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Jember is East Java’s third largest city after Surabaya and Malang, and is located about 150 kilometers from Surabaya. Once just a humble district, most famous for its coffee and tobacco plantations, Jember is now known for its glamorous and glitzy annual parade, known as “The Jember Fashion Carnival.” Attracting hundreds of thousands of spectators each year, Jember has now developed into a neat and complete city, and has become a popular holiday destination for foreign and domestic tourists alike.
The Jember Fashion Carnival exhibits elaborate creations by local fashion designers, combining traditional Indonesian styles with the latest international trends. Hundreds of participants spend the entire year in preparation for this 3-day extravaganza of color, costumes and creativity. The parade runs through the city center, along a 3.6 kilometer catwalk—the longest catwalk in the world. The Jember Fashion Carnival has now been recognized as the fourth largest carnival in the world, and definitely the biggest party in Indonesia.
The streets of Jember are well kept with good quality roads and clean sidewalks. Trishaws are a common form of transport around the city, as a means of preserving its cultural heritage. Jember is one of the cities that it is sometimes considered “The Gateway to East Java.” East Java is home to many amazing nature parks, such as Mount Bromo, the Meru Betiri National Park and Kawah Ijen, the largest acid lake on Earth, the Baluran National Park, and a host more.
Though not yet as prominent on the “tourist map” as Bali or Jogjakarta, Jember’s historical richness, vast plantations, natural wonders and fashion culture are quickly putting it on the list of must-visit places in Indonesia.
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Getting to Jember is not too difficult. The closest airport is in Surabaya which has available international flights from Hong Kong, Bangkok, Kuala Lumpur, Penang and Singapore. Domestic flights are available from most cities around Indonesia. From Surabaya, Jember is 4-5 hours away from by bus or Train. Both the bus terminal and train station are fairly easy to reach from the airport. Alternatively, you can find transport direct from the airport to Jember.