Berastagi is on the way to Lake Toba about 70-80km from Medan.
Mount Sinabung and Mount Sibayak (Gunung Sinabung and Gunung Sibayak) can be visited from here if you like hiking. There are Karo Batak tribes living nearby which are worth a visit.

The best part are the hot springs. A distance off the beaten track you can find about 30 hot spring baths not far from Gunung Semangat. They rarely have bule (white person) tourists so you're bound to be of interest if you are. The cost is pretty cheap (less than a $1) and is very hot. Monkeys (Monyet) tend to swing from the trees watching you as you soak.

There are some traditional villages nearby but most people go to Berastagi for the walk through Gunung Leuser National Park

Traveller's Comment

I went there with some friends late at night so there was no time to do any exploring of the mountains. Also it was raining and the risk was that we'd get stuck in the mud. So we stopped off at the hot spring pools. The mountains were misted in the distance and the jungle was so close I felt that I was nowhere near civilisation. Being able to see Monkeys watching me, bath in very hot water and smell wild life made me forget the city life for awhile.

Because I am exceedingly white I was the object of attention of several of the Indonesian girls. They said "Mr, Mr, photo please Mr" and I thought that they wanted me to take a photo of them. As it was they wanted to take a photo of ME with them! So, as there were 3 girls, there were 3 photos taken. The funny bit was when I offered to stand up in my speedos. "No, no, no!", they chorused. Maybe it would have ruined their camera! So the photos were taken with only my chest above the water and they went away happy. Very funny!

Read more in Neil's diary - Danau Toba
Continue the diary from Jakarta

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