There is a quite famous volcano in Bandung called Tangkuban Parahu. It is about an hour’s drive from the centre of Bandung, easy to visit, you can drive or catch one of plenty of public buses going up this Volcano as it has good parking, a poorly maintained walking trail and several tourist shops and restaurants near the crater.
There’s an ancient story about this volcano that apparently looks like an upside down boat.
TANGKUBAN PERAHU : One upon a time in west Java, Indonesia lived a wise king who had a beautiful daughter. Her Dayang Sumbi , she like weaving very much. Once she was weaving a cloth when one of her tool fell to the ground. She was very tired at the time so, she was too lazy to take it . Then she just shouted . ” Anybody there ? Bring me my tool. I will give you special present. If you are female , consider you as my sister. If you are male, marry you . Suddenly a male dog, its name was Tumang came, He brought her falling tool. Dayang Sumbi was very surprised. She regretted her words but she could not deny it. So, she had marry Tumang and leave her father . Then they lived in a small village Several months later they had a son. His name was Sangkuriang , he was handsome and healthy boy .
Sangkuriang liked hunting very much, He often went hunting to the wood using his arrow. When he went hunting Tumang always with him. in the past there were many deer in Java so, Sangkuriang often hunted for deer.
One day Dayang Sumbi wanted to have deer’s heart so, she asked Sangkuriang to hunt for a deer. Then Sangkuriang went to the wood with his arrow and his faithful dog Tumang. But, after several day’s in the wood Sangkuriang could not find any deer, They were all disappeared. Sangkuriang was exhausted and desperate. He did not want to disappoint her mother so he killed Tumang. He did not know that Tumang was his Father , At home he gave Tumang,s heart to the mother.
But Dayang Sumbi knew it was Tumang,s heart. she was angry that she could not control her emotion. She hit Sangkuriang at hes head. Sangkuriang was wounded, There was a scar in his head. She also repelled her son , and then Sangkuriang left her mother in sadness.
Many years passed and Sangkuriang became a strong young man. He wandered everywhere. one day he arrive at his own village but, he did not realize it. There he meet Dayang Sumbi. At the time Dayang Sumbi was given an eternal beauty by God so, she stayed young forever. Both of them did not know each other. So, they fell in love and then decided to marry.
But then Dayang Sumbi recognized a scar on his Sangkuriang head. She know that Sangkuriang was her son. It was impossible for them to marry , She told him but, he did’t believe her. He wished that they marry soon. so, Dayang Sumbi give a very difficult condition. She wanted Sangkuriang to build a lake and a boat in one night, She said , she needed that for honeymoon.
Sangkuriang agree with the help of genie and spirits Sangkuriang tried to build them. By midnight he must finished the lake by building a dam . in Citarum river, Then he started building the boat. It was almost done when he nearly finishe it , Meanwhile Dayang Sumbi keep watching on them. She was worried when she know this so, she made lights in the east. Then the spirits thought that it was already done. It was time for them to leave they left Sangkuriang alone. Without their help he could not finish the boat
Sangkuriang was very angry so he kicked the boat. Which caused the boat to become Mount Tangkuban Perahu it means a boat upside down and from a distance it looks like a boat upside down.
Since it is well above sea level it is considered cold. Thus you can buy your traditional rabbit fur hat with ear muffs and tail thingy here. The crater, as seen from the car park. (which becomes a bit of a bun fight later in the morning.)
We followed a small track left, and then continued, that last shopkeeper told us it was impossible to walk around the crater, and should not be attempted. (I guess Indonesians are not used to walking outdoors. ). We climbed along the ridge visible from left to right
Rock scramble down. Craters on either side, weather closing in. On the right you can see the middle ridge line that we walked across. While we were we could only see 1-2 metres due to bad weather.
We found a volcano research station up the top, seen in the google earth picture. A fellow (Scientist) let us in to have a look around, but it was fairly dilapidated. Outside was a small shop, with tarpaulin roof, selling drinks and instant noodles. Both were welcome, as we were fairly hot and sweaty at this stage. While sitting there we passed a Singaporean couple walking and a Dutch family.
As we started back off the weather began closing in, and as we cut across the middle of the two craters, visibility dropped to 1-2 metres, cold rain lashed down and the ground turned to rivers of mud. Great, parts of this scramble involved a 1-2 metre rock climbs, over a series of ledges of about 10 metres in height, which didn’t make me feel very comfortable or safe.
Finally we got to the other side, and stopped for some food and drink. I was knackered, in fact the trek took us about 3 hours, but halfway around I had a wardrobe malfunction, ie my pants spilt, big time.
It got better, my car had a slight problem the water pump to the radiator had burst. We had to leave the car and catch some local angcots (public mini bus) with said split pants back to our hotel while some mechanics drove out to repair the car.
Despite the problems I would rate this trip,