Indonesia is not only Bali or Lombok, but we have also West Sumatra as one of great destinations for vacation. This is my second time coming here, and I (still) feel amazing of the beauty of the nature and culture. If you have any plan to visit Padang or Bukittinggi, here is some advices for you to consider (it’s my itinerary, actually 😜) :

Day 1:
– Flight to Minangkabau Airport (Padang). l
– Rent a car (or online taxi) to Bukittinggi, it takes 1,5 hours at night or approx 2 hours during the day.
– Take a rest in a hotel or homestay near city centre (because my flight arrived at night, I can’t do many things but sleeping ^^) – – I decided to stay at Bukittinggi for 2 nights and in Padang also for 2 nights.

Day 2:
– Trip to Maninjau Lake, you can enjoy view from above (but you may also going down to the Lake, I didn’t do that ‘coz worried of running out of time).
– Going back to Bukittinggi for lunch.
– Trip to Harau Valley. It is an area of canyons and rock formations with forest and rice fields in between. There are some waterfalls on the cliffs.
– Going back to Bukittinggi. You can stop by at Payakumbuh for the famous Dangung – Dangung Sate Padang.

Day 3:
– Prepare to check out in the morning.
– Visit Panorama for scenic view of Ngarai Sianok & Goa Jepang around Bukittinggi city centre (it costs IDR 15,000/person). There are some craft shops inside Panorama which have good price rather than in the market near Jam Gadang. You can buy shirts, embroidery clothes, miniatures, paintings, and so on.
– Take some pictures of the famous Jam Gadang. You have free time in this city centre until lunch time. A recommendation Padang dishes is Selamat restaurant. Its rendang is very delicious, the best in town. Just don’t be late, after noon there will be no rendang anymore.. ;p
– After lunch, we’re heading to Batusangkar for visiting Istano Basa Pagaruyung. It is a royal residence of the former Pagaruyung Kingdom. Try to wear its traditional clothes for only IDR 35,000 for adults & IDR 30,000 for children. Take some photos in front of and inside the palace. You can get around the courtyard of the palace by using car tours (cost only IDR 5,000/person).
– You can leave Batusangkar to Padang before dusk, and have dinner in Padang.

Day 4:
– After enjoying mountain view at the day before, now it’s time for sand & beaches!! ^^
We’re heading to Bungus Bay. There are some travels offering packages for day trip to the islands. The average cost is IDR 250,000/person including lunch, transport to two or three islands (by boat), snorkel mask, and snacks during the trip.
– It is a small archipelago consists of some islands. The famous one is Pulau Pagang. It takes 50 minutes by boat. It has white sands and snorkeling spot just near the beach, and also wonderful view with the blue sea and sky, in front of other islands. A perfect combination! really!! There were not many tourists since this destination is quite new, but the scenery is just like Gili Trawangan!! Me likes this islands so much.. much.. much..
– Wait, don’t change your clothes. We still have another island to visit. It is Pasumpahan Island. Even though there is no spot for snorkeling, but this island has also magnificent view. The sea colour graded from soft blue, tosca, and dark blue, with lots of tree on the island. Swimming in the beach is a good option.
– Going back to the port and preparing to coming back to the city for dinner. I recommend seafood restaurant in front of Taplau (Padang beach). Its barbecue grill shrimp and crab in padang sauce are very good. Hm, yummy.. Ah yeah, you should try es durian (durian ice). It is durian blend with shaved ice. It tastes good!

Day 5:
– This last day will depend on your flight schedule. In my trip, my departure flight was in the late afternoon. So, I have a half day to explore the city. I visited Grand Mosque of West Sumatra. The exterior is wonderful. It has traditional touch, and nowadays it becomes one of West Sumatra iconic buildings.
– Visit Taplau near city centre. It is a long beach in the west part of Padang. Taplau is stunning beach with rocks jutting out into the sea. Taking some memorable photographs would be perfect!
– Lastly, if you still have time, you can enjoy a new mall in the city. It’s Trans Mart. You can find food & drinks, groceries and fashion, or play mini roller coaster and other games in Mini Trans Studio.

That was all. This is one of my favourite trip during the year. Hope the next vacation will be great or better than this. One thing you should remember when having a vacation is you can expect less or more, but when you are already in the trip, whatever might happen, just enjoy every moment. Have a good day! and have a nice vacation.. Jangan lupa bahagia 😉