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Travel Like a Local: Indonesia

Ira recommends... Indonesia. Travel like a Local.

Skyscanner presents a new series of Travel Like a Local to show you a locals perspective on food, places to visit and common phrases. Our first edition introduces one of our Group Marketing Managers in Singapore, Ira Noviani.

Ira Noviani

What local food do you recommend?

Pecel Pandegiling: Get your dose of succulent rice poured with peanut sauce and completed with beef, raw vegetables, and peanut crackers. This is the one and only place to have a taste of heaven when you travel to Surabaya. The place is located at Jalan Pandegiling 318-A, Surabaya.

Gudeg Yogya: Sweet savoury jack fruit boiled for hours with palm sugar and coconut milk and served with chicken, hard-boiled egg, tofu, tempe (soybeans patty) and beef skins stew on top of the warm rice will satisfy your tastebuds for a truly Javanese dish. You can get them when you visit Yogyakarta in Central Java.

Dawet: Finish your meal with this tasty beverage made from cool coconut milk mixed with rice-flour jelly in green colour and sweetened with palm sugar. Perfect for your sweet tooth!

What places should I visit?

Gunung Bromo is a dream spot for a sunrise chaser, located near Surabaya in the Eastern part of Java Island. There are jeeps or horses to take you up to the mountain. Best view is to be seen before 5-6 AM.

Ubud in Bali is a perfect place to cycle. Absorb the green nature from the forests and paddy fields in Ubud and be amazed with the traditional Balinese buildings that are mixed harmoniously with the environment. Ubud is the place where you want to learn about Balinese culture, like arts, crafts, dance and sculptures.

Nongsa Beach in Batam offers a beautiful sunset with golden rays striking against the bluish skylight and the sparkling clear water. Just enjoy the passing of boats while resting your stress away on the white sandy beach.

What about local phrases I should use?

  • Terima kasih (Thank you)
  • Apa kabar? (How are you?), it’s always a good point to start the conversation.
  • Boleh minta tambah? (Can I have a second helping?), though may not guarantee you’ll get one, they will be amazed with your fluency in Bahasa to say the least.

Common misconceptions about Indonesia?

You can not survive while travelling in Indonesia without learning Bahasa Indonesia: Nowadays a lot of Indonesians, especially from the travel and hospitality industries are able to converse in English, albeit fluently, and you can get away with English in all cities without too many communication issues.

Internet is horrible or almost non-existent in Indonesia: True to some extent; but if you stay at a good hotel, you get pretty decent Internet.

You can’t get beer in Indonesia: Indonesia produces the delectable lager Bintang. So you will survive your thirst while travelling in Indonesia. Drink responsibly!

Sum Up in 3 Words

Diverse, laidback, friendly

Rice field in Ubud, Bali

Bromo Mountain in East Java