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Grand spectacles, rich culture, and unique attractions welcome you in this metropolis surrounded by the mountains of East Java. Whether you’re up for some whitewater rafting, volcanic hot springs, or some of the best nightlife in Indonesia, you can take your choice of things to do in Bandung and see what the Dutch were talking about when they dubbed this the Paris of Java.
Built on a broad plain surrounded by volcanic peaks, the city of Bandung follows the lines laid out by the Dutch in the 18th century. The old colonial area still forms the center of town, where modern high-rises share space with historic buildings that show off the city’s unique take on Art Deco design. Northern Bandung reaches into the hills, host the city’s newer, upscale residential areas, where malls and factory outlets provide area a familiar suburban feel for people to take advantage of the cool air in the highlands.
Some of the finest examples of New Indies architecture are waiting for you around the city, and you can get some terrific views at the iconic Villa Isola or explore a showcase of history in the Merdeka Building. Check out the venerable Cipaganti Mosque in the old European residential area, or the towering minarets and patterned dome of the Grand Mosque of Bandung. The Bandung Geological Museum gives you an inside look at the unique landscape the city was built on, or you can enjoy the lively clubs or the night markets along Cibadak Street.
If you want to get to know Bandung but you’re not sure where to start, you can join a guide for a tour that shows you all the action, from colonial Dutch buildings to Indonesian shadow puppets. A trip to the north gives you a fantastical tour of the forested mountainsides, or you can head all the way to the steaming hot springs along the volcanic crater of Tankuban Perahu. Try the fresh tea at the Gunung Mas plantation or take a ride through the rapids of Pengalengan to make the most of the natural wonders in your surroundings.