Kurzurlaub:  Cirebon

 last time I was here was on Christmas holiday 2015 when Ira, who now resides in Uhdaliyah, Saudi Arabia, took her home coming trip. It was awful. In our visit (I went there with VItri as well, then met Maya and Imelda) two of its historical sites, Keraton Kanoman and Kasepuhan were FULL OF GARBAGE! Not to mention it was stingy too. I almost throw up.

We did have wisata kuliner, later I think, the food taste was so-so. then I made conclusion, this city is just over-rated. 

but last weekend, I visited the city again. I had to. Dearest Ragil and Beby got hitched, tied their knots. He already told us his plan a year ago and asked us to free our schedule.

so,de and I, like any other West European (teheeeee) taking train both commuter train to Tanah Abang and long haul train from Gambir Station (Argo Jati it was) to Cirebon.

Eine gute Aussicht aus dem Zug

we discussed our plan in Cafetaria Compartment. i refused going back to those two palaces (Keraton) as I feel that I still can smell how bad the place was. then we came up with Gua Sunyiragi. FOr my non Indonesian readers, gua means Cave. I had expected the similar horrible garbage all around tho.

after we reunited with Kak Indah soon as we arrived in Cirebon, we had Nasi Jambal for lunch, then off we go to Gua Sunyaragi (literally means, lonely soul)

ticket enterance fee : IDR 10,000. there will be tour guide provided for approx 45 minutes of tour, cost IDR 50,000 and you have to pay to the counter, not directly to the guide.Fair enough! 

a bit about the historical site.

it was built in 1700’s by the great grandson of Sunan Kali Jaga. sit on 1,5 hectare land. It is a cave complex hence it was meant as a place for meditating especially for royal family members at that time. the complex has 10 caves, meant to support the meditating process such as food supply, weapon making, meeting room, bed room, guarded room, repairing-soul room a.k.a Gua Padang Hati (aslikkkk! kalau galau ada guanya  sendiri).

IT was carrefully designed. there are hall, a small and dark one , connected one cave to another, others just scattered around.

sometimes  when you get out the caves, you have to bow down as symbol of respect. since there was no AC at that time (ja, natürlich!) there was water container inside the cave, meant to cool down the temperature. mind you, Cirebon lies in seashore! 

And tip from me/us? Just gave the camera to your guide, he knows how to take very instagramable pictures! MOst of the pics taken from De’s iphone. Setdah nih bocah, banci foto abessss….

Guard Tower

And just below this cave, Gua Arga Jumput, there are two doors, and one door is belived to have a direct acess to Mekka, the holy land! As long as you have a pureeeee heart and clean soul.

Gua Arga Jumput

And you know what??? This area is verry veryyyy clean as no street vendor is allowed! ngga ada yang boleh jualan di area ini! SEHR GUT!

Main Enterance

Later at night, we went to Kuningan, another one hour drive, to attend the wedding. IT was beautiful place with GUnung Cermei as the back ground.

Yeah, I wore running shoes! It was part of the deal with the brides.

Congrats once again , love birds! 

resensi : Aquaterrace Bed & Breakfast

lanjutan cerita di sini

  • You live in Archipelago all your life (well, yaa sort of),thus, the coastal line is not too far from  where you live…
  • you live in a country that has many…many…..blue ocean and beautiful beaches…(forget the infrastructure, though)


  • You watched those American FIlm Series when you were kids…with those rich guys had house facing the ocean…


  • You are dreaming of having a similar house. you wish to wake up and had your meal with a sea view…

terrace room


SOOOOO…..this aquaterrace Bed and Breakfast could be the answer of your (in this case, my) childhood dream with an affordable price for me. 😉

From Ocean Room’s porch

Owned by a Japanese wife and Balinese husband, this B&B is very carefully designed and maintened. THe color of Blue and While really dominating the interior. Everything is detailed and very neat!

View from the bathroom

I had a chance to stay at Both Type of the room, the Ocean Room (has direct access to the beach) and Terrace Room (it has bigger room for up to 3 people).

of course, there is no TV but wi-fi works very well! 

each type of the room comes with pool.

those are the pool for OCEAN ROOM

while these are pool for Terrace Room 

Their food were good too!

