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Jambi Sumatra Information

Jambi Sumatra information, cultural, history of Jambi and places of interest includes the myth legend, fauna, flora, tiger conservation and heritages.

The Early history of Jambi
The river port of Jambi, the capital of the province of that name, is situated in the central region of Sumatra on the river Batanghari which flows east into the Berhala Straits. Jambi is positioned on the busy sea route between China and India , and the region played a major part in early maritime trade. The Tang Annals record that as early as the seventh century A.D. and again in the ninth century Jambi sent ambassadors to the court of Chinese emperor ( Wang Gungwu 1958;74). These earliest records of Jambi show it to have been the original capital of Melayu ( Malaya Kingdom ) The ancient Hindu – Buddhist Kingdom of Sriwijaya also had its capital in Jambi at about this time.Muaro jambi, a large temple complex several kilometers downstream from the present capital may well have been the center of Buddhist learning referred to by the Chinese monk I-Tsing, who traveled from to India in 671. He studied in Sriwijaya for four years, then returned in 689 with four ollaborators, to write two books in the Buddhist pilgrims and Buddhism of his time. It is during they stay that he noted that Malayu ” is now the country of Sriwijaya”.Scholars have differed in their interpretations of this remark,certainly the relationship between Melayu and Sriwijaya was a very close one, although there were some clearly period of Malay independence when Sriwijaya was based in nearby Palembang. By the eleventh century the capital had certainly moved to Jambi ( Wolters 1970:2 ). As well as functioning as an entreport, Jambi also produced its own exports including a variety of tree resins for use as incense, as well as cloves, tortoise-shell, gardenia flowers and cardamom. From Arab traders it imported cotton, fabrics and sword blades ; from China silk gauzes and thread, the latter possibly used in the manufacturer of silk brocades decorated in gold supplementary weft, the “songket” for which the Malay world later became famous.

The Myth and Legend
Oral traditions establish the roots of Jambi’s relationship with Java and the founding of the kingdom and Islam within it. According to the legend, in the fifteenth century a Turkish prince, shipwrecked on the coast, met and married Putri Selaras Pinang Masak (lit.Princess Ripe Betel-nut ), the ruler of the coastal kingdom of Tanjung Jabung, around the lower riches of the Batanghari River. The couple had four children, of whom one, Orang Kayo Hitam, became the central hero figure in Jambi Legend.
Places of Interest

The Javanese kingdom of Mataram was at that time demanding tribute from Tanjung Jabung and when orang kayo hitam was a young man he determined to put a stop to this. He traveled in disguise to the mataram capital, where a master smith was forging a kris with which to kill him. Orang Kayo Hitam killed the smith and seized the kris, which he later took back to Jambi. There it becomes known as Kris Siginjei, the symbol of royal power in Jambi. The stories goes that the Javanese ruler, fearing the wrath of Orange Kayo Hiram, called for a truce and sealed the agreement by arranging a marriage between his daughter Ratumas Pemalang and Orang Kayo Hitam.
Another legend tells the incorporation of the upriver region into the kingdom and the establishment of the Jambi capital at Tanah Pilih, or chosen land , its present site. Orang Kayo Hitam is said to have journeyed upriver into the interior where he came across a log with a lock of black hair entwined around it, the hair, he thought of a beautiful girl.
He sees off in search for her and eventually came to a village where he found her guardians. As was the norm on occasions when men with magic powers met, he was challenged to single combat. Both he and his adversary leapt, thrust and struck at each other using all the skill of pencak silat, and the fight went on for several days. Eventually, however, orang kayu hitam proved the stronger.

As his prize, he asked the girl’s guardian if he could marry her, but they were extremely reluctant for this strange black man to marry Mayang Mangurai, as she was called. They set him a test, traditionally considered to be impossible to fulfill. The test was in four parts. First he must hand over a mortarful of gold, second, the hollow of a blowpipe, third the sleeve of a shit, and fourth, a measure of louse heads. He had a year and a day to perform these tasks. Orange Kayo Hiram set off to Java where he easily obtained the gold. Neither did the other requirements present him with any difficulties.
On his return, the wedding gifts were handed over and the guardians had to concede. After the wedding, the young couple set off down the river in a small covered boat, following a pair of white geese. Mayang Menguarai’s father had told them that when the geese left the water and settled on the bank for two days and two nights, there they should build a city. The place was this occurred was then known as the Tanah Pilih. When Orang Kayo Hitam struck the ground for the first time with his knife, he hit a gong buried in the earth. When he hit the second time he hit a cannon. Many believed these to be the parents of the girl, transformed in their graves. Others believed that they had fled into the forests rather than embrace Islam. There they became the ancestor of Kubu People ( Suku Anak Dalam ), the forest dwellers that have retained their animist beliefs and hunter-gatherer existence.

jambi sumatra information

Jambi Sumatra Information and Places of Interest

BATANGHARI
Cagar alam hutan Bulian is a central conservation of kayu Bulian (Evisideroxylon Zwageri). In this forest we could make a research on a unique plant or just having a sightseeing for the beauty of primier forest vegetation. This forest covers about 7480 in square. In order to reach this forest, we have to make a land trip from Jambi city through Muara Bulian town.

