Padang

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Padang is the capital city of West Sumatra, Indonesia.

For other places with the same name, see Padang (disambiguation).

Understand[edit]

Padang, the capital of the province of West Sumatra, is mostly used by tourists as an access point to Bungus Bay, the surfing sites of the Mentawai Islands, the inland hills of Bukittinggi, and the Kerinci Seblat National Park.

That said, the city is very pleasant with a nice promanade along the beach, distinctive Padang architecture and wonderfully friendly people. The city is also the home of the delicious Padang food and the town is stuffed with restaurants and street stalls. The locally available guidebook 'Sozzie Sumatra' can be referred to on arrival for upcoming local events and a current 'what to do' section.

Get in[edit]

By plane[edit]

Minangkabau International Airport (Bandara Internasional Minangkabau - BIM) (PDG), located 23 km north-west of Padang, is the main gateway to West Sumatra, with frequent flights to destinations throughout Sumatra and Java such as Indonesia (Garuda-Indonesia), (Sriwijaya Air), (Lion Air), (Batavia Air), as well as Singapore (Mandala Airlines) and Kuala Lumpur (AirAsia)[1]. Direct flight to and from Padang, are only available from 1. Domestic - Jakarta - Batam - Medan 2. International - Kuala Lumpur - Singapore. Visas are available on arrival. From the airport, the cheapest way to get into the city is by Damri (bus) for a fare of Rp15,000 per person. Its route passes by the major hotels in Padang. Other alternatives include taxis or pre-arranged rental cars.

A Rp 100,000 departure tax is levied on outbound international flights and Rp 35.000 on domestic flights.

By train[edit]

Rail transport to Padang are limited, the only passenger trains running is a twice-daily service from Padang Panjang. This connection can be quite useful if traveling from Jakarta overland.

The main station is Padang Station,

Get around[edit]

Crazily-decorated Angkots run along the two main roads. Prices for a trip are approximately Rp2,000. You can get taxis from the Minangkabau International Airport to town for less than Rp50,000 if you speak the language.

Unfortunately if you are white or black, Minang people are well known to be good business people, and are quite skilled at making you pay a few extra thousand rupiah. That being said, don't start squabbling over 50 cents here or there.

There are several alternatives that you can choose for transportation in Padang, such as bus kota (for city bus transportation), angkutan kota (for transportation in the city), taxi, and car rental. Most public transportations are not very safe and clean compared to international standard. During rush hour, you can see the buses overcrowded. Be careful with your valuables as sometimes there are pickpockets and thieves taking advantage while riding on the public transport, though this is very rare.

If you're looking to spend a few days in Padang, car rental is the preferred way to go around. All car rentals include the driver, who can also act as your guide. It's not recommended for tourists to drive around because road signs are not followed by the locals and courtesy while driving almost do not exist in Indonesia.

  • Jacktour Padang Car Rental, tel. +62 751 445655 , [2]. Padang and Bukittinggi car rental services.
  • TotalCarRental, tel. +62 811 21 8494 , [3]. They also provide Padang and Bukittinggi tour packages that you can choose.
  • CV Budi JayaJl. Aur Duri Indah XVI No. 1 +62-751-841939, 7892205, 7850275. Car rental: Innova, Avanza, Kijang, Panther, Xenia, APV, Altis, tour bus. Rp275,000 per day (car {Xenia) and chauffeur).
  • Padang Rent Car. A very experience guide that able to provide you a satisfaction on travelling in Padang city. They provide cars for rent with the cheap price and good service. Contact them +628 1166 8389. [4].

See[edit]

  • Museum Adityawarman, Jl. Diponegoro (Lapangan Tugu), +62 752 31523, 39587, TuS 8AM-4PM
  • Taman Budaya (Cultural Park)
  • Pantai Air Manis (Sweet Water Beach). It is most famed for Batu Malin Kundang (Stone of Malin Kundang), a stone shaped like a prostrating man. According to local legend, this stone is Malin Kundang , the ungrateful son who disowned his poor mother after coming home as a rich man from his travels. His mother cursed him into stone, as well as the remains of his ship, which can also be seen near his stone. There is a tidal island from the beach here, with nice clean (by Indonesian standards) water and sand.
  • Pantai Padang (Padang Beach). You can ride the bendi (a horse-drawn carriage) along the beach, and stop by the rows of shops to eat some rujak as you watch the waves.
  • Sitti Nurbaya Bridge, a beautiful bridge especially at night. Sitti Nurbaya is the eponymous character in a classical literary novel.
  • You go down the south of Teluk Bayur, up and through steep hills (don't try and take a bus, there is an [Angkot] that goes all the way).
  • Ramayana. World class shopping area with a variety of goods. A must see.