The only downside was…it was raining most of the time. Once, it was a very heavy rain that our porch in Terrace Room was all wet (yeah, no surprise).

Seems Bali will not be in our list, at least for few months maybe years ahead, but I will forever brag this accomodation. the  best in the east, traveller said.
We had a blast! 


Website : Www.aquaterrace.com

Or you can find in booking (dot) com and/or Air BnB.

(Short trip) Surabaya

I just got back from Surabaya for a business trip in which…the schedule was very very friendly except for the fact that  I had to take 5.25 am flight…

Friendly enough that besides office matter , I had a change to eat these sehr lecker Essen! Wisata kuliner atas biaya dinas, judulnya.

nasi Krawu In Gresik

since the meeting in Gresik was start at 10, and I arrive at 7 am already (the second flight from Jakarta arrived at 9.30, that was why I took first flight), I asked my colleague to have local cullinary for breakfast first.

later, when we got back to Surabaya, my colleague (whose cousins is marrried to my cousin—- small world)  treated me at Bebek Sinjay. 

bebek sinjay at Jalan Tidar

Crispy duck with mango chilly sauce

office mater done at 2 am. went to hotel to take a nap since I was soooooo sleepy. Ich war sehr müde.

later, as recommended  by many of my friends, I opt for Sate Klopo Ondohen. anyway, I checked google map, the restaurant was less than 3Km from my hotel. so, instead of taking Gojek or Uber, I walked. the city becomes better in my every visit. Anyway, I stayed in Surabaya when I was an appetriance in my former company for few weeks. that’s why it has special place in my heart 🙂 

The Satay (beef and chicken) marinated with shreded coconut. Gee, my mouth is watering just writing this.

sate Ondomohen

the store

after I was done with this food, time for a little reunion with former colleagues who work in this city. I chose Kedai Tua Muda, recommended  by Adel. adel said this restaurant offers great variety of food and the place is nice too, with great music.staffs are friendly too. well, compare to Jakarta’s price, of course it is much cheaper! my capucino only cost leas than IDR 20,000 where it could cost more than IDR 30,000 in Jakarta.

Ade, Juniko and I

A cup of capucino

it’s surabaya. clock is ticking slower than Jakarta. Even like I’ve spent foreeverrrr with those gentlemen, it was only 7.30 pm that Jun suggested me to take another food. it was raining in Surabaya. seemed it was a good choice.


ade couldn’t join us. then we bid farewell. Until  we meet again, gentlemen! 

TO make story short, I still had one meeting in Pasuruan in the next day.

then, after we had our lunch, I just knew there is a mosque looks like a temple.

mesjid Laksamana Cheng Ho Pandaan

Oke then.rush back to airport, unfortunately flight was delay. there’s a lounge anyway. i ate again….at a lot.

Au- desus des nuages

until next time, Surabaya! 

Urlaub: Die Insel der Götter

Well yeah, I just got back from Amed (that is in east Bali, people!) to celebrate Chinese New Year and life..#hasekkk

It is less popular tourist destination compare to Legian, Ubud, Nusa Dua or else. 
i was telling myself, no trip to Bali within next years, but when I read May’s post, I changed my mind. I made sure that room would be available first, then I booked my flight.

I rarely struck any traveler’s review at first read. very impulsive! life is surely good when you’re ada duit dan si boss ijinin cuti! Agree?

From the window


aquaterrace bed and breakfast itself took 3 hours drive from Ngurah Rai airport (you can arrange this pick up service) undulating road unfortunately, cloudy days. The driver who picked me up at the airport wasn’t so keen to talk so I better shut my mouth.
Arrive at 5 pm greeted by not so intense rain and enjoy the rest of the night, by watching the sea shore, read novel at the balcony and had dinner at the Aquaterrace’s restaurant.

Quite beach

next day, after I had my breakfast (with a sea view!), I went snorkeling in the famous Japanese wreck coral garden. Too bad the weather is not so good. Bli Pili (bli = big brother in Balinese) suggested to rent a Jukung, a Balinese fisherman boat. I -of course- like any other Indonesian female did the bargain.