Penangkaran buaya, or Crocodile Conservation Center is located on Kebun IX village, in the district of Jambi. It’s about 48 kms out of Jambi city. In this place you can see the conservation system for crocodile using local technology. The brave of the employee in serving the wild animal may give a special impression for you.

Bangko Regency
Sungai Batang Meringin or Batang Meringin river is a great river for rafting sport and adventure. Indonesian Rafting Federation (Federasi Arung Jeram Indonesia – FAJI) has recommended this river as one of rafting sport center in Indonesia. Batang Meringin river has 16 kms in length, and located in Air Batu village (district of sungai Manau). This river is still including the area of Kerinci Seblat National Park.

Goa (cave) Sangering is a cave which has a length of 450 meters. Inside this cave is the home of Wallet bird. In the radius of 2-5 kms of this cave you can find ten other caves with various types. They are goa Tiangko, goa Mesjid, goa Keruh, goa Terentak, goa Pancur, goa Tali, goa Batu, goa Putih, goa Senamat and goa Sungai Batang. These caves are located in the district of sungai Manau, about 9 kms from the center of the town.Known with it’s beautiful original rainforest, mount Masurai is located in sungai Lalang village (district of Muara Siau). You reach this place in 7 hours drive from the Bangko town. The mount itself is about 2,720 meters of height. Climbing this mount is a great and unique experience. ALong your way you will find various wild animals and plants, while two volcanic lakes are waiting for you on the top of the mount.Grao Solar, Grao Nguak and Grao Kunyit are like small stone islands which are surrounded by a great tropical rainforest. The rainforest is the original habitat of elephants and other animals. Grao has a great hot spring which can reach 15 meters. Grao is located in the district of Jangkat, Jambi.

Muaro Jambi
Candi Muaro Jambi or Temple Complex of Muaro Jambi. This complex consists of several temples such as candi Astono, candi Tinggi, candi Gumpung, candi Kembar Batu, Candi Gedong, candi Kedaton and candi Koto Mahligai. There is a pool which was used to bath by the king near the candi Gumpung, namely Telago Rajo. This temple complex was built in 4-5 AD. This complex is located in Muara village, the district of Sekernan, about 25 kms in the north east direction of Jambi city.

Sarolangun
Prasasti Karang Berahi is an important artifact in Jambi. Written down an a natural stone in the year of 686, this artifact tell us about the request of writer to the God for blessing a protection to the kingdom of Sriwijaya and punish everyone who was not loyal to the kingdom. The writer also begged to the God to guarantee the safety of those who loyal to the kingdom.
Cagar Biosfer Bukit Dua Belas is the native palace of suku Anak Dalam or suku Kubu (Anak Dalam tribe). Stated as a conservation area with 28.703 ha of land, this area has a great hot spring water. It’s name is sumber air panas Hitam Pulu. The local people believe that this hot spring could help people to cure any kind of disease.
Danau Depati Empat or Depati Empat lake is a magical lake. When the sun shines over the lake we will see three beautiful colours. Surrounded by a great tropical rainforest, the lake is located in the distrcit of Jangkat.

Muaro Tebo
Taman Nasional Bukit Tiga Puluh or Bukit Tiga Puluh National park was stated as a national park in 1995 with it’s coverage area of 1,270 km2. Rich of biodiversity and endemic animals, this area is also inhabited by the tribes of Talang Mamak, suku Kubu and Malay traditional farmers. This national park is a great asset for Jambi. Integrated Conservation and Development Project (ICDP) has been built under agreement and coordination of World Wild Fund (WWF) and Indonesian forestry department to manage the park with it’s population (the people). Another international research project in this area is Norindra. It will mapping all plants and animals at this area to know the actual potency of this national park.

Muaro Bungo
Air Terjun Tengan Kiri or Tengan Kiri Waterfall is located about 3 kms from Muaro Bungo Town, the district of Muaro Bungo. Naturally built by the nature, the waterfall is very beautiful with it’s water running from the scretch of the hills. You can feel th egreat sensation of this waterfall when you are there.
Bunga Bangkai (Amorpaphilus Titanium), or more known as Raflesia Arnoldi, is an endemic plant of Sumatra. It means that this plant exists only in Sumatra. It’s flower could reach 2.85 meters in length. The strange is that, this flower has a bad smell or not like common flower which smell good. This plant is located in the district of Rantau Oandan, about 35 kms outside Muara Bungo town.

Tanjung Jabung
Taman Nasional Berbak or Berbak National Park is the largest swamp forest conservation in south asia which covers more than 150,000 ha of square. It has a high and rich bio-diversity, some of them are endemic animals. The park has a premier forest landscape. This area is good to develope nature tourism with many options of activities.

Berhala Island
Pulau Berhala or Berhala island is a small island (about 1km2 in square) in Jambi. In a certain time we can walk around the island in a whole. Every November this island is become a stop point for migran birds from other parts of the world. With it’s white sandy beach and stone beach, this island could be a great place for recreation beside visiting the funeral of Datuk Paduko Berhalo.
Located about 50 kms from Kuala Tungkal, the funeral of Orang Kayo Hitam is considered to be a holy place by the local people. Orang Kayo Hitam is the king of Jambi kingdom in 5 AD. Many people come to this funeral for something.

