- Place or Religious Monument
- Off the beaten track
Malang is a green city. That's the impression I got walking around its bird market, which is one of the city's main attractions. I actually came to Malang to rest and relax, with the idea being to take a two-day breather before tackling the trips to the Bromo and Ijen volcanoes.
Most people get to Bromo from Bali or even Probolinggo when visiting Indonesia, but we chose Malang instead as we were coming from the other side of Java and because there are a number of things to see and do in the city. In addition to the bird market, which also in fact sells plants and animals and just below which there is a small area where a number of artists ply their trade, we also got to see and admire a Chinese temple and a church and a mosque, the latter two standing virtually side by side, and eat in a colonial restaurant dating from the 1930s, after which we had a look around the shops just facing it, which sell some great products.
To finish off, we went for a massage at a place located behind a kind of minimart. Not only was this in an unexpected location, but the staff there were actually blind too!
Malang was the first place I stopped at in Java to have a rest before and after my trip to Ijen and Bromo. It's not a typically tourist town and not an absolute must see during a journey around Indonesia. However, it's a pleasant place to stay if you want something a bit more authentic and want to immerse yourself in the country's culture in a dynamic, student town.
Malang isn't very pretty, apart from one or two streets and a couple of mosques and other monuments, but it's easy to walk around, especially around the bird and animal market. I loved the chaotic, student atmosphere although it wasn't particularly exotic. If you take a mini-bus from the bus station or from the centre of town you can easily visit the surrounding area. I chose to visit Wonosari tea plantation which is both very interesting and very beautiful, and you can easily spend several hours walking among the tea bushes.