The city of Malang is located in the eastern part of Java, Indonesia. It is the perfect base to explore Bromo Tengger Semeru National Park and visit Mount Bromo, one of the country’s 100 volcanoes.
During the colonization of Indonesia, Malang became a very popular destination among Europeans for its milder climate and easy access (due to its proximity to the port city of Surabaya).
When visiting Malang, you will be close to Mount Semeru, the highest mountain in Java, and Mount Bromo, one of the top volcanoes to visit in Indonesia. But the city has other attractions that include temples, waterfalls, and tea plantations.
In this post, you will find what to do in Malang and learn about 7 must-see attractions and things to do around the city.
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What to do in Malang
Join a tour to visit Mount Bromo
The tour to see the sunrise at Mount Bromo is one of the most famous activities in Java (and Indonesia) and it is very common to do so from Surabaya.
However, Malang is the ideal base to embark on this adventure, as it is very close – only 3 hours away. So, the proximity to Mount Bromo makes the journey more manageable, especially considering the tour starts at dawn when it is still very dark.
I wrote an entire post dedicated to the tour to visit Mount Bromo from Malang.
Book here your tour to see the sunrise at Mount Bromo
Be mesmerized by Tumpak Sewu waterfall
Opened to visitors a couple of years ago, Tumpak Sewu is a remarkable waterfall, with several cascades forming a horizontal curtain of water almost 120 meters in height. Tumpak Sewu is one of the most beautiful waterfalls in Malang and entire Indonesia.
From the viewpoint, located a few minutes from the parking lot, you can have a fantastic panoramic view of the waterfall.
However, the best way to see the Tumpak Sewu is by going on a 30-minute hike passing through a steep path full of bamboo stairs and a small slippery creek that requires a lot of attention (not suitable for people with children). Then, you will be at the waterfall’s base to see it closely, touch the water or soak in the splashes of water that the wind carries. The journey from Malang to Tumpak Sewu takes approximately
Here is also a great tour to see Tumpak Sewu and Jodipan from Malang.
Admire Coban Rondo and the surrounding areas
Coban Rondo is an 80-meter-high waterfall located about 30 kilometers away from Malang, in Batu.
The park where Coban Rondo is located also offers other activities such as paintball, labyrinth, gardens, playgrounds for children to play, and a picnic area.
Getting to Coban Rondo is an easy task. It takes about 1 hour from Malang, and you can either hire a private car (around 150,000 IDR per hour, a minimum of 4 hours) or use the Grab app (we asked the driver to wait for us to take us back, so he wouldn’t return without a passenger).
The entrance to Coban Rondo costs 40,000 IDR, and the park closes at 5 pm. If possible, try visiting it during the week, because on weekends it is very crowded, mainly with locals, since few foreigners know of this place.
Walk around Kampung Jodipan
Known as the rainbow village, Kampung Jodipan was an ordinary slum neighborhood, but it became the tourist spot it is today after the initiative of some public relations students. They chose the village for a university project and collaborated with a paint company to paint the buildings with vibrant colors to attract tourists. Then, the Indonesian Air Force helped finalize the project in 2016.
At Jodipan, you will find colorful houses, flashy-colored umbrellas, murals, and 3D paintings. The village is divided by a river and connected by a yellow bridge where you can cross to have the perfect view of both sides.
You can visit Jodipan for the token value/donation of 3,000 IDR.
See Kampung Biru Arema
On the other side of Jodipan is Kampung Biru Arema, an independent project from the previous one but with the same objective. In early 2018, the community painted the whole village to give it a better appeal.
The inspiration was the same, but they did not use the vibrant colors of Jodipan. Instead, in Kampung Biru Arema, the predominant color is blue.
The entrance, for now, is free.
Visit Singosari Temple
Built in 1,300 with tower-shaped red bricks, Singosari Temple is now the ruins of one of the ancient kingdoms of East Java, Indonesia. Nearby there are two gigantic statues (known as Dwarapala) believed to be the guards at the entrance to the palace.
The temple is proof that once there was a kingdom in Malang and is 30 minutes away from the city center.
Get lost in the tea plantations
The location and the climate of Malang (and Indonesia) made it a suitable place for Europeans to plant tea, coffee, tobacco, and other products.
Therefore, Bukit Kuneer and Wonosari Tea Plantation are two tea plantations that can be visited in Malang. In them, you can see the process, watch the harvest, and have a tea tasting.
Being in the middle of the green leaves is a unique experience, and in Bukit Kneer, you can also find a viewing platform that divides the plantation and some other viewpoints.
Entry from 12,000 IDR.
How to get to and around Malang, Indonesia
Malang is located in the eastern part of Java and is accessible via plane with daily flights from Jakarta, Bali, and Bandung.
You can also get to Malang by train, departing from Surabaya and Yogyakarta on trips lasting 2 and 7 hours, respectively.
To get around the city, use the ride-sharing apps of Indonesia, Grab and Go-Jek, or hire a car service with a driver, with an average cost of 800,000 IDR per day.
We used Grab to get to Coban Rondo and asked the driver to wait for us (so he wouldn’t have to return to the city without a passenger). To visit Tumpak Sewu, I joined a local tour for about 850,000 for two people. And we booked the tour to Mount Bromo directly with our hotel for 1,000,000 IDR / pax.
Where to stay in Malang, Indonesia
We stayed at the Tugu Hotel, and the service was excellent. They have two restaurants, a pool, and a spa. You can book the tours directly with them, and it is also well located in the city center.
Other great alternatives are Hotel Santika Premiere Malang and Grand Cakra Hotel Malang.
Click here to see other accommodation options in Malang, Indonesia.
The best tours from Malang, Indonesia
Here is a selection of the best tours in Malang to see top attractions of Malang:
Malang is the ideal base for visiting Mount Bromo and, since you will be there, take a few days to visit one of the other attractions above. You will not regret it.
What to know for visiting Malang, Indonesia
- Visa: for current information about Indonesia’s visa, currency, and other travel updates, please visit my post on What to Know for Visiting Indonesia.
- The best time to visit Indonesia is from April to October.
- Always carry some cash with you, as some places do not accept credit cards.
YOU MIGHT ALSO LIKE TO READ:
- Java Itinerary: the perfect route to see the best of the island
- Mount Bromo: tips for visiting an active volcano in Indonesia
- How to visit Kawah Ijen, the volcanic crater with blue flames in Indonesia
- All you need to know before visiting Indonesia
- Indonesian food: exploring the main dishes of the country
- The ultimate 48-hour guide to Jakarta, the capital of Indonesia