Exploring Pindul Cave by Cave Tubing

pindul cave yogyakarta indonesiaIndonesia does not only have amazing mountains, rice fields, or marine natural tourism objects. Far away in the bowels of the earth, there is also natural beauty in another form, like the beauty of Pindul Cave located in the area of Kidul Mountain, Yogyakarta. In the Gunungkidul regency, whose area was dominated by karst / limestone hills, there are various tourists attraction, like rock climbing in Siung Beach, caving in Seropan, or exploring Nglanggeran Ancient Mountain. Now, there is another tourist attraction which is developed by the Department of Tourism and the local residents, called “cave tubing” in Pindul Cave.

Cave tubing is a caving activity using raft or inner tube, meanwhile Pindul Cave is a series of seven caves with underground river in the region of Bejiharjo. The calm flow of the river enables us to explore this river with buoys or raft. Cave tubing actually combines two exhilarating activities, body rafting and caving and also a bit similar with rafting. the equipments which are needed are also similar with rafting, like lifejacket, lifebuoy, head lamp, and other safety equipments. Although the depth of this river reaching 5 – 7 meters, the water flows calmly so it is safe for children, teenagers, beginners, or even pregnant women.

Pindul Cave has approximately 350 m length, 5 m width, 5-12 m depth, and the height between water surface to the cave roof is about 4 m. This cave has 3 zones; bright, dim, and dark zone with travelling time about 45 minutes.

exploring pindul cave yogyakarta indonesia

enter pindul cave yogyakarta indonesia

The best time to visit Pindul Cave is around 8 until 10 in the morning. Usually in this range of time, the water of the river is not too cold, and if it is sunny you will be able to enjoy the sunlight bias entering the cave from its wall and roof. In the center of the cave there is a quite spacious room/area with a hole on the top of the cave which is called “sumur terbalik” or “reversed well” by the local residents. The sun light which go through this hole creates a beautiful scene and amazing ambience. While exploring the cave you will also see big ancient stalactite and stalagmite which are already merged into one which looks like a big pillar in the size of five arm spans of an adult.

The Fourth Biggest Stalactite in the World

The biggest stalactite in Goa Pindul is also the fourth biggest stalactite in the world. Like explained before, this merged stalactite and stalagmite needs 4 until 5 people to encircle it. Moreover, the gap of this stalactite could be passed by an adult. There is also the “nipple stalactite” as called by the local residents, reputedly could make women more beautiful and ageless by its water droplets. For the children, it would be fun to swim in the bright zone, or jump from the rocks into the water and see some fish lives around the river. The charm of this cave is also completed by the natural abstract ornaments along the cave wall. There are also some water curtains made from the water droplets from the cave wall. The crowd of the bats hanging on top of the cave would accompany you reaching the end of the cave.

Access

To reach Pindul Cave, you could use private vehicle or public transportation. You can depart from Yogyakarta heading into the capital of Gunungkidul Regency, Wonosari. After arriving in circular route, turn left and follow the route to Karangmojo. In the Argopolitan crossroad, turn left once again into the village route and you will arrive in Bejiharjo Village. Gelaran Village, the location of Pindul Cave is in the area of Bejiharjo.

Ticket and Prices

For the tourists who bring their own equipments and do not need assistance from guide could directly enter Pindul Cave without paying a penny. However, for those who do not know how to do cave tubing and do not bring equipments could contact the administrator who could provide you with equipments and tour guide. For standard package, you will need to pay around Rp 25.000 – Rp 30.000. With that price, the tourists will get facilities like, tour guide, cave tubing equipments, snacks, and lunch.

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Accomodation and Other Facilities

There are a lot of facilities available for the tourists to ensure their comfort in visiting this place. Some of those facilities like, cave tubing equipments (inner tube, lifejacket, and headlamp), tour guide, homestay in the form of typical local residents’ house with bamboo wall, fishing pond, and small restaurants.

Travelling to Komodo Island, The Lair of Dragons

komodo island indonesiaTravelling to a dragon’s lair maybe is a common fairytale story that you could find in children’s books. However, this article is not going to tell any kids’ story about a giant winged lizard, but the real dragon of Indonesia, the “komodo dragons”, which you can find in Komodo Island.

Komodo Island is national park located in Nusa Tenggara, Indonesia and located between two islands, Sumbawa and Flores. This island is known as the natural habitat or the “lair” of komodo dragons, and in this island these komodo breed and live very well. Komodo National Park consists of three main islands: Komodo Island, Rica Island, and Padar Island.

The name Komodo Island was given in 1910 by the Dutch colony in Indonesia. It was started when the Dutch army reported to their lieutenant, Steyn Van Hens Broek, that they had seen a giant animal like a dragon around the island. Van Hens Broek then tried to see it himself and managed to kill one. After that, he brought the sample of the dragon to Bogor Museum and Botanical Garden to be studied.

Komodo or Varanus komodoensis is the biggest lizard species in the world which lives in Komodo, Rinca, Flores, Gili Motang, dan Gili Dasami islands. By the local residents, this lizard is also called “ora”. Included in the family of Varanidae, and clan Toxicofera, komodo is the biggest lizard in the world with 2-3 m length and 165 kg weight. This giant size is related to the island’s gigantism symptom which makes some particular animals lives in a small island bigger than its normal size. This symptom is caused by the absence of mammal carnivore in the island where komodo live, and also caused by their small metabolic rate. Thus, because of its giant body, this lizard sits on the top of the food chain in this island, where they fully dominate the ecosystem.

