Author Archives: Lian Eisdiarwan

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Scuba dive at Menjangan

Category : News: Destinations

Menjangan Marine Park, this small unpopulated island and a national park has been named one of the most spectacular coral reefs of Bali and is accessible to both scuba divers and snorkelers. Underwater sites range from sheltered and shallow coral gardens to vertical reef walls smothered with sea fans. From vivid gorgonians to reef sharks, pygmy seahorses to schools of snappers, sand banks with garden eels to magnificent formations of hard corals. Menjangan represents well the huge diversity of south East Asia’s coral reefs. There is a wreck, said to be an old slave boat, sitting on a gentle sandy slope at around 40 meters. Menjangan Resort is the closest dive centre to Menjangan Island and is set within the boundaries of the West Bali National Park, ensuring a unique setting for your land-time. Pos Dua is definitely the favorite site at Menjangan, an abundant shelf of reef in the shallows with abruptly drops into a near vertical wall encrusted with a plethora of corals; it looks like an explosion in a paint factory in some places. The visibility is great, at minimum 20 meters, giving a real sense of the sheer size and complexity of the reef walls.

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Tulamben, the best site for macro underwater photographers and muck night diving in Bali

The Tulamben Liberty ship wreck is a must do for any divers going to Bali. The liberty ship lies on a sand slope was hit by a Japanese torpedo then was beached by the eruption of Mount Agung in 1963. The wreck is about 130 m long with the shallowest part at about 9 m deep and the deepest on the other side of the wreck at about 30 m deep, the Wreck is so big that you need at least two dives to see it all. Best time for dive is in the morning or late in the afternoon or try a great night dive. The ‘rush hour’, normally between 10 am and 2 pm. If you are a beginner diver it is a unique opportunity to scuba dive a world class wreck dive site. If you are an experienced diver try to go further to the deeper part of the wreck around 35 m deep and look at the wonderful bow gun covered with Coral. It is a great photo opportunity! Moreover for macro lovers you can also find the rare pygmy seahorse in the area. The Liberty Wreck is not the only amazing dive site around the Tulamben area. Diving the Tulamben Wall also called Drop Off is also a great experience and makes a perfect second dive. Just a few hundred meters from the Liberty wreck lay Coral Garden Drive Site; it is a nice coral garden very easy and perfect for beginners or for night dives. This place has been recommended for Night diving experience! This location is a Reef. A few kilometers North, you will find the Kubu village. There is a wonderful reef with a nice coral garden, a very good place for macro underwater photography with pygmy seahorse and nudibranch. There are two very easy dive sites perfect for beginners. A good place to see blacktip and whitetip reef Sharks. Night diving this site is also very rewarding. The other best dive resort near Tulamben is Seraya Secret Dive site. It’s the best site for macro underwater photographers and muck night diving in Bali. With a 10 m deep black sand bottom, you can stay for hours searching for strange small creatures hiding all over the place. If you are patient enough, you might see the rare mimic Octopus. The visibility can sometimes be poor due to the sandy bottom but this doesn’t really affect muck diving. Get your camera ready and enjoy.

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A Circle of Spice Culinary Adventure With Janet de Neefe

Category : News: Cultural

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Expert Cruise Led by: Janet de Neefe

Discover the Indonesian Spice Islands with all your senses. Your sense of smell and taste will be peaked and fed as well as your sense of adventure on this exclusive eight-day culinary tour and rare look at the tiny islands that shaped a world of flavor.

Once worth their weight in gold, at one time spices were once the most sought after commodity in the world. From Asia to Europe, the demand for fiery flavor drove merchants, entrepreneurs and explorers across the globe in search for these valuable items. The more remote a source of a particular spice, the more the spice was worth, and none was so dear as the clove, mace, and nutmeg that hailed from the remotest area imaginable: the minuscule specs of land in the seas of the Moluccas, known as the Spice Islands.

It was the search for these mysterious Spice Islands that pushed European naval powers and explorers such as Magellan and Columbus and Magellan beyond their nearest shores to begin the “Age of Discovery.” Though their secret location has long been revealed, the Spice Islands remain remote and exotic as very few travelers get a chance to explore this culturally rich and historically fascinating region.

Lined with clove and nutmeg trees, the islands are as fragrant as they are beautiful, boasting dramatic volcanoes, pristine beaches, and crystal clear waters lined with teeming and vibrant coral reefs. Come follow in the footsteps of maritime explorers and quench your untamable taste buds as we indulge in all that the fragrant and fiery Spice Islands have to offer.

Meet the expert - Janet de Neefe

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Adding extra flavor to this extraordinary adventure will be expert Janet de Neefe. Melbourne raised, Janet has made Bali her home since 1984. Her love of Indonesian culture and cuisine led to opening two Ubud restaurants : Casa Luna, and Indus, as well as inspiring two cookbooks: Fragrant Rice, and Bali, the Food of My Island Home.

Janet’s expertise and insight will spice up our journey with market tours, culinary workshops, and certainly many delicious regional dining experiences.


