Saturday, January 10, 2009

Which part of java? Banyumas



Like others area which become economic growing central, Banyumas is not only inhabited by native people of Javanese Banyumasan ethnic group. Concentrations in urban area are ethnic group of Tionghoa, Batak (Sumatera) and amount of others ethnic group in Indonesia also have been staying. Openness basic attitude makes cultural wealth from outside of Banyumas is easy to be received and become part of local uniqueness.


Banyumas population is only 1, 6 milion people which every 100 female and exist 99 male. 95 % is Javanese ethnic group; either native people (Banyumasan Javanese) or Javanese mixture with majority religion is Moslem. But minority adherent likes Christian, Hindu, Budha, and Kong Hu Cu to live in harmonious life. Some people still follow native religion Javanese, Kejawen which divided into various branches spiritualism

Population density in Banyumas is about 1.169/km in 2006 with household approximately are 4 members every family.


Variety of people in Banyumas still uses Banyumasan Language. Cultural observer and historian deem that Banyumas language is purest relic old Javanese language or Kawi Javanese. Banyumasan Language does not happen stratification process like Kraton Javanese which nowadays becomes most dominant Javanese. Banyumasan Language was born and develops as posses of grass root society who’s expressive, free, frankly (blakasuta) and equal (egaliter) as reflection of people daily life.

Banyumasan language has many various pronunciation and vocabulary in local environment. It contains spelling variation and vocabulary from one district to others. Some experts give opinion that much variation are happened because there is not dominant power to arrange; which one is ‘formal or non formal words’. Nowadays those varieties exactly become a wealth.

Banyumas society commonly uses Indonesian as formal communication. There is something unique that adult people who still live in rural, they cannot speak fluently a language which comes from Melayu language family and has become formal language in Indonesia.


Which part of java?


Natural enchantment

The name of Baturraden comes from two words of Java they are Batur (slave) and Raden (queen). There was a story, a slave who took care a horse at the palace area of old Java. The love grew between slave and the princess, a regent’s daughter.

But their love didn’t get permission because of class social gap. Both of them left the palace and build up happy family on the feet of Slamet Mountain. Their place then grew be a village called Baturraden means the united of slave and queen.

Now Baturraden became favorite tourist place because of the beautiful nature and combining with culture and the tradition of the people. From the workers house of PLTA (water electricity technology) that was build up by Dutch colony now became resting place up to 640 meter of the sea.

Baturraden surrounded by naturally jungle that untouchable by human being. The jungle which is rich by flora and fauna keep on saved the eternality. Slamet mountain the biggest and the second higher at Java has 3.428 tall up to the sea.

Everyday, the temperature be overage between 18 degrees until 25 degrees. The place that becomes a background, the most popular love legendary is just 14 kilometers from the town center of Purwokerto. All kinds of vehicles can take the tourist up to enjoy the beautifulness by nature of Baturraden.

Modern History

Story of developing natural tourist resource in Baturraden begins from called by scientist as physics reaction between subatom and neutrons or called electricity. In 1928 the Dutch colony built up PLTA (water electricity technology) at the Ketenger one of the area in Baturraden.

The fourth pioneers’ men from Dutch that built up Baturraden became tourism area. J C Balgooy built animal husbandry for milk cow supply, meat and the egg for the worker at PLTA. Smoulders made a hotel which had 17 rooms, and now becomes Wisma Wijayakusuma. Tenteatte built hot water bath at Pancuran Telu (three spouts) and Pancura Pitu (seven spouts), in order can be visited by tourist. While Van Depperen at that time known as a leader sugar industry in Tegal supporting several business men and workers to visit Baturraden. The house of Van Depperen now becomes Villa Rahayu.

The role of the fourth men of Dutch besides make Baturraden knowing as electric supply, also famous with the beautiful scenery. in the freedom war era, 1947-1949 all facilities that became symbol Dutch Colony destroyed by Indonesian Army (TNI) except animal husbandry which had function to give milk cow and meat supply.

But beautifulness of Baturraden is not disappearing even all Dutch facilities were destroyed. Many students still visit Baturraden, just to see what the animal husbandry is looking like. Of course you can never imagine the road to Baurraden as good as now. Under Sukarno’s power in 1950 the animal husbandry was nationalized. But that year the place also closed because it indicated on diseases. There are no more visitors or tourists after that.

After the freedom of Indonesia from Dutch colony, the Banyumas prominent figure looks the potential of Baturraden to build as tourism industry for growing up Banyumas. In 1952 appeared developing plan of Baturraden. But at the time could not be realized because of Darul Islam battle (Molsem Army ). Baturraden developing could be realized in 1970.


You can relax yourself together with your beloved people to enjoy many facilities and nature attraction, or other attractions made by people. While race, follow natural jungle between damar trees and pine. You can take rest at hot source water Pancuran Telu and Pancuran Pitu.

Feel the sensation by taking bath with hot water from the source of the earth. The water temperature containing sulfur is about 60 degrees. That region also became treatment for rheumatic and skin diseases.

