Bandung, Central Java, is home to plenty of attractive destinations for those seeking to play, dine-out or stay-in.
In search of Bandung's best places to mingle with friends and family, The Jakarta Post Travel sought out the expert advice of three local writers.
Floating Market Lembang
Aswi, also known as "Bang Aswi" according to his blog bangaswi.wordpress.com, named Floating Market Lembang (FML) a good place to take relatives or friends visiting Bandung.
He said that FML was a perfect representation of Bandung's topography due to its mountainous surroundings.
"The weather is cool and nice. FML also somehow caters to the natural Situ Umar Lake," he said.
Situ, which refers to a natural or artificial body of water, can serve a variety of purposes, including retaining water and as part of an effort to preserve ecosystems.
Unfortunately, many other situ-like locations in Bandung have disappeared due to modern development.
The views of Bandung's highlands, which can be taken in from multiple vantages, the fun water activities and the delicious foods make FML the perfect hang-out spot.
Saung Angklung Udjo
On his blog, Aswi cited Saung Angklung Udjo (SAU) on Jl. Padasuka 118 as one of his favourite places to hang out in Bandung, especially with friends from abroad.
"This is where the heritage of angklung, a traditional bamboo musical instrument created by the Sundanese, is being preserved. And I like that SAU has complete facilities, including an amphitheater, a restaurant, a bamboo workshop, a shop and a praying room. At SAU, we can see angklung performances, learn how angklung is made, savour Indonesian delicacies or simply hang out cozily," Bang Aswi said.
Indeed, SAU is nestled in the middle of tall stands of bamboo plants, making the place feel cool, cozy and soothing, even if arriving in the middle of the day during the dry season. The lush green inner court is one of SAU's best spots to lounge.
The homemade yogurt and es lilin (popsicles) are a good way to unwind on a hot day. The restaurant also offers affordable Sundanese dishes as well as other Indonesian cuisine.
Bandung native Valiant Budi Yogi, a writer and blogger, raved about this restaurant as a great place to hang out in the city.
"The reason is simply because the place has a nostalgic quality, but is friendly at the same time," Valiant said.
The restaurant, which is located on Jl. Kidang Pananjung at Simpang Dago, was among the first steakhouses established in Bandung in the 1970's. For children born and bred in Bandung in the1980's, chances are at least one fond memory was formed at Tizi.
Though the initial hype has subsided, the restaurant retains a loyal customer base consisting of people like Valiant, who prefer less crowded places to hang out. The restaurant is decorated in cozy and pleasant European style.
Valiant recommends his favourite dish, Tizi's signature, Schasclik, for first-timers; but for those who love pastries and sweets, the apple pie and strudel are among the best-sellers at the restaurant's bakery.