Until now, komodo has been the pride and the revenue source for the local people, because of the attracting power of this lizard to the tourists. In this island, the tourists could directly observe the life of komodo, like the breeding season between May until August; roaming and sunbathing around the forests and under trees every morning; or hunting for their favorite foods like deer, goat, or boar. To protect komodo from extinction, in 1980 the government established Komodo Island as a national park. Six years after that, this national park was accepted as one of the world heritage site by UNESCO. Komodo National Park covers the area of 1.817 km².

kalong island indonesia

kalong island indonesia

Now, the habitat of komodo in the wildlife is getting smaller. Therefore, IUCN stated that this species is in category of endangered animal.

Other Attractions around Komodo Island

Besides travelling to see komodo, there are also some interesting places that you could visit during your tour in Komodo Island, for example:

1. Loh Liang – a tourism concession area where you could observe directly the life of komodo, deer, boar, various kind of birds, or even playing canoe.

2. Merah Beach – a shallow beach with beautiful panorama and amazing coral reefs. Here, you can go snorkeling or sunbathing under the warm sun of Nusa Tenggara.

3. Loh Sebita – Loh Sebita is a mangrove area, which are visited by a lot of tourists. This is a good place for trekking and observing birds.

4. Loh Buaya – a tourism concession area where the tourists are invited to see endemic animals like komodo, deer, buffalo, birds, long-tail monkey, wild horse, and so on.

5. Kalong Island – an island with a large number of “kalong” or bats. Many tourists come to this place to see these bats activities, and it is best to observe the bats in the afternoon where they are about to go out to hunt for food.

6. Golo Kode – from the top of the hill which is known as Golo Kode, the tourists could see fantastic panorama and natural landscape as a result of the representativeness of various ecosystem type which could be observed from here.

7. Molo Strait – a strait having strong river current which flows in the tide.

There are 36 diving spots in the area of Komodo National Park which are often visited by the foreign tourists for diving and snorkeling, like Tatawa Island, Merah Beach, Gililawa Laut, Loh Dasami, Pillar Steen, Batu Bolong dan Taka Makasar.

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To visit this place, there are some kind of transportations you could choose. From the land, you could reach this place from Bali to Mataram Bima and then Sape. After that, it could be continued by getting on a ferry heading into Labuan Bajo. From here, tourists could visit Komodo National Park using speedboat. Another alternative is using airplane from Denpasar, Bali to Labuan Bajo everyday by local airlines, like Indonesian Air Transport (IAT), Merpati, or Trigana Air.

Golf Courses in Bali

Bali has a worldwide reputation as the one of the best tourists destinations in the world. a lot of the tourists come to Bali looking for “sun, sea, sand and sport”. As for the sport, Bali has some kinds of sport to offer like water sport, air sport, mountain sport, or field sport like golf. In Indonesia, the golf courses that Bali has maybe still the best from all. There are 5 golf courses spread in South, Central, and North Bali which each offers a different experiences of golf in the Island of Gods.

Bali Beach Golf Club

bali beach golf club sanurBali Beach Golf Course is located in Hang Tuah Street, Sanur, Central Bali. This golf club has a good and well maintained field, tall trees, an artificial lake, mounding, and other interesting features. Bali Beach Golf Club is in the tourism area of Sanur which is near the city center. This golf course is very popular amongst the local and domestic golfers. This is the only one golf course in Bali which has 9 holes, but from the aspect of difficulty this course is categorical easy and is also suitable for junior or novice golfers.

Bali Golf & Country Club

bali golf and country club nusa duaBali Golf & Country Club is located in the elite tourism area in Nusa Dua. This golf course was built after Bali Beach Golf Club, and still exist until now. This golf course has 18 holes with each has different level and of course different panorama.

Bali Golf & Country Club gives unique experiences for every golfers. From hole 1 until 9, the player will play by climbing a hill through lush tropical vegetation with beautiful panorama of Nusa Dua from the top, Indian Ocean, and mountain range from far away. Hole 1 until 9 provides the contour of river, valley, and natural vegetation with some tropical birds population on it. For hole 10 until 18, players could play in a green and lush soft grass passing coconut garden and exotic beach.

In 1997, Bali Golf and Country Club was ever awarded by Fortune Magazine as the best golf course in Asia. Now, this golf club is in the category of “oldies”, but it still has the attracting power come from its uniqueness and good quality. Bali Golf & Country Club is also one of the golf club in Bali which offers the best golf training for the novices and juniors with its Ancora Institute.

Bali Handara Kosaido & Country Club

bali handara kosaido country club bedugulThis “total green” place is located in the center of highland in Bali, Bedugul, about 55 km from Denpasar. Surrounded by mountains, lake, and dense forest makes Bali Handara Kosaido Country Club looks like a wonderland which combine beauty and complete facility.

This golf course was built at almost the same time with golf course in Nusa Dua. One of the uniqueness of this golf course is its location which is in the height of 1500 meter above sea level, with average temperature around 15 degrees Celsius. With 18 holes available to conquer, this golf course also has a lot of obstacles and tall trees with a long hit range. Bali Handara Kosaido & Country Club has a good rating of the fields and the most beautiful panorama in North Bali.

Nirwana Bali Golf Club

nirwana bali golf club tanah lotLocated near Tanah Lot Temple makes Nirwana Bali Golf Club as the favorite golf course for the golfers with elegant and green design which are the typical of Bali nature.

