7 Best Things to Do in Malang, Indonesia
Malang is a vibrant city on the island of Java in Indonesia. Bustling with life and colour, this is an attractive destination to people for a variety of reasons, not least of all the wide array of enjoyable things to do and see whilst there. The city’s history as a Dutch colony can be seen in influences to this day, most notably through architecture.
To be sure you make the most of your holiday in East Java, make sure you take the time to see some of the best sights in the area.
1. Explore the Rainbow Village of Jodipan
The cheerfully painted buildings in the village of Jodipan may not give it away, but not that long ago, the area was a riverside slum with limited days. Due to unacceptable living conditions, the government was considering evicting all of the area’s residents. Thanks to some youthful university students, however, the village was given a new lease of life when it was transformed by layers of colourful paint. The joint project between the students, paint suppliers and local artists, captured the eyes and the hearts of people from all over the world.
Revamping the area and saturating it with vivid colours has done more than just erase what was once an eyesore. Tourism to the village has grown drastically, which in turn has improved the local economy, further improving the lives of the locals. Walking tours of the village are the best way to spend a few hours absorbing the infectious happy vibes of Jodipan.
2. Take in the beauty of Tumpak Sewu Waterfall
Against the powerful backdrop of the active volcano Semeru, you’ll find the awe-inspiring, two-tiered waterfall known as Tumpak Sewu. Surrounded by lush vegetation, the dramatic drop of the waterfall is a must-see for anyone eager to engage in some amateur (or professional!) photography, explore the pools at the bottom of the falls, or simply enjoy the view. It is conveniently located roughly 60 km southeast of Malang, making it an ideal trip for the morning. The name of the waterfall can loosely be translated to “the thousand waterfalls,” due to the way the falls appear to be many small ones, rather than one large waterfall.
3. Tour Kebun Teh Wonosari
In Batu, not far from Malang, lies this tranquil tea plantation. Shrouded in morning mists and ensconced by forests as far as the eye can see, the natural beauty of this plantation isn’t something that you’ll soon forget. The highlight of the spot is the plantation’s highest peak, Bukit Kuneer, which is about an hour’s hike from the parking area and well worth the exercise. Besides, gentle exercise is often the best way to immerse yourself in a country like Indonesia.
4. Visit Kidal Temple
Experience the serenity of an ancient Singhasari dynasty temple. Just over 10 km from Malang, the Kidal temple sits in stately splendour near the village of Rejokidal. Kidal is off the beaten path and is smaller than some of the temples you may have come across if travelling through Southeast Asia. It’s the ideal place to stop and reflect before setting off for a day of wider travel and sightseeing.
5. Solve the Coban Rondo Labyrinth
Most people who pay a visit to Malang also explore the nearby town of Batu, home to many attractions and located just a 30-minute drive from the city. The area of Coban Rondo is also very appealing to tourists, thanks to a nearby waterfall, camping area and this unique labyrinth. The unusual and peaceful attraction is an ideal way to take a break from exploring the local area and test your navigational abilities
6. Batu Flower Garden
After finding your way out of the labyrinth, move along to Batu Flower Garden to enjoy a collection of the area’s flora. As you might expect, the garden is bursting with beautiful displays of Javan vegetation and flowers, but there’s also a variety of activities to take part in, like rock climbing, ziplining, and plenty of places to enjoy a meal, too.
7. Batu Bengkung Beach
Lastly, one of the most popular things to do in the Malang area of Indonesia is to head south to the coast and visit a beautiful beach, like this one. Batu Bengkung is a picturesque island beach, with the added luxury of a barrier reef offshore, breaking the worst of the waves and making this a very calm place to soak up the sun and swim.