill for less than an hour, and you will find this Santorini-inspired eatery called Orofi Café. You can identify the signature look of Santorini from the white and blue colour scheme applied at this café.
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Located on the top of a hill, this café shows you the view of Bandung city from height. In a clear day, you can even see the mountain as the city background. The open-roof concept of the café made their dining area showered with sunshine in daytime. If you are not feeling comfortable being under the sun for some period of time, you might want to make your visit more enjoyable by coming in the late afternoon or evening time.
Credit: @oroficafe on Instagram
In this place, they serve mostly western dishes like pastas and pizzas. But one menu that withdraws our attention from the other is their Beef Crunchy Pizza. This pizza uses potato chips as the topping. Yep, you read it right. It is potato chips and pizza in one bite. Your wish has just granted.
Credit: @elia.chan on InstagramAddress:
Jl. Lembah Pakar Timur 99, Dago Pakar, Ciburial
11.30 AM – 11PM
6. Dulang Resort & Resto
Dulang Resort is another resort that kind enough to open their restaurant for public. Located in the middle of tea plantation in Lembang, Dulang provide their guests cool crisp air and green scenery around it for free. Tea plantation has always been a natural identity for Lembang, and Dulang happens to be lucky enough to be a part of it.
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The restaurant is facing toward the plantation, so you can definitely enjoy the green scenery and feel the cold air when you’re there. Being located in the hills, there are times when the view is blocked by fine mists. But instead of making it less scenic, the mist adds some sort of majestic and mysterious (in a good way) atmosphere to it.
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Their specialties are Sundanese dishes. Lalapan, sambal, and various kinds of fried proteins are some things you can order here. But to refresh your palate from fried food, you can try Sate Maranggi. It’s a traditional beef satay that's known as a signature dish from the neighbouring city, Purwakarta. The beef satay is marinated in sweet soy and coconut sauce, then grilled on charcoal fire. Served with some rice and pickle, and it’s ready to fulfil your appetite.
Sate Maranggi, a Traditional Dish from West Java
Credit: @dulangresort1 on Instagram#HHWT Tip
: Care for a dip in their swimming pool? You can pay IDR 40,000 (SGD 4) to enjoy the resort’s swimming pool. I mean, play in the water at the misty hill resort? That’s (literally) so cool!
Credit: @mariawatii on InstagramAddress:
It’s another uphill trip to get to this café! Cocorico is a hilltop eatery with a stunning view of Bandung right by their window. This three-storey café is known for their mini rooftop garden on the third floor. The garden provides a perfect view of Bandung cityscapes in day or night.
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Cocorico became local’s favourite for its ambiance and breezy atmosphere. Every storey gives a different vibe and includes an area that opens up towards the city view. Their building was designed in a way that allows the guests to have multiple viewing spots. Besides the rooftop garden, their second floor is also a favourite spot for sight-seeing or to simply enjoy the cool air.
Viewpoint on the second floor (photo by me)
No question about how amazing their food is! They have light meals such as Cireng (savoury fried rice-cake), main course like Beef Ribs Soup, and refreshing juices and smoothies to quench your thirst. Enjoy your time here as long as you want because in wherever area you sit, you are free to hang around their café to find the best spot to have some photo opportunities.
Credit: @cocoricocaferesto on Instagram
Since it’s located at the hill top, coming over around the evening will be a good idea. You can see two different cityscapes from this café, a busy city at day time and romantic city lights at night.
Credit: @aisoisemotret on InstagramAddress:
Jalan Bukit Pakar Timur 29, Ciburial
11AM – 12AM
8. Lawangwangi Creative Space - Halal Food, Serving alcohol drinks
‘When food meets art’ is the tagline of this place. That pretty much sums up exactly how it is since this restaurant is also an art gallery. This is where the foodies and art junkies can enjoy their time together. In the first floor, you can explore their art gallery that exhibits some paintings, sculpts, installations and many other forms of art.
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Done with looking around, come upstairs to their café to enjoy some meal. The interior is as artistic as their gallery. Instead of paintings, the walls are made of huge windows that show the guest the beauty of nature around this café.
Credit: @mazayagalva on Instagram
Food-wise, the café serves various kinds of foods to satisfy different appetites. From fried rice to chicken steak, Colenak (sweet fermented cassava) to ice cream, and numbers of drinks to enjoy with the view. Pssst.. most of the art pieces shown here are Indonesian artist’s works. This is a perfect place to have a closer look at Indonesia’s contemporary art scene while enjoying good food and beautiful views.
Credit: @_yudistira on Instagram
One of the most attractive spot at this café is the outdoor balcony that faces towards the open air of Bukit Dago. From this spot, you can see the view of green hills around Bandung and the city itself. But remember to be careful because the balcony is made of wood and has a low safety barrier. The guests are also warned not to overcrowd it to prevent any unwanted accidents.
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: Visit their website to find out what exhibition is going on the gallery at the moment!
Jalan Dago Giri 99a, Mekarwangi, Lembang
10AM – 11PM
Bandung isn’t only lovely because of its people, but also for its natural and city landscape. Who would’ve thought the city that was once burned down to ashes is now becoming a home, even for outsiders. The people of Bandung managed to welcome the guests as a family in their town while keeping it naturally beautiful. And each and every one of us, whether as guest or host, should do our part to keep it that way too. ?