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Ubud

Category : News: Cultural

Ubud is one of Bali’s favorite tourist destinations, surrounded by temples, ancient sites, the Ubud Sacred Monkey Forest, art galleries and museums and lush rice paddies and coconut trees. The most interesting thing from Ubud is their remarkable rich Balinese culture and arts. The pace of life in Ubud, set on the dramatic Ayung River, is a sharp contrast to the chaos in the south of the island. Many people spend their days here being pampered in spas, taking yoga classes, relaxing in the town's fantastic cafes and taking the occasional stroll through the surrounding rice fields.

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Bromo, Indonesia’s most breathtaking volcano sights

Gunung Bromo is an active volcano that lies at Tengger giant caldera. With its top blown off, it appears more crater than mountain, while putrid sulfurous gas and smoke billow out from within. This mountain is one of Indonesia’s most breathtaking sights: the massive size of the entire Tengger caldera and the magical beauty of the scenery and the dramatic highland light really are what dreams are made of. [codepeople-post-map] Visiting Bromo starts even before the sun is up to catching the magical sunrise. The best views of the massive caldera landscape are almost certainly had at sunrise from the top of neighboring Gunung Penanjakan (2,770 metres), as the sun rises, the clouds are the first to catch the color. Red. Pink. Orange. Then the valley starts to glow. The shadowy outline of the mountains comes into the focus and vista across the whole area is suddenly bathed in light. It is a good way to start the morning, indeed. A few moments later, down at the base of Mount Bromo itself sweeping views back across the ‘sand sea’ to the lip of the crater and over to Mount Batok and the Hindu temple (this only opens on auspicious days in the pilgrim calendar) at its base. It feels like something from Sahara. The only vegetation is up on the cliffs around the caldera, watching fearfully down at this barren landscape.

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Karimunjawa, home of outnumbers reef fish and corals.

Category : News: Destinations

The remote archipelago of Karimunjawa, a marine national park, consists of 27 tiny coral-fringed islands in the middle of Java Sea. These islands are an off-the-map spot with a population of about 10,000, many of whom still make a living from fishing and cultivating seaweed. Most of the islands have sublime white-sand beaches with turquoise sea. The heavenly time is when the sun went down in glorious shades of pink and red. And the reason why swimming and dive in here so wonderful is the variety of coral life within the park. There are nearly 250 species of reef fish and 100 species of coral that thrive in the waters around Karimunjawa. The archipelago is divided into zones to protect the rich ecosystem. Zone One is completely out of bounds to all except national park rangers, with other areas set aside for sustainable tourism. The main island, Pulau Karimunjawa, is home to most of the archipelago’s facilities. Fishing, tourism and seaweed cultivation are the main livelihoods. This is also the site of the islands’ only real town, Karimunjawa, and, despite widespread mangroves, a couple of good beaches. An airstrip is located on adjacent Pulau Kemujan. High season in Karimunjawa is from May through October. During the rainy season, winds and waves make it difficult, and in some cases impossible, to travel to the islands.

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Dieng Plateau

Category : News: Destinations

Taken from Javanese word 'adi', meaning beautiful, and 'aeng', or impressive, this plateau has stunning panorama, beautiful Hindu temples, cool weather and magnificent views of mountains hugging its flanks.

But Hindus say Dieng is from the word 'Dihyang', meaning heaven, and cite the presence of temples in the area. The temples are still used as places of worship.

Dieng is located 26 kms north of Wonosobo and 2,093 meters above sea level. Average temperature ranging from 10 degrees Celsius to 15 degrees Celsius. In the south, Prau Mountain is part of the Wonosobo area while Bandongan village at the foot of Sumbing Mountain is in Magelang regency. The plateau is also surrounded by other mountains, including Bismo and Rogojembangan, in Banjarnegara. The Pendawa Lima temples are found on the slope of the mountain, are also said to be major evidence of the dawning of civilization in Java. The temples were built in about the 8th century during the Sanjaya Dynasty era.

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What to see Jalatunda Well A not active crater fills with rain water. Jalatunda seem like a large well with diameter more than 100 m. Local people believe, someone who can throw a stone beyond the crater will reach their entire wish. Candradimuka Crater This crater is not volcanic crater but a land rupture. There are 2 crater but its only one crater that still active. The crater constantly roars. Sileri Crater Sileri is the widest crater in Dieng and spurt milky water like water being used to wash rice before cook; Javanese people call it ‘leri’, so people near Dieng named this crater Sileri Crater.

Dieng Temple Complex Dieng temple complex was discovered in 1814 by the Netherlands’ H.C. Cornelus. It consists of four different groups of temples that are all named after the characters of the Mahabharata epics. They are Dwarawati and Parikesit Temples in the north; Arjuna, Semar, Sembodro, Puntadewa, and Srikandi Temples in the center; and Dwarawati Kidul, Abiyasa, and Pandu Temples in the east. The other group includes Setyaki, Ontorejo, Petruk, Nala Gareng, and Nakula-Sadewa Temples. Visitor can find other interesting archeological site and statue in the Museum near Gatotkaca Temple.

