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Ujung Kulon, Rhino Sanctuary in Southwestern Java

Ujung Kulon is actually offers much more than just Rhino conservation

Endangered animal, Rhinoceros in their habitat in Indonesia (c) Shutterstock
Endangered animal, Rhinoceros in their habitat in Indonesia (c) Shutterstock

The critically endangered lesser one horned Rhino can only live and breed in Ujung Kulon, Banten. The name Ujung Kulon itself can mean the western end, as it is literally located on the southwestern tip of Java Island. It’s a national park, designed to protect not only the invaluable rhino, but also some other species such as bantengs and deer.

Baca juga : Pariangan, Desa di Atas Awan Terindah Sedunia yang Ada di Indonesia

White beach paradise island untouched by humans with coral reef in the foreground. Indonesia - Ujung Kulon National Park (c) Shutterstock
White beach paradise island untouched by humans with coral reef in the foreground. Indonesia – Ujung Kulon National Park (c) Shutterstock

Comprised of 122,955 hectares of land and waters, Ujung Kulon also has several smaller islands. All area in this park are still in pristine condition with very little human intervention. This UNESCO World Heritage Site has the largest remaining lowland rainforest in Java. These are the place you need to visit in Ujung Kulon.

The elusive Javan rhinoceros

Endangered animal, Rhinoceros in their habitat in Indonesia (c) Shutterstock
Endangered animal, Rhinoceros in their habitat in Indonesia (c) Shutterstock

Most of the people who visit this park definitely want to see the rhino on its natural habitat. The Javan rhino’s number keeps dwindling, mostly because the loss of their habitat and poaching activity. The rhino are very elusive as they are mostly mobile at night. During the day, they mostly wallow in a mud or wander to beaches and grazing in one spot.

There are only approximately 60 Javan rhino still exist today. In a case that a visitor is lucky enough to encounter a rhino, the procedure is that they have to climb a tree silently and then take a picture if they want to.

The charming Peucang Island

Peucang Island in Indonesia (c) Shutterstock
Peucang Island in Indonesia (c) Shutterstock

Imagine spending your day on sun-kissed small island with white beaches and crystal clear waters. That’s Peucang Island, a part of the national park. This island is very private feeling to it since there are not many people venturing here, even during the holiday season.

You’ll need to be with a guide to enjoy everything this island has to offer. There are lots of tour package offered to Peucang from Sumur, Tanjung Lesung, or even Jakarta. Prices are ranging depends on the distance and the duration.

World Class surfing at Panaitan Island

Surfing at Panaitan Island, Ujung Kulon
Surfing at Panaitan Island, Ujung Kulon via Instagram/mikaelsangder

At the eastern tip of Java, there is a world class surfing spot at Plengkung Beach at Grajagan Peninsula in Banyuwangi. At the western part, there is Panaitan Island, part of Ujung Kulon National Park that has lots of world class surfing spots. One Palm Point, Napalms, Illusions, Indicators, Apocalypse, Croc & Rolls and Pussy are the somewhat eclectic names given by the surfers for the surfing spots in this island.

The best aspect of surfing here is that there is a guarantee that the surfing spots will never be crowded. There is an ‘Exclusive Surfing Management Plan’ to ensure that the beaches are never too full of surfers.

Explore the park

The stairs to the lighthouse, Tanjung Layar, Ujung Kulon National Park, Banten, Indonesia
The stairs to the lighthouse, Tanjung Layar, Ujung Kulon National Park, Banten, Indonesia (C) Shutterstock

Ujung Kulon National Park is one of the few park that has a complete vegetation, from rich underwater life, beach vegetation, to mountains. There are at least 700 floras in this area, 57 of them are rare species. Apart from that, there are also several must-visit spots such as Cidaon Savanna where most herbivores here graze.

Tanjung Layar in Ujung Jaya, at the very tip of Java is a nice place to observe the ship traffic in this strait. If you go to Handeleum Island, you can even explore it via its river, the Cigenter River.

How to get to Ujung Kulon and what to do there

The beauty of Cigenter River, at Handeuleum island, Ujung Kulon National Park, Indonesia (c) Shutterstock
The beauty of Cigenter River, at Handeuleum island, Ujung Kulon National Park, Indonesia (c) Shutterstock

Ujung Kulon is accessible via sea or overland route. From Jakarta, you can drive to Ujung Kulon via Serang – Pandeglang – and Ujung Kulon. This route will probably take approximately six hours. Be aware that the road inside the park is not at the best condition.

The park is also accessible by sea from Carita or Tanjung Lesung that will land on Peucang Island, where the representative office of the park is located. The easiest way to explore the park is of course by booking a tour from an agency. You can choose a surfing package, safari package, or island hopping package. Next

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