Dulci Kasten

Dulci Kasten

Modified & Updated: 08 Sep 2023

Source: Commons.wikimedia.org

Tanjung Balai, located in the province of North Sumatra in Indonesia, is a vibrant and bustling city that offers a wealth of culture, history, and natural beauty. As one of the oldest cities in the region, Tanjung Balai has a rich and diverse heritage that has shaped its unique identity. From its picturesque beaches and lush landscapes to its fascinating historical sites, this city has something to offer to every traveler.

In this article, we will delve into 40 captivating facts about Tanjung Balai that will give you a deeper understanding of this remarkable city. Whether you are planning a visit or just curious about its intriguing features, these facts will provide you with valuable insights into its history, culture, and attractions. So, let’s embark on this journey and discover the hidden gems of Tanjung Balai!

Table of Contents

Location of Tanjung Balai

Tanjung Balai is a town located on the eastern coast of Sumatra Island in Indonesia, specifically in the North Sumatra province.

Historical Significance

Tanjung Balai has a rich history, dating back to the era of the Srivijaya Kingdom in the 7th century.

Cultural Diversity

The town is known for its multicultural atmosphere, with diverse ethnic groups such as Malays, Chinese, Batak, and Javanese residing harmoniously.

Economic Hub

Tanjung Balai is an important economic hub for trade and commerce in the region, with thriving industries in fishing, palm oil, and rubber production.

Traditional Cuisine

The local cuisine of Tanjung Balai is a delightful fusion of different culinary traditions, offering dishes influenced by Malay, Chinese, and Batak cuisines.

Beautiful Beaches

Tanjung Balai is blessed with stunning beaches, such as Mangga Beach and Sei Lepan Beach, where visitors can relax and enjoy the sun and sand.

Religious Harmony

The town is notable for its religious diversity, with mosques, Buddhist temples, and Christian churches coexisting peacefully.

Traditional Dance

Tanjung Balai is home to traditional dance forms like the Malay Joget dance and the Batak Tortor dance, showcasing the cultural heritage of the region.

Festivals and Celebrations

Various cultural festivals and celebrations take place in Tanjung Balai, including Chinese New Year, Hari Raya, and the Batak Tor-tor Festival.

Natural Beauty

Tanjung Balai is surrounded by picturesque landscapes, with lush forests, rolling hills, and scenic rivers adding to its natural charm.

Historic Lighthouse

One of the iconic landmarks in Tanjung Balai is the historic lighthouse, which stands tall and provides a panoramic view of the surrounding area.

Traditional Crafts

The town is famous for its traditional handicrafts, including handwoven textiles, wood carvings, and pottery, showcasing the artistic skills of the local artisans.

Water Sports

Tanjung Balai offers a range of water sports activities, including snorkeling, diving, and fishing, making it a popular destination for adventurous travelers.

Wildlife Sanctuary

The nearby Sembilang National Park is a haven for nature enthusiasts, home to diverse wildlife, including various bird species, primates, and reptiles.

Ancient Temples

Tanjung Balai is dotted with ancient temples, such as the Maha Vihara Maitreya Temple and the Vihara Avalokitesvara Temple, which attract religious pilgrims and tourists.

Traditional Music

The town has a vibrant music scene, with traditional gamelan orchestras and Batak gondang music being performed at cultural events and ceremonies.

Waterfront Promenade

The waterfront promenade in Tanjung Balai is a popular spot for locals and visitors alike, offering scenic views of the ocean and a vibrant atmosphere.


Tanjung Balai is known for being an affordable travel destination, with reasonably priced accommodations, dining options, and local attractions.

Heritage Sites

The town boasts several heritage buildings, such as the Old Town Hall and the Chinese-style Tokong Baharudin Temple, giving a glimpse into its architectural history.

Traditional Markets

Exploring the traditional markets of Tanjung Balai allows visitors to experience the local culture firsthand and purchase unique souvenirs and fresh produce.

Ecotourism Opportunities

Tanjung Balai offers various ecotourism opportunities, including nature walks, bird watching, and exploring the surrounding mangrove forests.

Warm Hospitality

The people of Tanjung Balai are known for their warm hospitality, welcoming visitors with open arms and making their stay memorable.

Maritime Trade History

Due to its strategic location, Tanjung Balai has a long history of maritime trade, with ships sailing to and from neighboring countries.

Adventure Activities

For those seeking adventure, Tanjung Balai offers activities like jungle trekking, river rafting, and off-road biking.