According to Golf Magazine, Nirwana Bali Golf Club is the best golf course in Bali and Southeast Asia. This golf course is located in Central Bali with 18 holes specially designed by Mr. Greg Norman, a professional PGA player. This golf course directly faces the Pacific Ocean so the wind will be a challenge for the players. This golf course is also specially designed for pros and used for various tournaments in Indonesia. Nirwana Bali Golf Club provides a typical beautiful view of Bali with the ricefield terraces, Tanah Lot Temple which is observable from hole 16, and also amazing sunset scene in the afternoon.

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New Kuta Golf Club

new kuta golf club baliNew Kuta Golf Club is the newest golf course which was built in 2005, with 18 holes located in the area of Pecatu Graha Bali, in the very edge of South Bali facing the Pacific Ocean. New Kuta Golf offers a different appearance from the other golf courses in Bali, where there is no single tree used as obstacle. This golf club is the branch of golf link spread in some countries in Asia and it use the concept of a desert like the golf courses in United States. New Kuta Golf Club is on the rise and often used as the place for official tournaments in Indonesia, like Ladies Open, ASIA PGA, and other small tournaments. This golf course is a favorite for the golfers who want a long hit distance from the T box to the green.

Tourism Objects of South Sulawesi

South Sulawesi is an Indonesian province located in eastern part of this country. The capital of this province is Makassar which is the 4th biggest city in Indonesia. South Sulawesi has so many tourism objects, but only some of them are known worldwide. The diversity of its culture and nature is the unique attraction for your holiday. Here is the review of some tourism objects in South Sulawesi.

Losari Beach Makassar

losari beach makassar south sulawesiIn Indonesia, there is only one beach where you can see both sunrise and sunset. That beach is Losari Beach located in Makassar. Besides that, Losari Beach is clean and well organized. The ideal time of visiting this beach is in the afternoon between 3 until 9 pm. Many people come here to enjoy the beach atmosphere, jog along the clean pedestrian, or eat in the restaurants. This beach is getting crowded when the sun rise in the morning or sun set in the afternoon. If you love jogging this place is the ideal place. Fresh air, gentle breeze, red-gold sun, and romantic atmosphere; this beach is a favorite place to spend your holiday in Makassar.

Bantimurung National Park

taman nasional bantimurung makassarThe official name of this national park is Bantimurung Bulusaraung National Park South Sulawesi. This tourism object is located in Maros Town which could be reach in 1 hour drive. Indeed, this place is a favorite tourist destination in South Sulawesi. In 1856-1857 a famous naturalist from England, Alfred Russel Wallace spent his joyful days catching and researching various kinds of butterflies, birds, and rare insects. Among those butterflies, there were the species of Papillo Androcles, one of the rarest and the biggest butterfly in the word which has long tail like swallows. The natural life of these animals has been tourist attraction for years.

Samalona Island

samalona island makasar south sulawesiSamalona Island is an island in South Sulawesi with 2.34 hectare size. This island is one of the marine attraction which has a lot of visitors from both local area and foreign country. This island’s area is an ideal place for diving, because around the island there are some reefs which are inhabited by various species of tropical fish and other sea biota. Samalona Island is abour 6.8 km from Makassar City which could be reached in 20-30 minutes using speed boat. In this location, there are also some simple lodges in form of “rumah panggung,” Sulawesi’s traditional house which could accommodate around 20 persons. Besides that, there are also some local restaurants serving various kind of fresh seafood.

Somba Opu Fortress

somba opu fortress south sulawesiSomba Opu Fortress was built in 1525 by Sultan Gowa IX. This fortress was the center of spices trading and port, which was crowded by merchants from Asia until Europe. In 1669, this fortress was taken by VOC, and then destroyed until it was submerged by tidal wave. Around 1980, this fortress was found back by some scientists and in 1990 it was reconstructed until this fortress stood firm once again. Now, Somba Opu Fortress has become a historical tourism object in Makassar. Inside this fortress, there are some traditional buildings of South Sulawesi representing Bugis, Makassar, Mandar, and Toraja ethnics. Besides that, there is also a 9 meter cannon with 9.500 kg weight displayed here, and a museum containing historical remains of Gowa Sultanate.

Fort Rotterdam

fort rotterdam makasar south sulawesiFort Rotterdam was built in 1545 by King Gowa X with name “Benteng Ujung Pandang”. Inside this fortress there is a “rumah panggung” or stilts house of Gowa, where the King and his family lives. The time when the Dutch ruled Banda and Maluku, they decided to conquer Gowa Kingdom so the VOC’s trading fleets could easily enter Sulawesi. In their effort to take Gowa, Dutch hired some mercenaries from Maluku. During more than a year, this fortress was battered and then finally the Dutch successfully destroyed the King’s fortress. They forced Sultan Hasanuddin to sign Bongaya agreement in 1667, which one of its clause was to give Benteng Ujung Pandang to the Dutch.

After it was taken by the Dutch, this fortress was rebuilt and redesigned based on Dutch’s architect, and then the name was also changed into Fort Rotterdam. This fortress was used as the central government of the Dutch colony in East Indonesia. In the era of Japan colonialism, this fortress was used as the central of language and farming study and then when Indonesia won their independence, TNI or Indonesian Army used it as the central commando.

