Search this blog


Home Post RSS Commentator Guest Book Sitemap

History of Palembang

Palembang a City by a River

Palembang is a city on Sumatra Island that is divided into two by the Musi River, the Ulu side and the Ilir side. This geographical situation has made water transportation system a part of the people's daily life. Along both banks of the Musi there used to be moored raft dwellings, called Rakit, some of which served as shops. The houses along the banks stand facing the water and are built on stilts. Because of its orientation towards the river, the city has an elongated profile along both sides and does not stretch far inland.

This venice of the East located on important trade artery between India and China since ancient times has determined the character of Palembang as a port city. Now the two sides of the city are connected by one big bridge, AMPERA, which is short for Amanat Penderitaan Rakyat.
Visiting Palembang means that you can pamper yourself with the delicious fishcake Pempek, as you can find this kind of food everywhere, from street vendors to fancy restaurants. You can also see what remains from the glorious Sri Wijaya Kingdom in Sultan Mahmud Badaruddin II Museum located on the side of the Musi River. Near the Museum, you can see a building called Benteng Kuto Besak, which used to be the residence of the Sri Vijaya kings in the 18th century. From the Museum area, continue your walking trip to Mesjid Agung. an architectural proof of the acculturation of Chinese, native Palembang and modern cultures in a harmonious way. Built in 1738, this greatest mosque in Indonesia of that time has continually been rebuilt and renovated. The last renovation in the year 2000 has given the touch of the 21th century style to this unique mosque.

One thing that you shouldn't miss when visiting Palembang is seeing people weaving Songket, the traditional Palembang's sarong. Take a becak ride to Jl. Ki Gede Ing Suro, on the way, you can see several Palembang's traditional houses, limas houses, with their unique roof shape. You can ask your becak driver to wait for you while you are browsing around the weaving houses along the street. You can also buy a sarong that you fancy. When you bargain for the desired item, bear in mind that one sarong needs one full month to finish.

Enjoy Palembang, Enjoy the Venice of the East !