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Guide to Choosing Your Hotel in Jakarta [2024]

By Tibs →
In this guide, I will answer all the questions I received from readers regarding the best hotels to choose for a stay in Jakarta. What is the best area to stay in Jakarta? Pick any hotel located along or near Jalan Sudirman, between Plaza Senayan and Sarinah Mall. Read my full answer:  What is the best area to stay in Jakarta?

What To Buy in Indonesia: Souvenirs, Gifts and Cheap Stuff

By Tibs →
If you are visiting Indonesia as a tourist, you are probably looking for gifts or souvenirs to bring back home. You may also be wondering if there are some cheap items that are worth buying here more than in your home country. In this article, I will give you tips on what to buy, what NOT to buy, where to shop, and how to avoid scams.

What to do in Jakarta in 24 hours?

By Tibs →
Many tourists stay in Jakarta for only 1 night, usually before heading to Bali. If you are in the same situation, you might be wondering what are the best things to do in the city in 24 hours or less. To help you, I have written this one-day itinerary that covers the town's best attractions. It is a bit rushed but it is realistically doable in 24 hours. Of course, you can skip some of the steps to make your day more relaxed. Choosing the right hotel in Jakarta for a short trip A hotel near  Plaza Indonesia  would be perfect or, alternatively, near  Sarinah . To reach the airport faster, you could also stay near Semanggi, Taman Anggrek or Pluit, but then you would be further away from the attractions I will recommend below. You should be aware that every Sunday is car-free day in Jakarta. This means that Jalan Sudirman and Jalan Thamrin will be closed to cars from 6 AM to 11 AM. Recommend Hotel Near Sarinah/Plaza Indonesia for a 24-Hour Stopover in Jakarta → 5-stars (more than 150$/

Living in Jakarta: Best Neighborhoods for Expats (2024)

By Tibs →
I previously wrote about the best areas to stay in Jakarta for tourists . You may want to read this article as well to get a first introduction to the city's neighborhoods. I wouldn't say that there isn't one best place to live in Jakarta, as the criteria for each person will be different. The most important factor when deciding where to stay should be the distance between your home and your work or, if you have children, between your home and their school.

12 Delicious Indonesian Soups (and Where to Eat Them)

By Tibs →
A common mistake of foreigners visiting Indonesia is to limit their knowledge of Indonesian cuisine to Nasi Goreng and Nasi Padang. Few will taste one of the dozens delicious soups that you can try everywhere, from classy Indonesian restaurants to popular food courts. Indonesian soups are typically made from some of these ingredients: turmeric, garlic, lemongrass, onions, potatoes, coriander, ginger, galangal, tomatoes and of course, coconut milk. Chicken is the most common type of meat, followed by beef, mutton and fish. Pork soups are very rare outside of Bali. Sop or Soto? It seems that even Indonesians are not so sure about the difference between "soto" and "sop". Some friends told me that "sop" are clear soups while "soto" are mixed with coconut milk. Wikipedia tells a different story: It says that traditional soups are called "soto" while modern, western-inspired ones are called "soup". If you know the differ

Where to Stay in Jakarta - Best Areas for Tourists (2023)

By Tibs →
If you visit Jakarta as a tourist, you are probably wondering about the best areas to stay in the city . Due to the horrible traffic and the lack of public transportation, I advise you to choose your location carefully. 1 kilometer in Jakarta is like 10 kilometer in normal cities. Just going to the opposite side of a street by car can sometimes take up to 30 minutes! If you don't have time to read my entire review , the following paragraph is a short summary: The best place to stay in Jakarta, either you are a tourist or a businessman, is around Plaza Indonesia or Grand Indonesia, for instance:  Kempinski ,  Grand Hyatt ,  Pullman ,  Mandarin Oriental . It is an expensive area though so if you are on a budget, you can stay near Sarinah Mall instead. You'll find backpacker hostels ( Jalan Jaksa ), 2-star hotels ( Favehotel ), 3-star hotels ( Holiday Inn  or  Ibis Tamarin ) and 4-star hotels ( Morrissey , Four Points by Sheraton , AONE or  Akmani ). Need more address

How to Buy Viagra or Cialis in Indonesia (Bali or Jakarta)?

