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Palembang was formerly the capital city of the Kingdom of Srivijaya, a powerful Malay kingdom, which influenced much of Southeast Asia. The earliest evidence of its existence dates from the 7th century; a Chinese monk, Yijing, wrote that he visited Srivijaya in the year 671 for 6 months. The first inscription in which the name Srivijaya appears also dates from the 7th century, namely the Kedukan Bukit Inscription around Palembang in Sumatra, dated 683.
Palembang landmarks include the Ampera bridge and the Musi River, the latter of which divides the city into two, Seberang Ilir to the north and Seberang Ulu to the south. The Seberang Ilir is Palembang's economic and cultural centre and the Seberang Ulu is its political centre.
==Get in==
==Get in==

Revision as of 13:02, 26 December 2012

Palembang is the capital of the province of South Sumatra.


Get in

By Plane

Sultan Mahmud Badaruddin II International Airport (PLM). Recently rebuilt in another location into a modern airport. It just opened at the end of 2005. International flight operated by SilkAir [2] from Singapore and AirAsia to Kuala Lumpur (begin 10th March 2011). Some domestic flights include Jakarta (frequent), Pangkal Pinang, Batam, etc. Domestic departure tax is Rp 35,000, while international is Rp 100,000.

By Bus

Palembang connected by inland bus transportation to other cities in Sumatra (Jambi, Padang, Pekanbaru, Medan and Lampung) also to Jakarta crossing Sunda strait by ferry.

Get around

It is quite easy to get around in Palembang since there are a lot of public busses, modified vans (Angkots or Angkutan Kota) and for short distances there is always becak. Don't be surprised if they keep packing the buses and angkots with people even though they are full. Short trips should be no more than 5000 rp. Taxis are scarce, far between, and often refuse to use meters and insists on fixed price for certain distance. Just like other Indonesian cities, the most reliable and safe taxi in Palembang is Blue Bird group. On land, motorcycle taxis, ojeks, are cheap, quick, and everywhere. Boats can be hired on the river.

Recently the TransMusi bus rapid transit system was operated to connect most of city parts; from Airport to city center and Jakabaring Sport City on the other side of Ampera bridge. TransMusi is similar to TransYogya in Yogyakarta, both operated smaller bus compared to larger TransJakarta bus.


  • The Musi Bridge is one of the largest bridge in Indonesia and also Palembang landmark.
  • Masjid Agung Palembang. This grand mosque has been renovated a few times already. Now it is a very large and beautiful mosque. In some sections of the mosque you can see old Sriwijayan style architecture. It is located in front of the main roundabout in Palembang which you will pass coming from the Musi Bridge.
  • Benteng Kuto Besak the old fort located on Musi riverbank.
  • Museum Sultan Mahmud Badaruddin II, located near Benteng Kuto Besak. The museum building is in Palembang Limasan traditional architecture, displaying the history of Palembang city, from the era of Buddhist Srivijaya empire to Palembang Sultanate and colonial era.


  • Late afternoon on Benteng Kuto Besak. The river front plaza on front of Kuto Besak fort overlooking Musi river and Ampera bridge is a popular spot for local family, youngsters and visitors to enjoy late afternoon breeze in Palembang. It is a nice place for hang around and people seeing. The "warung terapung" (floating warung) are boat eating establishment offering nice and cheap snacks and Palembang famous dishes such as pempek. On east side of Ampera bridge, numbers of traditional eating establishments offering various local delicacies.
  • Cruising Musi river. The small "perahu ketek" (ketek boat) offer a short cruise on Musi river, overing view of Ampera bridge and Palembang city from Musi river. It can be rented personally or shared with locals.
  • Cinema. Movie theater is an affordable entertainment in Palembang when you don't have any idea where to go and what to do. The fare per movie is around Rp. 25,000 per ticket. Beware the heavy hand of the Indonesian censor though. The cinemas would be full of students and teenagers especially on Monday where there is a promotion (Nomat - Nonton Hemat) that only cost around Rp. 15,000 per ticket.

There are only 4 theaters opened in daily basis so there are no much options of movie selection. Cinemas: INTERNASIONAL 21, PIM 21, STUDIO 21 (Cineplex) Website:

  • Sunday morning exercise in Jakabaring. Jakabaring Sport City with its grand Gelora Sriwijaya Stadium was the host of 2011 Southeast Asian Games. In sunday morning it is a popular spot for locals to converge and do jogging and exercise.