On the way to coral reef

anyway, while cruising the sea, the fisherman stoped its boat. He wanted to sell his fishes to a collector. yep, right in the middle of the sea. the collector throw his bucket, the fisherman put all his fishes in that bucket (ember sebesar ember cucian itu lho). guess how much  did he receive? IDR 105,000 only!

oh em geee! i feel bad for my self! In tangSel, that Seratus ribu cuma dapat 3-4 ikan kayaknya! Duh! 😦 later, I paid the rent fee as its initial price. 

Anyway, there I was, spending my birthday contemplating life below sea level :))

Bukan mendukung Paslon Gubenur DKI

Weather was not oke, I threw up. then decided to go back to pebble stone sea shore. here, I  was witnessing again the hard life of Amed fishermen.

THey have to push the Jukung back to its place. 

pushing the Jukung is one thing, bare feet  on pebble stones, is another hard thing! 

sakit banget lho kaki nginjek batu batu koral gitu.

Later  I bought sea salt from the children of Amed  ( these two girls are the only seller when I was there).

Fourth grader, they told me

 i read that the money will go to their school.

she saw sea salt on the sea shore

after I had my lunch, I enjoyed the rest of the noon by Balinese Massage, with sea breeze sound as background  and rain drop. Yes, it was raining….then storm. i stayed at the room then.

at night, I checked the hotel and restaurant next door to have birthday dinner 😉

Blue moon hotel it was, and the food taste good as well. they gave free bread and pesto for complementarty.

Homemade bread and pesto

nasi urap Bali

While enjoying my dinner I talked to one of the waiters,

“kenapa ngga pindah ke kota aja sih pak? legian, Nusa dua, sanur. kan lebih ramai, bapak bisa lebih berkembang” (read : kaya) 

he replied with that thick Balinese accent… 

“Pernah, 16 tahun lalu. Saya tidak betah. Terlalu ramai dan berisik. Di sini tenang, kampung saya di atas bukit, tapi menghadap lautan”

Ah ya, who am I to judge? he is one of those rich people in desa Bunutan, who has everything in life except money…or stock…or Gold.

And owh, as since this restaurant is within the hotel area, they have visitor’s unwanted belonging as interior. Books! 

mostly book from European countries

Look at that novels!!! Me want oneeee!
next morning, I -of course -had my morning run. 

Mengamini kata May, inilah Bali sesungguhnya

this is the real Bali. Less commercial, less crowded. i can’t afford a bottle of soda sold in those club kekinian di Legian, Uluwatu, etc as most of middle class people post in Instagram. 

Next to my hotel, people breed cows and pigs.

The real miss Piggy!

When I had my morning run, I watched from one of the hill, overlooking Jameluk Beach, those fishermen going back to the seashore. i wonder how do they know their home? 

Have they ever get lost? 

 laut kan sama sama saja ya? Kok bisa ngga nyasar ya? 😉

What I love about Desa Bunutan, Amed when I was there, less people. no seller bugging me around when I was at the beach. 


upacara minta berkat mobil baru.

well yeah, it is black sandy beach some with big stones. seems the local mind their own business.

nikmat Tuhan mana yang kau dustakan?

Stone beach of Amed

On the way back to city ( I stayed overnight in Seminyak because my flight was in the morning) .

I managed to visit the beautiful Tirta Gangga along the way. 

Enterance fee

it was a private park for Karangasem Royal family, built in year 1946. now it opens for public. finally I was there. last time I visited the island, I failed to visit this garden.

Oh well, die Insel Der Götte, immer einen Besuch wert.  
if you don’t like the crowd like I do, this part of the island  is surely to go.

You can hike Mt Agung, or join the fishermen to catch fishes, or see the sea salt in the making.

The only downturn of this trip, there is no car rental and I can’t ride motorcycle. It’s hard to mobile. Jemeluk area is another beauty. even it was raining.
Will post pictures of aquaterace soon while you can read May’s review.

Reisen ist das Enzige was man kauft, das einer richer mach. 

nomor dua setelah sedekah sih :))

Anywyay, if May said in her post…

Promise my self that one day I will wake up in Bali 🙂

I came up conclusion while I was contemplanting….

hell yeah, it’s another story.I had wrote it in another platform anyway 🙂

short trip : Bontang

I just got back from Bontang, Kalimantan Timur.

I don’t know why, the moment when I was still on airplane, sit next to nobody in Airbus 3XX plane, I can’t keep myself from smiling.

