Berhala Island

Tanjung Jabung Timur

The Makalam Bridge

Jambi City

Mount Kerinci


Berbak National Park

Tanjung Jabung Timur

Zapin Dance

A Famous Malayan Traditional Dance


Article: Songket, Luxuries Behind Traditional Weaving Craft

Have you found a traditional weaving craft for millions of rupiah? You will notice that songket weaving craft prices are started from a million to 7 millions rupiah if you buy from its weaver studio directly, or there is additional 1-2 millions rupiah added at retailer level. Traditional weaving craft called songket have luxury impressions in apparently, the difficulties in producing a songket can be reflected from time taken to create a piece of cloth. Averagely, a weaver can finish a cloth of songket in a month or more depending on how difficult to patterning the cloth. If we assume there is order to provide ten pairs of songket, it means a weaver can only finish the job order in 20 months.

Kerinci: Lake Gunung Tujuh, Amazing View From Highest Lake in Southeast Asia

Surrounded by seven mounts: Mount Hulu Tebo (2,525 m), Mount Hulu Sangir (2,330 m), Mount Madura Besi (2,418 m), Mount Lumut (2,350 m), Mount Selasih (2,230 m), Mount Jar Panggang (2.469 m), and Mount Tujuh (2.735 m) makes this young caldera lake as highest freshwater lake in Southeast Asia. Situated in Kerinci Regency, precisely in Kayu Aro sub-district about 55 km from Sungai Penuh City, the lake is the most favorite place for mountaineers and hikers who are visiting Kerinci. What you will get is an amazing view of the lake, especially when sun is rising on dawn. For domestic visitors or other people from tropical or desert countries and not accustomed with mount weather, you better bring you thick sweaters or jackets because average temperature at the lake is about 17-18 Celsius degree with lake shrouded by mist on a few corners.

FYI: Flight Schedules From Jambi

Jambi is being served by four national airlines and a few local airlines. There are 10 flights to Jakarta from Jambi daily, with schedules:

A daily flight to Batam is being served by Sriwijaya Airline, depart on 12.00 AM from Jambi.

FYI: Options To Reach Jambi

Jambi position in Sumatera make people who wants to reach it can travel easier with many options may be selected. People can travel to Jambi by plane, vehicle, or speedster. For domestic tourist, normally they start or transit in Jakarta before taking plane to Jambi directly. If you spend your previous visit in northern Sumatera like Medan or Aceh then you can travel by vehicle to southward or flying to Batam where you can have plane to Jambi directly. If vehicle is your choice then you can make trip through eastern state roads from Pekanbaru of Riau Province to enter Muaro Jambi Regency, or you can pick center state roads from Sibolga City of Sumatera Utara Province to enter Bungo Regency, those are the trip lines you can travel from northern. From Batam you may pick speedboat to reach Jambi City via Kuala Tungkal, the capital of Tanjung Jabung Barat Regency whereabouts takes 2 hours before Jambi City by vehicle on next trip. For people who make visit from southern Sumatera like Lampung or Sumatera Selatan, they can travel to northward with 2 options, the first one is to use eastern state roads which can deliver you to Jambi City about 5-6 hours traveling by vehicle from Palembang. The second one is to use center state roads that will make you to visit Sarolangun Regency first before reaching Jambi City on next 3-4 hours by vehicle. Another option is from Padang, the capital of Sumatera Barat Province, which means you come from western Sumatera, from there you may rent vehicle for traveling to Jambi to eastward through Kerinci Regency (275 km from Padang) or Bungo Regency (280 km from Padang). From Bengkulu Province, there is a road from Rejang Lebong Regency of Bengkulu Province that met with center state roads intersection about 2 hours before Sarolangun Regency, this road cut through hills and mountain giving you a different atmosphere of Sumatera.

FYI: Public Transport Availability in Jambi City

As capital of Jambi Province, City of Jambi have many varieties of public transport services. From "angkot" or "ojeg" to airplane, and from boat to large size buses. When you need vehicle for your trip, except within the city and you are not planning to rent a vehicle, you need to make sure which direction your trip is from Jambi City. It helps you to pick which company of public transport service correctly. And it also helps you when you catch the public transport service not in their official ticket box which it means you will pay cheaper for its ticket price.

