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National parks

This is the list of the national parks of Indonesia. Of all the national parks, 6 are World Heritage Sites, 6 are part of the World Network of Biosphere Reserves and 3 are wetlands of international importance under the Ramsar convention. A total of 9 parks are largely marine. The first group of five Indonesian national parks were established in 1980. This number increased constantly reaching 41 in 2003. In a major expansion in 2004, nine more new national parks were created, raising the total number to 50.


Bromo Tengger Semeru
National park

Bromo Tengger Semeru National Park is located in East Java, Indonesia, to the east of Malang and to the southeast of Surabaya, the capital of East Java. It is the only conservation area in Indonesia that has a sand sea, the Tengger Sand Sea (Laut Pasir Tengger), across which is the caldera of an ancient volcano (Tengger) from which four new volcanic cones have emerged.

This unique feature covers a total area of 5,250 hectares at an altitude of about 2,100 m. The massif also contains the highest mountain in Java, Mount Semeru (3,676 m), four lakes and 50 rivers. The Tengger Sand Sea has been protected since 1919. The Bromo Tengger Semeru National Park was declared a national park in 1982.

The volcanic complex of Tengger forms a condition where a new caldera of volcano forms inside a larger and more ancient caldera. There are five volcanoes inside the Tengger Caldera: Mount Bromo (2,392 m), Mount Batok (2,470 m), Mount Kursi (2,581 m), Mount Watangan (2,661 m), and Mount Widodaren (2,650 m). Mount Batok is the only peak that is no longer active, and is covered in casuarina (Indonesian: cemara) trees. Mount Widodaren, located beside Mount Batok, contains the cave Widodaren, which is considered sacred by local people.
The five volcanoes within the caldera are surrounded by a vast area of sand called the Tengger Sand Sea, which in turn is surrounded by a steep crater wall of the larger Tengger Caldera with height differences of about 200-600 meters. Other mountains around the Tengger caldera are: Mount Pananjakan (2,770 m) Mount Cemorolawang (2,227 m), Mount Lingker (2,278 m), Mount Pundak Lembu (2,635 m), Mount Jantur (2,705 m), Mount Ider-ider (2,527 m) and Mount Mungal (2,480 m). The peak of Mount Pananjakan is the most popular place to watch the entire volcanic complex of Tengger.

Further south in the national park, there is another volcanic complex called the Semeru Group or Jambangan Group. This area contains the highest peak of Java, Mount Semeru (3,676 m). Other mountains within this area are Mount Lanang (2,313 m), Mount Ayek-ayek (2,819 m), Mount Pangonan Cilik (2,833 m), Mount Keduwung (2,334 m), Mount Jambangan (3,020 m), Mount Gentong (1,951 m), Mount Kepolo (3,035 m), and Mount Malang (2,401 m). The Semeru forest area has many rivers that are former lava lines from Mount Semeru. The Semeru group is considered to be very productive, producing volcanic matters such as lava, volcanic ash, and hot cloud and spreading it to the surrounding area. The lower area is surrounded with fertile rice fields.
Some endangered flora are protected in this park, such as Fagaceae, Moraceae, Sterculiaceae, Casuarina junghuhniana, Javanese Edelweiss, and about 200 species of endemic orchids. There is a relatively small diversity of fauna in the Bromo Tengger Semeru National Park. There are about 137 species of birds, 22 species of mammals and 4 species of reptiles protected in the national park. Examples are Besra, Green Peafowl, Javan Rusa, Dhole, Crab-eating Macaque, Marbled cat and Leopard.

Culture

The area in and around the park is inhabited by the Tengger people,[2] one of the few significant Hindu communities remaining on the island of Java. The local religion is a remnant from the Majapahit era and therefore quite similar to that on Bali but with even more animist elements. The Tengger people are believed to be descendents of the Majapahit empire and were driven into the hills after mass arrival in the area of Muslim Madurese in the 19th century.

On the fourteenth day of the Month Kasada, the inhabitants of Tengger Mountain range gather at the rim of Mount Bromo's active crater to present annual offerings of rice, fruit, vegetables, flowers, live stock and other local produce to the God of the Mountain, as adherents of religion combining elements of Hinduism and Mahayana Buddhism the Tenggerese ask for blessing from the supreme God, Sang Hyang Widi Wasa. This ceremony called Kesodo Ceremony.

Access

Bromo Tengger Semeru can be reached by private and public vehicle. There are four gates to access the place, Probolinggo, Wonokitri, Ngadas and Lumajang. Probolinggo approach is the easiest and by fat the most popular route, especially if you go by public bus, Wonokitri is the closes and the easiest one if you go by private vehicle from Surabaya (5 hours journey). To get closer to Mt. Bromo you must rent 4x4 vehicles (there are many 4x4 vehicles rental there).

There are a few options that you can choose to stay. You can stay at The Bromo Guest House which is located at Ngadisari that lies 3 km from the crater rim. Or you can choose other hotels at Cemoro Lawang because it this situated at the crater rim. Walking on the sea of sand and stepping up on the 249 steps to rim is worth to try. Enjoying the unique crater in crater, watching the dawn at Bromo is the main attractions in the area.


Location map of Bromo Tengger Semeru

Last revised on January 06, 2011
    
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