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Outskirts of Bandung

Kuala Lumpur
Level Contributor
77 posts
6 reviews
Outskirts of Bandung

I am thinking of a trip with young children to Bandung for 5-9 days. Would like to spend more time in outskirts enjoying nature. Want to make serious effort to plan in order to avoid traffic jam.

I hope to focus on spending time outside Bandung:-

(i) Ciwidey area (Kawah Putih), Malabar Tea Estate) and explore nearby regions beyond;

(ii)Tangkuban Perahu area.

Heard so much about the infamous jam during weekends in and out of Bandung. Seriously, does it mean, if we arrive on Sat/Sun, we are going to get stuck in horrible jam just getting to hotel and around? Does it mean that even if I am based in Ciwidey area, weekends are a no no for exploring the countryside/tea plantation?

How bad is it? Unless I can plan to steer clear of horrendous traffic condition itself, I may opt for another place to visit. Appreciate some help just to plan timing.

What is a good hotel to base ourselves to explore Ciwidey area and beyond? Can't seem to find much info/photos on Malabar Mess in Malabar Tea Estate

Hope to get some tips. Thanks!

Jakarta, Indonesia
Level Contributor
7,595 posts
118 reviews
1. Re: Outskirts of Bandung

Avoid weekend if possible is a rule of thumb.

Since your interest is to explore outskirts of Bandung, then staying near the attraction can be an alternative. So it will be couple of days to be based in Southern Bandung, and few days in northern Bandung. Since you got plenty of days for the trip; I did not see any problem if you have to switch hotel.

Staying at Malabar Mess can be a choice to enjoy Southern Bandung area. For information on rates and type of room they have, contact

Kantor PTPN VIII Jawa Barat

Jl. Sindangsirna No. 4 Bandung

Telp. +6222 2038966

Java, Indonesia
Level Contributor
1,853 posts
4 reviews
2. Re: Outskirts of Bandung

We have stayed at the Malabar Mess. It was absolutely lovely. There is also a large estate in the North of Bandung called Taman Bunga that will rent these huge modern houses, complete with the view and crisp fresh air. Easy way to enjoy a week if you have a car rental. Lembang is only 10 mins away.

Another option is to split your time between Bandung and Pangandaran. Pangandaran is hardly ever visited by foreigners, and is a domestic resort town. The beach is broad, the seafood fresh, and some of the local sites like Green Canyon is delightful. lots of cheap hotels and foodies. it is a 5 hour drive from Bandung.

Kuala Lumpur
Level Contributor
77 posts
6 reviews
3. Re: Outskirts of Bandung

Thanks Cirque & Craneboy, for your reply. Appreciate it!

If I were to stay in Bandung and make weekday day trips out Ciwidey/Tangkuban Prahu area, will I have to battle a lot of traffic in or out ? How long shld we expect to take to reach the area on weekdays?

Is it difficult to self drive around? Although we normally prefer to do that in places we go, we found Bali not convenient to drive on your own for lack of good maps and directions. The other big thing is can we find good reliable companies to rent well maintained vehicles?

Craneboy, thanks for the info on Malabar Mess. Able to give a bit more comments on the place eg standard of the rooms & place esp cleanliness? Prices of food? Easy to get outside affordable food in this area? Anything for the children in the grounds of the guesthouse itself? Would love to find out more on Taman Bunga too. Thanks for the tip on Pangadaran - will consider.

Thanks, folks for your time and effort posting information!

Cheers, LovelyBee

Jakarta, Indonesia
Level Contributor
7,595 posts
118 reviews
4. Re: Outskirts of Bandung

If you prefer to stay in Bandung city and have day trips to the places outside Bandung, then it's possible too. Standard travelling time would apply. To Tangkuban Perahu is around 1 hour drive whilst to Kawah Putih is around 2 hours drive.

Car rental: if you are not comfortable to self-drive in Bali, then Bandung will be no exception. Consider renting car with driver instead.

Jakarta
Level Contributor
61,585 posts
117 reviews
5. Re: Outskirts of Bandung

Check Sindang Reret establishments. they have hotels in both locations ( Lembang and Ciwedey).

sindangreret.com/v1/index.php/sindang-reret-…

Kuala Lumpur
Level Contributor
77 posts
6 reviews
6. Re: Outskirts of Bandung

Hi again!

I've been thinking and doing some more reading up on the TA forum. I am amazed at the time & effort you destination experts give to the forum! Wow, thank you for the kindness in helping fellow travellers!

Anyway, can help give me advice? Is this a good plan:-

1. Base in Bandung city centre (5 days)

-day trip to Tangkuban Prahu

-day trip to Cidiwey/Kawah Putih/Situ Patengan & surrounding area

-day trip to Malabar Tea plantation area - tea factory/cycling in tea plantation

-shopping in evening each day

(rent car + driver for daily trips)

2. Base in Garut (3/4 days)

-day trip to Gunung Papandayan/ other craters

-Kampung Nga

-dodol/other local industries

Options:

(i) rent car & self drive Bandung-Garut return

Is it easy to get to Garut on our own and find places around? If there are adequate sign boards to key places and good maps, we can handle the driving as we are used to self drive holidays. Problem is -can get good maps? Got signboards?

(ii) get driven to Garut in a day (plus stops), then rent car from Garut (+ maybe driver or self drive) around Garut.

