On the southwestern tip of West Java is a wildlife reserve of 51.000 hectares covering the Ujung Kulon peninsula and the nearby islands of Panaitan and Peucang. The reserve is a dense forest and is the home of the last surviving one-horned rhinoceros of which only 50 remain. Ujung Kulon is accessible by boat and the closest departure point is Labuan on the west coast.
An entry permit is needed, issued by the Forestry Service (Perlindungan Hutan dan Pelestarian Alam) at Labuan. The dense forest provides a natural habitat for many species of rhinoceros, wild ox, deer, wild boar, panthers, crocodiles, snakes and birds. Visitors are only allowed up to the buffer zone where rustic accomodation is available on Peucang island where towers are erected to be able to observe the animals undisturbedly.
Marine life in the surrounding seas is a kaleidoscope of colors. Beautiful sea gardens are found off Peucang and Panaitan islands. There are no scuba facilities in Ujung Kulon. 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.
A stay of at least two days on the reserve is recommended where food provisions should be taken along.
This is the coastal area where the Dutch formerly landed to trade. Banten has few relics to show of its past grandeur, however, there are the ruins of powerful Moslem kingdoms such as the palaces of Surosowan and Kaibon, the grand mosque of Mesjid Agung Banten (1599) and a Dutch fortress and an old Chinese temple.
Baduy Cultural Conservation
The Baduy community in Banten is an utterly unique and closed society which can be reached via a 10 km village road from either Cibolegar or Cibungur village in the Leuwidamar district. The 50 km road from Rangkasbitung is steep. In April and May, the Baduy community is closed to outsiders, as during this time it commemorates certain ceremonies, called Seba, the offering of part of their agricultural products to the Head of the District, Sub-Regent and the Chief Resident. During this ceremony the "Puun of Baduy" sends out a group of representatives of Baduy Dalam people as well as Baduy Luar to act as the community's spokesmen. When conducting this Seba ceremony the Baduy Dalam members refuse to ride any vehicle, instead, the distance of 150 km is traveled on foot as proof of their perseverance.
To enter this very special Baduy area, one should obtain written permission from the Rangkasbitung District Office stating the purpose of the visit which may take one whole week to process.
Karang Bolong Beach
The name Karang Bolong means Rock (karang) with a Hole (bolong). This may have been some frozen lava, formed during the eruption of Mount Krakatau. The Rock forms a gate facing the sea, making it look very picturesque. There is a small forest which has been converted into a recreation spot. There is a river flowing down to the sea where people can have a bath of fresh water after swimming in the salty sea.
Salira Indah Beach
About 15 km from the Merak bus station is the Salira Indah beach resort, located at scening Tanjung Pujut.
This resort on Java's west coast can easily be reached within a few hours from Jakarta either by bus or car.
Dua Island (Pulau Dua)
Dua Island is the name of a small nature preservation inhabited by some 50 kinds of fish-eating birds. These birds originated from Africa, Asia and Australia and stay on this island to lay and hatch their eggs during April through August each year and fly back home afterwards. It is located in the Banten bay and is accessible by boat from Tanjung Priok sea harbor or from Marina, Ancol.
A rocky isle of 500 m2, it is located 127 km south of Rangkasbitung or 120 km west of scenic Pelabuhan Ratu. The isle functions as a tide breaker as well, so that the inward beach is safe for a variety of marine sports which would have been threatened by the menacing tides of the Indian Ocean.
The isle has a forest conservation park and rubber estate.