Most of Ujung Kulon National Park has always been a wilderness and only last century was described as "a place desolate and frigthening, never trodden by Javanese". However, isolated communitieswere once established along the shorelines and its waters have provided shelter and food for early mariners for many centuries.
Around the Gunung Honje Range live the people of this region, the Sundanese of south-west Banten. These 42,000 inhbitants who speak a dialect of the Sundanese language, live in numerous villages kampungs outside the eastern boundary of the park.
With live based on their traditional culture, 90% of the local people still live off the land and the sea using age old methods. Their staple rice diet is supplemented by corn, sweet potatoes, cassaava, beans and cucumber crops and tropical fruits like bananas, rambutan, mangosteen, jambu and the highly appreciated durian. Cloves and coconut are sold elsewhere to bring money into communities. The villagers also raise oxen, goats, sheep, ducks, geese and chickens and collect wild honey and palm sap.
Sundanese society is based upon large extended family who provide support and aassistance within the family. The saying "whether we eat or not, as long as we are together" prevails as family relationships are very strong.
Until this century, it was the hunting, fishing and gathering grounds for these communities and although they are still able to collect forest produce in the park's buffer zone area, agriculture, hunting and fishing are illegal inside the park.
The three entrance points for visitors to Ujung Kulon National Park are Taman Jaya, Peucang Island and Handeuleum Island. Two less visited regions, Panaitan Island and the Gunung Honje Range, can be reached from these entrance points or direct from Labuan. One thing that you should not miss is the debus attraction by local people (This attraction will be showed by arrangement).
The village of Taman Jaya, where the road down the coastline ends, is just outside the park boundary. This is the main entry point for trekking into the park and visiting Handeuleum island.
The unique and delightful island of Peucang lies in clear blue waters off the north western coastline of the Ujung Kulon Penninsula. its white sand beaches and coral reef shore hold a fascinating world of marine life while Peucang's impressive forest shelters an abundance of wildlife, some of which graze and play around the lodges.
Swimming and Diving
Peucang island's beach is superb for swimming and shallow snorkelling reefs are also found all along the shore. For deeper snorkelling there are coral reefs to the east, widway between the island and mainland. Scuba diving areas are also found to the west and at several other locations off Peucang island.
Walks and Trips
- Karang Copong Walk (3 km, 50 mins)
- Citerjun Terraces Trip (1.5 km, 15 mins)
- Cidaon Grazing Grounds Trip (800 metres, 20 mins)
- Cijungkulon River Trip (1.5 km, 1 hr)
- Cibunar Walk (7 km, 3.5 hrs)
- Tanjung Layar Walk (5 km, 1 hr)
- Tanjung Layar Walk -via Cidaon(6.5 km, 3 hrs)
- Ciramea Walk (6 km, 1.5 hrs)
- Ciramea Walk -via Tanjung Layar (6 km, 1.5 hrs)
- Handeuleum island walk (1 km, 25 mins)
- Cigenter grazing ground trip (1.5 km, 30 mins)
- Cigenter river trip (5 km, 2.5 hrs)
- Cihandeuleum walk (2-3 km, 1-3 hrs)
- Cikabeumbeum and Cihandeuleum rivers trip (2km, 1-2 hrs)
PANAITAN ISLAND AREA
Panaitan's hills rise from pristine forest with wildlife of deer, pigs, monkeys, crocodiles, monitor lizards, large phytons and a wide variety of bird life to the ancient Hindu statues on the summit of Gunung Raksaa. Panaitan islaand's rugged coastline and wide sandy beaches shelter several scuba diving reefs and create exceptional surfing waves.
SURVING AND DIVING
There are several good scuba diving locations off Panaitan Island's northern and eastern shores including the reef of Batu Pitak near Legon Butun but diving around Panaitan Island is not recommended for beginers.
WALKS AND TRIPS
- Gunung Raksa walk (4 km, 1 hr)
- Legon Sabini walk (12 km, 4 hrs)
- Gunung Honje walk (9 km, 3 hrs)
- Cegog via Rancecet (6km, 1.5 hrs)