Ujung Kulon National Park
Ujung Kulon National park is an isolated untamed wilderness on the southwestern tip of Java. The Dutch opened this park in 1921 to protect the threatened Javanese rhinoceros. Now the area covers about 760 sq km including Panaitan Island. It is one of the best places in Java for wildlife spotting. There are many kinds of animal species, which can be seen. They are birds, wild pigs, hornbills, river otters, deer, crocodiles and the Javanese rhinoceros. The crocodiles and the Javanese rhinoceros are rare seen but we never know.
The best time to visit Ujung Kulon is between April and October. To get there and to get information about the park the visitors have to go to Labuhan where the PHPA at the coastal road can give us all information and arranges our permit for the park. An entry permit is needed, issued by the Forestry Service / PHPA (Perlindungan Hutan dan Pelestarian Alam) at Labuan. From here we can also take the boat to Ujung Kulon. The boat leaves on Mondays and Fridays and returns on Sundays and Thursdays.
Handeuleum Island is at the northern bay of Ujung Kulon and offers also a small guesthouse. Peucang Island at the western tip of Ujung Kulon also has a guesthouse and also a small restaurant. Marine life in the surrounding seas is a kaleidoscope of colors. Beautiful sea gardens are found off Peucang and Panaitan islands. From one of these two islands we can start to explore the park. In the park are several posts of the PHPA where we can stay over for the night. If we want to hike in the park we must hire a guide from the PHPA in Tamanjaya. It is wise to bring our own food and sleeping back if we want to stay over for the night in the park. If we want to walk around the whole park along the tracks it will take us about 3 three days (45km). On the western tip of the peninsula is a lighthouse built by the Dutch, which stands near the site of the ruins of the old one.
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