We started Day 4 of our trip quite early as we had made plans to spend half of the day sightseeing and the other half shopping. Given the distances that we planned to travel, we decided the day before to charter a taxi for the whole day which cost us 500,000 Rph excluding toll charges and entry fees. After having a simple but filling breakfast of nasi goreng prepared by our homestay host, we left Bandung heading to even higher altitudes to visit the craters that the area was famous for. While most visitors to Bandung would head towards Tangkuban Perahu for their spot of crater sightseeing, we opted instead to visit the less popular and more distant Kawah Putih crater.
Being less popular meant that even some taxi drivers had trouble figuring out how to get there which unfortunately included our taxi driver. He had to stop a few times along the way to ask for directions to Kawah Putih from the locals which gave us a chance to appreciate the surrounding scenery. The drive to Kawah Putih took us nearly 2 hours through the town of Kapo where the narrow single lane road was crowded with all manner of vehicles. Quite a number of times our taxi was surrounded by other cars, buses, lorries, becak, horse drawn carts and not to mention pedestrians on foot. It was definitely the image that one would conjure when thinking about the population density of Java. Looking back, I think the massive number of people on the road could be attributed to what seemed to me to be their market day since everyone seems to be converging to the main market there.
After the chaos of Kapo, the traffic began to thin out as we approach the winding roads into Ciwedey. As the roads start to wind into higher altitudes, the temperature began to noticeably dropped into more welcomed coolness compared to the muggy temperature in the lowlands. Due to the lower temperate temperatures, Ciwedey was also famous for it’s strawberry which one could see planted in plots outside of almost every other house in the area. All these plots had signs that invited people to stop and pick their own strawberries but unfortunately for us, their strawberries were not in season and we could not stop to pick them. We did get a spot to stop where we got to stretch out our legs and take photos of the surrounding padi fields and strawberry plots to remember the place by.
(R: Padi terrace and L: Strawberry plots at Ciwidey)
(Strawberries not yet ready for picking at Chiwidey)
(Sign at entrance to Kawah Putih, Ciwidey, Bandung)
(On approach to the Kawah Putih lake)
(Some views surrounding the lake)
(Sample of vegetation surrounding the lake)
(Scenes that we saw when the mist was blown off the lake surface by the winds)
We spent almost 2 hours at the lake taking pictures of it and ourselves at the lake knowing that it was not something that we get to see that often. For me personally, it was something that I always dreamed to see and here I was seeing the beauty of a lake in a crater of a volcano in Indonesia. It was then that I really felt that this trip was becoming all that I had planned and dreamed about and that this was really just the beginning of our journey of discovery.