Top 10 Must-Visit Attractions in Surabaya for First-Timers

Surabaya, often dubbed as the “City of Heroes,” is a bustling metropolis in East Java, Indonesia, brimming with rich history, vibrant culture, and exciting attractions. As the second-largest city in Indonesia, Surabaya offers a myriad of experiences for travelers, from exploring historical sites to indulging in delicious cuisine and enjoying modern entertainment. If you’re planning your first visit to Surabaya, here are the top 10 must-visit attractions that promise to leave you captivated and enthralled.

1. House of Sampoerna

Immerse yourself in the rich history of Indonesia’s clove cigarette industry at the House of Sampoerna. This museum, housed in a beautifully preserved Dutch colonial building, offers insights into the production process of Indonesia’s most iconic cigarette brand. Visitors can witness skilled workers hand-rolling cigarettes and learn about the company’s fascinating journey. Don’t forget to explore the museum’s collection of vintage cigarette-making equipment and artifacts.

2. Surabaya Submarine Monument

Dive into Indonesia’s maritime history with a visit to the Surabaya Submarine Monument, located in the heart of the city. This unique attraction allows visitors to explore a decommissioned Russian submarine, gaining a glimpse into life aboard a submersible vessel. Climb aboard the submarine and imagine the daring voyages undertaken by its crew. The monument also serves as a tribute to Indonesia’s naval heritage and the brave sailors who served their country.

3. Tugu Pahlawan (Heroes Monument)

Pay homage to Indonesia’s national heroes at Tugu Pahlawan, a monumental landmark commemorating the Battle of Surabaya during the Indonesian National Revolution. The towering monument, adorned with intricate carvings and surrounded by lush gardens, serves as a poignant reminder of the city’s role in the struggle for independence. Visitors can ascend to the top of the monument for panoramic views of Surabaya and reflect on the sacrifices made by those who fought for freedom.

4. Suramadu National Bridge

Marvel at engineering excellence with a visit to the Suramadu National Bridge, the longest bridge in Indonesia connecting Surabaya with the island of Madura. Spanning over the Madura Strait, this iconic bridge is a symbol of connectivity and progress. Take a leisurely drive or stroll across the bridge, soaking in breathtaking views of the surrounding seascape and city skyline. The bridge is particularly enchanting at sunset when the sky is ablaze with hues of orange and pink.

5. Surabaya Zoo

Embark on a wild adventure at Surabaya Zoo, one of the oldest and largest zoos in Southeast Asia. Home to a diverse collection of animals from around the world, including endangered species, the zoo offers visitors the opportunity to observe majestic creatures up close. From playful primates to majestic big cats, the zoo promises a memorable experience for visitors of all ages. Don’t miss the chance to attend animal feeding sessions and educational presentations conducted by experienced zookeepers.

6. Surabaya Carnival Park

Indulge in family-friendly fun at Surabaya Carnival Park, an expansive amusement park featuring thrilling rides, entertaining shows, and delicious snacks. Whether you’re seeking adrenaline-pumping roller coasters or whimsical carousels, this park has something for everyone. Take a leisurely stroll through beautifully landscaped gardens, or challenge your friends to a game of skill at the various carnival booths. With lively performances and vibrant atmosphere, Surabaya Carnival Park guarantees a day of excitement and laughter.

7. Chinatown (Kampung Cina)

Step into a world of culture and cuisine at Surabaya’s vibrant Chinatown, also known as Kampung Cina. Wander through narrow alleys lined with traditional shop houses, adorned with red lanterns and intricate carvings. Discover bustling markets selling a myriad of goods, from exotic spices to ornate handicrafts. Don’t forget to sample delicious Chinese delicacies at local eateries, where aromatic aromas waft through the air. Experience the fusion of Indonesian and Chinese cultures in this dynamic neighborhood.

8. Al-Akbar Mosque

Admire the grandeur of Islamic architecture at Al-Akbar Mosque, one of the largest mosques in Southeast Asia. With its striking domes, towering minarets, and intricate tile work, the mosque is a testament to Indonesia’s rich Islamic heritage. Step inside the mosque to marvel at its expansive prayer hall, adorned with ornate chandeliers and intricate calligraphy. Visitors of all faiths are welcome to explore the mosque and learn about the principles of Islam.

9. Surabaya North Quay

Unwind by the waterfront at Surabaya North Quay, a picturesque promenade offering stunning views of the city skyline and bustling harbor. Take a leisurely stroll along the boardwalk, lined with palm trees and colorful flower beds. Stop by one of the waterfront cafes or restaurants to savor fresh seafood dishes while watching ships sail by. Surabaya North Quay also hosts regular cultural events and performances, adding to the vibrant atmosphere of this waterfront destination.

10. Jalesveva Jayamahe Monument

Pay tribute to Indonesia’s maritime heritage at the Jalesveva Jayamahe Monument, a majestic sculpture depicting the country’s naval prowess. Situated along the banks of the Kalimas River, this iconic monument commemorates the Indonesian Navy’s motto, which translates to “In the sea, we are glorious.” Marvel at the intricate details of the sculpture, which portrays sailors in action aboard a ship. The monument serves as a reminder of Indonesia’s seafaring traditions and its important role in maritime trade.


Surabaya offers a captivating blend of history, culture, and modernity, making it a must-visit destination for travelers seeking an authentic Indonesian experience. From exploring historical landmarks to indulging in culinary delights and enjoying family-friendly attractions, Surabaya has something to offer for everyone. Whether you’re a history buff, an adventure seeker, or a food enthusiast, Surabaya’s diverse attractions promise to leave you enchanted and inspired.

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