Do[edit]

Relaxing and breathtaking is the main thing to do in here. This city more to administrative city. Honestly there isn't too much to do here in the down town. But if you go to the up town, some interesting spots await to be explored. These include Sikuai Island", Lubuk Minturun river' (a 'natural jacuzzi') and Bungus Bay (crystal water river), all in southern Padang.

Pool is a popular sport to play and there are a few places dotted around.

The nightlife is relatively dull because Padang is a minor city and a rather devout Muslim community. Bars are available at Hotel Bumi Minang, but don't expect alcohol.

If you can find your way down to Chinatown and get some Kripik Padang (crackers, available in two flavors: spicy and sweet), that could be a good idea, too. In Chinatown, you also can explore the mixture of Minang-Chinese food.

Surfing[edit]

  • Pantai Air Manis (Sweet Water Beach)

 This a very good surf spot fort beginners with a beach break and not to big waves. It is working during low season, too, but waves can be inconsistent. A few options for renting surfboards along the beach. Price around 50000rp/per board/per day Direction: Angkot from the market to the beach, fare 5000rp, last trip at 5pm

Buy[edit]

There are a lot of stores on the side of the road, much like anywhere in Indonesia. There are two malls, Minang Plaza, which is smaller and better for your more supermarket / basic clothing needs. There is a bit of Western Food at Plaza Andalas in the form of Papa Ron's Pizza.

Shopping at Andalas is a little bit better, but at this point in time, the malls are more downscale, mainly local products and local shops. No big retailers here. Brand names aren't really easy to find. You could find a few surfing items at Andalas plaza - but that's about it.

There is a Gramedia across the road from Andalas Plaza also.

  • Ramayana. Shopping district, locally famous. Great bargains can be picked up here.
  • Basko Grand Mall. features: KFC, Pizza Hut, J.CO, Bread Talk, Matahari, Solaria, Foodmart, etc.

Eat[edit]

Padang is famed throughout Indonesia for spicy Padang food (masakan Padang). Ordering at a Padang restaurant couldn't be easier: just sit down at a table, and watch the dishes pile up. Eat what you like, as you'll only pay for dishes you've actually consumed. Famous dishes include:

  • rendang sapi, spicy curried beef cooked until the sauce is dry
  • soto padang, crispy beef in spicy soup
  • ayam pop, deep-friend vaguely popcorn-like (hence the name) kernels of chicken
  • sate, beef satay in curry sauce, served with ketupat (rice dumplings)

Padang dishes can use rather unusual ingredients though, including internal organs like hearts, lungs and even brains. All Padang dishes are Halal, due to the Islamic root of Minang people.

Some Westerner-friendly restaurants:

  • Nelayan Restaurant, located by the edge of the beach near town, quite popular with the foreign crowd, there are two levels. During the daytime it tends to be relatively empty. By western standards the food is very cheap and the service is quite good.
  • Safari. Cafe serving Western and Indonesian foods. Has a plasma television for watching soccer. Quite a nice little place to go if you long for a steak or a serve of crinkle cut fries.
  • Pizza HutLorong Sonny Bungus (Around the corner from Hotel Ank). A home from home amongst the local shacks, this pizza hut has the best chicken dippers in all of West Sumatra.

Local delicacies[edit]

  • Rohana KudusJl. Rohana Kudus No. 74 +62-751-23386. One of the favorite places to buy snacks to bring home as gifts, including the snack the area is famed for, Kripik Balado or Kripik Sanjay.

Drink[edit]

The only real bars you will find are at the major hotels. This is a very Islamic community and therefore the influence of alcohol is minimal. That being said, beer is for sale at the major supermarkets, Suzuya, etc. Bintang is about all you will find. If you are feeling game, the traditional market could be something you might want to visit, as hard liquor such as Johnny Walker may be available there.

Hard liquor is also available at several warungs (small shops on the side of the road) and it is quite easy to obtain cheap vodka, whisky or rum. The going rate for a 250ml bottle of spirits is Rp. 23,000.

The best nightclubs in Padang are Hotel Pangeran Beach, Rocky Hotel, Ambacang hotel (the newest hotel) and Queen.

