Top things to do

Top Choice Mosque in Banda Aceh

Mesjid Raya Baiturrahman

With its brilliant-white walls, ebony-black domes and towering minaret, this 19th-century mosque is a dazzling sight. The best time to visit is during Friday-afternoon prayers, when the entire building and courtyard…
Top Choice Museum in Banda Aceh

Tsunami Museum

A visit to this beautifully designed, hard-hitting museum commences with a walk through a dark, dripping tunnel that symbolises the 2004 tsunami waves. This is followed by a powerful set of images of the devastation…
Top Choice Italian in Iboih

Bixio Cafe

Who would have thought Sumatra’s best Italian food is hiding in a remote corner of Pulau Weh? Sit by the lapping waves and dig into Luca and Eva’s wonderful, authentic and freshly made pastas and gnocchi with fresh …
Museum in Banda Aceh

Rumah Aceh

In the same compound as the Museum Negeri Banda Aceh, the Rumah Aceh is a fine example of traditional Acehnese architecture, built without nails and held together with cord and pegs. Inside is a typical traditional …
Cafe in Banda Aceh

Warung Kopi Solong

Banda Aceh’s most famous coffee house has been doing business since 1974. It’s an excellent place to try kopi sanger (coffee with condensed milk) – strained through a sock! You can buy 250g and 500g bags of finely g…
International in Banda Aceh

Country Steakhouse

Well hidden down an alley out of view is this cosy, wood-panelled restaurant that has a speakeasy feel, and specialises in Western food and cold beers. New Zealand steaks and lamb chops are the specialties, as well …
International in Iboih

Dee Dee’s Kitchen

On the same strip of beach as Rubiah Tirta Divers, Dee Dee cooks up an eclectic selection of dishes, from the excellent home-made chapati with guacamole, pasta dishes, crispy tempe tortilla wraps and tofu burgers to…
Ice Cream in Banda Aceh

Ice Cream Gunung Salju

A local institution is this downtown place notable for its delicious home-made ice cream. It has a heap of flavours, including local offerings such as avocado, durian and jackfruit, as well as all the usual suspects…
Island in Banyak Islands

Pulau Sikandang

This largish island with pristine beaches takes a couple of hours to walk around. It's one of the most popular places to stay with several guesthouses set up here. Snorkelling is possible but there’s a steep drop-of…
Historic Building in Banda Aceh

Gunongan

All that remains of Aceh’s powerful sultanates today is on view at Gunongan. Built by Sultan Iskandar Muda (1607–36) as a gift for his Malay princess wife, it was intended as a private playground and bathing place. …