As the number of weeks I have left on my contract dwindles into the single digits, I really feel the push to organize as many weekend trips as I can manage.
So on a late-September weekend, a few friends and I were up and traveling at 6:30 am! We started by heading to the Central Jakarta area to pass through the remnants of the delicious night market for snacks, and then on to the Senen train station; destination: Cirebon.
About 3-hours east of Jakarta, near the coast, lies this small town. My local friend was organizing this getaway, so she had us on a tight schedule. Luckily, within five minutes of walking out of the train station, we saw a handful of hotels, so renting a room was extremely easy.
Once we dropped off our bags, we ate an early lunch of Padang food and the local soup. With full bellies we headed to the Taman Sari Gua Sunyaragi temple. It was a unique cave-like temple complex with lots of interesting passageways and levels. Our tour was about an hour in the hot sun, but completely worth it.
After that we headed through the town, in pedicabs, to the Kraton, or local Palace. We saw the museum, house and original wooden carriages.
No trip to Cirebon would be complete without going shopping for Batik. This area is known for its colorful Batik fabrics, so we all did a little souvenir shopping. I scored a beautiful piece of silk for a wrap-skirt.
Later that night, we all went to a big square not far from the hotel. We enjoyed the live music while eating the local dish of Soto Betawi…delicious. We also enjoyed Martabak…a delicious custardy pancake. I naturally chose bananas and chocolate as toppings, and it also comes with a standard drizzle of sweetened-condensed milk. Terrible for your health, but tastes amazing.
The next morning it was time to make the return trip back to hustling and bustling Jakarta…. A great getaway.