Medan is the capital of the North Sumatra province in Indonesia. Located on the northern coast, Medan is the third largest city in Indonesia, and the largest Indonesian city outside Java. Geographically, Medan is located at 3o30' — 3o43' Northern Latitude and 98o35' — 98o44' Eastern Longitude, with a north-ward sloping topography and it lies at 2,5 - 37,5 meters above sea level.
As the capital of North Sumatra, Medan has a very strategic position. There are consulates of foreign countries and it is the primary center of activities of northern Sumatra.
The population of Medan is consisting of diverse ethnic groups: Malay, Java, Batak, Chinese, Aceh, Minangkabau, Tamil, etc. Each ethnic group has its own cultural patterns and different social structures.
Bahasa Indonesia is the national language but English, Mandarin and Hokkian are widely spoken. The ethnic groups also speak various languages and dialects.
||Tropical climate with warm weather all year round. Temperatures in the lowlands range from 21ºC (70ºF) to 32ºC (90ºF). The highlands are cooler, where temperatures range between 15°C (59° F) to 25°C (77°F). Annual rainfall varies from 1,000mm to 4,000mm.
The unit of currency is Indonesia Rupiah indicated as IDR. Foreign currency can be converted at banks and money changers.
Polonia International Airport in Medan has daily flights to all major cities in Indonesia as well as international destinations including Singapore and Malaysia.
Airlines that fly to Medan are:
You can get to Medan by boat from Penang (Malaysia). Cruise ships also operate cruises between Medan and Jakarta
For those with time on their hands and don’t mind adventurous travel, there is a bus which travels overland from Jakarta to Medan.
What to do in Medan?
See some of natures most terrifying creatures at the Crocodile Farm at Asam Kumbang, located about 10 km from the heart of the city. This farm has nearly 2,000 crocodiles of different sizes and species. Come here during feeding time to see these fierce reptiles use their sharp teeth to cut their lunch to shreds. Learn more about these animals and follow their stages of development. Souvenirs made of crocodile’s skin are also sold here. The farm is open from 9:00 am - 5:00 pm.
Soak up some culture and educate yourself about Indonesian traditions with a visit to Museum Negara. Here you’ll find a fascinating collection of archaeological relics from 12th century South Indian statues to remains of an Islamic nisan or gravestone.
The Grand Mosque of Medan is an impressive sight complete with Arabesque domes and crystal chandeliers.
At the Palace of the Sultan you can see photos and memorabilia from the days of royalty. The building’s design reflects Malay influences, painted in a yellow trim (the color of Malay royalty).
Places of Interest in Medan
Lake Toba also known as Danau Toba in Indonesia is the largest volcanic lake ( crater lake ) in the world. It is surrounded by tall mountains, it cradles the large island of Samosir in its middle.
Unlike any other lake, if you think about the location — close to the equator — and look at the picture, you will realize that there is something strange about the lake. Most large lakes were formed by glaciers; large lakes close to the equator are sometimes formed by the damming of a large river. But there is no large river flowing into Lake Toba. The lake has a different and more dramatic origin.
Sipiso - piso Waterfall
Set in the beautiful highlands of North Sumatra, the stunning Sipiso-piso waterfall is located on the North side of Lake Toba, 24 kms from Kabanjahe. This long but narrow waterfall drops 120 meters into an impressive gorge below.
This thundering waterfal is popular with visitors who come to photograph this magnificent natural wonder. Surrounded by a lush green mountainscape and with a rainbow forming at the base of the waterfall, it’s hard to imagine a more impressive subject for a photograph.
Samosir Island , in the middle of Lake Toba is the size of Singapore. Lake toba is the largest and deepest crater lake in world.906 meter above sea level, a water surface area of 1,265 square km, 90 km long with a coastline of 285 km, and with an average depth of 450 meters. Samosir island is the home of Batak people. The population of Samosir Island is approximately 130.568, or 91 per square kilometer
Sibolangit Hill Park
Sibolangit Hillpark is a theme park (Themepark), the largest on the island of Sumatra! By carrying out the three themes of Lost City, Toon Town, and Heritage, Hillpark Sibolangit presents a variety of rides - which attract world-class rides like Roller Coaster (thunder), Ferries Wheel (giant windmill), 4D theater, and many others! To complement the enjoyment of visitors, amphiteathre capacity of 1,200 people always faithful present attractions, shows, concerts International class luxury.
||Mount Leuser National Park
Covering both resilient Nangroe Aceh Darussalam and antique North Sumatra Province, most parts of the national park rest in the lush South East Aceh region, blessed with tropical fruits like mango, rambutan, durian, avocado, orange, papaya, and guava. The other parts are situated in the east Aceh, south Aceh, and Langkat of North Sumatra, known to produce world-class coffee and tobacco. Most visitors normally start their adventures in the national park through Bukit Lawang, North Sumatra, where you can always find the gentle giants of the jungle, the orangutans. Discover the gentleness of these sociable primates as your discovery of Sumatra begins right here.