A Trip To Berastagi
Berastagi is situated in the upland of North Sumatra Province. Wedged between Mount Sibayak (2,049 m) and Mount Sinabung (2,451 m), it has cool climate, beautiful scenery, and several tourist attractions. With a well-developed infrastructure, the city is perfect for weekend getaways or longer holidays. Berastagi has always been a favorite weekend spot for Medan’s citizen since the 1.5 hours trip from Medan (Capital of North Sumatra Province) is relatively shot. The city, however, can also be a worthwhile destination for Jakartans. It only takes a total of 3.5 hours to reach: 2 hours of Medan Berastagi drive.
There are vast forest along the road from Medan and occasionally, you can see buildings with unique Karo (a tribe from Batak ethnic) ornaments, a sign that you have entered their domain. Women wearing the distinctive Batak headdress can also be seen from time to time. Mejuah-juah, welcome to the land of Karo! On the road between Medan and Berastagi, lies Sibolangit Botanical Garden, which houses several kinds of local vegetation. Next, it goes winding and sloping upward, going through Penatapen. If you want, you can stop here briefly to enjoy the cool air or a clear view to the plains below.
Near Berastagi, there is an intersection that goes to mount, a starting point for people who wants to climb Mount Sibayak. After this intersection, you will see hotels lining up along the road, right up to the hilltop. You can also see forested hill on the right side of that winding road, before finally entering the main street. Berastagi is small city with downtown area comprising only of a main street with stores and restaurants on its left and right.
For accommodation, it is better to pick hotels on the hilly areas, such as Gundaling Hill where it is quieter and offers better view. The panorama from Gundaling Hills is especially beautiful in this afternoon. You can see the whole city, its surrounding orchards, and the crater of Mount Sibayak, a volcano that has been dormant for centuries. To the west is Mount Sinabung (another dormant volcano), while the Karo plains lie on the south.