You can ask the guide to invite professional message, and you will enjoy having experience special message that only served in Baturraden. Message your body with yellow gold sulfur mud, and you will refresh your body.

If you want to take the sulfur mud home, villager has prepared in liquid or powder. You can use at home for your message.

Beside dammar jungle and pine, enjoy natural quietness by visiting Telaga Sunyi (quite lake). Put your entire problem and your mind; just try to take attention the bird sing, wind blows shaking the peak of the tries, and feels the cold water from the mountain. Let your mind and your body sinks at the holding of nature.

Baturraden also provided many playing facilities, just like mini cart, gliding action pool, swimming pool, hot bath, and water bike. There is also Kalola Widya Manggala zoo to introduce your children about variety of Indonesia animals.

Besides hotel you can also order spa or spent the night at the café and restaurants that have special traditional taste and natural.


Ambarawa Steamed Train Tour; Back to 19th


Traveling by an old-wooden-wagon train is a rare experience in this modern era when we are used to traveling by modern car, train or airplane. This gives a remarkable memory of the beginning of 19th century.

To enjoy this trip is not difficult also to arrange but then you should be in a group because the wagons can consist of around 90 passengers. By paying more or less 250 E, you will make a trip in the colonial-era train for an hour. Anyhow, for those who come individually, you can also make a lorry trip from Ambarawa through beautiful landscape till a village near by Rawa Pening. which takes more or less an hour go and back just by paying around 1 E per person with minimal collective passenger 10 persons.

It was the idea Van der Wijk in 1840, that making the railway would give advantages for the colonial military because it could connect some strategic places to control Java. In 1864 the process of building railway was begun. With its development the train was used for colonial military, economy, and public transportation for the have.

After the independence period of Indonesia, those railways were also still used. But because of some reasons, few destinations of the train were stopped. And just in 1975, this was open for tourism.

The tour starts from Ambarawa station. This station is nowadays also used for train museum with huge collections of 21 locomotives from varied from the year of 1891 till 1928 that you can easily see from the first sight you come to that museum since they are on the open air. Those trains give idea of developing technology from one period to another.

The passengers have a chance to enjoy the wooden-wagon train with old locomotive, made in Germany and first operated in 1907.

This steamed-locomotive will be ready to carry the passengers after three hours preparation for its steam heat by teak-wood fire. The sound of its whistle signing that the train is moving and slowly running. Of course the smoke of the steam come over the wagon and the passengers but it is just fun.

Along the way, natural sight and villager activities can be seen. Children and people are waving to us to say “Have a nice trip”. The beautiful rice landscape, mountain, the green plantation support the atmosphere that we were in the beginning of 19th century.

Why this trip becomes special? Because with the old locomotive we can travel from Ambarawa (474 m above sea level) to Bedono which has 711 m above sea level. Amazing.


Baturraden mountain resort, a jewel in Indonesia eco-tourism


As Indonesians breathe a sigh of relief after a barrage of warnings of eruptions from the country's most active volcanoes, Baturraden resort at the foot of Mount Slamet in central Java remains calm and shines as an eco-tourism jewel.

Mount Slamet or Gunung Slamet in Indonesian, is an active volcano and the second-highest peak on Java island, reaching 3,428 metres above sea level.

The resort itself was established in 1979, and is surrounded by beautiful green gardens, hot springs, ponds and bungalow-style hotels 650 metres up the slopes. As we indulge ourselves with the harmonic surroundings of a vast pine forest and green valley, we can also dip our feet in the cold spring water running through the middle of the resort.

'It's such a great place to breathe fresh, clean air for me and my family,' said Widyanarti, 32, a mother who came all the way from Jakarta and who goes by a single name.

'You don't get this kind of weather in the polluted cities such as Jakarta,' she said, adding that the resort is also a perfect place for children to learn about nature and the importance of preserving it.

The cool mountain breezes are a special draw for domestic and international visitors, and the resort caters to all. Admission is only 3,000 Rupiah or 0.30 cents. It opens daily from 5:30 am and closes around midnight.

Baturraden is also a well-known spot to spend a day trekking through its splendid natural forest and villages. Always green, blanketed with a light misty air, the area is blessed with an abundance of natural water resources spouting in numerous waterfalls and rivers, which flow between the huge boulders of hardened lava.

'Baturraden has been a great example of how a mountainous area can be managed as a potential asset for eco-tourism,' Indriyani, a programme manager at Indecon, a non-governmental organization specializing in the expansion of eco-tourism in Indonesia, said.

Destination: Baturraden mountain resort located near Purwokerto city in central Java, Indonesia.

Climate and best time to travel: Tropical country, best time is in the dry season between March to October.

How to get there: Seven to nine hours drive from Jakarta by car, bus or train. Bus ticket costs around 40,000 Rupiah with AC (about 5 dollars) or by executive train with AC is 190,000 Rupiah (about 20 dollars).




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