Now, in this big fortress there is still a church left by the Dutch and La Galigo Museum which saves more than 4 thousand collections of numismatic, foreign ceramics, history books, scripts, and ethnography. The ethnography collection consists of different kind of technology, art, tools, and other things which were used by Bugis, Makassar, Mandar, and Toraja ethnics. Nowadays, besides functioned as a tourist attraction, this fortress is also used as the cultural center of South Sulawesi.

Tana Toraja

tana toraja makasar south sulawesiTana Toraja is a tourism object which is widely known for its unique culture. This regency is located approximately 320 km north from Makassar and very famous with its wooden traditional house. That traditional house is called TONGKONAN. Its roof is made from sliced bamboo which are stacked as a roof. However, some of tongkonan now use zinc roof, so it will be more durable. Tongkonan also has strata based on the degree of its owner nobility, like gold, bronze, steel, and brass strata.

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Besides that, another thing that is famous from Tana Toraja is “londa”. Londa is a steep rock hill in the cemetery of Tana Toraja. Londa is about 5 km to the south from Rantepau. One of them is located in the high place on the hill with many caves where the coffins of the local people are arranged based on family line. In the other side of the hill, these coffins are opened facing the vast scene from top of the hill.

Popular Art Markets in Bali

For every tourist spending holiday in Bali, visiting art markets is a must. There are a lot of art markets in Bali which all of them sell various kinds of original Balinese souvenirs or handicrafts. Some garment products like, bamboo shirt, beach shorts, clothes, or Balinese-patterned shirts are sold in these markets. Besides that, some snacks or Balinese foods are worthy to be tasted like Bali sour peanut, Bali cakes, or Bali brem (kind of beverage). The other choices are like various paintings and sculptures, or body care products like Bali scrubs or aromatherapy scrubs.

However, with the proliferation of modern souvenir shops, these are markets are losing their customers gradually. They could not compete with the polished buildings, air-conditioned rooms, fixed prices, and spacious parking area of the modern souvenir shops.

Actually, shopping in traditional art market with shopping in modern souvenir shops are not comparable. There is a special sensation when we shop at the art market, try to interact with the sellers, or bargain the price given. Besides that, the atmosphere of the art market gives an unique aura of shopping.

if you want to get a different experience of shopping, especially souvenir shopping, art markets are the perfect place for you. There are a lot of art markets in Bali, but these markets are the most popular in Bali.

Kuta Art Market

kuta art market baliUsually, tourists prefer to buy Bali shirt made from rayon or thin cotton in this market. However, these shirts are not for souvenirs. These shirts are favorite amongst the tourists to be put on during their holiday in Bali, because of its originality and of course comfort when used in the hot climate. The most favorite shirts for the tourists, especially Australian, is the one with local beer logo on it.

This market is strategically located near the center of the Kuta’s hustle, so the tourists who unintentionally pass by the location sometimes also attracted by the goods sold in this market. Many handicrafts like sculptures, statues, or paintings are sold in Kuta Art Market. The images, motifs, or patterns of these handicrafts are not always from Bali, so the tourists have a lot of choices. This market opens from 8 or 9 am until 7 am, and located near Kuta Beach and Kartika Plaza Street.

Badung Market

badung fruit market baliEvery single daily needs and handicrafts are available in this market, starting from kitchen utensils until Balinese ceremonial equipments. This market is also a good destination choice to know more about the Balinese culinary, like Bali coffee, cakes, or snacks.

The tourists also like to buy “bokor Bali,” an aluminum offerings platter which is used to decorate their house. Besides that, you can also find bamboo shirts, beach shorts, and other Balinese unique garment products.

This market is located in the center of the city, Gajah Mada Street, Denpasar, near Sulawesi Street which is famous for its complex of Balinese traditional clothes shops.

Kumbasari Market

kumbasari market baliKumbasari Market is located near Badung Market. This market is well known as a wholesaler market. The souvenirs that you find in Kuta or near it, actually come from Kumbasari Market.

You can buy some Balinese clothes and accessories here. Not only those small goods, medium and big goods are also sold here like wooden statues or sculptures, even furniture and house decorations.

If you are interested to buy things in large quantities, here is the best place. However, if you only want to buy things in retail, the sellers would also be happy. Kumbasari Market is located in Sulawesi street, Denpasar, and still in one location with Badung Market.

Sukawati Market

sukawati art market giayarThis market is the most famous amongst the tourists, either local or foreign tourists. Here, you can find beach sarongs, shorts, and Balinese patterned clothes, woven bags, or some cute sandals.

Paintings sold in this market are sold well. Since this market is near some handicrafts center villages, so you will easily find good statues, sculptures, and paintings here. Sukawati market is located in the border line of Denpasar and Gianyar City; as if being the gate of entering Gianyar from Denpasar.

A little tips, it would be better to come in the morning where the market is just opened and not really crowded with guests, because you will find it easier to shop and bargain. There is a unique fact shopping in this time, that the sellers will likely accept your bargain since they believe that refusing the early guest would brings bad luck.

Guwang Market

guwang art market giayarThis market is not as famous as Sukawati Market, even though the distance between these two markets are very close. Guwang Market is located in Guwang Village, Gianyar, only 500 meter from Sukawati Market.

This market looks tidier than Sukawati Market with a larger parking area for its guests. Indeed this market is developed to be support Sukawati Market. Not like in Sukawati Market, the buses can easily park in Guwang Market, because of the spacious parking area. The shopping goods are even the same with Sukawati Market, so this market could be a good alternative to buy souvenirs.

