Saturday, January 29, 2011

Going on Vacation to Garut, West Java (Part III)


For lunch this time, we tried to choose a restaurant located on the main road in Garut. Actually we wanted to eat at the restaurant which was recommended by a friend, but because it was far, we were so reluctant. Finally the choice fell to a restaurant with the slogan "Eat at gazebos above the water". Actually, it was a pretty place, in the main street, there gazebos above-water with big fish swimming around, there were wooden houses in the background that looked sad, but the atmosphere was quiet. There were no other visitors there.

Then we ordered food. Like other Sundanese restaurants, the menu almost the same. We ordered white rice, karedok (Sundanese vegetables salad), tamarind vegetables, grilled chicken, fried squid with flour, avocado juice, soursop juice and milk tea.

After a long wait, the food came. I tasted them. Unfortunately they did not taste good. Too much salt on karedok and fried squid; plain taste of tamarind vegetable; there was a strange taste, even bitter on avocado juice. Ho ... ho ... no wonder no other visitors stop by here. Because of hunger, we ate them all…. Ha..ha…

When paying at the cashier, I saw the waitress at the restaurant were sitting, dazed awaits visitors. The atmosphere was grim. In my heart I also felt sorry for them, if there’s no visitor came, and it happened on and on, they might lose their jobs because restaurant got bankrupt. Maybe the management should think about a new proficient chef?


The next event was traveling around the city of Garut. We went around the town without any direction, turn right, turn left, and went straight ahead, enjoying a cool little town. Passing by Great Mosque of Garut, schools, offices, and shops, we tried to find something unique. When we saw the stores that sold souvenirs, we stopped. The shop owner greeted us with his big smile. We were invited in, and he said we could taste various kinds of dodol Garut. Dodol was a traditional snack made from brown sugar, glutinous rice flour, fruits, and other ingredient.

When I was little girl, my relatives often gave me dodol Garut. Dodol was inside the box, it brand was “Picnic”. It wrapped in paper. The color of dodol was dark brown, sweet, but I did not like the taste. It happened on and on, always the same dodol.

But this time, there were many kinds of dodol stored in the transparent boxes. There were colorful. There were dodol wrapped in clear plastic, some are wrapped with leather corn "This dodol made from potato, this is made from strawberry, this is made from mango, and then this is made from soursop." The shopkeeper said. "And this is the best choice; this is very good, made from red beans. There are also made from green beans, and there is also the black sticky rice. "

I and children ate many kinds of dodol. The taste were so good, so different with dodol Garut I ate when I was a kid. I like the red beans dodol the most. But potato dodol and green beans dodol were also yummy.

The price were various , start from Rp. 18,000; Rp. 20.000,; Rp. 22,000, -; Rp. 24 000, - to the most expensive Rp. 32 000, - per kilogram.

After buying dodol, leather crackers, nut ting-ting, bajigur and bandrek (beverage made from ginger and brown sugar), we went back to the hotel.

Monday, January 24, 2011

Going on Vacation to Garut, West Java (Part II)


After eating, we continued our journey to the hotel. In Cipanas area, there were a lot of hotels. There were large and small hotels. The hotels offered hot spring to pamper visitors , it's no wonder because there was natural hot springs from the mountain in Cipanas.

On my opinion, large hotels and small hotel looked very different. Most large hotels were visible from magnificent and spacious building, while the small hotels were simpler; there was even a small alley entrance location. On average, large hotels such as the Kampung Sumber Alam, Danau Dariza, Tirta Gangga, and the Sabda Alam already "advertised" on the internet.
So that visitors from outside the city could find and booked the hotel via internet or phone. Not surprisingly, in front of large hotels lettering "ROOM FULL" or "SORRY, ROOM FULL", while the small hotels did not. In front of the small hotels lettering the words "EMPTY", there were even special officers who stood in front of small hotels which the job were to offer people on every passing car to stay at their hotel. "Come, sir .. Please stay at our hotel, complete facilities at a low price ... " they said. So whenever visitors came to Garut without prior hotel booking, not to worry, because the small hotels could accommodate them.

