For those not travelling abroad during the holiday season, there are many destinations only car-ride away from Jakarta that provide a quick reprieve from the city. Heading south towards the mountain peaks of West Java, one can find nature abound. Whether for a quick day trip or perhaps an extended weekend, these not-so-distant destinations are a great answer to a quick and easy getaway. 


Nestled in the midst of lush greenery, Sentul offers a haven for adventure seekers and nature enthusiasts alike. As a sprawling outdoor oasis on the outskirts of Jakarta, Sentul beckons visitors with options of some thrilling activities, serene hikes and family experiences. Whether you’re seeking an adrenaline rush or a peaceful retreat, Sentul has something for everyone.

Taman Budaya Sentul City

Make your first stop at Taman Budaya Sentul City. Boasting the region’s natural beauty and adventurous spirit, this expansive park offers a plethora of fun activities. Ranging from flying fox adventures and challenging obstacle courses to leisurely hikes and team-building activities.

There’s also the famous Green Centrum, an extensive green field within the park, which serves as a great backdrop for outbound training, picnics, weddings, and other special occasions. Taman Budaya Sentul City is the hub for children who are looking for fulfilling adventures that challenge their adrenaline and their brains, activities like archery war, paintball, clay making, batik making and kite painting are available to choose from. 

Hiking, Trekking, and Camping with idGuides

For those yearning for an authentic connection with nature, Team idGuides provides the ideal solution. Their ‘Easy Escape Jakarta’ trails offer a chance to explore Sentul’s radiant rice fields, pine woods, and coffee plantations. With 30 distinct routes to choose from, including family-friendly walks, invigorating waterfall treks, and challenging trail runs, there’s an adventure suited for every member of the family. Led by the knowledgeable Team idGuides Sentul Community Trail Guides, these private hikes not only provide an enriching experience for participants but also contribute to the local community and its preservation efforts. As you traverse the scenic trails, you’ll discover the beauty of Sentul in its purest form. 

For a more immersive experience, idGuides also offers the Acacia Camp, a charming hilltop campsite boasting panoramic views of the surrounding landscape. Here, families can relax in the tranquillity of nature while indulging in delicious meals, afternoon refreshments, and even barbecues and picnics. The campsite provides all necessary amenities, ensuring a comfortable and memorable stay under the stars. For the ultimate outdoor adventure, families can opt for a camping experience at this private campsite. With dedicated staff and comprehensive services, including cooking facilities, cosy lounging areas, bathing amenities, and comfortable sleeping quarters, guests can unwind and reconnect with the great outdoors.


Now we move on to the breath-taking peaks of West Java. Puncak is a testament to the natural splendour of Indonesia. It is a blend of natural wonders and heart-pounding adventures, while also offering a harmonious retreat for travellers seeking to escape from the mundane and busy city life. With lush tea plantations, exotic wildlife and thrilling adventures, it is a melting pot for thrill seekers to converge. In the middle of these misty mountains and hills, visitors can embark on a memorable journey. 

Taman Safari Indonesia Bogor

The obvious first choice destination in Puncak is, of course, the Taman Safari Indonesia Bogor. This huge park allows visitors something that most traditional zoos don’t– observing the wildlife in a habitat that closely resembles their natural environment.  From the safety of your vehicle, you can encounter lions, elephants, giraffes, and a wide array of other species up close. The park’s conservation efforts and educational programs make it an enriching experience for visitors of all ages. 

Gunung Mas Tea Plantation

The enchanting Gunung Mas Tea Plantation is a must-visit destination in Puncak, with its rolling hills and mist-covered mountains, the picturesque backdrop of the tea plantations offers a serene atmosphere, perfect for those who love to leisurely stroll around while appreciating the beauty of nature. Here, visitors can witness the tea-making process, from the plucking of tea leaves to the final brew, and can even participate in tea-tasting sessions. The plantation’s tea terraces provide not just the ideal spot for capturing Instagram-worthy photos, but a sanctuary for those who want to immerse in the tranquillity of the plantation, a perfect getaway from the city. 

Paragliding in Puncak


For the thrill-seekers, paragliding near Bukit Gantole promises an adrenaline-pumping experience in the clouds. The all-encompassing views of the verdant valleys create a surreal backdrop as you glide through the air. With experienced instructors to ensure a safe and exhilarating experience, it is an ideal activity for both beginners and seasoned paragliders. The feeling of weightlessness and rush of the wind brushing against your face is truly an experience unlike any other, something that will linger in your memories long after your feet touch the ground. 