Environmental Conservation

Tanjung Balai is committed to environmental conservation, with efforts to protect its natural resources and promote sustainable tourism practices.

Cultural Museums

The town houses several cultural museums, including the Tanjung Balai Cultural Museum, where artifacts and exhibits showcase the local heritage.

Delicious Seafood

Tanjung Balai is a paradise for seafood lovers, with its abundance of fresh seafood restaurants serving delicacies like grilled fish, prawns, and crabs.

Sunset Views

Witnessing the breathtaking sunset views over the ocean is a memorable experience in Tanjung Balai, creating picturesque moments.

Ayam Penyet

A popular local dish in Tanjung Balai is Ayam Penyet, which consists of fried chicken served with spicy sambal, rice, and assorted vegetables.

Religious Landmarks

Tanjung Balai is home to religious landmarks, such as the Mesjid Agung Al-Jabbar Mosque and the Kwan Im Goddess of Mercy Temple.

Vibrant Nightlife

After the sun sets, Tanjung Balai comes alive with a vibrant nightlife scene, offering bars, lounges, and live music performances.

Coffee Plantations

The surrounding areas of Tanjung Balai are known for their coffee plantations, producing high-quality Sumatran coffee.

Traditional Festivals

Various traditional festivals are celebrated in Tanjung Balai, such as the Hari Raya Batak festival, featuring traditional dances and music performances.

Indonesian Batik

The art of Indonesian batik is showcased in Tanjung Balai, with local artisans creating beautiful batik fabrics using traditional methods.

Historical Landmarks

The town is home to historical landmarks like Fort Willem III, a 17th-century Dutch fortification that offers a glimpse into the colonial history of the region.

Fishing Industry

Tanjung Balai is widely known for its fishing industry, with numerous fishing boats and a bustling fish market offering a variety of fresh seafood.

Unique Language

The people of Tanjung Balai have their own unique language, known as Bahasa Tanjung Balai, which is a blend of Malay, Chinese dialects, and local languages.

Religious Pilgrimage

The town is considered a significant destination for religious pilgrimages, with devotees coming to visit the Vihara Dharma Sasana temple and seek spiritual enlightenment.

Rich Archaeological Sites

Tanjung Balai is surrounded by rich archaeological sites, with ancient relics, such as pottery and tools, shedding light on the region’s prehistoric past.

Sustainable Tourism Initiatives

Tanjung Balai is actively promoting sustainable tourism initiatives, focusing on preserving the environment, supporting local communities, and conserving cultural heritage.

These 40 facts about Tanjung Balai offer just a glimpse into the charm and allure of this vibrant Indonesian town. From its rich history to its cultural diversity, stunning beaches, and delicious cuisine, Tanjung Balai has something to offer every traveler. Whether you are seeking relaxation, adventure, or an immersive cultural experience, Tanjung Balai is a destination that should not be missed.

Plan your visit to Tanjung Balai today and explore the hidden wonders that this captivating town has to offer!


In conclusion, Tanjung Balai is a fascinating city with a rich history and vibrant culture. From its stunning landmarks and breathtaking natural beauty to its bustling markets and delectable cuisine, there is no shortage of experiences to be had in this charming city. Whether you are a history buff, a nature lover, or a foodie, Tanjung Balai has something to offer everyone. So, plan your visit to this hidden gem and immerse yourself in the unique charm and allure of Tanjung Balai.


1. What is the best time to visit Tanjung Balai?

The best time to visit Tanjung Balai is during the dry season, which is between April and October. The weather during this time is pleasant, with less rainfall and more sunshine.

2. Are there any accommodations available in Tanjung Balai?

Yes, Tanjung Balai offers a range of accommodations, including hotels, guesthouses, and homestays. Visitors can choose from various options to suit their preferences and budgets.

3. What are some must-visit attractions in Tanjung Balai?

Some must-visit attractions in Tanjung Balai include the Maha Vihara Buddhayana temple, Tanjung Balai Beach, and the Sri Bintan Kampung Eco-Tourism. These places showcase the city’s cultural, historical, and natural beauty.

4. Is Tanjung Balai known for any local delicacies?

Yes, Tanjung Balai is known for its seafood delicacies. Visitors can indulge in mouthwatering dishes like grilled fish, prawns, and squid, which are freshly caught from the sea.

5. Are there any shopping opportunities in Tanjung Balai?

Yes, there are various shopping opportunities in Tanjung Balai, with local markets offering a wide range of goods such as traditional handicrafts, batik clothing, and fresh produce.