Ubud Market

ubud art marketJust like the other art markets, Ubud Market also sells the same products. You can find woven bags, Balinese patterned shirts, Balinese traditional clothes, until sculptures and paintings.

This market is quite large, so you need to go further inside to get the best price. The unique fact about this market, which is also become the attracting power, is this market was used as the shooting location for Hollywood film, “Eat, Pray, Love” starring Julia Roberts.

kuta hotel

This market is very strategic. It is located in front of Puri Agung Saren Ubud, the palace of Ubud King. Besides that, this market is in the center of Ubud, in the crossroad of Monkey Forest Street. Thus, tourists who spend their holiday here, always come to this market.

Derawan Island, an Amazing Diving Spot in Kalimantan Sea

derawan island at kalimantanDerawan Island is located in Derawan Archipelago, Berau, East Kalimantan (Borneo). Derawan has a flat beach with beautiful white sand and light blue sea. In the surrounding waters, there is a marine (underwater) park which is famous as a diving spot. In the depth of 5 meters, various species of sea biota could be seen, like cuttlefish, lobster, ghostpipe fish, bluering octopus, nudibranchs, seahorses, ribbon eels, and scorpionfish.

In the coral reef approximately 10 meter depth, there is ”Blue Trigger Wall,” a 18 meter long reef with so many red-toothed trigger fishes around.

This island is a real tropical paradise with gradation of soft green and blue water, mild white sand, the line of coconut tree along the coastal line, a small forest inside the island, and do not forget the beauty of its underwater life. Dr. Carden Wallace from Queensland Tropical Museum, Australia had have a research about the marine wealth of Derawan Island resulting discovery of more than 50 types of Arcropora (sea animals) in one coral reef. No wonder if this island occupies the top three places for a world class diving spot, making this island as a dream of every divers.

Around Derawan Island, there are 28 identified spots for diving. To explore all of these spots, at least 10 days are needed with one diving in each spot. Moving from one spot to another needs a boat, however if the tourists want to explore the island, it could be done on foot.

Coral Reefs

the coral reefs of this island spread out in every sandbar, like Pulau Panjang Sandbar, Masimbung Sandbar, Buliulin Sandbar, Pinaka Sandbar, Tababinga Sandbar, and Muaras Sandbar.
The main area of coral reefs:

  • Western Pulau Panjang ( inlet and channel )
  • Muaras with high diversity, aesthetic value, and healthy reefs
  • Malalungun Reef, high diversity with complex structure
  • Besar Reef which is rich of various habitats

Reef Fish

paradise diving derawan islandIn 2003, a reef fish survey showed that this island has 832 species, and at least 1.051 species in Berau with dominant species of Gobes (Gobiidae), Wrasses (Labridae), dan Damselfishes (Pomacentridae).

Green Turtles

green turtles derawan islandGreen turtles are sometimes visible from the wooden bridge in the beach. We can see these turtles swim back and forth in the surface of clear water. Even, when we are diving, these friendly turtle will swim around us with no worries. Once in a time, these turtles could also be seen around the cottage in the coast of the island. At night, some turtles come to the beach and lying their eggs in the sand.

The islands around Derawan

Other islands around Derawan are also worthy to visit, like Sangalaki, Maratua, dan Kakaban which each has its own uniqueness. Manta Rays which has 3.5 m wide fin and (sometimes) Black Manta Rays with 6 m fin could also be found around Sangalaki Island. Meanwhile, Kakaban Island has its own uniqueness, a prehistoric lake in the middle of the sea; the only one in Asia.

Some protected and conserved species could be seen here, like coconut crabs (Birgus latro), whales, dolphins (Delphinus), green turtles (Chelonia mydas), scaled turle (Erethmochelys fimbriata), dan dugong (Dugong dugon). Coconut crabs live in Kakaban and Maratua Island. Whale, could be seen around Maratua Island in particular season, meanwhile the dolphins live around the island of Semama, Sangalaki, Kakaban, Maratua, dan Muaras Sandbar. Turtles are often seen in Panjang, Derawan, Semama, Sangalaki dan Maratua Island and the Dugong which live Panjang dan Semama Island. Another unique species which live here is Manta Rays (Manta birostris) in Sangalaki Island and Pigmy Seahorse in Semama and Derawan Island.

Facilities

resort derawan islandDerawan Island provides some facilities like cottage, diving equipments, speedboat, and restaurant. This island also offers some affordable lodges which are owned by the local people. These houses are very modest, and its location is over the sea; around 100 meters from the land which eases the occupants to see various kind of colorful fish and turtle swimming below the house.

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Access

To get Derawan Island, first, tourists could fly for 3 hours to Balikpapan from Jakarta, Surabaya, Yogyakarta, or Denpasar. After that, we still need to get on airplane to reach Cape Redeb, about one hour from Balikpapan. Besides that, Cape Redeb could also be reached by crossing the sea, through boat from Samarinda or Tarakan.

Best Clubbing Spots in Bali, Best Places to Spend the Night

If you are staying in Bali for your vacation, then this information on best clubbing spots in Bali might interest you. Instead of just lounging around at your hotel room or villa, you can visit those clubbing spots during the night and enjoy the rave of the Balinese people there. Though you might feel the same just like when you are clubbing somewhere else, you should not jump to conclusions before you ever tried the clubs there first hand. We have several recommendations of best clubbing spots in Bali here.