Sentul and Puncak are two great destinations for those who want to make a quick escape from the bustling city routines without having to travel a great distance from home. Whether to relax, unwind or seek an adventurous time, they have it all! 

Where to Stay: 

Pullman Ciawi Vimala Hills

Everyone needs an escape once in a while, especially those who are used to living in the midst of the city’s bustling dynamics and the daily mundane routines that seem to never end might wear us down. Sometimes it is good to take a pause, rest and rewind.  Discover a hidden paradise on the ethereal land of Pasundan, where you can find a memorable getaway encased in an opulent and luxurious experience at Pullman Ciawi Vimala Hills. Taking advantage of the lush and green hills and unparalleled views that one can’t find in the city, Pullman Ciawi Vimala Hills wants to bring its visitors to a state of utmost relaxation like never before.

Every detail in the premise is meticulously crafted to facilitate an exceptional stay experience for all guests, from elegant and spacious rooms overlooking the scenic hills to world-class amenities including a luxurious spa, infinity pools, and fine dining restaurants, the resort embodies the epitome of indulgence. Guests can immerse themselves in the calming ambiance, whether it’s a leisurely swim in the infinity pool overlooking the valley or a pampering spa treatment, delectable steakhouses and bars. The resort’s commitment to excellence is evident in every aspect, making it a haven for travellers seeking a blend of lavish comfort and natural serenity. For those in search of a truly luxurious escape, Pullman Ciawi Vimala Hills Resort and Spa is the right place where the harmony of nature and luxury seamlessly intertwine, creating an oasis of bliss and relaxation. | 

JSI Resort Megamendung

Located at Megamendung, Puncak, Bogor, on the foothills of the great Mt Pangrango, JSI Resort Megamendung has created a refuge where nature reigns supreme. Appreciating the natural surroundings, the grounds are lush and verdant, with facilities that encourage guests to enjoy the open air. Accommodation options at JSI Megamendung are unique as well, with different styles and experiences to choose from. You’ll find ‘glamping’ inspired tents, hotel rooms made designed into containers, cosy bungalow-style villas and large mountain-lodge villas with private pools and kitchenettes. Each different abode ensures that guests enjoy the green views and fresh air.

The resort’s facilities follow the same ethos, with a swimming pool surrounded by forest, an outdoor kids’ playground, a mini zoo with deer, birds, and even an ostrich. Doubling down on this fully-fledged vacation experience are outdoor activities and adventures, including paintball, archery, rafting, off-road buggies and at night, barbecue and bonfires! The resort’s restaurant offers Indonesian, Western and international dishes in a semi-outdoor space with 360-degree views, and one will find Kayu Spa, for those after a little extra relaxation during their stay. For those after that very classic family vacation getaway, or maybe just need vast open spaces in which to refresh and relax, then a cheeky escape to the West Java highlands may be in order. | 

Where to Eat: 

Soeasana Restaurant at  Novus Giri Puncak Resort & Spa

Located on the sloping hills of Puncak, Soeasana Restaurant offers a chic and tropical ambiance, with an open bar that overlooks the valley and allows for a breezy panorama of West Java. With woven bamboo seats, plush cushions in earth tones, and adorned with wood and grey accents, this restaurant presents a contemporary space in which to enjoy great food and great views.

The menu at Soeasana Restaurant has been carefully curated to bring out the symphony of distinctive Indonesian flavours. One of the highlights of the menu is their ‘Ayam Betutu Kahyangan’ cooked in a Moroccan red clay pot called tagine, to other dishes such as ‘Gulai Cumi Bunting’ with an added aloe vera twist, and ‘Papiong Sapi Toraja’ cooked inside a bamboo in open flames. These lists of menus offer not only a unique and bold taste to the palate but also pay homage to the diverse flavours of Indonesia, while also pushing the boundaries of innovation and gastronomic artistry. 

Jl. Sindanglaya Raya No. 180, Cipanas, Puncak, West Java | +62 821-1877-1994 | @soeasana.resto 

Dinda Mulia

Dinda Mulia

Dinda is an avid explorer of art, culture, diplomacy and food. She is also a published poet and writer at NOW!Jakarta.