  • grace hostel padang (25118), jalan batang arau 88 B/5,Padang, Indonesia +6281374006060. 24. Grace Homestay is Homestay for back packers the air in Grace Homestay more fresh than the other place because there is a hill Gunung Padang in front of Grace Homestay. There clean and familiar Homestay during you stay in Padang. RP 100.000 IDR.

Sleep[edit]

  • Havilla MaranathaJl. Bandar Pulau Karam No. 10-D +62 751 26321fax: +62 751 38663, e-mail: . Homey,have good facilities; Dormitory(backpackers), Single or double room and family room;:hot and cold water,hot spot internet,nice lobby,kitchen facilities, international TV Channels,Location :City center, near the beach and a shopping center. Rp 85.000 -Rp 270.000 - Rp 575.000.
  • Hotel Inna MuaraJl. Gereja No. 34 +62 751 35600 - 33741fax: +62 751 38 266 - 31 163, e-mail: . Large, hotel aimed at local business travelers. Comfortable but somewhat faded. Look out for frequent specials for significant discount below rack rates. Skip breakfast. from Rp. 450,000.
  • Savali HotelHayam Wuruk No. 31-33 (S 00 57.491 E 100 21.300),  +62 751 27660fax: +62 751 23262, e-mail: . New elegant boutique hotel, solid yet beautiful bulding near Padang Beach and Batang Arau River with clean and safe area.
  • Hotel SuryaJalan Bandar Purus. One of the better (and cheapest) of a smattering of cheap losmen-style hotels to the north of Jln M. Yamin and to the west of Pasar Raya. Friendly staff, cramped and dirty rooms without fan. Only for the hardened cash-strapped travelers. Singles: Rp50,000.
  • Wisma MutiaraJalan Pulau Karam 149. Nice little hotel in the western part of town. It is very clean and a nice breakfast is included. Staff is very helpful and friendly. Doubles Rp 150,000-275,000.
  • SAVALI (Hotel), jl. hayam wuruk no. 31 (Posisi GPS : S 00 57.491 E 100 21.300),  +62 - 751 - 27660. Check-in: 14.00, check-out: 12.00. boutique hotel with : Free Wi-Fi, swimming pool, Restorant, wine barmempunyai kamar yang air water heater, LCD TV, safety box, tea/coffee set, hair dryer, Laundry, spring bed , RFID card 700000Rp 1 night.
  • Brigitte's HouseJl Kampung Sebelah 1, Chinatown (near Sitti Nurbaya Bridge),  +6281374257162. Opened in Oct 2010, it has airy dorm beds & private rooms with rates starting from Rp75,000 with breakfast included & free WiFi. You can also rent their motorbike for Rp60,000 per day. Run by Ms Brigitte, a Batak gal & assisted by Mr Julian, the Aussie Indonesian-speaking handyman. Located not far from the Airport Damri bus route to the city & walking distance to Padang beach. 85000Rp.
  •    Natures Inn (Opposite the Tourist Information Centre). Family run home stay, clean and modern, dorms and double rooms, bed linen provided, sharedbathrooms with seat toilets and showers, hot and cold water showers, free WiFi, fans and air-con prices start at 125k and go up, 25k extra for breakfasts.

Pantai Air Manis[edit]

  • Adi's guesthouse (Angkot from Padang market to Pantai Air Manis. 5000rp. Last angkot at 5pm.),  +6282170017779, e-mail: . Family run home stay, clean and simple, 2 rooms with bathrooms and fan. Located on the beach, it is a small restaurant and meeting place for the local surfing community. They usually serve fried rice, fried noodles and noodle soup (mix rebus), but if the food is included with your room, you will have the chance to try the wonderful curries of Adi. Adi is very reliable and helpful. 200k for one person all included, 300k for two. Surfboards are included in the package, but can be rented separately at 50k per day (prices in 2013).

Stay safe[edit]

Padang lies right on a fault line and is frequently hit by earthquakes. The last one, in September 2009, killed over 1,100 people, and destroyed many buildings.

Go next[edit]

  • Lake Toba : catch a bus from the A.L.S. bus station (5km from the city centre) to Parapat overnight, from Rp.120,000 to Rp.200,000. There is one leaving at 2PM.
  • Medan : catch an overnight bus from the A.L.S. bus station (5km from the city centre), from Rp.120,000 to Rp.200,000. There is one leaving at 2PM.
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This is a usable article. It has information for getting in as well as some complete entries for restaurants and hotels. An adventurous person could use this article, but please plunge forward and help it grow!