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See East Jawa
Places of interest in East Jawa

Surabaya

As the second largest city in Indonesia, Surabaya offers many good hotels, shopping centers and entertainment. Its well stocked zoological garden include several species of Indonesian fauna like orang hutan, komodo dragon and a collection of nocturnal animals. Kalimas is an old traditional harbor for the world famous Bugis schooner pinisi which sailed the Indonesia seas for hundreds of years. At present those perahu can still be seen in their former glory with big colorful sails.

Mpu Tantular Museum, well-stocked with archaeological art and cultural items from prehistoric times until independence.

Across the Strait Madura, just a few minutes from Surabaya over the Suramadu Bridge, is the island of Madura, famous for its unique bull races held each year after harvest season. For groups, the races can be arranged on request. The Regional Tourism Offices of East Java provides a monthly calendar of events of the races.

Trowulan - Pandaan - Tretes

The surroundings of Trowulan village is believed to be the site of the ancient capital of Majapahit. Archaeological excavations in the area have recovered many terracotta ornaments, statues, pottery and stone carvings which are displayed at the Trowulan Museum. The map in the museum is a guide to nearby sites of historical interest.

The Candra Wilwatika open-air theater in Pandaan, 45 kilometer south of Surabaya presents classical East Javanese ballet performances on each full moon night from June to November. The performances are based either on the Ramayana stories or East Java's legends and folklore. The backdrop of Mount Pananggungan gives the performances an enchanting experience.

Up to ten kilometer from Chandra Wilwatika is Tretes, one of the most beautiful mountain resorts of East Java. Hotels and roads cling to the hillside with swimming pools for a dip in the cool climate. Horses are also available for hire. Camping ground is available near the Kakek Bodo waterfall.

Malang

Ninety kilometer south of Surabaya lies Malang, one of the most attractive towns in Java. A strong sense of civic pride can be noticed from the well-maintained and painted becak, the neat main square, buildings and streets. The cool climate is one reason why it is highly desirable among the East Javanese as a place to retire. Twenty kilometer from Malang on the southern flank of Mount Arjuna, are Selekta and Songgoriti, popular hill resorts with hot springs. The climate is cool and (five kilometer nearby) is Batu, famous for its apples and flowers. Sports facilities at Selekta include horse riding, swimming, and tennis.

Purwodadi Botanical Garden

Founded in 1941 for the study plants growing under relatively dry conditions, the Purwodadi gardens lie about 30 kilometers northeast of Malang just off the Surabaya-Malang main road on the lowest slopes of Mount Arjuno at about 300 meters altitude. It covers an area of about 35 ha (212 acres).

Mount Kawi Fortune Hunting

A sages grave on mount Kawi near Malang, has for decades enjoyed unrivaled fame among those who seek to increase their worldly blessings through pilgrimages, offerings, and meditations besides hard work.

Most of the pilgrims to Gunung Kawi are Chinese, but even to nonbelievers the place is worth a visit for its intensely Javanese atmosphere, with frequent wayang and gamelan performances and a quaint mixture of Javanese and Chinese influences.

The grave itself is built on a hilltop, but to its left and right of the long stairway is an assortment of sacred springs, Chinese houses of worship, flowers and souvenirs stalls and other interesting sights.

Mount Bromo

One of the most exciting experiences is watching the sun rise from the crest of the Bromo volcano which is a three-hour drive from Surabaya, followed by a pony ride from the village of Ngadisari over a sea of sand to the food of the volcano. Ascend the 50 steps to reach the rim.

On the vast expanse of sand, formerly a caldera, there are two volcanoes: the extinct Batok which is a perfect cone and the Bromo. Volcanic sulfur fumes. while during intense rumbling sounds the surrounding population who believes in the God of Bromo quickly brings offerings.

The annual offering ceremony of Kasada is held on the 1 4th day of Kasada, the twelfth month in the Tenggerese calendar year. In 1991 it was held on November 23-24. It is a colorful event where villagers from the surrounding areas bring their produce of sacrifice to the holy volcano.

Baluran National Park/Wildlife Reserve

Located at the eastern tip of East Java, just off the Surabaya - Banyuwangi main road, it is dry country-side of open forests and scrub-land, bordered at the coast by marshes, swampy groves and white beaches. A landrover or jeep is perhaps the only vehicle that can stand the long hauls across these rugged grassy plains. Here, the banteng (wild ox), deer and birds can be photographed in their natural habitat.