Looking thru the window, more than 20,000 feet above the ground, I was beyond happy, for no reason 🙂

above Borneo

Arrived around 1 pm, Balikpapan time, one hour ahead Jakarta Time. This was marked as my second visit to Kalimantan/Borneo  Island, first visit to Balikpapan.

proceed next flight with ATR 500. I think this was my first experience using ATR. not sure, probably took the same plane when I was a kid. 

ATR 500

12,000 feet above kalimantan Timur’s ground.

lepas landas balikpapan

Just to make story short, I had delicous Seafood for dinner 

can you name the food? Sehr Lecker!

Marching Band Pupuk Kaltim

and a chance see Marching Band Pupuk Kaltim during their practice time.
This Marching Band team is the young squad (up to high school students). One who always win the National Championship is their senior. But trust me, they are thaaaaaat good! 

housing in Badang LNG

The housing complex  Badak  LNG reminds me of my neighborhood back in Rumbai Camp, Riau. 

What a trip! feel Very blessed! 

Buaya darat! (literally) :))

Don’t underestimate, you, city kids! They have Olympic- size swimming pool too! 

senja di batas dermaga

(intip) Semarang

and around

Last weekend, I went to Semarang. Alone and by train. Things that I never do (taking a solo trip with long haul train) :p

My last long haul trip by train was 10 years ago to Jogja. So, I was very pleased to see the changes in PT. KAI even though I’ve read the changes that was done by Mr. Jonan in this book.
I took Agro Angrek Malam, in which in my surprise (and opinion) is better than Rj train that took me from Berlin to Prague :))

The AC was very cold, seats are comfortable. As far I remember, when I went to Surabaya early 2000’s, the same train was ugly. I was younger and easy to be pleased by that time (namanya juga jaman duit pas pasan) 

Anyway, arrived in Semarang at 3 am in the morning and that remark as my second visit. I remained in the station until about 5 am after I took my shubuh time. Then went to HOM HOtel where Vitri and Netty stayed. We would go to Magelang together using rented car. I took train because (before mu surgery) the doctor warned me not to take airplane first.

first stop : Cafe Oen

I had visitted the same store in Malang.

Dutch cookies and pastries

mesin kasir kuno

then off to Ambarawa!

we visited Museum KAI. 

Ticket price: IDR 10,000

enterance area was Wall of History PT. Kereta Api Indonesia. It was a busy station back during Dutch collonial to take platation harvest as well as the armies.

Thomas and friends! the real one!

It still has the famous loco, build in 1800’s still using (wood) logs for its fuel. when I was there, the compartement was rented by a group in which one of the people was very rude

“Kereta ini sudah kami sewa ya! kalian ngga boleh ikut”

He? I didn’t even realize the situation because from what I know, that Kereta wisata only operated on Sunday (later I learned unless it is privately rented that cost IDR 15 mio). I thought it was only the show case or alike.

Bah! Dibayarin kantor aja sombong bener, pak! 

anyway, there were (of course) old locomotivrs and vintage compartments. They also keep the building as it is.

The we stoped by Monumen Ambawara. Kids grew up in 80’s ….do you remember there is this picture in our PSPB book? 😜

the subject that is no longer exist.

Cocor Merah built in USA

Arrived at Mesastila Resorts to pick up our race pack. that was where the start line and our stay.

The place is beautiful! some said scary and haunted but no ghost bother to say hi to me :))

taken from my instagram account:

this building was built in 1928 which was used as a coffee plantation mansion by Gustav Van Der Swan.unfortunately it’s raining. otherwise the guests can enjoy stunning sunsets overlooking Gunung Sindoro and Sumbing
The next Morning, I took a trail race for 21K. It was raining hard and to make story short, I quitted the race. I’ll surely write about this 🙂 

At 3 pm, we were heading back to Semarang. Dropped Vitri and Netti of to the airport.  my train was at 10pm!

So, i killed time by ngayal-ngayal babu in Nest.co.logy. Seems my friends in Path who visited Semarang did the check in. its Coffee was goood! You can overlook Semarang City

Later I visited Lawang Sewu (literally means 1000 doors) with the rented car. I just knew that it was a centralized-ticketing-and -schedule  for NEtherland Indische Spporweg Maarschappij  during Dutch Colonial. It called Edmoson ticket.

