Indonesia’s rainbow village: a new Instagram hotspot

Located in Randusari, on the Indonesian island of Java, the village of Kampung Pelangi has been transformed into a photogenic tourist spot; a colourful oasis nestled amongst the tan buildings which compose the city of Semarang.

According to Lonely Planet, the local council committee provided Rp 300 million (about £17,000) to transform the village, previously considered to be a slum, into a bustling tourist hub.

How did the local council achieve this tourist boom? A simple paint job.


Many of the houses have been painted a minimum of three bold colours and there are colourful murals peppered throughout the village. Even the very paving stones are painted with the colours of a rainbow.

As social media continues to gain traction across the globe, tourists are frequently guided to visit certain areas by short, snappy articles listing the “top places to visit” or colourful pictures sporting a quirky hashtag on Instagram.

It’s becoming increasingly important, particularly for places far from the well-worn tourist trail, to stand out from the crowd, using social media as a stepping stone to do so.

The local council of Kampung Pelangi spotted the opportunities which accompany this social media boom and set out to make their village a new insta-famous spot – and they succeeded.

Increasing numbers of tourists flock to this Indonesian area to snap the perfect pic and the local economy has boomed as a result.

And this is only the beginning; the budget for this project is expected to increase to Rp 2 billion to include a multitude of other village improvement activities such as cleaning up the river nearby.

The project, as envisioned by high school teacher Slamet Widodo, intended to engage the local people to become more active in their community and hopefully draw in some tourists.

The project has exceeded expectations, providing business to local people and extending this development project to encompass environmental improvement as well.

This project has taken the phrase “paint the town red” to a whole new level.

Article written for The National Student:

Featured image courtesy of

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