Tg. Jabung Timur: Berhala Island

And now, we will fly to the easternmost of Jambi Province, to visit and experience another side of Jambi, Island of Berhala. These unique island originally are groups of isle with coastal boulders, hills, white sand, cliffs, groves, and bushes. If you imagine it would be a great place for a romantic atmosphere, yes, there you go. But once again, you may find the trip to reach there is not as easy as starting a romantic dream. Berhala Island is 10 kilometers square small isle and have a few populations there. Presently, Jambi Province is claiming the isle as part of the province while the neighbor province, Province of Kepulauan Riau is doing the same. Both provinces have same reasons and arguments, history background. This dispute puts them trying to leave their mark at the isle, you will find that the isle have 2 docks which were built and being managed by two local governments. And population is also divided into two locals that represented to each province. Okay, let it be. :)

We assume City of Jambi would be our home base, then your first checkpoint is to reach Nipah Panjang, a little riverside town, capital of a sub-district in Tanjung Jabung Timur Regency. There are 2 options to travel the route, the first one, you may travel by vehicle to Suak Kandis and then from Suak Kandis to Nipah Panjang by boat. This first option would take about 1:30 hours (Jambi City to Suak Kandis) and next trip about 1:10 minutes more (Suak Kandis to Nipah Panjang). Even takes time much longer, this option will give you various scenery and panoramas. The second choice is to take boat from Jambi City directly to Nipah Panjang, it would be about 2:30 hours traveling the trip.

Nipah Panjang is situated in eastern of Tanjung Jabung Timur Regency and is the capital of sub-district of the regency with same name. Most population there are living from marine and plantation products. Even though Nipah Panjang is a town in Jambi but Buginese is dominant there. This little town faces sea lines to Malacca Straits and Java Sea which make this town have been rising to be a port town. From this town, we will take next boat to Berhala Island directly, that trip will take about 3 hours in a good clearly day to arrive at Berhala Island.

Berhala Island
Shortly before really arrive there
And now, we've just arrived at the island. The dock is not really giving us a great welcome, too dirty and nasty, contrast to what we may imagine for the tone. Once again, just let it be. After touch the dock, the first thing we should do is to make sure which one better for our shelter, to build a tent or to pay a lodge. When you are done with shelter stuff, then it is up to you. You can go hiking, fishing, snorkeling, swimming, sunbathing or just sleeping.

Berhala Island
This one is great for swimming
Berhala Island
Or, snorkeling there
Berhala Island
Or, diving there
Berhala Island
Or, sunbathing there
Sunset in Berhala Island
Or, sleeping to catch moment like this one

Muaro Jambi: Temple of Muaro Jambi

Considered as one of the richest cultural and archaeological sites in Sumatera, Muaro Jambi Temple, a Buddhist temple, was built estimated earlier than Borobudur Temple in Central Java province. It can be seen from the journal of a famous Chinese scholar, I Tsing who visited Jambi in the seventh century. Situated in Muaro Jambi village, Muaro Sebo sub-district, Muara Jambi regency, 40 km northeast of Jambi city, Muaro Jambi temple, covers an area of 12 kilometers square, along the side of Batanghari river. There are eight main temples in the complex. All of them are located in the center area, fortified by walls. Three of them, Candi Tinggi, Candi Kedaton, and Candi Gumpung - are already renovated.

Archaeologists conclude that the site was the center of Old Jambi, the capital of ancient Malay kingdom which reigned supreme about ten centuries ago. The capital was siege and destroyed in 1377 by armies from Majapahit. For centuries, the site had been lost and forgotten deep in the jungle, only to be rediscovered in 1823 by SC Crooke, a British lieutenant is to map the Batanghari river watershed for military purposes. In 1982, a 32-centimeters tall female bronze statue was found at Koto Kandis, in the Muara Sabak sub-district. It is believed to be the goddess Laksmi, holding a lotus bud in her left. In addition to the archaeological sites, many visitors find the riverside an ideal recreation and picnic spot.