Edmonson Printing Machine – Ambarawa

you know what? On my early years taking train in 2003, the Edmoson ticket was still used for economy train! If you are wondering, we used tap system now.

the design of the windows was for a reason. It will prevent the rain to the building.
enterance fee is IDR 10,000.the place is not scary at all. some of my friend called it is angker. At night, there is music played to prevent the visitors “bengong”. The famous old songs from 1950’s – 1970’s you probably recognize. For secs, I feel like living in 1950’s.

And you know what, in front of Lawang Sewu used to be a monorail. The Orde Baru goverment removed the rail and transformed to road! The similar train is still exist in Solo as Kereta Wisata not to commutte.

Ahh men! this is exactly what stated in Jonan’s book. A great number of railway road (nation wide) was reduced because the second president had deal with Japan. commercial motives!!! japan needs to sell its cars.The expatriates in my office don’t even have private vehicles in their homebound. There was a visitor from head office  in Jakarta Branch who took trip with Commuter Line when he worked for Jakarta Branch a decade ago. He said, the trains reminded him of his childhood. Back in 2006-2007 there were many imported used-train from Japan. Ach, sweet! 
Anyway, That explains the heavy traffic in big cities specially yeah…Jakarta. typical negara belum  maju – terbelakang juga ngga-tapi serakah aja pemimpinnya. 

it was raining hard, I cancelled my plan to walk around Kota Tua Semarang (old town). I loveeee old buildings!!!! Mereka seperti saksi bisu kehidupan di dunia! menyaksikan banyak hal and some remain misteries.

 The driver dropped me off again in Tawang Station.

Blenduk Church

A nice me-time! I alwayssss love the history of my country.  How our heroes were fighting for Indonesia’s independency no matter where you come from or where you go to pray! 
It sad me that my acquaintances  are fighting and nyinyir about President election (up until now) and the upcoming Pilkada Jakarta! You should go to Museums you-pathetic-people!!! 

Dibuang Sayang – tanjung pinang

So, two weeks ago I flew to Tanjung Pinang. My second visit to this city and first time experiencing the new Terminal 3 Ultimate Soekarno Hatta. I went like


Terminal 3 Ultimate

check in counters

waiting area

Still, it doesn’t have free drinking water. It is still chaos, inconvenience temporary food stall etc. Hell, former Ministry of Transportation said it wasn’t ready to serve….yet.

Arrived around Noon in Haji Fisabillah Airport, Tanjung Pinang, Pulau Bintan. Nothing new. I wonder if there is no event like Bintan Triathlon (Usually on May for the past 11 years ), Ironman Bintan or Tour de Bintan (November except last year it was cancelled due to haze), I guess this airport would be very quite.

Haji Fisabillah Airport


find the difference

Anyway, with rented car, we had lunch and coffee in local coffee shop. I forgot the name of the coffee shop, it was on Trip Advisor. Since I was sick, I didn’t feel like taking picture or else.

There are several tourism spot in Pulau Bintan like Pulau Penyengat and  Pantai Trikora. But, yeah…I didn’t come here for pure holiday.

On the way from Tanjung Pinang to Lagoi, we stopped by at Vihara Avalokitisvera Graha. Wikipedia said it is the biggest Vihara/temple in South East Asia. I’m not sure about this, I think I saw larger temple with larger statue of Dewi Kuan Yin Phu Sha in Medan.

But, it is  a big area!

view from Vihara’s lobby

Do you see row of statues? those statues are very hugeeeee!

tree pose among statues

Then, headed to Lagoi.Approx 1 hour drive from Tanjung Pinang,  where the Ironman event took place.

sea I’d swam the next two days

There is a new tourism spot, Treasure Bay which is claimed as the  biggest swimming pool in Asia (10 mins drive from Swissbell Hotel Lagoii)

Unfortunately, due to my fever and limited time, this was the closest I can get with the pool :((. you can google the picture.

From the bus

and, ah! I stayed in Nirwana Resort area again, but different hotel this time (read: cheaper). Prices are very expensive in Lagoi.

the resort rooms

hello again, nirwana beach

will write my race recap in the next post!