Wednesday, May 27, 2015

Novotel Bogor Golf Resort

Novotel Bogor Golf Resort is a 45-minute drive from central Jakarta, set among

breathtaking gardens and an 18-hole golf course. Guests can relax on the Novotel’s poolside terrace under the shade of tropical trees.
The rooms at the Novotel Bogor Golf Resort are modern with air conditioning and 45-channel flat screen TVs. Many rooms include balconies or terraces facing the green gardens.
After a round of golf at the onsite course, guests can enjoy full relaxation at the Oasis Spa, where expert massages are offered.
The In Balance fitness centre offers modern exercise equipment in a bright room with floor to ceiling windows.
The Novotel has a grand outdoor pool. There is also a full-service indoor Kid’s Club.
The Novotel Bogor Golf Resort’s restaurant offers range of cuisine, including traditional Sundanese/Indonesian and authentic Italian dishes. Cocktails are served in the gardens at the Jati Pool Bar or in the the open air Mahoni Bar.
The Halim Perdanakusuma International Airport is less than 40 km from the resort. Free parking is available on site.
Hotel Rooms: 179, Hotel Chain: Novotel

Address: Golf Estate Bogor Raya, 16710 Bogor, Indonesia Show map

Tuesday, May 26, 2015

The Luxurious Lagoi Bintan Sanchaya

Situated on the beautiful island of Bintan and located just a 10-minute drive from BBT Ferry Terminal, The Sanchaya offers luxurious and modern getaway with a private beach area, an outdoor pool, free WiFi access in all areas of the property, and free on-site parking for guests who drive. This resort also offers free return transfer service to the ferry terminal.
The beautifully designed rooms at The Sachaya are all air-conditioned. Each one is fitted with a seating area, a flat-screen satellite TV, an iPod dock, personal safe and an en suite bathroom featuring shower facility, slippers, bathrobes, and free toiletries.
Fresh towels and linen are also provided. Some rooms have dining area and a well-equipped kitchen. Guests can enjoy pool, garden, or sea view from the balcony.
The concierge service at the 24-hour front desk can help guests with currency exchange, luggage storage, laundry requests, arranging car hire and bicycle rental, airport shuttle, and organising relaxing massage treatments at thespa and wellness centre. Guests can also purchase lovely trinkets at the on-site gift shop.
As for dining option, the on-site All Day Dining Restaurant serves Asian and Western dishes, while the Library & Bar serves light snacks and refreshing beverages.
We speak your language! Hotel Rooms: 30 

Address:  Jalan Gurindam Duabelas, Plot 5, 29155 Lagoi, Indonesia Show map

Journey into the Surreal Sungei Sebung Mangrove Forests of Bintan

Located south west of the extensive Bintan Resorts tourism area, just at its very border, are pristine mangrove forests bisected by the meandering, clear river of Sungei Sebung .  This 6.8 km long river has its source in the hillside lakes whose waters are collected from the rains and not from the ground as springwater.  The mangrove forests that  once used to be cut down by the locals to obtain woodfor  charcoal and building materials have now been left alone to return to their original state ever since tourism now promises a better future through the preservation of the forests and river:  precisely the natural environment that tourists seek and love.  

And so today, visitors can take a boat ride almost right to the source of the river, and experience a thrilling trip into the world of tropical mangroves: watch monkeys, kingfishers, otters, tree snakes and even thousands of fireflies create glowing lights at night, sparkling up the bushes like Christmas trees. At the same time visitors assist in preserving this  precious pristine environment from destruction.

 In 2003  the Bintan Mangrove Discovery Tours  was awarded the PATA (Pacific Asia Travel Association) Gold Award for Ecotourism/Travel Related Project.