Temple of Muaro Jambi -
Temple of Muaro Jambi -
Another sculpture
Temple of Muaro Jambi -
Pieces of sculpture
This temple may not be as attractive as Borobudur which was made of volcanic stones displaying the great work of art and whose statues and relief are still intact, but Muaro Jambi was built, just like any other Sumatran temples, with terracotta bricks, which undoubtedly prone to weather. Yet, the remains speak of its glory during its heyday.

Temple of Muaro Jambi -

Temple of Muaro Jambi -

Temple of Muaro Jambi -

Temple of Muaro Jambi -

Temple of Muaro Jambi -

Temple of Muaro Jambi -

There are several temples that can be found in Muaro Jambi Temple site and some of them have been restored; Gumpung temple where the statue of Pradjnaparamita was found. It is the second most beautiful statue after Ken Dedes statue in Singosari, Tinggi temple, Kembar Batu temple, Gedong I and Gedong II temple where Dwarapala statue and Gajah Singa statue were found, Kedaton and Koto Mahligai.

The temple itself or precisely the temple complex can be reached only in half hour by vehicle from Jambi City via the new route. This new route was established since Batanghari II Bridge completely built in east are of Jambi City. The old route takes about 1 hour via Batanghari Bridge in west area of Jambi City.

At a particular time, like Vesak, you may catch how Buddhist monks that come from Jakarta and other countries organize their religious rituals. And it would be more crowded by people (mainly Chinese descents) to visit the temples at the peak of event.

Kerinci: Lake Kaca, as Clear as Glass

Regency of Kerinci have many tourism objects to see. Beside Mount Kerinci, Lake Kerinci, Kayu Aro tea plantation and Semurup hot spring, we may find Lake Kaca is an interesting place and worth enough to make a visit. This lake is located in Gunung Raya sub-district and is part of Kerinci Seblat National Park area which makes the lake surrounded by forest. Unfortunately, the accommodation to reach lake location is not good enough, you may find an annoying trip. But once you are there you would think that the scenery you get pays your effort to reach there.

You may reach lake location from Sungai Penuh City, it would take about an half of hour to Fort Depati Parbo by vehicles. From this point, you have to hike through grove and forest for, at least, 3 hours. Yeah, it's "just" 3 hours and just keep your smile while you are hiking or a famous Sumatran tiger would pounce you. No, I'm kidding you, but seriously, you may encounter them in your trip if you were lucky enough. And still on your trip, you will have to cross a creek (10 meters wide) with swift water currents, swamps, and many leeches (specially in rainy day), so be prepared. And the last stage is to down the 6 meters cliff before you are really at the lake location. If you plan to camp there, consider to pick lakeside area that can cover about 10 dome tents.

Lake Kaca is a small lake, approximately 10-15 meters depth in 900 square meters area (about 30 meters length and 30 meters breadth). The most interesting scenery from this lake you will get when you arrive in lakeside is you can see the bottom of the lake from lakeside because the water is so clear. The perfect time to see Lake Kaca is in clear weather and moonlit night. An amazing scenery would wonder you when you are looking at how the lake shines as if it has light source from the deep.

Lake Kaca -
Lake Kaca, from lakeside in a sunny day
Lake Kaca -
A view from another corner
The "Kaca" itself means glass, this name given to describe how clear the lake water is as clear as glass. A beautiful thing that would accompany and entertain you while you are hiking to lake location is song whistled by various birds. You may catch horn bills, sriguntings, and endemic Sumatran birds, tangkar uli. Beside birds, you may hear roars and cries of primates like siamang. And when you reach the lake and standing by lakeside, you will find semah fishes dancing there.

Here are tips to make your trip to Lake Kaca:
  • If you plan to make round trip in a day you need to prepare your physic condition, since accommodations you will get are too minimum, including public health accommodations.
  • Try to start the trip on 06.00-07.00AM, it would help you not in hurry when you make home trip.
  • Considering to wear boots is good choice, it would help you in mud holes and when you cross the creek.
  • Try to apply mosquito repellent to prevent leeches' bites.
  • And don't forget to bring your raincoats to anticipate local tropical forest rain.
  • And the last one is to bring your emergency medical equipment.
Good luck and have nice trip then... :)