Merdada Lake Merdada Lake was a volcanic crater and the widest lake in Dieng Plateau, it’s about 25 Ha. A agricultural development center is built near the lake.

Sikidang Crater Named from Javanese word ‘kidang’ or baby deer because the activity of the crater seems like a baby deer that jumping around, running and moving. This crater spurt high temperature water and mud.

Tuk Bimo Lukar A fountain dripping clear water in a natural bathing spring considered as holy is the origin of Serayu River.

Telaga Manjer Manjer lake is popular for weekend family picnics. The lake is 54 m deep and 79 hectares large, surrounded by green mountains. The location is 12 km from Wonosobo, in the sub-district of Garung.

Telaga Warna Telaga Warna, a lake reflecting various colors from its basin. In addition, Telaga Pengilon (or Mirror Lake) is believed to be a place where a princess from the Hindu Mataram Kingdom used to gaze. Near the lake at Sikendil Hill in Jojogan village, visitor can view Dieng plateau from Dieng Plateau Theater.


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The Keraton, Sultan residence and heart of Javanese arts and culture

Built in 1756 by Sultan Hamengku Buwono I, today the Keraton is the residence of Sultan Hamengku Buwono X and his family as well as a center of Javanese traditional arts and culture. All the buildings, courts, carvings and trees and even their locations within the 14,000 sq. m. Keraton have deep philosophical meanings and are symbolic of human life. The palace, the Tugu Monument and Mount Merapi are positioned in one line, forming a sacred axis. In the old times, the Sultan concentrated his mind along this axis before leading meetings, making decisions or giving orders to his people. Visitors can enjoy the atmosphere of the Keraton as it was centuries ago. Daily activities open to the public include gamelan music, Javanese poetry readings, court dances, and puppet shows designed to preserve the ancient arts. Many sets of gamelan instruments, antiques, batiks and heirlooms make the Sultan’s Palace one of the most interesting tourist sites in Jogjakarta. Keraton Tours Monday-Sunday 8:00 am – 2:00 pm, Friday 8:00 am – 11:00 am. HB IX Museum & Keraton Batik Museum (inside the palace) Open daily: 10:30 am – noon. Museum Kereta (Royal Carriages Museum) Jl. Rotowijayan, west of the Keraton: Open daily: 10:30 am – noon. Entrance fees charged. Daily Activities at the Keraton All performances are held at Sri Manganti Pendopo, inside the Keraton. Monday: Javanese Gamelan Music – 10:00 am – noon Tuesday: Javanese Gamelan Music – 10:00 am – noon Wednesday: Golek Menak (Wooden) Puppetry (abbreviated performance) – 10:00 am – noon Thursday: Javanese Court Dance – 10:00 am – noon Friday : Javanese Poetry Recital – 9:00 – 11 am Saturday: Wayang Kulit (Leather) Puppetry (abbreviated performance) 9:30 am – 1:00 pm Sunday: Wayang Orang (Human performers) – 9:30 am – noon [codepeople-post-map]

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Candi Banyunibo

Category : News: Cultural

Located at The Valley of Dripping Water, Cepit Village, Bokoharjo, Prambanan. Open daily 8 am – 5:00 pm. Candi Banyunibo can easily be visited after strolling through Ratu Boko Palace. Situated about 2 km southeast of Ratu Boko, Banyunibo is a solitary complex in the middle of farmland and is flanked by the Gunung Kidul hills to the south, offering exotic scenery and enjoyable views. Although quite small, this Buddhist temple has interesting features, such as a slightly curved roof functioning as the top of the stupa and giving it a unique charm. Built around the 9th century, every window is carved with likenesses of Sakti, the wife of Buddha: on the west windows is Pandarawasini Sakti from Amitabha, the north Tarini Sakti from Amogasiddhi, and on the south Mamaki Sakti from Ratnasambhawa. This temple is surrounded by Hindu fragments. Like all other sacred places, tiny Banyunibo (which means “dripping water”) is still used today as a place of meditation and contemplation. Local legend says that there was once a river flowing from Ratu Boko to Banyunibo which carried gold.

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Candi Sari

Category : News: Cultural

Candi_SariLocated 15 km east of Yogyakarta at Bendan Village, Tirtomartani, Kalasan, Yogyakarta. Open daily 8 am – 5 pm. This two-story Buddhist temple is located 600 meters from Kalasan temple. It was built around the 9 th century AD as a vihara Buddhist Tara monastery. The first floor was a praying room and on the second story were the monks’ chambers. At its top are nine stupas. Windows are built around the temple, with the exception of the west side because of the Buddha and Boddhisattva statues. The temple is decorated with talent: there are 36 large figures represented in relief on the exterior walls, still covered with stucco (vrajalepa), but some of the figures are difficult to recognize: half-gods, Naga kings, masculine and feminine divinities following the Tribangga rules, some of which are reminiscent of Tara, the bodhisattva consecrated at Kalasan. Notice the Kinara-Kinari (bird-angels) near the windows and the elephant friezes at each side of the door, also the two guardian statues of Dwarapala and Gupala at the entry.

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