Husein Sastranegara International Airport is situated in the city of Bandung, the capital of West Java in Indonesia. Northwest of the city centre, the airport’s single terminal is used for both international and domestic flights.
If you have not arranged a free airport transfer service with your hotel, the next most convenient way to get from the airport to Bandung’s city centre is by taxi. As the taxis are not metered, you need to purchase a taxi ticket at the taxi booth near the arrival area. If you are travelling in a bigger group, it is advisable to engage the services of a shuttle bus operator. These shuttle buses will take you to destinations outside of Bandung as well, such as Jakarta and Subang.
Travelling within the city of Bandung can be daunting and frustrating at times, especially since there is no mass rapid transit system, subway line or surface train network. Visitors have to learn how to get around via small public minibuses known as angkot. Learning how travel via angkot can be challenging as only the origin and destination names are displayed; there is no route description. However, you can always ask the locals or the driver for assistance. As angkots are modified minibuses, the seating capacity of the vehicle is usually doubled, making the seating arrangements cramped and awkward for first-time users. If you are tall or uncomfortable with close contact, it will be better for you to take a taxi. Always insist on using the meter if you choose to do so, or you might have to pay double the going rate. A good bet will be Blue Bird taxis, known to be a reliable and honest taxi operator.
Number one on your list of destinations should be the Merdeka Building, known as Gedung Merdeka in Indonesian. The building is a prominent landmark in the city, boasting architecture that was hugely popular during the 1920s to 1930s. Vestiges of the building’s opulence are reflected in its interior and furniture. It was the venue of the first Asian-African Islamic Conference in 1965, and today, it is a museum honouring that conference.
Another Gedung, or building you should head to is Gedung Sate. The iconic building was formerly the headquarters of the Dutch Indies Government Companies, but it now serves as the governor’s office of the West Java province. Its architecture melds neo-classical influences with native elements, making it an architectural gem in the city¾you will see Spanish Moorish-style windows and Balinese pura-style roofs. The building’s nickname, Gedung Sate, is a reference to the shape of the building’s central pinnacle that appears similar to the shape of a popular traditional dish called satay. It is open to the public and the top floor offers a great view of the city.
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