Kalitlatak

A privately owned plantation with an elevation of 450-750 m above sea level, on the slope of Mount Merapi covering a 2.500 acres of land producing coffee, rubber, cocoa and spices. Cloves begin as flowers on the clove tree, cinnamon is ground bark, pepper grown on vines and nutmeg like golf-ball size pears hanging on broad leafed trees, are to be seen. Touring the plantation is a trip through a vast, exotic spice machine process which ends with neat packages ready for export.

Sadengan

A famous wildlife reserve and feeding ground but of a smaller size than that of Baluran. Located in the forest of "Hutan Purwo", 81 kilometer to the south of Banyuwangi. It is in possession of 700 wild buffaloes and varieties of other wild animals, all of which can be seen grazing in the late afternoon from the viewing tower.

Triangulasi

13 kilometer south of Sadengan on the coast with a beautiful beach view. A nice location to watch the sunset and a place where turtles lay eggs.

Sukamade Turtle Beach

78 kilometer south of Banyuwangi with its deep turquoise wafer, 250kg sea turtles and a long beach, surrounded by vast cocoa, coffee and rubber plantations, are to be found here.

Meru Betiri Reserve

After a 30 kilometer very rough road which crosses half a dozen rivers through dense jungle and a rubber plantation, you finally arrive here on the southeastern tip of the province, where the last of the Javanese tigers had sought refuge. A hundred and fifty years ago Javanese tiger inhabited most of Java and was even considered a nuisance in some populated areas. But through the 1800s and early 1990s it was hunted mercilessly and its habitat destroyed by plantation builders. By the beginning of the Second World War it survived only in the most remote mountains and forests, and today, the last four or five live on the brink of extinction in a remote region.

The government and the World Wildlife Fund have mounted a determined effort to save the tigers and their environment. And to do so, the authorities are even prepared to relocate a few thousand humans. But Meru Betiri is not simply a tiger reserve. Wildlife of all kinds abounds, like black panthers, leopards and turtles.

Temples

Between Surabaya and Malang is the town of Singosari where remnants of the early 13th century Singosari Kingdom include a temple and two gigantic statues of guardians to what many believed to be the main gateway to the capital of the kingdom. Jago temple dates back to 1268, and is one of the most attractive temples in East Java. Scenes from folktales as well as from the Mahabarata epic decorate the side panels.

Kidal temple, not far from Jago temple, was completed in 1260 to honor one of the kings, and is a gem of Singosari temple art. Located 120 kilometer south west of Malang and 11 kilometer North of Blitar, is Penataran temple in the Singosari - Majapahit temple complex, dating from the mid fourteenth century. Its structures are laid on a large and vast field. The temple terraces are decorated with Ramayana base reliefs. The main temple is well preserved.

Pasir Putih Beach, Situbondo

If you happen to be driving in a private car between Surabaya and Bali, this lovely beach may be worth visiting for a few hours or, if you prefer, an overnight stay to relax After driving long hours coming from either way. For you to en joy here is fishing, sailing, swimming, snorkeling, windsurfing, water-skiing or just simply : sunbathing. Good seafood is available at some beach-front restaurants where nearby small souvenirs are for sale. This place is suitable for transiting tourists, rather than a destination piont.

Mount Ijen Crater

Not exactly the most accessible of all craters, this Ijen crater may become of great interest to the adventurous tourist. It is located far enough from Bali as well as from Surabaya, whereas an overnight stay is recommended either at Banyuwangi if ; coming from Bali or at Bondowoso if coming from Surabaya. The trip to the crater should start early in the morning the next day because road accessibility only gets you up to 14 kilometer from the crater which you have to d on foot, and up-hill for that matter. Special about this crater is its wide gaping mouth having a diameter of 1 km, whereas its depth all the way to the bottom is 17 meters, where a turquoise lake is found with its impressive roundings.

Ponorogo

Ponorogo is located southwest of Surabaya at a distance of 200 km. A bigger town closest to it is Madiun, which lies on the main highway between Surabaya and points west of it in Central Java. So, out of Madiun it would be a side-trip to Ponorogo, if you care to witness the Festival Reog, held here on the 17th of August each year, highlighting the area's traditional drama and dance. Otherwise you may want to visit Ngebel Lake nearby, whereas batiks and basketry of this region are also well-known.


Last revised on September 14, 2009
    
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