Semarang Part 1

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I can’t believe I am sitting in The Tavern, part-bar part-restaurant and ultimately exclusive during New Year’s week in Semarang. Yes, Semarang, one of the sleepiest cities in Indonesia and possibly the world. Semarang’s popularity has faded into quick stop for backpacker heading to Jogjakarta, widely popular for Borobudur temple, and another relaxing spot for truck drivers carrying fresh fruits to Jakarta. Unlike Bandung with its trendy cafes and Paris van Java reputation, Semarang doesn’t have that kind of popularity or charms.

Yet here I am, sipping down my light beer while watching the city lights up with amazing sunset and Merbabu (or Merapi?) mountains as background, my brother (who is a college student and real Semarang-ster) asks for Carbonara Pizza and another round of lemon-infused beers. A single thought come up in my mind; maybe Semarang is not that bad!

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Majestic Chinese Restaurant

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If you look at travel books or magazine, there is always something similar with all of them. They’re suggesting you to stay away from popular (possibly overrated) tourist places and go follow the locals. For some reasons, I bought this cliché suggestion in my last visit to Hong Kong. Wanting to avoid touristy dim sum places, like the infamous Tim Ho Wan, I chose to stop at Jordan MTR Station and followed my relative’s suggestion to an authentic Chinese restaurant called Majestic.

The place wasn’t too hard to find. Yes, just like many other ‘hidden’ gem, it’s hard to spot because Majestic Restaurant is actually occupying an entire third floor of a building, not having it’s own private space. I had to look for the sign, which is also covered with Hong Kong’s chaotic billboard arrangements, and pushed number 3 in an old squeaking elevator.

It was quite an adventure, I am telling you. Continue reading