Three-hours drive southeast of Jakarta, located on a plateau 750 metres above sea level and surrounded by seven active volcanoes, Bandung is quite the fairy tale setting. The geography and elevation of the site means that its more or less the Cameron Highlands of Java, with cool, comfortable temperate climate throughout although wishing for snowfall would be pushing it.
Our hotel. Living room.
Another bedroom. Mine for two nights.
Despite all the wondrous geography and nature, Bandung is actually more well-known for its fashion. The city has a thriving textile industry, and immaculately rendered copies of luxury branded apparel and accessories are here for the taking. This isn’t China however, so there are obvious mistakes “committed” in order to impress upon consumers the fact of their imitation, although I assure you, the price tags themselves are real. If you’ve come here looking for a cheap shortcut towards dignity, respect and honor back home, you’re in for a rude awakening, but the city is on a course set for change. As Java looks to be the first island in the archipelago to attain developed status first in two decades, fashion’s slowly moving back into the capital as the island’s people become wealthier and discerning. My friends Lina and Ima tell me Bandung’s slowly losing its reputation as a shopping haven for Indonesians to Jakarta and Singapore. For now, the traffic’s bad. It is with this knowledge that Titus and I agreed that the shopping element shouldn’t be our primary reason. Instead, we decided to see something more, tangible and historic. But with a few hours till dark, we decided to dedicate whatever time we had to exploring the city’s shopping scene, which attracts shoppers by putting up statues and posters of Marvel and DC superheroes.
I’m a big advocate of street food. Unhealthy? Unhygienic? I don’t think anyone expects anything less, but I’m a firm believer in eating as the regular locals do, but I can thoroughly understand any concerns against eating it, which is why I didn’t quite push for it this time. When you travel alone, you’re the master of your own time and yourself, but when you travel with someone, you’ve got to be considerate and give in to others’ concerns. So, we had our dinner at Cihampelas Walk, a place making lifestyle venue that’s a little like Holland Village, but better.
Goku and Flash. That’s a fanfic pairing I’d like to read about.