By Tibs →
One of the questions I receive the most is how to buy viagra or Cialis in Indonesia, the two most common erectile dysfunction (ED) drugs available. It is actually very easy to buy them (at least in Jakarta or Bali), as well as some other "magic" pills like Levitra or Hammer of Thor. With 70% of Indonesian males who are smokers, it's not surprising that there is a lot of demand here for products that combat impotence. In this article, I will give you some tips on where to find them, how to avoid the fake ones, and how much they cost. Main differences between Viagra, Cialis, and Levitra Each man will have a different reaction to each of these drugs. That's why it can be a good idea to try all of them at different times to see which one is the best for you (of course, ask your doctor about it before taking anything). Generally speaking, though, these are the main characteristics of each: Viagra: Typically, you'll need a 50mg dose to get a

4 Best Ways to Learn Indonesian Online for Free

By Tibs →
Learning Indonesian online has never been so easy. There are so many websites, apps and videos available for free that the real problem is to identify the right one for you. Before choosing, you should ask yourself a few questions: How serious are you about learning Indonesian? Do you want to become fluent or do you only want to learn the basics? Do you want free lessons or are you ready to pay for a subscription? The advantage of paying sites is that you'll usually get a complete program that you can follow every day. By investing money, you will feel more motivated as well. Without paying, you'll need to stick to trial offers with a limited number of free lessons. That's fine for a beginner, but it can be annoying as you make progress. Do you prefer learning through an app or a website? If you don't have too much time to spare, using a mobile app is a convenient way to learn. You can practice for a few minutes from everywhere, for instance while comm

STDs / HIV Check-up and Treatment in Jakarta

By Tibs →
Many readers ask me where they can get a medical check-up for STDs such as AIDS, HIV, Chlamydia, Gonorrhea, Syphilis, Hepatitis, Herpes, HPV (Human Papillomavirus), Genital and Anal Warts, etc. I will give you a list of recommended places in this review, plus some tips about safe sex in Jakarta. If you are wondering whether STDs are prevalent in Indonesia, the answer is "of course". If you are wondering whether you should get checked after sleeping with someone without a condom, the answer is "of course". Sex education in Indonesia is almost non-existent, and very few people know about STDs. For many, condoms are just a way to come inside a vagina without making babies. It is very common for Indonesians, guys or girls, educated or not, to have sex without any protection.

How I Learned to Speak Indonesian in 1 Month

By Tibs →
I can't say I'm particularly gifted at learning languages. Before Indonesia, I lived 2 years in Italy and 2 years in Brazil, and yet I can barely speak any Italian or Portuguese. Indonesian, or Bahasa Indonesia as it is called here, is different from any other languages. There are no tenses, no declension, no tones. There is nothing tricky about the spelling, nothing complex about the grammar, and you always pronounce the words the same way . You don't even have regional differences: It is spoken identically in Sumatra, in Papua, in Java or in Bali. And best of all, it uses the Roman alphabet. Put it simply, it is probably  the easiest language to learn in the world . I arrived in Jakarta in November 2018. After one week, I had learned enough words to get by in all the most common situations : Greetings, introductions, ordering food, buying groceries, asking for directions, expressing basic feelings, etc. After 1 month, I was able to have a normal

Why You Need Travel Insurance in Indonesia (2021-COVID Update)

By Tibs →
When I speak with tourists visiting Indonesia, I am often shocked to learn that they don't have proper travel insurance or medical evacuation insurance. Among long-term residents, there are also many who do not have health insurance, particularly those without a working permit (typically the digital nomads). The objective of this article is to convince you that spending a few dollars per day on insurance is not a waste of money, especially during this COVID-19 pandemic. Even if you are on a tight budget, you can get cheap insurance ( as low as 3$ per day if you take a yearly subscription - check here ) that will at least save your ass in case of a serious illness or accident. If you cannot afford it, then you probably should not travel to Indonesia. Why you need travel insurance in Indonesia While you certainly need insurance everywhere, there are even more reasons to get it when you travel in Bali , Jakarta, or the rest of Indonesia: You are exposed to more risks When y

Best Things to Experience In Jakarta (2021)

By Tibs →
Many tourists hate Jakarta because they visit it the wrong way. They check the things to do in a guidebook or on the internet and then try to do as many as possible in a short time. Since they are not familiar with the city, they get stuck for hours in traffic, walk in the heat from one sight to the other, and spend more time bargaining than actually talking with Indonesians. I am not saying that Jakarta is perfect, but if you know what to do, you can definitely have a good time. Below is my list of the most recommended things to do or experience in Jakarta, starting from the best. An alternative title for the article could probably have been "How Not To Hate Jakarta". Your suggestions are welcome, please just write a comment at the end. You can also read  Is Jakarta worth visiting?  for more information. Try Indonesian food Every time I come back to Jakarta from Europe, the first thing I do after landing is to eat some Indonesian food. It is a very underrated cu

