Our little trip or tour of the Semarang Kota Lama or Old Town began at Pring Sewu….
(Address – Jl. Suari No.10 – 12, Purwodinatan, Kec. Semarang Tengah, Kota Semarang, Jawa Tengah 50137)
This restaurant is situated at the Kota Lama of Semarang, we were ushered into a private room where we were given the opportunity to try our hands making a Hanuman puppet wayang suket..( a shadow puppet made from woven grass/ reeds)
Wayang suket is usually made to deliver the puppet stories to children in Javanese villages.To make it, a number of grass leaves or dried reeds were woven and strung together (by folding) to form a puppet-like figure. Those puppets were not painted, exposing their natural color.
It was certainly not easy but we all managed to complete our puppets…
The PringSewu is used to be owned by Chinese-Indonesian tycoon, Oei Tiong Ham who was born and bred in Semarang, he grew up and became a sugar merchant and became the ri wealthiest man Far East… And PringSewu has an ancient safe room belonging to Oei Tiong Ham which we got to see.. Then we headed for a little tour around the Kota Lama or Old Town or Oudstad (as it is known in Dutch)
Kota Lama Semarang
A step into the Kota Lama Semarang, takes you back to the heydays of the colonial era time of the Dutch East Indies…
Here, you can see both well preserved as well as some abandoned 18th century buildings have been pretty well preserved and has character or life in them…
There are plenty of picturesque spots in this beautiful part of historical Semarang…
( Address – Jl. Letjen Suprapto No.32, Tj. Mas, Kec. Semarang Utara, Kota Semarang, Jawa Tengah 50174)
Right at the heart of the Kota Lama Semarang is the eye catching Blenduk Church… This church boasts Panteon style architecture and comes with a dome..
It was built in 1753, and is the oldest Protestant Church in Central Java…..
The emblematic octagonal copper dome (also known as mblenduk in the Javanese language) is said to be inspired by the Church of St Peter Basilica in the Vatican City… Other iconic features of this church are said to be the two surrounding clock towers, the stately baroque organ, floating octagonal pulpit, antique spiral wrought iron staircase and rattan teak pews… I did not go in there as it was closed, but just telling what I understand…. Hehehe…
Semarang Old Town Complex
(Address – Jalan Srigunting Street, Kec. Semarang Utara, Kota Semarang, Jawa Tengah 50174)
At the side of the Blenduk Church is the Semarang Old Town complex, where the Galeri industry Kreatif Semarang is.. And this is a paradise for antique hunters….
Here, you can find thousands of antiques and vintage goods as well as other unique or vintage handicraft that you can buy and bring home as special mementos….
You can find some 40 antiques sellers here with various assortment of antique Dutch colonial currencies, old style televisions to a unique old saxophone….
There is definitely an abundance of unique items with prices ranging from IDR10 thousands to millions….
(While you are there, don’t forget to hitch a ride with President Joko Widodo around the Semarang city centre…. Hahaha)
The sellers are members of the Art Items Sellers Association (PADANGSARI) that specializes in antiques and unique items.
Over the other side of the antiques market, you can find lovely batik clothing for sale and also food and drinks…
From here, we headed back to PringSewu where we had our dinner… It was a great little adventure into part of historical Semarang and I was contented…