Apache Club

Apache Club Clubbing BaliThe Apache Club is located at Legian Street number 146, in Kuta, Bali, This place is for those who like reggae music. If you are into the music, you are in for a great show of reggae live performance from the famous local group. Feel the unique rhythm of the reggae from Bali and see what you can get from there. This place is recommended as the number one best clubbing spots in Bali. The place open from 6 PM up to 2 AM. Though, the live performance will not show up until 11 PM. Get ready to reggae all night here.

Telephone number’s Apache Club: (0361) 761215

Bacio Bali

bacio baliThis is another recommendation for clubbing spot that you might enjoy during your visit to Bali. This place is near the beach and the atmosphere is really cool and calming. If you haven’t ever clubbing near a beach before, you should come and visit Bacio Bali. The place is located on Double Six Street. You will immediately recognize the place by the big sign bar. The party usually went all nigh up until morning. The nigh sea breeze and the thumping music will give you new experience of clubbing.

Telephone number’s Bacio: (0361) 7424466, 756666

Hardrock Cafe

Hardrock CafeThis is the place you have to visit if what you are looking for is not a simple clubbing, but also any types and variants of entertainment. Hardrock Cafe is located in the lobby of the Bali Hard Rock hotel. This place is highly recommended especially if you are staying at Hard Rock café. There will not only be live music and drink bar there. You will also be able to enjoy the amazing modern dance, fire dance, fashion show, and there are still much more attraction you should enjoy here. Just in case you can’t spot the location, Hardrock Cafe is located at Pantai Kuta Street, Kuta. Just find the Hard Rock hotel and you will find the Hardrock Cafe there too.

Centerstage Bali Telephone number: (0361) 761 869

Kama Sutra Bali

kama sutra baliThis is the best clubbing spots in Bali if you want to enjoy Indian ethnic up-beat music mixed to your heart’s content. The collection of the music there are nice and has this thinge sensation of the upbeat Hindustan rhythm. The music is great and the drink is good too. There are already so many people whether they are from outside the country or local tourist enjoying the unique music and the beat. This could be a great place to relieve stress if daylight entertainment is not to your liking that much. The spot is at Kuta Beach. You can enjoy the music while enjoying the beach’s night scenery, which will be a moment to remember during your vacation.

Kamasutra’s Telephone number: (0361) 761999

Bounty Discotheque Bali

bounty discotheque baliBounty is well known as the most sophisticated discotheque in Bali. Situated in the area of prestigious Kuta, where the nightlife parties never stop. The discotheque itself is an old ship, HMS Bounty which is transformed into a great club with enjoyable atmosphere and unique decoration. Inside, you could find a unique mixture of a discotheque, restaurant, fashion show venue, foam party venue, sexy dancer performance, and DJ battle which made this discotheque as a one stop nightlife entertainment. Not just that, some exhilarating entertainment like foam party, drinking competition, pool, or Drag Queen are there for you to enjoy. Live music. Karaoke, and live DJ performance will accompany your night with Funky Progressive Modern House, Electro House, Hip Hop and RnB music.

There are three main bars provided, like Taveren Bar, Captain Bar and Harbour Bar. You can enjoy the quality sound from the state of the art sound-system, great dance floor, and friendly people who want to enjoy the night. Bounty Discotheque is the best place to party in Bali.

Bali Joe

bali joe barBali Joe is the famous gay bar located in Seminyak area. The location is near another gay bar Mixwell. So many people go back and forth to these two bars because of its adjacency. Bali Joe presents variety of stage and bar top performances including Balinese go-go dancers and excellent lip-synced female impersonators. The favorite is indeed the Beyoncé impersonator which performs such a high energy dance while dressed in a pretty excellent clothes.

kuta hotel

Bali Joe Bar is the perfect place for indulging yourself in the comfortable and friendly atmosphere with some irresistible cocktails, and unique different entertainment. Those are several best clubbing spots in Bali recommended for your vacation. Bali is full of attraction and the day and the night are different. If the daylight entertainment is not enough for you, you can walk the street in the darkness and find various other sides of Bali and her wonders. Those clubs are also one of her wonders at night. Enjoy the upbeat music, release your stress, with a good beat and good drink in the company, you will feel relaxed and enjoy the vacation on Bali island to your heart’s content without having to worry about a work problem or something else.

Tirta Empul Tampaksiring, the Temple of Holy Spring

tirta empul temple baliTirta Empul is a name of a temple located in Tampaksiring Regency, Gianyar. Tirta Empul literally can be translated into “holy water which is gushing out from the land.” Indeed, in this temple there are some waters gushing out from a great spring. This temple could be found easily in the very east side of Tampaksiring Presidential Palace. Tirta Empul Empul is also one of the historical remains in Bali, especially in Gianyar. Thus, President Soekarno was interested to build a presidential palace near its location. The presidents who visit Bali will take their times to visit this palace. Until now, Tirta Empul Temple and the its springs is one of the leading tourism objects in Gianyar Regency.

