The 10 Best Places To Visit In Semarang

Ah, Semarang! A city that often flies under the radar, yet it’s a treasure trove of cultural heritage, culinary delights, and scenic wonders. Nestled on the north coast of Java, this capital city of Central Java province in Indonesia is a fascinating blend of old and new. It’s where you can wander through colonial buildings one minute and marvel at modern architecture the next. Let’s dive into the top 10 must-visit spots that make Semarang a hidden gem worth exploring.

Lawang Sewu: A Glimpse into the Past

First up is Lawang Sewu, known for its thousand doors. This grand Dutch colonial building is steeped in history and local lore. It’s a place where the past lingers in the air, and if you’re into a bit of spookiness, it’s rumored to be haunted. But don’t let that scare you away! The architecture alone is worth the visit, with its high ceilings and stunning stained glass. It’s a photographer’s dream and a history buff’s paradise.

Sam Poo Kong Temple: A Cultural Melting Pot

Next, we can’t talk about Semarang without mentioning the Sam Poo Kong Temple. This vibrant temple complex is a testament to the city’s Chinese influence. It’s not just a place of worship but a cultural center where you can witness traditional dances and ceremonies. The intricate carvings and bold colors are a feast for the eyes, and the atmosphere is always buzzing with energy.

Gedong Songo Temple: A Heavenly Escape

For a breath of fresh air, head to the Gedong Songo Temple. Perched on the slopes of Mount Ungaran, this group of small Hindu temples offers panoramic views that’ll make your heart skip a beat. The journey there is a bit of a trek, but trust me, it’s worth every step. The misty landscape and the scent of Pine trees are like something out of a fairy tale.

Rawa Pening Lake: Nature’s Canvas

If you’re a nature lover, Rawa Pening Lake should be on your list. This natural lake is a serene spot where you can unwind and watch local fishermen at work. The backdrop of Mount Merbabu and Mount Telomoyo adds to the picturesque setting. It’s a great place to catch a sunset or simply enjoy a peaceful boat ride.

Old City: A Walk Through Time

Strolling through the Old City, or Kota Lama, is like stepping back in time. The cobblestone streets and colonial buildings are a nod to Semarang’s Dutch heritage. It’s a charming area to explore on foot, with plenty of cafes and street vendors to keep you fueled. Don’t miss the iconic Blenduk Church with its distinctive dome.

Great Mosque of Central Java: A Modern Marvel

The Great Mosque of Central Java is a striking example of contemporary Islamic architecture. Its grandeur is undeniable, with towering minarets and an expansive courtyard. The mosque is not only a place of worship but also a community hub. It’s especially captivating during the evening when it’s all lit up.

Karimunjawa Islands: A Tropical Paradise

A bit of a journey from Semarang, but absolutely worth the trip, are the Karimunjawa Islands. This archipelago is a slice of heaven for beach bums and divers. The crystal-clear waters and coral reefs are teeming with marine life. It’s the perfect escape from the hustle and bustle of the city.

Simpang Lima: The Heart of the City

Simpang Lima is the beating heart of Semarang. This bustling square is where locals come to relax, exercise, and socialize. It’s surrounded by shopping malls and street food stalls, offering a taste of urban life in Semarang. At night, the area comes alive with music and laughter.

Tugu Muda: A Monument of Valor

Tugu Muda is more than just a monument; it’s a symbol of the city’s spirit. It commemorates the Battle of five days in Semarang and stands as a reminder of Indonesia’s fight for independence. The area around the monument is perfect for a leisurely evening walk.

Chinatown: A Culinary Journey

Last but not least, immerse yourself in the flavors of Semarang by visiting Chinatown. This bustling neighborhood is a culinary hotspot where you can indulge in street food and traditional dishes. From the savory lumpia Semarang to the sweet bandeng presto, your taste buds are in for a treat.


  • What’s the best time to visit Semarang?

    The best time to visit Semarang is during the dry season, from April to October. You’ll enjoy sunny days perfect for exploring the city’s attractions.

  • Is Semarang tourist-friendly?

    Yes, Semarang is tourist-friendly, with a range of accommodations and activities to suit different preferences. English is widely understood in tourist areas, making it easier for travelers.

  • How do I get around Semarang?

    Getting around Semarang is a breeze with options like taxis, ride-hailing apps, and public buses. For a more authentic experience, try the becak (rickshaw) or rent a bike.


In conclusion, Semarang is a city that may not be as famous as Bali or Jakarta, but it certainly packs a punch with its diverse attractions. From the historical allure of Lawang Sewu to the natural beauty of Rawa Pening Lake, there’s something for everyone. The cultural richness of Sam Poo Kong Temple, the old-world charm of the Old City, and the modern splendor of the Great Mosque of Central Java are just a few highlights. Whether you’re seeking adventure in the Karimunjawa Islands or a culinary journey in Chinatown, Semarang will not disappoint. So, pack your bags and set off to discover the wonders of this Javanese jewel. You’ll find that Semarang is indeed one of Indonesia’s best-kept secrets, offering an array of experiences that are both enriching and unforgettable.

Kurby Team

The Kurby Content Team is a diverse group of seasoned real estate experts dedicated to providing insightful, reliable information for homebuyers, real estate investors, and real estate agents. With backgrounds ranging from real estate brokerage, property investment, and residential home buying, our team combines decades of experience with a passion for demystifying the real estate world. We at Kurby are committed to helping you make informed, successful real estate decisions. Whether you're a first-time homebuyer, a seasoned investor, or a real estate professional, count on the Kurby Content Team to deliver the most relevant, actionable real estate content you need.