Kawah Ijen Off The Beaten Path

  • Neatly laid out Catimor village
    Neatly laid out Catimor village
    by theo1006
  • Blawan Hot Pools
    Blawan Hot Pools
    by theo1006
  • A Nature Reserve since 1920
    A Nature Reserve since 1920
    by theo1006

Most Recent Off The Beaten Path in Kawah Ijen

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    The bitter-water-river

    by theo1006 Updated Jul 5, 2014

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    The sulphurous Ijen crater lake drains through a small river aptly named Kali Banyu Pahit, bitter-water-river. At 2 km direction Sempol from the Paltuding base the river crosses the road. Here you find a gazebo siutable for a picnic, but most passers-by just climb the rocks and taste the water. It is terribly acrid.
    The river flows on all the way to Blawan and beyond. We did not find it there, but we suppose it gets diluted.
    See the video Kali Banyu Pahit.

    Kali Banyu Pahit cataract Kali Banyu Pahit picnic spot Tasting the water
    Related to:
    • Mountain Climbing
    • Hiking and Walking
    • National/State Park

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    Blawan Waterfall

    by theo1006 Updated Jul 4, 2014

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    I, Theo, saw Ijen crater for the first time in December 1969. With three students in my VW beetle we had ventured onto the Ijen plateau and got lost. We were 'rescued' by the manager of Kalisat coffee plantation. We stayed the night at his place and the next morning he arranged for us to ride with him on horseback to the crater. Forty years later, in 2009, I visited the crater again, together with Helen. Access had become much easier.
    And now, 2014, we decided it was time to see some more of the Ijen plateau. We sought out the three attractions that are located in Blawan village, close to Catimor Homestay.
    Blawan Waterfall, also referred to as the Catimor fall, is different from most others. It is hard to reach the top and impossible to reach the bottom. One does admire it from a perilous viewpoint halfway the drop of the water into a narrow ravine.
    The fall is on walking distance (1.5 km) from the Catimor homestay. Follow the signs from there. Pass by the hot pool, where a woman collects a fee of Rp 2000. Then you cross an innocent looking brook, ascend a flight of stairs, descend more stairs en espy the waterfall through a narrow cleft. You can come closer, but a rickety bamboo fence reminds you to stay away from the edge.
    See the video Blawan Waterfall.

    Blawan fall close-up Blawan fall behind bamboo fence The flight of stairs uphill Stairs downhill and fall in sight The innocent-looking brook
    Related to:
    • National/State Park
    • Eco-Tourism
    • Hiking and Walking

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    Blawan Hot Spring

    by theo1006 Written Jul 3, 2014

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    The last attraction we visited near Catimor Homestay was the Hot Spring. Actually it is the first attraction one encounters after leaving the plantation village, but we reserved it for our way back. All three attractions lie in an area that has been designated as a nature reserve since 1920!
    You do not actually see the spring, because they have built some pools to take a bath in. There are also private bathrooms, rather poorly maintained. So we joined a few locals in the common pools. The water it quite hot, you have to get accustomed slowly and not stay in it too long. There are two pools, the second one has a slightly lower temperature. And if you complain that it is too hot, the lady in charge opens a valve that adds some cold water.
    The lady charges Rp 5000 for a bath. She also has a warung where you can get a coffee or a botted drink and a mie rebus.
    A WORD OF WARNING: Do not drink the water. Days after our bath at Blawan, Helen had a persistent bowel disorder diagnosed as an amoeba infection. We think it was caused because she inadvertently ingested some of the water.

    Blawan Hot Pools Neatly laid out Catimor village A brook runs close to the pool A Nature Reserve since 1920
    Related to:
    • Eco-Tourism
    • National/State Park

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    Blawan's Limestone Cave

    by theo1006 Updated Jul 3, 2014

    If you are a first time visitor to Ijen, we recommend that you reserve two nights of your itinerary there instead of one, and do some more exploring after your sunrise visit to the crater. Close to Catimor Homestay there are three attractions close together, which we saw by just a short walk. The first was Blawan Waterfall.
    Before going back from the fall we walked a path uphill, starting at the top of the stairs, where we met a family of monkeys and got a view of Raung volcano - the highest peak of Ijen.
    Then, on the way back, we passed a shed and a sign pointing to “Patilasan Damar-Wulan, Goa Kapur”, which we try to translate as “Traces of Moonlight, a Limestone Cave”. Following the direction we first passed a warm lake in a romantic setting - not natural though, the wall around it was clearly built at some point in time.
    Then we saw the cave, though not in moonlight. Nor was it much of a cave, rather a ledge in a narrow ravine, the same ravine that leads to the fall. To get on the ledge one has to negotiate a wobbly bamboo ladder. We were so intent to get down and up it safely, that we forgot to make a picture of it.

    In the cave A monkey above Blawan waterfall The shed and the sign to Goa Kapur Raung volcano in sight An artificial warm-water lake
    Related to:
    • National/State Park
    • Hiking and Walking
    • Eco-Tourism

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