Being an Indonesian who wanders around the world

My goal in my life is Travel around the world.

I gave up my idealism to teach and move to Singapore, doing office work just to get more money so I could save more for travelling. Yeah, I gave up teaching, the job I love the most. But I have to stay focus. I support my parents financially you know, so being a teacher won’t make me go anywhere.

I always take long trip on summer (May-July) even though I know in Southeast Asia, the whole year is summer. But at least, rain won’t likely to pour on those months.

Last month, I took a long trip from Kuala Lumpur – Siem Reap – Pnomh Penh – Bangkok – Hanoi – KL – back to Singapore. I already prepared myself to make so many review posting in my blog, but being an Indonesian really ruined your standard of travelling. I am hard to please.

I tell you why.

Angkor wat is not Borobudur

So, after I read so many positive reviews about this place, I had a big expectation. I arrived at Siem Reap in the morning, picked up at the airport by my tuk-tuk driver who speaks Malay! (Anyone wants his contact I’ll happily give. Just leave me a comment or tweet me.) He brought us to Angkor Wat, Angkor Thom, Bayon, and some random temples that I forgot the names because too much temples name to remember with such foreign name. After time reached 3 pm, the tuk tuk driver asked whether I still wanted to visit Bantey Srei (because I already insisted since morning). He told me that it’s very far. I replied that I don’t mind and I also don’t mind to pay extra dollars because the pictures I saw in the internet are very mesmerizing.

The Famous Angkor Wat

Reading the history and map of Angkor Wat from “The Rough Guide” Book

The tuk tuk driver was right. It’s very far and I slept all the way there. I woke up with a major headache because I slept with natural fan blown upon my body! (In Bahasa called masuk angin.) When I arrived at Bantey Srei, I was like… JENG! JENG! Is this it? Why all the pictures in the internet look so pretty?!

The Famous Bantey Srei for “It’s worth the trip” motto. Well, NOT worth the trip.

Angkor wat sure was big, but I told you, I’m Indonesian. I saw Borobudur when I was 11 and I couldn’t sleep for the next week because it was sooooo gorgeous.

I took shuttle bus to Pnomh Penh, that was about 5 hours journey full of sudden break and extreme maneuver by the driver. Thank god again, I’m Indonesian. I had worse with Kopaja driver. LOL

I cannot say many things about Pnomh Penh because that city is so depressing with all the history. I had a nightmare sleeping after visiting the Genocide museum (used to be the actual prison where all the victims were tortured) and Genocide Center or Killing Fields where all the victims were killed massively.

So, there goes my Cambodian trip. Not what I expected from a holiday.


Halong Bay is not Padang Bai

Another excitement I was looking forward to is Hanoi and of course the legendary Halong Bay. Let me cut you to the chase of Hanoi. It sucks. It’s just Jakarta 10 years ago, with worse taste of food and more rude people.

The only good thing about Hanoi is the museums. I love all the museums. I visited Vietnamese Women Museum which was great and Ho Chi Minh Museum which was remarkable, one of the most artistic and weirdest museum I’ve ever seen.

Ho Chi Minh Museum

Vietnamese Women Museum

So if you love museums, Hanoi won’t be such a bad idea. But you know how much I hate crowded and messy city. I ran away from it, I live in one now, so I don’t ask for one again on my holiday. But anyway I could only blame myself.

The next day, I went to Ha Long! The legendary village of the dragon and took a cruise to Ha Long Bay. Highlights: Even my trip from Padang Bai to Lembar by 15,000 rupiah ferry has much better view than this!

The Famous Halong Bay, the path after visiting the colorful cave (don’t even bother to remember the name.)

We cruised through the limestone (that is similar to one when going to the Phi Phi Island in Phuket) and visited caves (great but not that great) and stopped in the floating village, which is originated from Kalimantan, Indonesia.

The Floating Village, NOT Photoshopped.

After going kayaking, and saw the floating village, we all cruised back to Ha Long City. I really couldn’t believe my eyes that the water in the ocean is not blue. It is greenish kind of dirty. Oh my god it’s too bad to be true. I can’t even compare with the water near Lombok Island.

This cruise supposed to be a breathtaking cruise. :(

It’s not that I didn’t enjoy the whole journey. I did. I tasted new food, met new people and learned new things. It’s just that sometimes it pissed me off when they exaggerate about something . This place is not breathtaking. Maybe for some people it is, because people has different standard and level of bitchiness (well mine is sure high). I hate when things are overrated. Halong Bay is definitely overrated. There goes my only review for the holiday.

Call me hard to please. I’m sorry for having high standard of scenery since I am an Indonesian. I’ve so many universe great creations in my country, and I’m gonna live up to that.

Even for Bandi who has gone to so many places on earth, he still agree that Indonesia has it all. Sometimes I wonder why Indonesian (including me) loves to go to abroad when our country has it all. The answer would be… The beautiful places in Indonesia are not tourist friendly. Government doesn’t care so much and don’t bother to start to care.

A lot of potential hidden in every part of Indonesia. We’re so huge for god’s sake! But sadly, all of our neighboring country is smarter than us to attract tourists. They have their advertisement everywhere and those pretty pictures which I bet photoshopped. When I took picture in Gili Trawangan with my pocket camera, the photos were already breathtaking.

So many places in part of Indonesia I haven’t visited. And guess what? The air tickets to those places could be twice or three times more expensive than going to Phuket or Hong Kong. But I guess price doesn’t lie, does it? :p





4 thoughts on “Being an Indonesian who wanders around the world

  1. Just a comment to connect? Well, another offer impossible to refuse.

    Though I guess you are being a little unfair to your holiday destinations of course you’re right: Indonesia has it all. And yes, apart from Bali the tourist industry ( not just government) is doing very poor indeed.

    By the way I wonder what you liked about Ho Chi Minh Museum. As soon as I saw your picture of the building I immediately knew I would stay away from that monstrous architectonic mistake.

    • Hey Colson.
      Yeah I believe I was unfair. :p

      HCM Museum looked very ‘fail’ but once you entered, it’s actually the weirdest yet most unique museum I’ve ever been to. They somehow created this flow of uniqueness and dorkiness throughout the museum. They don’t only hold the memorabilia from Ho Chi Minh himself but also cute and artistic wall painting, 3D objects and weird interior. You should visit if you’re into museum. =)

  2. I agree with you for the most part. Indonesia already has everything that countries in Southeast Asia has. But have you ever tried to travel farther than Southeast Asia? There lies the real wonder of the world ;p

    I recommend you to visit Hong Kong and China for your next trip and there you’ll find what you’re looking for ;p

    • Hahaha no offence but i will never visit China. (even if you pay for my tickets) LOL :p
      Hongkong is still in consideration since I have friends living there.
      Yup yup soon I will going around Europe! :)

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