Banten is the latest province found in the Island of Java. Banten was once part of the West Java Province, but was made province in 2000. This province boasts a unique ethnic group named Baduy Dalam tribe which is the indigenous people of Sundanese Banten who still strongly hold on their tradition of anti-modernization; they keep their traditional outfit and other lifestyles. The indigenous people living in Banten areas speak their own dialect derived from the Old Sundanese Language.
It was on this stretch of coastal land that the colonial Dutch first landed in Indonesia to trade. The town still houses remains of the once powerful Islamic Banten Kingdom, founded between 16th and 18th centuries AD. Among the relics of Banten’s rich history are the palaces of Surosowan and Kaibon, Masjid Agung (Grand Mosque) Banten (1599), a Dutch fortress and an old Chinese temple.
The potential and uniqueness of the culture owned by the Banten people, among others are the martial art called ‘pencak silat’ and debus and Mask Dance. In Banten we can also find architectural heritage such as the Old Great Mosque of Banten, the Cemetery of Keramat Panjang, and many others.
When we visit the Banten Province, spend some time to see this one of its kind performance called Debus. Debus is a martial art so popular in Banten and is one of the leading attractions offered to the tourists.
Debus is a combination of martial art and body invincibility which shows an extraordinary ability of man. The players stab themselves with sharp objects, burning themselves in fire, drinking sulfuric acid, putting stuffs in throat, frying eggs on head top and so on.
Those who like to see the performance of Debus can visit the debus art communities in Banten Province which only take about 2.5 hours drive from Jakarta. Other than that, tourists can also enjoy Debus performance in special occasions like cultural festivals, regional tourism promotion, commemoration of the independence of Indonesia and celebration of the anniversary of Banten Province.
National Park of Ujung Kulon
National Park of Ujung Kulon is one of many national park and natural conservation locations in Indonesia. UNESCO has confirmed that Ujung Kulon area is the world’s natural conservation. In this location, tourists can enjoy the beauty of tropical forest and onehorned rhinoceros that is the ultimate attraction of this national park.
National Park of Ujung Kulon comprises a number of small islands; among others are Peucang Island, Handeulem Island and Panaitan Island. The highest location is the Mount Honje. The special feature of this national park is its role as the natural habitat for diverse preserved animal species such as Javanese rhinoceros, deer, wild ox, a range of primates, wild boar, leopard cat, lemuridae and various types of bird.
Tourists can visit this place either through Labuan (Carita Beach) or through sea route with a rental boat in order to reach one of the islets. The tariff for speedboat is around Rp 3-3.5 million rupiah for a day. Tourism infrastructure such as inns, information center, tourist guide and transportation infrastructure are also available.
Baduy Traditional Community
The indigenous population of Banten occupies an area of 5,101 hectares. It comprises two tribes: the Inner and Outer Baduy. Unlike the majority of Banten’s Moslem population, the Baduy are strict followers of an ancient form of Hindu who choose to live in harmony with nature and avoid the modern lifestyle. The area is located in Lebak Regency.
Keraton Surosowan (Surosowan Palace) was built during the reign of Sultan Maulana Hasanuddin (1525-1552). Sadly, most of the structure has been damaged and only the walls encircling the fortress remain. According to old maps, a ditch used to encircle the palace complex. It was said that small ships could to sail along the ditch or along the canals and into the open sea.
Tasikardi at Margasana village, Kramatwatu District, is part of the archeological complex of Old Banten. During the period of the Banten Kingdom, Tasikardi irrigated its rice fields and has a water treatment facility for the Surosowan Palace.
Speelwijk Fortress is located at Kampung Pamarican, in the Banten Bay. It was once used as the fortress of the Sultanate of Banten before the arrival and subsequent occupation by Dutch colonists.
Taman Jaya is a wood carving community located near Ujung Kulon National Park
Pulau Dua/Pulau Burung (Bird Island)
Pulau Dua/Pulau Burung (Bird Island) is a natural bird conservation located about 1.5 kilometers from the northern side of Karanghantu Harbor. It can be reached by motorized or sailboats in 15 minutes. From April to August the island is visited by thousands of birds migrating from Africa, Asia and Australia to lay and hatch their eggs.
The Tower of Bojong
The Tower of Bojong was built in 1885 by the Dutch. This historical eighteen-storied lighthouse at Anyer Kidul stands 75,7 meters high and commands a spectacular view of the picturesque Anyer coastline.
Karang Bolong Beach
Karang Bolong Beach is located 50 kilometers from Serang, or 140 kilometers from Jakarta. Karang Bolong Beach is a beach recreation area named after a large rock with a hole in its center stands facing the open sea.
Batu Kuwung Hot Springs
Water from the spring can reach up to 70-80° C (156-176° F). The hot water is iodized but does not contain sulfur.
Rangkasbitung in Lebak Regency is a center of opal and onyx crafts.
Bumi Jaya in Serang Regency produces exceptional export-quality pottery.
There are eleven 18-hole golf courses and one driving range across Banten, with luxurious facilities and first class accommodation.
Umang Island, with its white sandy beach overlooking the crystal clear sea, is located 183 kilometers - about 4 hours driving or 5 minutes by boat - from Jakarta. The island has a resort and spa facilities in which to relax in natural surroundings, and offers a magnificent view of Krakatau and the Ujung Kulon National Park.
Masjid Agung Banten
This magnificent mosque complex in Old Banten is located about 10 kilometers north of Serang, the present-day capital of Banten Province. The building showcases some of the grandest and most unique architectural elements found anywhere across Java or Indonesia.
Keraton Kaibon (Kaibon Palace)
It is located in the village of Kroya beside the Old Banten road, approximately 7 kilometers from the town of Serang and 1 kilometers from Surosowan Palace. The name is a reference to Queen Asiah, who once ruled the kingdom in the stead of her 5 year old son-king.