According to stone inscription found in Manukaya Village, Tirta Empul Temple was built by Sang Ratu Sri Candra Bhayasingha in Manukkaya Village around 882 Saka or 960 B.C. Just like the other temples in Bali, this temple also consists of three parts jaba pura (front yard), jaba tengah (middle courtyard), and jeroan (main temple). Jaba tengah is the location of holy water showers, whereas the jeroan is the main temple for praying.

tirta empul tampak siringBefore going further inside the temple, the tourists will given a beautiful park scenery with green grass and “maja” trees along the way to the main temple or so called jaba pura. There is also a resting area which is surrounded by a large fish pond with its colorful and attracting fish. The tourists could also feed these colorful fish and watch them swimming elegantly inside the pond. Besides that, in this resting area there is also a restaurant where the visitors could try Indonesian food whilst enjoying the view of the fish pond.

Balinese people flocks coming to this temple to “melukat” or purifying body and soul from bad things. Not just Balinese, other people from outside Bali and foreign country also come to this place to melukat too. They apparently want to feel the sensation and blessing of the holy waters in this temple. Of course, every visitor should obey the rules which are clearly written in front of the gate. The temple keepers are very friendly and always ready to help the visitors.

The most visited area is indeed the holy water (tirta) shower pool located in the jaba tengah of this temple. This pool has 30 showers which each flows holy waters from the springs located in the main temple. Every holy water flowed from those showers has different name and function, like Tirta Gering which could repel evil spirits from our body, Tirta Merta for pleading fortune and prosperity, Tirta Sudhamala for purifying our body and soul, and so on. Besides those holy waters, there is also one shower, called Pancuran Cetik which is not used for melukat. Cetik in Balinese means “poison” and the name given for this shower is related to the Balinese mythology, Mayadenawa. In this mythology it was told that King Mayadenawa was an arbitrary emperor who did not allow his people to worship God. Then, the Gods finally found out his tyranny and tried to stop him. Under the command of God Indra, they decided to fight this king.

tirta empul tampaksiringWith his army, God Indra successfully defeated Mayadenawa. Then, he escaped from God Indra and hid in the north of Tampaksiring. With his evil power, he then created a poisonous spring deceiving the army of Indra who drinked the water from this spring. Knowing this, God Indra quickly thrust his spear into the ground and from there a spring was created to neutralize the poisonous spring.

According to local people, the mythology of Mayadenawa is also related to the celebration of Galungan Day. Galungan is a symbol of victory for the virtue over the evil. In galungan Day, every Barong from various villages at Gianyar come to this temple to be bathed with the holy waters of Tirta Empul. Barong is the symbol of virtue in this universe, so by bathing it in the holy water it is expected that the holiness and goodness aura of the barong could be maintained.

Access

This temple is located 41 km north from Kuta in Tampaksiring Village, Gianyar Regency. It could be reach in 1.5 hour driving. The road heading to this tourism object is in very good condition. Besides visiting this temple, the visitors could also visit Tampaksiring Presidential Palace which is adjacent.

Hotel Gianyar

Tiket

This temple is free for Balinese people who wants to pray, but for tourists, the entrance ticket cost Rp 6.000 per peson.

Art Market

In front of Tirta Empul near the parking area, there are some stands which sold Balinese souvenirs and handicrafts. Besides that, there are also shirts, Balinese threads, and of course food. Always try to bargain, because you may get cheaper price from these kind sellers.

North Sumatera Favorite Tourism Objects

Toba Lake

Toba Lake was formed after super volcano eruption 73.000-75.000 years ago. It was estimated that around 800 km3 volcanic rocks and 2000 km3 volcanic dust were ejected and spread into the sky. It was also spread by wind to the west for 2 weeks, covering half of the earth from China to South Africa. The eruption occurred during 1 week and the dust could reach 10 km above sea level. Toba Lake is the most favorite destination in North Sumatera for both local and foreign tourist. You can read more about toba lake here.

Lawang Hill

Lawang Hill is a tourism object located in Bahorok District, Langkat, North Sumatera. This place has been famous for local and foreign tourists. During holidays, thousands of tourists visit this place to explore Langa Hill, see the natural habitat of orangutan, or enjoy the beauty of Lawang Hill itself. In addition they can also enjoy the freshness of water in Bahorok, the tourists also like to watch the amazing panorama of Bukit Barisan mountain range, which is more popular as Gunung Leuser National Park. The local tourists usually come from various area like Medan, Binjai, Deli Serdang, or Langkat.

Besides having a vacation, the tourists also like to stay in various resorts or hotels like Rindu Alam Hotel, Bukit Lawang Cottege, and so on. In long holidays these hotels could be fully booked. The tourists could also buy some souvenirs like shirts and keychains around the hotel.

Samosir Island

Samosir is an island located in the center of Toba Lake, North Sumatera; an island with 1000 meter above sea level height. Samosir is actually a new regency in Sumatera Utara, which was inaugurated as a regency in January 2004. Before that, Samosir is a part of Toba Samosir regency. This new regency consists of 9 districts, like Pangururan (the capital), Harian, Sianjur Mulamula, Nainggolan, Onan Runggu, Palipi, Ronggur Nihuta, Simanindo, and Sitio-Tio.

Each district has its own tourism objects, which are organized by the government and the local citizen. However, the potential of those areas are not maximized yet. Not many promotions are done to attract tourists to come here.

The lack of good access to the island is one of the factor which obstruct the development of Samosir as a tourism object. To reach this island, a long trip must be done. From Medan to Prapat needs 4 hour driving, and then 45 minute for crossing the lake from Ajibata dock. However, if you use a speed boat, it will only take 10 minutes to arrive at Samosir Island.

Samosir Island is believed as the origin of Batak people which is centered in Pusuk Buhit, Sianjur District. Pusuk Buhit is a hill range with 1800 meter above lake level height. This hill is believed by the Batak as the universe or the place for God to appear.