How much should I expect transport from Bandung-Garut? Easy to rent car + driver in Garut?

Some other questions:-

1. Would it be too much repetition of scenery - TPrahu/KPutih/Papandayan? 2. Is Garut worth going or is it more or less same scenery as Cidiwey

3. lovely rice terraces - where would I find them?

4. any batik cottage industry around?

5. Sari Papandayan resort - very few reviews - how do you rate it?

6. Danau Dariza- seems perpetually fully booked on TA all year round? That hard to get?

Thanks loads for time answering.

Rgds, LovelyBee KL

Jakarta, Indonesia
Level Contributor
7,595 posts
118 reviews
7. Re: Outskirts of Bandung

Regarding your options:

(i) <<Is it easy to get to Garut on our own and find places around? If there are adequate sign boards to key places and good maps, we can handle the driving as we are used to self drive holidays. Problem is -can get good maps? Got signboards? >>

Will be more helpful if you're fluent in Bahasa Indonesia (just don't think if you watch Indonesian drama on TV2 then it's ok to drive around yourself). Consider renting a car with driver in this case. Garut is much smaller than Bandung and have less visitors compared to Bandung, so if you state you're having trouble driving by yourself in bigger tourist place such as Bali, why risk yourself to get trapped in much smaller tourism place such as Garut?

(ii) Some hotels can arrange this for you. Otherwise, try to get quotation from Bandung's car rental (you'll be likely to be charged for out-of-town usage though).

On your questions:

1. Repetition will turn into wonders if you're into mountains and nature.

2. Not the same scenery. Garut itself is a town, much more like typical Indonesian smaller town.

3. You can expect to see this along the way to Garut - have to check for the seasons though. If it's a harvest season, it will be golden field around you. Otherwise, it could be green or pure muddy field.

4. On resorts: never experience both places you mentioned. Kampung Sampireun is well developed, but rather expensive (for my standards).

On your booking problem at Danau Dariza, how did you know it's fully booked? Have you tried to call them directly because the website only offer primitive online booking (not instant confirmation).

Jakarta
Level Contributor
61,585 posts
117 reviews
8. Re: Outskirts of Bandung

1/ Plan for BDG area is totally OK ( this reflects the simple fact that you`ve read the forum - BRAVO!)

2/ IMO stay in Garut is a complete waste of time/ effort/ money for transport, car rent etc. Better stay in Gracia Resort& Spa for 2-3 day for the same hot spring/ tea plantation experience. Better allocate more money for shopping ( bring empty suitcases - LOL.

3/ Self-driving is not recommended, rent a car with a local driver.

4/ <<Would it be too much repetition of scenery - TPrahu/KPutih/Papandayan?>>

Not at all, the scenery is completely different and the nature wonders at the sights are both wide-eye opening experience, both unique, thrilling and magnificent.

Java, Indonesia
Level Contributor
1,853 posts
4 reviews
9. Re: Outskirts of Bandung

Hi,

Malabar Mess is not in Ciwidey. It is actually in a small market town called Pangalengan in the Cisangkuy Valley. It is 25 km uphill from the main entrance of the volcano. The rooms are comfortable and it is very quiet with lots of easy walks all around. The rooms have a porch each, ideal for just taking in the fresh air. The mess is popular and you should call ahead as soon as you get to Bandung. Call 022 2038966. Ask for Ibu Conny. She was in charge of the Mess when we visited a few years ago.

Remember that this is a tea plantation and not some high end spa resort type of place. You will not be disappointed if you are expecting clean, tidy rooms in the middle of a working tea plantation.

It is indeed easy to get to Garut, either by public transport (from Leuwi Panjang bus terminal) or by your private car rental WITH driver attached.

You should be heading for Cipanas Garut and not Garut town. This is the tourist center with some very good hot pools in any budget. Stay and swim at the Tirta Gangga hotel if you dont want to spend too much. It is easy to arrange transport to the mountains and to the sulphur lakes from Cipanas, Garut.

If you want to spend serious money, stay at the Kampung Sampireun. I am not sure the Sundanese kings themselves had it so good. Rooms start from USD 200 a night and believe me, they are usually full. It is really plush with villas built around a lake , ensuring privacy and loads of style.

Cheers.

Kuala Lumpur
Level Contributor
77 posts
6 reviews
10. Re: Outskirts of Bandung

Thanks, Craneboywill for the info on Malabar Mess! I was going to skip Malabar Mess (for lack of online info / reviews) but your posting made me seriously re-consider and so it is back on my planning list!

Need some more info on Malabar Estate/Mess, if I may ask you, Craneboywill and/or the other destination experts:-

1. does the Mess serve bfast/lunch/dinner? how is quality of food? how is the pricing?

2. are there alternative decent restaurants in the area? are they far out?

3. is there opportunity to tour the tea factory to watch the processing? any fee charged?

4. bicycle rental in the plantation?

5. walks - can wander around our own or need guide? does the Mess give out maps for walks in the plantation?

6. is there swimming pool or hot springs within the plantation grounds? extra charge?

7. strawberry farms nearby?

If Craneboywill made the trip few years ago, I am wondering how I can find out if the place is now maintained just as well as the time he was there? This will be utmost important for us.

Thanks very much for time and patience answering my many queries!

Regards