Going to Banda Aceh
Several airlines fly between Jakarta and Medan and Banda Aceh.
Besides Garuda Indonesia there are also low cost carriers such as
Lion Air and Sriwijaya Air. One way ticket is normally around Rp.
300.000 and up. Air Asia flies between Kuala Lumpur and Banda Aceh.
Fire Fly flies between Penang in Malaysia and Banda Aceh. There are
also many regional flights out of Medan and Banda Aceh which can be
used for a part of the journey or when making a detour. NBA and Susi
Air flies between Medan and Banda Aceh over Singkil (for visits to
Pulau Banyak), over Simeulue, over Kutacane (for Leuser National
Park), and other places. Some routes are even subsidized and dirt
cheap. Unfortunately both NBA and Susi Air are still not very good
in informing about their routes and schedules.
The non-stop night busses between Medan and Banda Aceh are
comfortable. The major bus companies are PMTOH, Pelangi, Kurnia,
Pusaka, and Anugerah. In Medan they all have ticket offices on Jl.
Gajah Mada. All becak and taxi drivers know the place. From there
the bus companies have free transfers to their respective bus depot.
The journey takes 10-11 hrs. Rp. 140.000 in 2+2 seated bus, or Rp.
180-200.000 in 2+1 seated bus. In Banda Aceh all big bus companies
can be found at the bus terminal. Some of the busses are far too
cold. Be prepared with something warm to take on.
There are also minibuses, so called L300, plying this route and
parts of it. Banda Aceh – Medan is 140.000.
The route over the west coast of Aceh with all its beaches and
scenic views is now in good condition. It is well worth if you would
like to make stops and see places along the road, for example Tapaktuan. It takes longer time, but is worth it. Minibuses (L300)
Banda Aceh – Meulaboh is Rp. 70.000, Banda Aceh – Tapaktuan
Rp. 120.000, and Banda Aceh – Singkil (680km) Rp. 195.000.
There are also minibuses (L300) plying the route over Takengon and
Central Aceh through the Leuser National Park. It is a very
beautiful and interesting, but time consuming route. Banda Aceh to Takengon is Rp. 85.000. All the way to Kutacane is Rp. 140.000 and
takes almost 20 hrs. From there on it is easy to reach Medan. Banda
Aceh – Kutacane via Medan is faster and cost Rp. 185.000.
The minibus companies are Flamboyan Tour, Mentari Tour, Bouraq
traffic this routes. Mini busses can be found on Jl. Muhammad Jam or
nearby in Banda Aceh, directly behind the Grand Mosque. Mini busses
normally have door to door service.
Transportation in Banda
You normally arrive in Banda Aceh by bus or by plane.
airport a taxi to downtown is officially Rp. 70.000, but can be
bargained a bit. Drivers will approach you as soon as you come out
from the arrival hall. A bus, Damri, traffic the route Airport –
Grand Mosque area, App. 10.000. For an extra fee they can a small
detour to your hotel. If you find a becak (motorbikes with sidecar)
it probably cost Rp. 50.000 and up.
The new bus terminal is on Jl. MR. Muhammad Hassan. There are taxi,
becak, and labi-labi (public minibuses) available. When coming out
from the terminal turn left if you want to head towards downtown.
The cost for a ride with a labi-labi in town is Rp. 3-5.000. Tell
the driver where you are going to be sure that you get on the right
one. Most of them end up at, or originate from, the new minibus
terminal a couple of hundred meters behind, the Grand Mosque. (See
map) From there are labi-labi to Peunayong and other destinations.
Labi-labi to Ulee Lheue and the ferries to Pulau Weh (Sabang) can
also be found on Jl. Sultan Iskandar Muda, southwest of the Mosque.
Becak and taxi can take you anywhere you want in town and its
vicinity. A becak is roughly 30-50% cheaper than a taxi. Don’t
forget to bargain. Normal prices for becak could be like follows:
From Bus Terminal to down town and Grand Mosque: Rp. 15-20.000. From
Grand Mosque to Penayong: Rp. 5-10.000. From Bus Terminal to Ulee
Lhe: Rp. 20-25.000. From Airport to Grand Mosque or Peunayong: app.
Rp. 50-60.000. Remember, the price is between you and the driver.
Travel agents and Car Rentals
Only travel agents supporting the Banda Aceh section of
www.sumatraecotourism.com are listed here and mentioned by name on
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