Mangroves protect coasts from Tsunamis

Mangroves are very hardy and functional plants. Living as they do from seawater to fresh water and brackish  or partially salt water  in between, their strong roots create a natural water treatment system efficiently absorbing nutrients from the water. Experts estimate that one hectare of mangrove forest does the work equivalent to a mechanical water treatment plant worth USid="mce_marker"23,000.   Their roots also absorb nutrients from the water and  create a nursery for reef fishes and prawns. At the same time  mangroves are known to protect the coast from destructive tsunamis.  The incoming and outgoing tides at Sungei Sebung clean the river from trash and dead  leaves, creating a healthy and clear water ecosystem.

Sungei Sebung has four kinds of Mangroves. These are the pencil roots Avicennia, mostly found at sandy shores that  have pencil-like breathing roots and small yelow flowers. This type has the largest tolerance for saltwater. Then there are the Stilt Roots Rhizophora . The stilt roots allow free flow of the tides by hovering above the ground while still providing coastal protection.  While the Knee roots Bruguiera are found in areas with a mixture of salt and fresh water, and can grow up to 30 meters tall. Some have pretty red flowers. Whereas, the Ribbon Roots Xylocarpus is predominantly fresh water based. They carry fruit the size of a football.

Wildlife that have made  the Sungei Sebung mangroves their habitat are macaque monkeys, mostly of the silver leaf type, that are notable for their black faces lined with white. There are also purple herons found among the mud-flats at low tide. You may also meet otters, monitor lizards, mud skippers  and a number of species of Kingfisher birds. Discover the black mangrove snake with yellow stripes all curled up on tree branches. (

Thursday, May 21, 2015

Batam Offers Cheng Ho Sea Voyage Experience To Tourists

Tourists in Batam city, Riau Islands Province, can revisit the experience of the heroic sea voyage once undertaken by legendary Chinese Admiral Cheng Ho that led him to nine cities in Sumatra and Java Islands.

The admirals silk road expedition is being replicated in a new marine tourism attraction called, "The Cheng Ho Sea Route: Archipelagic Sailing," which covers Batam, Aceh Darussalam, Palembang in South Sumatra, Bangka Belitung, Jakarta, Semarang in Central Java, Cirebon in West Java, Surabaya in East Java, and Bali.

Admiral Cheng Ho, whose original name is Zheng He, his Arabic name is Haji Mahmud Shams, and his Indonesian name is Dampo Awang, was a famous Chinese sailor and explorer who had sailed to Malacca in the 15th century.

In fact, the Chinese Muslim from the Ming Dynasty had led seven expeditions to 37 countries in Asia, the Middle East, and East Africa between 1405 and 1433 under the auspices of Emperor Yongle.

The admiral has sailed through Indonesias archipelago on five occasions during his over 28-year world exploration.

Ancient Chinese traders had considered "Nusantara" (Archipelago or now Indonesia) as very important and had significantly influenced the Indonesian culture.

The cultural influences are reflected, among other things, in Indonesias batik designs, cuisine, dance forms, architecture, and fashion.

The Cheng Ho sea route attraction was inaugurated by Coordinating Minister for Maritime and Environmental Affairs Indroyono Soesilo in Batam, Riau Islands, on Feb. 21, 2015.

"This is an important asset, particularly for attracting tourists from China. The Chinese respect their ancestors and their cultural heritage," Minister Soesilo stated.

Using a replica of Cheng Hos ship, the Tourism Ministry offers tour packages tracing the sea routes taken by Chinese Admiral Cheng Ho in the nine regions.

The Golden Cheng Ho II, the replica of the admirals ship, is a three-deck wooden ship adorned with red and gold colors. The ship has intricately carved ornaments depicting heroic stories from the Ming Dynasty in the 15th century.

In Batam, tourists will be taken to Golden City in Bengkong, one of Batams top tourist spots, where the Cheng Ho sailing ship monument is located, and a mosque dedicated to the admiral is being built.

Similar trips will also be offered in Aceh, Palembang, Bangka Belitung, Jakarta, Cirebon, Semarang, Surabaya, and Bali, which were visited by the admiral.

The admiral had even visited Palembang, South Sumatra, on four occasions, respectively in 1407, 1413-1415, 1421-1422, and 1431-1433.

