Sunday, January 3, 2010



I went to Banyuwangi last time to visit my friend's family. My friend lived with me in Surabaya and she wanted to see her parents and she asked me to go with her. I havent been to Banyuwangi, so.... i was expecting to see Banyuwangi really is. Cus we plan to visit Baluran National Park.

We took train from Surabaya to Banyuwangi in the morning. Well..... thats the first time i rode by train. Pretty interesting. Itinerant vendor selling snacks and hot air. But i love it. As it was very hot i went outside to feel the wind, and i met a Canadian Backpacker. We talked and he is interested to come with us. My friend agreed that he could come with us and stayed in her parents house.

In the morning the three of us prepared with backpack and rice and banana that was taken from my friends back yard. We walked from my my friends house to the National Park which is approximately 3 KM. And at the entrance gate, we must pay admission for the National Park.
1. For Domestic Tourist : RP. 2500
2. For Foreigner : Rp. 20.000

We saw a sign OLD WELL and went there. There is legend about the well. It is said that long long time ago three cities dug a well at the same time, and which city succeed to dig the the watered well the quickest, then the city will be the most hilarious in the future.

Then we passed the evergreen forest. When we passed evergreen forest animals like black and gray monkey and birds can be seen. Sometimes they passed in front of us.

It took round 3 hours to get to Bekol Savanna from the entrance gate.
Bekol Savanna is just like african savanna. With yellow grasses and couple of trees. Hmm thats why it is also called the Africa of Java.:) This Savanna is 40 % of whole the National park Area (25.000 Hectares) . In the dry season, wild animals usually gather here for water. Best time to visit is September to October.
Wildlife animals living in this national Parks are abundant. The icon of Baluran is Bos javanicus (javanese bull) which has horn and on the head and dewlap.Other fauna in the Park are Wild Bulls (Bubalus bubalis), ajag (Cuon alpinus javanicus), dear (Muntiacus muntjak muntjak), rusa (Cervus timorensis russa), Panther (Panthera pardus melas), mouse deer (Tragulus javanicus pelandoc), dan mangrove cat (Prionailurus viverrinus), biawak lizard (Varanus salvator).

And also living happily round 155 kinds of birds here such as The Barn Swallow (Hirundo rustica), Asian koel (Eudynamys scolopacea), Green Peafowl (Pavo muticus), The Red Junglefowl (Gallus gallus), kangkareng (Anthracoceros convecus ), The Rhinoceros Hornbill, (Buceros rhinoceros), Lesser adjutant (Leptoptilos javanicus), and many others.

We were so tired that we stopped few times and enjoy banana. Our Canadian fellow bought young coconut as eating coconut will be good for energy. It was pretty hot... so dont forget if you visit Baluran... bring hat and apply sunblock. And water.
You know what from my friends house to Bekol is 19 KM. and we walked that far...........
At noon when we arrived we stop at the ranger house. We bought snack there and there is also mosque, where we can pray there. If you want to spend the night here yu can rent the guest house at the Savanna.

Anyway though we were tired, when we arrived the Savanna, felt like we were healed and feel fresh to see the Savanna exotic panorama.

From Savanna to Bama is round 5 KM. Bama Beach has white sands. And lush mangrove. And a big lizard popped out. We were a bit shocked. than we laughed.

Bama is rich of coral reef. three of us then went to the beach and swam to see the corral reef. very beautiful with school of colorful fish. Snorkle is a must-do here if you want to explore more. But becareful of sharp coral. I hurt my feet stepping on those sharp coral.
Bama is also the home of hundreds of Grey Monkey (Macaca fascicularis).

We return to Bekol again at dusk. Satisfied of the adventure... but tired and they way to my friends home is 19 km ahead.
Luckily domestic tourist car stopped and gave us ride. Alhamdullilah. Thanks God.

-Best time to see wildlife is in dry season round 5 AM. Walk slowly thru the bush and see what those wildlife do from a very close distance. :)
-Dont forget your sunblock and hat if you want to trekk
-If you want to explore more of Baluran ... better stay overnight there and rent guest house. If you dont want to stay overnight, better go with vehicle (car/motorbike/landrover).
-Get a bicycle to get to Savanna and Bama will be fun and healthy :), if you love cycling.

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