Published: May 30th 2010May 28th 2010
Bandung - the Indonesia’s “Paris Van Java” ( well, at least it was until around 30 years ago) is one of the top tourist destination in Java due to its close proximity to Jakarta. Honestly, I am not a fan of Bandung city. My dad was raised there and he told me so many beautiful things about Bandung, but nowadays you really can’t see anything good. Traffic, garbage, crazy drivers..yupe, it’s just like Jakarta - in a smaller scale. And to make things worst, the tourist “top destination” is what they call “ FO - Factory Outlets” - cheap bags, clothes, accessories and the likes-for sale !!!. It’s for the shopping kind, which unfortunately I am not.
But still, Bandung has not lost all of its charm. Bandung is surrounded by mountains- at the North there is Tangkuban Perahu - and at the South, Patuha. Our destination is going South since North is pretty much crowded and there are far more places to visit at the South anyway ! What to see? Cimanggu hot spring
Cimanggu hot spring is located along the main road. Our arrival was at around midnight , so we decided to take
a bath first before we went to sleep. Since we slept at a villager’s house so close to the hotspring area, the access to the hotpring is FREE (yipee!! ). There are 3 different kind of pools, for kids and adults. All these pools got mountain view and located outdoor. If you want to get a private room, you just have to add Rp. 10,000 ( that’s the holiday rate, ordinary rate is about Rp 7000,-).
Mind you, don’t expect clean pools ! The water was almost greenish when we went. It’s a turn off so we decided to get the private room. But still, don’t expect anything like a Japanese hotsprings with natural stones and stuff..it’s as simple as a room with a bathtub filled with hot water. It’s enjoyable, though—well, at least for me who simply loves bathing with HOT WATER when the temperature was freaking cold out there.
Cimanggu is open 24 hours. After midnight, it’s like a party with youngsters playing guitars, cards, chattering—what a noisy bunch! It’s a surpirse, actually. I thought this area is supposedly religious, but at Cimanggu you can see couples dipping together at the pool—hugging and holding hands in
public . Wow ! Kawah Putih
We were planning to get up early in the morning to walk to Kawah Putih (white caldera), but it was raining - so we went back to sleep ( what a lazy bunch). Kawah putih is a gorgeous crater with whitish-bluish water that formed a lake of some sort. I’m not an expert of what to call this phenomenon—but bottom line is : it’s amazing !
If you don’t bring a car, from the entrance you could either walk up ( 5.6 km UPWARDS ! yikes ! ), or get a transportation provided by the Kawah Putih caretakers, or rent a motorbike ( we picked this option). If you choose to pick the transportation provided, you have to wait until it’s full ( which could take around 13 people). It costs you Rp 25,000 per person back and forth for transportation and an additional Rp 6000,- for entrance fee. If you rent a motorbike, it will cost you Rp 50,000 per bike ( which can take 2 people) and an entrance fee of Rp 15,000,- . If you bring your own car , the cost will depends on how many
people in the car.
The road to Kawah Putih is a very curvy road with all its jungle beauty. Green, green and all green ! ( for someone coming from Jakarta, it is so lovely to see all those green stuff ! ). There is a stopover where you can see a top view of the villages surrounding the Patuha mountain. It’s so lovely.
Upon arrival at Kawah Putih, you could hear a Sundanese folk song being sung (Sunda is one of the Java tribe in Indonesia). There is a man sitting under a shady tree at the entrance of Kawah Putih singing with a traditional musical instrument. It adds to a certain mystical feeling. I feel like in I’m in some enchanted kingdom from some fairy land. And it was a good thing we came quite early—not many people arrived yet, only a few who is doing their pre-nuptial picture taking. I hope Kawah Putih will always be maintained this way. It’s accessible, yet clean. It’s beautifullll ! Situ Patengan
Situ Patengan is a lake that is close to Kawah Putih. You can ride an angkot ( a public transportation ) from Kawah Putih
The view at the hotspring
entrance directly to the lake for only Rp 2000,-. Along the way, you can see OVERLOADS of tea plantation ! Yupe, it’s like a green blanket ! . And when you are getting closer to the lake , you can see this beautiful lake from the top surrounded by all green. Love it !
You can rent a boat ( for about Rp 100,000-150,000) to go circle the lake. But we choose not to. We decided to head for lunch and to our delights—food stalls there are quite cheap. We ate LOTS and LOTS of fish, tempe, tahu and satay. Yummyyy ! That was one of the best grilled fish I have ever tasted. Everything was great.
Situ Patengan has a legend about being a meeting place for lovers and there is a stone that is called “Batu Cinta” (the love stone). Many couples went there, but again we decided not to. We simply sat beside the lake, took some pictures and enjoyed the beautiful view. Surprisingly enough, just like Kawah Putih this place is fairly clean. Thumbs up for the Bandung government to keep it up ! Kawah Cibuni
The next journey is
Beautiful green !
actually NOT in our list. We wanted to find a waterfall that was said to be quite close, but after some asking around it turned out to be a 15 km rough ride. Then, an idea just popped up. Why don’t we try Kawah Cibuni? They said it’s a crater where some people who still believe on ancient beliefs come, visit and pray .
To our surprise, there is no public transportation - so we have to go by Ojek (bike for rent). And what a journey it was. The road was really really really scary. If something goes wrong with the motorcycle, you will surely fall down to the bottom. Just don’t look down !
Upon arrival, I can sense something not good—it’s like I have a bad feeling. Not only because of the sulphur smell, but I feel so uneasy and uncomfortable being at this place. There are some people gathered around a stone and pray. Some also bathe there in some hopes for healing. There is a hole in that stone. It was said that if you can pass thru that stone and went to the other side , you will get what you wished
White and Blue :)
Oh well, maybe not for me. But the ride there was fun, though.
After that, we have to go to the closest market to get some food stocks and find an ATM machine. It was a very very very long ride using ojek, but thankfully the view was great. Then, we cooked some dinner and off to sleep . We went to Bandung station the next morning , dropped by to some bakery so I can buy something for my mom( there is a famous one at Bandung that is called Kartika Sari) and wait for the train to get us back to jakarta.
Short but LOVELY vacation. How to get there?
I went by train and rent a mini van to go to Cimanggu. However, public transportation is also available. From Bandung city, just to go Lewi panjang and get an L 300 vehicle that goes to Ciwidey. Alight at the Ciwidey public market (the last stop) and get an angkot (colored yellow) going to Situ Patengan. This angkot will pass thru Kawah Putih—Cimanggu—Ranca Bali ( tea plantation) and at last, Situ Patengan.
There are more photos below