You take a train the 151 km from Jakarta to the port of Merak from where ferries sail to Bakauheni on the southern tip of Sumatra every 20 minutes around the clock taking between 90 & 120 minutes.
There are no sleepers on the overnight trains, only reclining seats. Train 10 is the Argo Dwipangga, Eksekutif class only, air-conditioned.
Trains 43 & 44 are the Bima, Eksekutif class only, air-conditioned. How to buy tickets: At the station, at Indomaret minimarkets or online at as shown here.
Java to Bali by train & ferry Java to Sumatra by train & ferry Train travel on Sumatra Ferries to Borneo, Sulawesi & Papua How to travel by ferry between Singapore or Malaysia & Indonesia How to travel overland between Europe & SE Asia Citizens of many countries including the UK, USA, Canada, New Zealand, Malaysia, Thailand & Singapore do not require a visa for stays of up to 30 days.
Some other nationalities including Australia can get a tourist visa on arrival for a stay of up to 30 days. ) and your passport checked at the entrance gate to the platforms.
Trains 177 & 178 are the Kertajaya, Ekonomi class only, air-conditioned. The Argo Bromo Anggrek (the Bromo Orchid) is Indonesia's premier train, linking Java's two largest cities in 9 hours at a creditable average speed of 80 km/h (50mph) start to stop on its narrow gauge tracks.
The train keeps up a relentless 110 km/h (75 mph) between the few stops it makes, hooting ceaselessly at each level crossing, speeding non-stop through most smaller stations on its 9 hour dash - the same journey would take 15 hours by road.
Once in Bandar Lampung, there's a twice-daily train to Palembang.
Here are the details, feedback if you travel this route would be appreciated.
After Semarang there's a brief stretch where the train skirts the Java Sea, and around Cirebon you'll see the vast shadow of Mt Cereme in the distance to the south, its summit usually hidden by cloud.
It's an active volcano and the highest point in west Java.
Trains 43 & 44 are the Bima, Eksekutif class only, air-conditioned Trains 47 & 48 are the Sembrani, Eksekutif class only, air-conditioned.