Slawi, located in the Tegal Regency of Central Java province in Indonesia, is a hidden gem that should definitely be on every traveler’s radar. While it may not be as well known as some of Indonesia’s larger urban centers, Slawi has plenty to offer visitors, from its unique tea culture to its stunning natural beauty. Here’s everything you need to know about this charming city.
One of Slawi’s claims to fame is its production of a particularly fragrant black tea, which is enjoyed as part of the local tea drinking culture known as Moci. To experience a true taste of Slawi, be sure to try this delicious tea at one of the city’s many local food stalls, called Warteg (Warung Tegal), which offer daily meals at affordable prices for all walks of life.
Aside from its famous tea culture, Slawi is also known for its warm climate and gentle sloping geography, which is unusual for a tea-producing area. The city is bordered by several other districts and is located about 20 km south of Tegal at the central north coast of Java in Central Java province. Slawi has a tropical monsoon climate with moderate rainfall from June to October and heavy to very heavy rainfall from November to May.
The majority of citizens in Slawi work as farmers, in the metal industry, the public service, or in a variety of home industries, including teak furniture-making and weaving sarongs. While many young people leave the area after high school to seek out opportunities in larger urban centers, some are working overseas in places such as Middle East, Singapore, Malaysia, Hong Kong and Taiwan. Their financial remittances are an important source of income for the area.
In terms of local cuisine, Slawi offers a wide range of dishes to try, including Tahu Aci, fried tofu triangle with one side filled with cassava flour, Sega Lengko, made of boiled and steamed rice adorned with fermented soybean cake pieces tempeh, tofu, soy-bean sprouts tauge, sand-fried peanuts and some hand crushed krupuk aci (cassava flour crackers) and/or krupuk udang (prawn crackers), fried shallots with mild chili peanut sauce over the top prior to serving, and a variety of chicken turmeric soup, Soto Tegal, and Sate Tegal.
But Slawi isn’t just about food and drink – there are also plenty of local areas of interest to explore. Visitors can check out the old and new markets, the Singa and Rama theatres, and the historical Pankah Sugar Factory, all of which are part of the Dutch colonial legacy in the city. In addition, nearby Guci offers a wealth of natural beauty, with its waterfalls, gardens, and public hot springs at the foot of Slamet Mountain, approximately 27 km south of Slawi. And for those looking for a relaxing day out, the Alun Alun Kabupaten Slawi offers a garden with a large fountain that is popular on Sundays.
Whether you’re a foodie, a nature lover, or a history buff, Slawi has something for everyone. So why not add this charming city to your travel bucket list today?