When we arrived at Danau Dariza hotels and resorts, located on Jl. Raya Cipanas Tarogong Kaler Garut, we were greeted by quite unique scenery. The hotel lobby shaped just like Toraja traditional house, complete with cow's head on it. The rooms were also provided in the form of traditional houses. There were traditional houses such as
Padang, Batak, Sundanese, East Nusa Tenggara,Bali, etc.. The rooms were set overlooking an artificial lake. Each room was equipped with a boat, so that it can be used for boating on the lake.

After checking in, we rested for a while in the room. But children could not wait to get a boat ride.While my husband and kids going around the lake by boat, I took the picture by camera. In the lake,there were many big fishes. Most of them were gold fishes. The fish came and gathered near the porch steps. When the children spread peanut,the fishes crowd eating the peanut. The fish seemed to be tame, they took the peanut from Dea’s and Rafif ‘s hand. Truly a unique experience!

Unfortunately the weather was less friendly. It rained.. Children, who were easily bored, beganimpatient. Finally, in the rain we walked to the swimming pool. There were two swimming poolsavailable at this hotel, a pool of cold water and a pool of natural hot water. Despite the rain andcold, many hotel guests swam and soak in hot tubs. Because it's too late, the children chose to playthe water ball. Beside the water ball, there were also another game for children such as flying foxand waterbike, but due to rain the kids could not do it.

As we passed the gate of swimming pool, Dea smelled delicious pastry. Apparentlythere was a small shop that sold croissants there. Her stomach was so hungry. She bought a few pieces ofcroissants, or “hollow bread “; that’s the way Dea called them.The price was Rp. 5000, - per piece.It was quite tasty, really inviting appetite.

That night we went out the hotel, looking for a place to eat. Because the kids want to eatnoodles,then we eat at the Mie Alladin.

The next morning, I and the kids tried bicycle water. Anin and Dea pedaled the bike enthusiastically around the lake . Once satisfied, the children went to swim straight until noon.

Saturday, January 8, 2011

Going on Vacation to Garut, West Java. (Part 1)

A friend recommendedGarut, West Java became one tourist destination. He told at a glance about the beauty of Garut. At that time I was not so interested. But when I saw his vacation photos posted on Facebook, I got interested. Immediately, I browsed the internet searching for more data about Garut.

Another friend then gave me the brochures for hotels in Garut. There were two interesting hotels, the Danau Dariza hotels and resorts and the Kampung Sumber Alam resort. So we booked the hotel via telephone, as it was already in the holidays, we almost missed the place. Kampung Sumber Alam was already full. Luckily, we got a room at Danau Dariza hotel.

After packing and preparing for all purposes, by having a hotel brochure with a map to the location, we went to Garut. To avoid traffic jam, we chose to go to Garut on wednesday. It was at 9 pm, the sky was bright and travel was smooth, no traffic jams. We chose to go through Cipularang toll-road. Along the road to Garut , the beautiful scenery of hills, valleys and mountains spoiling our vision. We spent 3.5 hours trip happily. Although had to wonder which direction should we go, we finally arrived in Tarogong Kaler Cipanas ,Garut, without difficulty. Rafif, my youngest child vomited and was pale face, so we decided to stop into a restaurant first.


A roadside restaurant catch our attention. Its name was "Cangkuang Kuring". The menu offered were Sundanese Food. One of them was rice liwet. This restaurant offered dining in the gazebos with the view paddy field and mountain.

Dea and Rafif the swing that was available there. Rafif ‘s pale face was no longer visible. He laughed and swung his body on the swings.

It’s time to order a meal. There were some menu options, all of them were Sundanese and Indonesian cuisine. For example, fried and grilled carp, liwet rice, oxtail soup, fried chicken, grilledchicken, rice oncom tug tug, and others. We booked 2 servings of oxtail soup, 3 servings of white rice, 2 packages liwet rice, grilled chicken on bamboo, and hot sweet tea . The children ate avidly. It was delicious cuisine as well. Rice liwet was tasty, we ate all of themravenously until its crust-descale. Ha .. ha ...