The first time I visited Bandung was in 2008. In fact, that was my first visit to Bandung, the shopping paradise. To be honest, I did not fancy Bandung the first time around. I am not a shopper, that’s why. However, my recent visit to Bandung gave me more reasons to visit Bandung.
As Indonesia lies on the Pacific Ring of Fire, you can hike volcanoes or visit accessible volcano craters like Tangkuban Perahu and Kawah Putih Ciwidey. If your interest is the former, you may want to read this article written in Indonesian language on 7 volcanoes in West Java. <- Click on the link.
As for the latter, you must remember Tangkuban Perahu and Kawah Putih Ciwidey are very touristy volcanoes because they can be reached by easy walking.
According to Mas Eka, a friend who lives in Bandung, you must avoid Bandung during the weekend because everyone in Jakarta go to Bandung for weekend escapade. The roads would be extremely congested and take longer time to reach destinations.
Kawah Putih Ciwidey is a crater lake which is less popular sister to Tangkuban Perahu. It derives its name due to the whitening effect of the rocks and sand around the crater lake. The name Ciwidey itself originates from ancient Portuguese word Ciwi which means kiwi the fruit and Dey means day. Together they mean kiwi day.
Located 50km from Bandung city centre, the journey to Kawah Putih Ciwidey may take up to 2 hours or maybe longer depending on the traffic. The journey brings you through the highland where you will get to see farms, plantations and beautiful resorts area. Your local guide may insist you to bring warm clothes. Based from my experience, it was not that cold after 10am. It was of moderate air conditioner temperature. Then again, it depends on your adaptability to cold weather and timing. The temperature can get as slow as 8 degree celcius at night and in early morning. To be safe, bring warm clothes.
Once arrived at the parking area, the visitors are expected to queue for the angkot ride. Angkot is the orange coloured van which can fit between 8-12 people at one time. The ride took 15 minutes before reaching a huge space leading to Kawah Putih.
Follow the walkway down to the crater lake. The eruption of Gunung Patuha formed two natural lakes which are located side by side. There are Kawah Putih and Kawah Saat. I had limited time at Kawah Putih that I only realized the existence of Kawah Saat when I was ordered to get back to the bus.
Because of the sulfur interaction, the light cyan coloured water fill the crater lake giving an oustanding view to Kawah Putih.
The advice is not to stay longer than 15 minutes as sulfur could affect your health. Before leaving Kawah Putih, you may buy strawberries and snacks near the parking area. A pack of strawberries is sold at IDR10,000 (RM3.00).
The new tariff for Kawah Putih is IDR18,000 for domestic & IDR50,000 for foreign national. For parking, it’s IDR150,000.
45 minutes from Kawah Putih, there lies a recreational hillside family-friendly resorts known as Ciwidey Valley. In fact, around Ciwidey, there are many cottages and resorts to choose from. Ciwidey Valley has 20 standard cottage rooms, 3 family cottage rooms, 6 standard camping ground and 4 family camping ground. All with Air-conditioner, Flat TV, censored key card and wifi internet access.
The theme for the resorts is nature, flora and fauna. It feels so calm at Ciwidey Valley that you would only hear laughter of the children from the children play area. There is a swimming pool for kids and adults with many water play area such as sliders and watersplash. There is also a raised bird house where you can go for a visit.
The resto is a nice place to hang out with friends for lunch/dinner and enjoy the view of the Ciwidey Valley.
Taman Hutan Raya Juanda, Bandung is a hidden gem of Bandung. I said so because it is located 15 minutes from the shopping haven of Bandung. There are few entrances to reach Taman Hutan Raya Juanda and the nearest to the city centre via Dago Pakar. As Taman Hutan Raya Juanda occupies a chunk of 590 hectares land, the forest reserve can be accessed from Maribaya, Lembang and thousand of steps at PLTA Bengkok or Curug Dago.
While my blogger friends explored the instagrammable coffee shop near the Dago Pakar entrance of Taman Hutan Raya Juanda, I went for a nature walk around Taman Hutan Raya. short form, TaHuRa. Indonesians and their love for first syllable.
The entrance fee:
IDR 12,000/pax/day – Local
IDR 76,000/pax/day – Foreign visitors
For more info on Taman Hutan Raya, Juanda, visit TahuraJuanda.
A visit to Taman Hutan Raya Juanda will not be completed without a visit to Armor Kopi. Armor is a short form for ARabika Multi ORigin. Operating from a wooden small house with glass window and wooden tables and chairs integrates is a perfect setting for coffee shop in a pine trees forest. Armor Kopi has dozen selection of good coffee to choose from with 3 basic coffee being robusta, arabica and liberica. For non-coffee drinkers, you can choose from green tea, black tea, oolong and honey milk tea.
Taman Hutan Raya, Djuanda (Tahura Djuanda), Dago Pakar, Bandung
Weekday from 09:000-21;00
Weekend from 08:000-21:00
Instagram : armorkopi.bdg
The last place we visited in Bandung is Dusun Bambu which will be covered on the next post.
This trip to Bandung was made possible by the invitation of Ministry of Tourism Indonesia for Trip of Wonders – Wonderful Indonesia campaign. Date of travel: 30 & 31 July 2016