Death Noodles: a Jakarta hole-in-the-wall serves what may be the world’s spiciest noodles!

Some foods become legendary. But if we speak about the so called “Death Noodles”, the legend went viral on the web when one man, Ben Sumadiwiria, claimed he went deaf for two minutes after enjoying a plate of it. His YouTube channel features several additional videos of he and his friends chowing down on noodle bowls that make literally their skin flush and their eyes water. Apparently, nothing strange, as the base of the intense dish is quite innocuous: Indomie noodles, a type of instant spiced noodles made in Indonesia.…

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Krakatoa: the story of the world’s mightiest explosion

The biggest explosion the world has ever known (try to imagine: an estimated 13,000 times greater than the bomb that destroyed Hiroshima during WWII) happened on this day, August 27 1883, as eruptions of the Krakatoa volcano reached their peak. To understand, the noise of the explosion was heard 3,000 miles (4,800km) away, five cubic miles (21 km^3) of rock and ash were projected 50 miles (80.5km) into the air, while 36.5m tsunamis were created and 36,000 people lost their lives. The island of Krakatoa (originally Krakatau) featured three linked…

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Gereja Ayam: the curious “chicken church” in the middle of the Indonesian forest

We are in the thick forest of Magelang, Indonesia. If you be trekking here, try not to be too alarmed if you stumble upon a massive building shaped like a chicken. Yes, a chicken. Known as Gereja Ayam (unsurprisingly, “Chicken Church”), this moldering, behemoth, bird-like building is an unexpected, pictoresque and whimsical sight to stumble upon. The church’s unusual design has inspired many debates and fan theories over the years, each one attempting to solve the mystery of why someone would spend money to build a chicken in the middle…

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Mie Lethek Garuda – a traditional food from Indonesia

We are in the small village of Srandakan, in Indonesia’s Yogyakarta Sultanate, which is the last remaining Indonesian region to be ruled by a Sultanate. What is the reason for visiting this Special Region? Aside from the natural attractions, culture, and history, tourists want to try all traditional foods that they can find there. The region offers the classic one locally known as ‘Mie Lethek’. They are traditionally made with no machines, but with cows and workers, most of whom are middle-aged to elderly. It’s hard work being a cow…

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A visit in Lawang Sewu, The Indonesian “House Of Thousand Doors”

Wars, suffering and blood shed fills the world’s history, and this is one of the reasons why many of the our planet’s older buildings have tragic histories that still mark them today. Lawang Sewu, in Semarang, the capital city of Central Java, saw some of the most devastating events in Indonesian history. The name itself means “a thousand doors” in the local language. However, this takes on slightly creepier undertones when you consider the building’s history. The name originally referred to its actual structure, even if It doesn’t actually have…

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The Ma’Nene Festival in Indonesia: the mummies of the dead return to visit their loved ones.

As we know, all cultures have their own way of celebrating those who have passed away, but in Indonesia, in the province of Tana Toraja, funeral rites are a little “different” from the usual. The Ma’Nene ritual is the festival of ancestor worship. When a person dies, the body is mummified with natural ingredients and buried in rock tombs. The mummification process allows the preservation of the corpse and allows the family to return to exhume it! The Torajan people proudly display their dead relatives after digging them up and…

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The misterious abandoned plane in Bali.

We are in southern Bali, near the southern coast of the Bukit Peninsula, where there is an abandoned Boeing 737. It’s not at an airport or an airplane boneyard, but it sits in a field near a kind of limestone quarry. It’s just off the Raya Nusa Dua Selatan Highway and only five minutes from the very popular and turistic Pandawa beach, so, it’s not exactly hidden away from the world! What makes it even stranger, is that no one seems to know how it got there! It would normal…

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