City Facts - Surabaya
Surabaya is on the northern shore of eastern Java at the mouth of the Mas River. Flooding is common in many areas of the city during the rainy season, mostly caused by clogged sewers and poor maintenance. The fact that Surabaya is located in a river delta doesn't help the matter either.
Unpretentious Surabaya may be the second-largest city in Indonesia
, but it's a little lacking insight. However, many people come here on business, and Surabaya is also a gateway city for Mount Bromo and the island of Bali. The city's attractions tend to be more apparent to those who make it their home rather than to short-term visitors.
As with any big city, never let your guard down due to the high crime rate. That said, Surabaya has few real dangers for visitors apart from the perils of crossing the very busy roads (the secret is to raise an arm while crossing, and to progress with a predictable speed and bearing, allowing the traffic to flow around you). Don't walk on the streets, especially at night, if you can avoid it since you won't have anything to sightsee and the air pollution is fairly high. Do not easily trust people you have just met, even if they look friendly.
The nearby Juanda International Airport has a new, bright terminal and flights to domestic locations - Singapore
, Hong Kong
and Kuala Lumpur
. Officially, you're supposed to buy fixed-fare taxi coupons from the "Prima Taxi" stand for the 18 km trip into town, but one may be able to get a driver dropping off passengers to pick you up. If going further away it'll be cheaper to rent a car with a driver instead.