10 Best Gifts Ideas For Your Indonesian Girlfriend or Wife

By Tibs →
If you have a local girlfriend or wife, you certainly know that Indonesian girls absolutely love receiving gifts. In fact, I would say that being generous is one of the surest ways to keep your relationship strong and happy. The list below will give you 10 ideas of gifts that all Indonesian girls would love to receive. I've included links to trusted websites you can buy them from. Flowers

Jakarta Travel Guide - For Single Guys

By Tibs →
In this article, I will explain everything you need to know about traveling to Jakarta as a single guy. I tried to keep it as concise and short as possible. For more details, you can email me directly at thibaud@jakarta100bars.com. If I wrote something inaccurate, please leave me a comment and I'll correct it. Note: I updated this article in January 2019. Visas for Indonesia The citizens of almost every country on earth can enter Indonesia without a visa for at least 30 days. This visa is non-renewable and non-extendable so you'll have no choice but to leave the country after it has expired. Overstaying is currently charged IDR250,000 per day. For staying for more than 30 days as a tourist, you have 4 options : → Make a 60-day tourist visa in any Indonesian consulate abroad (I did one in Saigon, Bangkok, KL, Singapore and Paris). It takes 3-4 days and costs 50$. This visa can then be extended 4 times 30 days for about 40 dollars (you must use an agent).

My Experience Buying from Amazon in Indonesia

By Tibs →
I have bought countless goods on Amazon over the years (books, toys, air purifier, pollution masks , etc) and had them shipped to Indonesia, in Jakarta or Bali, without any difficulties. In spite of this, I know quite many expats who are still not confident using the website. That's a shame because there are still many products that are hard to find in Indonesia, especially if you live in smaller cities. Amazon also has competitive prices (in particular on its " Today's Deals " page) and it is much safer to use than local alternatives like Lazada or Tokopedia. If you are still hesitating, this guide will explain everything you need to know about buying on Amazon from Indonesia and why you should not worry about it. I will answer common questions like: - Is it safe to ship from Amazon to Indonesia? - What kind of products should you avoid buying on Amazon for Indonesia? - What is the AmazonGlobal shipping program and how does it work? - Does A

25 Best Traditional Markets to Visit in Jakarta

By Tibs →
Apart from the ubiquitous malls, Jakarta is filled with traditional markets and shopping streets. This review covers all the shopping areas to visit as a tourist. Some of them are very famous and some completely off-the-beaten track. I've listed them in 4 different categories: Traditional markets used by Indonesians for their daily household needs Interesting shopping streets for the tourist or the urban explorer Low-cost / wholesale shopping centers and malls with fake goods and great bargains Specialty markets (Precious stones, birds, flowers, fish, etc...)

Are Sex Toys Legal in Indonesia?

By Tibs →
Buying sex toys in Indonesia used to be very difficult, but today it has become more easy thanks to the internet (you can buy online on websites like Amazon ): In this review, I will answer a few questions: Are sex toys legal in Indonesia? Can I import them from abroad? Where can I buy some? Are Sex Toys Legal In Indonesia? NB: I am not a lawyer and I didn't study laws. The following is only my personal interpretation of the law based on internet research. If you can read Indonesian, I recommend you the following: The Legality of The Sex Toys Business in Indonesia . If you think I'm wrong, please leave me a comment below. Officially, there are no laws specifically forbidding sex toys in Indonesia. Possessing a dildo, importing it or carrying it with you when you enter Indonesia is not explicitly prohibited in any text or regulations.

11 Indonesian Islands You've Never Heard Of

By Tibs →
The next Bali or the next Lombok is listed below. If you are a tourist considering going to Bali to enjoy a quiet beach holiday, just forget it. Bali is ridiculously overcrowded and it is starting to look no different than Jakarta: Clogged with traffic, disorganized and polluted, it is far from the paradise it pretends to be. The good news is there are 17,000 more islands to explore in Indonesia, with far better beaches and scenery. Sure, they require a bit more effort to visit and you may not find 5-star honeymoon resorts so easily. But once tourism will develop and change the authenticity of these islands, you will probably regret not making the trip earlier.

Travel Guide to Salura Island - Sumba

By Tibs →
Salura (called Halura in the local Kambera  language) is an island located at the southern tip of Sumba. It is 4.5 km long and 1.5 km wide, which makes it a bit smaller than Nusa Lembongan, but almost 3 times larger than Gili Trawangan. I traveled there for a few days in November 2017. It is still completely authentic and untouched by tourism. To give you an idea of how rarely visited it is, people told me that I was the first foreigner to ever spend a night there. Occasionally, though, they welcome luxury boats that make a stopover for a few hours, but that's it.  Unsurprisingly, there is still very little information about how to get to Salura, where to stay and what to do. To change that, I wrote this short review that will hopefully answer all the questions you may have about organizing your trip on the island.