In the foot of Pusuk Buhit Hill there is a village name Sianjurmulamula which has a cultural site in the form of King Batak house miniature. According to local people, King Batak was originated from Thailand which crossed the pacific sea until he finally arrived at Sianjurmulamula. However, there is also another source said that King Batak was originated from India.

Sibayak Mountain

Sibayak Mountain is located on Karo Highland with 2.904 m above sea level height. This mountain could be reached from two place, Raja Berneh Village and Brastagi Town. Sibayak Mountain is an active volcano which has a shallow crater and this crater is relatively easy and safe to be visited as long as you are not too close with it.

This mountain is not hard to be climbed even for a newbie. Like Gede Mountain in West Java, this mountain is also a favorite spot for the local mountaineer especially at the night. Usually, these mountaineer starts to climb the mountain at 2 am to be able to see the fantastic sunrise scene from the top of the mountain. Moreover, from top of this mountain we can see the whole Medan city. However, the condensation factor in this mountain is quite high causing frequent fog seen clustered at the summit area.

hotel in bali

Gundaling Hill

Gundaling is 1.575 meter above sea level and could be reach about 3 km from Brastagi Town. To reach this hill, we can go on foot or by sado (local gig). In this hill there are some beautiful parks, resting areas, and a pathway for jogging around the summit of Gundaling. From this summit we can see the amazing panorama of Sibayak and Sinabung Volcano.

Taman Ujung Karangasem, the Combination of 3 Cultural Elements

taman sukasada is king palaceTaman Sukasada was a park or resort palace of Karangasem King which now is better known as Taman Ujung Karangasem. This park is located in Tumbu Village, Karangasem, about 5 km southeast from Amlapura City. It was built by King of Karangasem, I Gusti Bagus Jelantik, who had title Anak Agung Anglurah Ketut Karangasem. With a perfect concept, this place is a pride of Karangasem citizen. In the past, this park measuring almost 400 hectares, but now only about 10 hectares because the land of this park was divided and given to the local residents in the era of land reform. The ownership of Taman Ujung is now fully inherited by the descendants of Karangasem Royal Family, making the status of this area become a private property. However, tourists are still allowed to visit this glorious kingdom park.

Taman Ujung is one of Balinese masterpieces which was built in 1909 by King of Karangasem, Anak Agung Anglurah Ketut Karangasem involving a Holland architect named van Den Hentz and also a Chinese architect named Loto Ang. Besides those experienced architects, the construction of Taman Ujung also involved Balinese traditional architects or “Undagi” and Mr. Wardodjojo, a technician from government’s Public Works Service as an advisor. Before it was built, Taman Ujung was actually a park named Kolam Dirah which was built in 1901. So, the architects and technician at that time only renovated and developed this previous park into a greater one.

taman sukasada karangasem

taman ujung karangasem

The construction process took time for 12 years and it is finished in 1921, but the development was continued to enhance this park. In 1937, Taman Sukasada (Taman Ujung) Karangasem was inaugurated through “maligya” ceremony, recorded on two marble inscriptions written in Latin and Balinese letters with two language, Bahasa Indonesia and Balinese. The inscriptions were posted on the wall of Bale Warak.

Those inscriptions also shown that the construction was finished at 6th of August 1937. The most attracting aspect from this buildings complex is the combination of three different cultural elements, like Bali, Holland, and China resulting a very original and authentic architecture. Balinese architecture could be clearly seen from the decoration pattern which are in the form of wayang stories and other Balinese sculpture patterns. Meanwhile, Holland architecture could be seen from the style of building, and Chinese architecture could be seen from the gates, octagonal pool, and Bale Bundar (gazebo).

According to Balinese cosmology, Taman Ujung Karangasem is a meeting point of the mountain and sea which are represented by Lempuyang Mountain in northeast, Agung Mountain in west, and sea or Lombok Strait in the east which is only a few meters near from this park. The concept of mountain and sea is very respected and often practiced by Indonesian traditional people.

taman ujung bali

taman ujung karangasem at tumbu village

Before 2001, the beauty of Taman Ujung Karangasem could not be seen by anybody because of severe damages taken from the eruption of Agung Mountain in 1963, Seririt earthquake in 1978, and Culik earthquake in 1978. For almost 25 years, the buildings in Taman Ujung Karangasem were broken and abandoned without any effort for reconstruction. In 1994, the government investigated the level of this place’s breakdown and then tried to repair and remap the park. In 2001, they successfully repair two canopies and some wayang reliefs.

In 1999, World Bank gave support through conservation study done by Culture Heritage Conservation. Finally, in 2002 World Bank gave grants for the reconstruction of Taman Ujung which were used to repair the fences, gates, and pools. In 2003, the refinements were continued on Bale Warak, Bale Gili, Bale Kambang, Bale Lanjuk, Bale Kapal, and the others. The conservation project was totally finished in May 2004 with estimated funds spent reaching 10 billion rupiahs.

karangasem hotel

Finally, at 7th of July 2004, Taman Ujung Karangasem was once again inaugurated as a tourism object through “melaspas” ceremony. The official opening ceremony was attended by the Governor of Bali Province. Now, the condition of Taman Ujung is amazing, resulting a crowded visits from both local and foreign tourists. The beauty of Ujung Beach near the park also adds another value of visiting this tourism object.