Ijen plateau or known as “Kawah Ijen” is highly recommended to mountain buffs and hikers. The Plateau was at one time a huge active crater, 134 sq km in area. Today, Ijen is a quiet but active volcano, and the landscape is dominated by the volcanic cones of Ijen (2,368 asl) and Merapi (2,800 asl) on the northeastern edge of the Plateau, and Raung (3,332 asl) on the southwest corner.
The magnificent turquoise sulfur lake of Kawah Ijen lies at 2148 m above sea level and is surrounded by the volcanos sheer crater walls. The vent is a source of sulfur and collectors work here, making the trek up to the crater and down to the lake every day. Sulfur collectors hike up in the morning and return around 1 pm when the clouds roll in. They carry shoulder basket of pure sulfur from a quarry on the lakes edge under the shadow of the sheer walls of the crater. The mineral at Kawah Ijen is purer and is worth commercial exploitation despite the horrendous labor involved: Javas homegrown sulfur is a natural source of sulfuric acid, in great demand in the oil-refining business and in the production of fertilizers.
If you realy want to visit the Ijen Plateau and are interested in what it has to offer, environmentally and historicaly, you need to spent more than one night.
The water falls 30 meters. From a distance, you can see the different colours; some of the water comes from a sulphurous spring that flows from Kalipahit, making the water a murky brown. When it meets cool clear water to form a mountain stream, the colour difference is striking, making the waterfall truly unique. Water from the river Pahit flows with such a brute force, that the water hurtles down. It is impossible to see the ‘end’, because a water fog blocks your sight. Hot water with sulphur boils out of the soil near the river Pahit as well as near the waterfall, sometimes resulting in small waterfalls flowing to the Blawan waterfall.
A lot of heat is leaving the area of Kawah Ijen and the Ijen Plateau, through both the lake and hot springs. Temperatures of up to 225 degrees Celcius were measured in the fumarole-solfatara of the crater lake. The heat flow from the solfatara area is estimated to be ten times as large as the heat flow from all the hot springs together in the Ijen Plateau. There are 12 springs recorded in the area, most of them in the Blawan area. The Blawan springs are probably fed from a source directly below. The water that reaches the surface has a temperature of around 40 to 50 degrees Celcius. The springs produce relatively dilute (compared to the crater lake, diltue means that the total amount of dissolved solids in the water is low, like iron and magnesium) and neutral pH (6.4) water.
COFFEE PLANTATION & FACTORY
At your own pace and according to your own interest walking throughng to the coffee plantation Blawan? If you spent an extra day at the Ijen Plateau you have at least some time to inhale the amazing scenery. Especially in the morning, when the sun is not yet at it’s highest point, views are terribly dramatic and colours are still bright and fresh. You have the opportunity to see people at work in de plantation, in the vegetable fields or in the coffee greenhouses.
CIVET COFFEE (KOPI LUWAK) DISCOVERY
Civet or luwak coffee is coffee that has passed the intestines of the mongoose or palm civet. It is believed that those coffee beans have a different taste compared to regular coffee. Although this coffee is known for a long time in Southeast Asia, it only became widely known after publications in the 1980′s. Civet coffee is the most expensive coffeee in the world.
The origin of Kopi Luwak is closely connected with the history of coffee production in Indonesia. In early 18th century the Dutch established the cash-crop plantations in their colony in the Dutch East Indies islands of Java and Sumatra. During the era of Cultuurstelsel (1830—1870), the Dutch prohibited the native farmers and plantation workers to pick coffee fruits for their own use. Soon the natives learned that certain species of musang or luwak (Asian Palm Civet) consumed these coffee fruits, yet they left the coffee seeds undigested in their droppings. The natives collected these Luwak’s droppings. Cleaned, roasted and grinded it to make a coffee beverage. The fame of aromatic civet coffee spread from locals to Dutch plantation owners and soon became their favourite. Yet because of its rarity and unusual process, the civet coffee was even in colonial times expensive.
Arabica Homestay Have breakfast while you’re surrounded by beautiful hills. Take a look at the home industry with strawberries and macadamia nuts.
Catimor Homestay Enjoy the hot spring containing sulphur and the swimming pool at Catimor Homestay. Nearby you can visit the coffee factory and waterfall.
Ijen Resort and Villas The first luxurious hotel in this scenic area. A superb view from your spacious bed room with balcony. 643 meters above sea level.
Ijen Resto & Guest House You start yout trip to Mt Ijen in Banyuwangi? There are some options to spent the night on your way to Mt Ijen. Ijen Resto & Guest House is a good choice.