In his honor, the inhabitants of Palembang have built the Cheng Ho Mosque. South Sumatras Kingdom of Sriwijaya had owed Cheng Ho for his contribution to paralyzing the Cantonese pirates led by Chen Tsu Ji that had often committed crimes in Malacca waters.

A giant "Cakra Donya" bell hangs at the entrance of Aceh Museum in Indonesias westernmost province of Aceh.

The stupa-shaped bell, bearing Arabic and Chinese inscriptions, was a gift from Emperor Yongle and was brought by Cheng Ho to Aceh in 1414.

The Central Java capital of Semarang was believed to be the first place where the admiral had landed and stayed in Indonesia.

During one of Admiral Cheng Hos expeditions, one of his trusted lieutenants, Wang Jing Hong, had suddenly fallen very ill. The admiral decided to make a stop in Semarang and used a cave as a temporary shelter.

Later, the inhabitants of Semarang built a temple to commemorate Cheng Ho at that site, and it was known as Sam Po Kong temple, or Gedong Batu.

The beautiful Sam Po Kong temple complex includes five temples showcasing a blend of Chinese and Javanese architectural styles.

The temple underwent massive renovation in 2006 to commemorate the 600th anniversary of Cheng Hos voyage to Semarang.

Visitors can refresh those memories of the Chinese admiral when they opt for the new tour package, which is expected to boost the number of foreign tourist arrivals, particularly from China, which is a major tourist market for Indonesia.

"The sea route is part of Admiral Cheng Hos important history, which brought the Chinese empires peace message," Tourism Minister Arif Yahya noted.

Riau Islands, the third-largest foreign tourist entry point after Bali and Jakarta, also offers white sandy beaches, deep sea fishing, and undersea panorama of fish and coral reefs to tourists.

The current government has identified a huge potential in marine tourism, but it has so far been overlooked.

"It is ironic that marine tourism just contributes 10 percent (of the total tourism earnings)," Tourism Minister Yahya stated at the Bogor Palace, earlier this year after attending a limited cabinet meeting on tourism led by President Jokowi.

The Indonesian government has set a target to earn US$4 billion from marine tourism this year as compared to US$1 billion recorded in the previous year.

The Indonesian Government has set a target to receive two million foreign tourists in Batam in 2015, but the Batam administration hopes to receive 1.4 million foreign tourists this year.

China is a potential market for Indonesia. On an average, more than 100 million Chinese travel overseas every year.

Almost one million Chinese tourists visited Indonesia last year, and in this year, Indonesia has set a target to double their number.

Therefore, Garuda Indonesia has been focusing to increase its international flight services to China.

"China is the main focus of Indonesias tourism industry, besides Australia, Japan, Korea, and Russia," Arif Wibowo, the CEO of the five-star airline, stated recently. (Antara)

Tuesday, May 19, 2015

Hotel Namira Syariah in the Batik City of Pekalongan

Offering meeting/banqueting facilities, Hotel Namira Syariah Pekalongan is located a 5-minute drive from Pekalongan Train Station. Free WiFi access is available throughout the property.

Each air conditioned room here is provided with a flat-screen cable TV, carpet flooring and a seating area. Complete with a refrigerator, the dining area also has an electric kettle. Featuring a shower, private bathroom also comes with free toiletries and slippers. You can enjoy city view from the room. Interconnecting rooms are available.
Khazanah Restaurant serves a fine selection of Arabian, Indonesian and Western food, while Chinese food. Light snacks and refreshing beverages can be enjoyed at Jumeirah Lounge.

At Hotel Namira Syariah Pekalongan guests will find a 24-hour front desk. The friendly staff can assist with car hire, shuttle service and airport transfer for an added fee. Other facilities offered at the property include meeting facilities, luggage storage and laundry facilities.
The hotel is a 15-minute drive from International Batik Center and Linggo Asri Waterfall.

Hotel Rooms: 73 

Address: Jl. Dr. Cipto No.70, 51122 Pekalongan, Indonesia Show map


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