Indonesia has no shortage of mountains to climb and volcanoes to explore. Many require long hikes to reach but others are also accessible by car or motorcycle via road. This one happens to be one of latter. Plus after my last rather depressing post on Kebun Binatang Bandung it was time to highlight the city’s better side: Tangkuban Perahu volcano!
Located about 30 km north of Bandung, Tangkuban Perahu volcano is easily accessible and makes for a great day-trip. In fact the 2,084 metre (6,837 feet) high mountain is one of Java’s more popular tourist attractions, both among locals and tourists.
The Sudanese name translates as “upturned boat” and is based upon a local legend. Unfortunately I do not remember this legend well enough to try and explain it myself, sorry.
The last eruption was less than six months ago!
Back in February and March of 2013 Tangkuban Perahu once again began spewing ash 500 meters (1,640 feet) into the air. For several weeks the entire area within 1.5km was cordoned off. Luckily no lava hit the surface then, and has not since 1983. But ever since March visitors are no longer able to hike down to view the boiling mud up close and buy eggs cooked on the hot surface.
Nowadays there is a cluster of small shops up at the top of the crater. They sell a variety of souvenirs and food, including corn on the cob and cooked eggs — only now they are cooked on charcoal fires and not the hot ground of the volcano, is in previous years.
If you have time you can even hike all the way around the top of the crater!
Lava eruptions at Tangkuban Perahu have occurred in 1896, 1910, 1926, 1929, 1952, 1957, 1961, 1965, 1967, 1969, and most recently 1983. Judging by that trend and the ash clouds that were released a few months back, it sounds as if the volcano may be nearing another eruption. Go visit it while you still can!