  • Songket. Among Indonesians, Palembang is famous for its songket handycraft. It is a traditional handwoven cloth with metalic golden or silver threads. Songkets are available in most Palembang marketplaces and even available in Palembang airport, however for richer variety and choices, several songket handycraft centres, production houses, boutique or showroom are avaliable in the city.
  • Pempek. Although pempek can be found in most of Indonesian cities, the original Palembang pempek is said to have distinct taste and beyon compare. Unfried, packed, precooked boxed pempek is popular as food souvenir among Indonesians visiting the city. Fish based Palembang krupuk is also popular choice.
  • Palembang Square [3] is a mixed use complex that opened in August 2004, with site-area about 54,000 square meters and features:
3rd storey strata title Shopping Mall (41,536.5m2 gross area), have re-sellable area about 28.481,78 m2, and have the biggest shopping mall atrium at South Sumatra (777m2.
120 unit Shop-Offices (Kantor Toko=Kanto).
The Arayduta Hotel is a 5-star hotel with 18 stories, together with Convention Hall for 3.000 people’s capacity.
The shopping mall is the modern and the complete mall which is built as the recreation center and the 'shopping heaven' for families in Palembang and operational with three big anchor tenants (Carrefour hypermarket, Grand JM department store, and Gramedia bookstore); some Family game stations (Amazon, Fun city); four billiard center (with total table about 55 billiard table); some Café, local and national fast food restaurants (KFC, CFC Texas, Popeye’s, Mc Donald, etc); Hairdresser (Jonny Andrean, Yoppie Salon, etc); Shops; Local TV station (PAL TV); National FM Radio station (Oz Radio); etc. Palembang Square nowadays becomes as one of the favorites place at South Sumatra (about 750.000 regular visitor/month).
  • Pasar 16 Ilir. A very busy multi storied bazaar situated near Masjid Agung. When coming into Palembang on the Musi Bridge you will be able to see the bazaar on your right. Women's clothing is widely sold. A lot of clothing sold here are in beautiful colours and embroidery with Indian/Pakistani styles. Bargaining here is a must. Some people refer to this bazaar as the Tanah Abang of Palembang. Pasar 16 is also good to buy traditional palembang textile called Songket. You can get songket as a textile to make clothes, songket shoes, purses, cushion covers, calligraphy, art, hand fans, etc. Songket is a must buy if you come to Palembang. Don't buy it at the airport as it would be more expensive.
  • Palembang Indah Mall (PIM), Jalan Letkol Iskandar no.18, +62 711-350999. operational hour 10.00 - 22.00. PIM is the 30,000 square meter mall with many national and international brands such as Giordano, Crocodile, POLO and Ralph Lauren, LEVI's, ANDREW, Point Break, Planet Surf, NIKE, ADIDAS, FISIK, Hammer, Leonne Uomo, Bruno Piatelli, Osella, Contempo, GOSH, ETUDE HOUSE, The FaceShop, C n F Perfumery, Sport Station and Kids Station, Swatch, Samsonite, SHARP, the BodyShop, Breadtalk and GOLF HOUSE. The mall has also many anchor tenants such as ACE Hardware, INFORMA home furnishing, HYPERMART, Cinema 21 (6 cinema), and Electronic Solution. If you want to relax and chat with friends you can try to hang out at JCo doughnut and coffee, EXCELSO and the upcoming Roppan. To have meals you can dine in Pizza Hut, A&W, Brasserie, Es Teler 77, CFC, DON Cafe, Mr. Pancake or Solaria, or you can also have a great time at the Le Garden Food court which offer you many kinds of Palembang cuisines. When your kids need more games, you can go straight to TIMEZONE. There are a lot more stores of Optics (Optic Seis and Optic Melawai), Accessories Stores and Cellular and Gadget Stores (PAZIA, Erafone, Global Teleshop, WellComm and also hairdressers (Johny Andrean, My Salon and Christopher Salon). The people in South Sumatra and Palembang consider PIM as an exclusive mall for middle upper class. Around the mall currently there are Standard Chartered Bank, Bank Central Asia, Bakso Lapangan Tembak, Ma Maison (Italian and French Cuisine), Istana Mama Susi Resto, Fugu Sushi Bar, billiard, karaoke center and Hotel. The mall has a parking lot building which can contain up to 1200 cars. PIM is considered as a one stop entertainment and shopping for the people of South Sumatra.


  • When you're in Palembang you must eat the traditional food called Pempek. Pempek is fish cakes which is fried and eaten with a spicy dips called Cuka. There are different varieties of Pempek.
  • In Palembang most fast food and outlets are available. There is a McDonalds in International Plaza. Other fast foods available are KFC, CFC (Californian), Texas Chicken, etc.
  • In Palembang one famous eating joint is Martabak Har. Martabak Har sells Murtabak or Prata filled with minced meat and egg and eaten with curry.Most of the owners are Indian descent. There are many Martabak Hars but the original one is near the big roundabout (Alun Alun) near Masjid Agung. </eat>


  • The Aryaduta Hotel & Convention Center Palembang a 5 star hotel in centre. +62 21 385 8770 [4]
  • Hotel Horison Palembang a 4 star platinum hotel on a service level that equals any 5 star hotel. . +62 711 355000 Fax: +62 711 377 966 [5]
  • Penginapan Lebar Daun Where backpackers are most welcome. +62 812 712 9405 [6]
  • Hotel Aryaduta Palembang, Jl. POM IX, Palembang Square, Palembang 30137, South Sumatra, Indonesia, +62 711 383 838, [1]. Hotel Aryaduta Palembang is located in South Sumatra, Indonesia. The Aryaduta Hotel & Convention Center is an 18-storey atrium hotel offering 174 rooms. One of the facilities they offer to guests is their the largest banquet and meeting space in South Sumatra, accommodating up to 2,500 guests reception-style. Guests could also enjoy their experience in their Pool Café that offers healthy food, snacks, and light refreshments. Best rates on official website start at USD 64.46.
  • HomeInn Palembang, Jl.Mayor Ruslan No.8, 0711-377799. checkin: 11000; checkout: 1200.

Get out

You can go to Singapore with Garuda Airlines or Silk Air. AirAsia also flies to Kuala Lumpur. Some domestic flights also available include Jakarta (frequent), Medan, Batam, etc. Domestic departure tax is now Rp 35,000. Or maybe you can try jetfoil to another beautiful part of South Sumatra, Bangka Island.

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