By: Kindeng Temminck-Simamora
Malang is the second largest city in East Java, Indonesia. It is traditionally known as a place to unwind and relax for people stressed out from big city life. Due to its elevation, Malang has a cool climate, although according to native Malang people (known as Arema, an abbreviation of Arek Malang), it has gradually gotten hotter in Malang.
Malang is not as crowded and busy as other cities on Java such as Jakarta or Surabaya, so the air feels cleaner and the atmosphere is more laidback. The city features some malls, good restaurants, a variety of hotels, tourist attractions, good schools/universities. All in all Malang is a friendly city, where every visitor will feel at home.
Natural Beauty in Malang
Malang doesn’t just have mountains, but also beaches and waterfalls. Some of the waterfalls can be found in Batu, just 45 minutes from Malang. The one which is the easiest to get is Coban Rondo (coban means waterfall).
Another waterfall in Batu is Coban Ondo, close to Cangar, the warm water spring. This waterfall is not as well known, so it is less crowded there. The access to the waterfall is not as easy as getting to Coban Rondo. Ondo means stairs and to get there you have to climb a long stairway!
Waterfalls located in Malang are Coban Pelangi and Coban Baung.
Malang Beach Life?
A lot of visitors are surprised when they find out Malang has some pretty good beaches. The beaches are located in South Malang. It takes about 2 hours by car to get there. It is also possible to get there by motorcycle or public transport (which will take longer). To make the trip easy and comfortable, you can rent a car from Malang. The average cost is Rp. 400.000 (45 USD) a day, including a driver and fuel.
Balekambang and Sendang Biru beaches are well known beaches near Malang and attract lots of visitors.
My favorite area for some beach life is Pulau Sempu. This is an island in Sendang Biru facing the Indian Ocean. Rocky cliffs protect a part of the island from the ocean. Through a hole in the rock, water from the ocean formed a lagoon. They call it Segoro Anakan. You can safely swim in the lagoon and you can climb the hill to see the amazing Indian Ocean.
There are many beaches on this island but I will just name three of them: Kembar I, Kembar II and Pasir Panjang. It just takes about 30 minutes from the lagoon to the nearest beach.
Due to the big waves it’s not allowed to swim here, but don’t think that you’d waste your time because time will fly here. Before you know you’d have to go back.
To get to the lagoon and the beaches you have hike through a forest. This is a nature reserve so you need permission to pass through. The hike takes 2 hours if the weather is good. Since it is a nature reserve, there is no accommodation at all. But you can bring a tent if you want to stay overnight. Don’t forget to bring enough water and food too.
If you like adventure, these beaches and the lagoon are there for you to explore. To really enjoy these natural beauties you should go on weekdays to avoid the crowd. More information and photos about the beaches, waterfalls and Malang are available on my website www.holiday-or-living-in-malang.com