Indonesia – Kawah Ijen, Taman Nasional Baluran, Tanjung Papuma
I’ve joined a community called Share Traveller. 15 persons including me planned to have a trip to Kawah Ijen, Baluran National Park and Tanjung Papuma beach.
Rena and I decided to take the bus (Pahala Kencana) to Surabaya which cost IDR 220K. Meanwhile, the rest of us took the economic train from Senen Train station that cost only IDR 40K. A dramatic scene happened to us where we arrived late at the bus station due to a bad traffic jam and we didn’t know the precise location of the bus. Well, as a result, some angry passengers yelled at us because they waited for 15mins..feel so guilty 😀
We departed from Jakarta to Surabaya at 4.30pm and arrived around 1pm at the following day!!! yup it was a very exhausting trip and in the middle of the journey a dramatic scene happened again!! The bus needed to change tires at Semarang for 1.5hrs. While we arrived at 1PM, the rest of the team already arrived at 8am at Surabaya. So, I suggest to take the train rather than the bus! While Rena and I were in the middle of the journey to Surabaya, the rest of the team decided to go to the waterfall at Probolinggo (but, they never found it).
From the bus station in Surabaya, we took another bus to Probolinggo to catch up with the rest of the team. It only cost us IDR20K with Tjipto bus. We departed at 2PM and arrived at 4PM. Sooo glad to see the rest of the team…and we continued the journey with them with a rented car. We departed at 4.30PM and arrived at Kawah Ijen at 12.00PM. Approaching Kawah Ijen, we needed to get through a bumpy road. Due to our motto as backpackers, we didn’t stay at a hotel or motel, we just took our sleeping bag and slept at wherever we could find a place to sleep. Lucky for us, we found a “warung” that was abandoned but still in a good shape and was also empty. Some of us slept in the warung’s terrace, the rest in the car or at the security guard’s checkpoint.
We woke up at 3AM so we could go see the sunrise. We needed to walk for 3.1KM to the crater and for the first kilometer the track was quite easy. The next 2 kilometers was like hell, the track’s slope was almost 450. I, as a person not used to tracks in that condition, almost passed out. The thin air and my low blood pressure made me so dizzy. For those who have problems like me, it is very suggested to bring some sweet snacks. Lucky for me, Rena brought Soyjoy, and it helped me to survive the last kilometer.
Finally, we arrived at the top of Kawah Ijen. I can’t remember the time we spent to finish the track, but I assumed it was 1 hour. We waited for the sunrise, but Kawah Ijen is not a perfect place to see the sunrise, because the sun is covered by clouds and mountains (I don’t remember the name of that mountain). But it was worth the trip to Kawah Ijen in the morning, because we can see the clear crater with it’s blue to green color. We can also climb down to the crater. Some of us did, while I could not stand the smell of the sulfur. At 8AM a thick fog came in and it covered the crater, so we couldn’t see it again. Around 8AM some of us decided to climb down to our base camp.
After we took some rest, at 11PM, we continued the journey to Baluran National Park near Banyuwangi. My first thought was “ehm..what can we do in that Park besides watching monkeys?”. We arrived at 3PM. After the entry gate, we couldn’t find any interesting spots, just trees and more trees. After about a 1-hour drive, we found a huge grassland. We immediately got out of the car and took some great pictures there. Suddenly, I realized that this national park looks as though it were in the middle of the African jungle, with green grass, trees and mountains as background. Don’t forget the blue and dark clouds. It feels like I was in the middle of the Africa continent (well, I’ve never been to Africa, but I think TV says a lot about Africa). Then we found a tower, which we could climb at, and saw the whole grassland area. Amazing. We just found out that the place was used for the making of King Movie, a famous Indonesian movie.
Around 5AM we left the place, because it was raining. Next destination is Tanjung Papuma in Jember. Hell yeah..beach!!
We arrived at 12PM at Tanjung Papuma..long journey….and we slept on the beach 🙂
The one thing that I like from Indonesia, the sunrise view is so amazing. We woke up at 5AM to catch the sunrise, and it was very beautiful. The sunlight was like a stage spotlight. Cool sunrise…never saw a sunrise like that. The beach was very cool, too bad we didn’t have much time to explore it, while the cliff looked like Uluwatu, Bali. If I had the chance, I would definitely go back to Tanjung Papuma and spend one day there. After we took some pictures, at 9AM we went to Surabaya and arrived at 3PM. We took a train at 5PM and arrived at 8AM with happy faces.
In conclusion, this itinerary will spend long hours in the car. But it is very worth it. Just make sure, to explore Tanjung Papuma for one day, it has a very beautiful cliff.