Kerinci
Gunung Kerinci or mount Kerinci is the highest top in Sumatra island. In it’s 3,805 meters-height-top, we can find it’s lava which has size of 600 x 100 m2.The top always covers by fogs. Climbing the mountain will take more than 11 hours and through 10 stoping posts. Climbing activity in this mountain is dangerous for beginners. It is recommended that your activities are guided by local people.Kerinci Lake is situated on 783 meters above sea level. Located in Sanggar village, the lake is about 5,000 ha in square. Surrounded by the scratch of hills, this lake is a great place to take various activities such as fishing, photography, canoeing or just walking around to enjoy the beautiful sightseeing.

Kerinci Seblat National Park:
Kerinci Seblat National Park (KSNP) is the largest national park in Sumatra and one of Indonesia’s most important natural reserves. KSNP had been gazetted with a total area of 1,375,000 hectares. The park area includes the second highest mountain in Indonesia and the highest caldera lake in Southeast Asia. Habitats range from lowland dipterocarp rainforest to montane forests and volcanic alpine formations.The park is home to a staggering diversity of flora and fauna. It is thought that more than 4,000 plant species grow in the park area, including the world’s largest flower, Rafflesia arnoldi, and the tallest flower, Amorphophallus sp. Some 17 species of birds and several mammal species found in the park are endemic to Sumatra, appearing nowhere else on earth.

Local People and culture:
The Kerinci valley has been inhabited for at least six thousand years and evidence of Bronze Age cultures have been found in the area. To the west of Lake Kerinci are a number of carved megaliths whose age and purpose remain a mystery.Anthropologically present day Kerinci also presents a mystery. The origins of the Kerinci people remain obscure. A wide linguistic diversity, with about 35 dialects being spoken along the valley only, serves to complicate ethnographic research. Although traditional costume has been abandoned for everyday use it is still worn during festivals and cultural events.

Lake Gunung Tujuh
Lake Gunung Tujuh is a spectacular caldera lake of 960 hectares, located at an attitude of 1,950 metres and surrounded on all sides by the very steep slopes of Mt. Tujuh. This volcano has seven (tujuh) peaks, the highest of which is 2,732 metres. The lake measures about 4.5.kilometres long by 3 kilometres wide, and the greatest depth recorded is 40 metres. It is located within the Kerinci Seblat N.P., and all the surrounding hills and mountains are densely forested. It is accessible by a 1.5 (very fast) to three-hour (slow) walk along a small forest path leading straight up the mountain from the PHPA guardpost of Pesisir Bukit (alt. 1,400 metres), which in turn is a half-hour walk from Pelompek village. The track leads up to a point on the crater rim (alt. 2,010 metres), immediately south of the outlet river of the lake. Administratively, L. Gunung Tujuh lies in Gunung Kerinci District (Kecamatan), with Siulak Deras as administrative centre (Bakosurtanal and Bappeda Jambi, 1990).

Flora and Vegetation
Apart from filamentary algae, no aquatic plants were recorded during the present survey. Morley, Fienley and Kardin (1973) spent more time at the lake, constructing a raft to venture out on, and report that “There is virtually no marginal swamp except for a small patch of Equisetum sp. accompanied by Patidanus sp.Carex sp. and Impatiens sp.”. Their Equisetum is probably E.debile, as recorded at nearby L. Belibis, and their Impatiens is probably I. platypetala, as recorded at the nearby Bento swamps, and at Lempur.

Fauna
No freshwater snails were recorded, in spite of a lengthy search, and only one fish species was reported to occur, namely keperas (peres/Puntius sp.). Thierry Thomas carried out a bird survey in the area in September 1990, but did not observe any aquatic birds. No aquatic birds were seen during the present survey (10/4/91), and our guide confirmed that he had never seen any ducks or egrets there, although he had been there at least a dozen times.

Present condition
Lake Gunung Tujuh is a (geologically) very young and virtually pristine lake, with a well-forested watershed and crystal clear waters. Fishermen occasionally operate at the lake and two buts (pondoks) were observed in small clearings along the lake edge. Where the path reaches the lake there is a small clearing, and some rubbish has unfortunately been left scattered here.
Air Terjun Telun Berasap or Telun Berasap Waterfall is a great waterfall which is located in the are of Kerinci Seblat National Park. The waters is coming out with 10 meters in width from 45 meters cliff. The waterfall ends at the valley after bringing a great sound and fog or smoke. This is from where the name of the waterfall derived.Kawasan Bukit Tapan or Tapan Hill Zone is a conservation of Pinus Kerinci (Pinus Merkusi Strain Kerinci). This zone is an habitat of a number of endemic animals at the area. Calm and peace, this place is good to research and learning. This place is located about 17 kms from the Sungai Penuh town an acould be reach in 30 minutes drive.

Kerinci Seblat Tiger Protection
Kerinci Seblat National Park is one of the largest national parks in Asia, and a world-renowned center for biodiversity. In addition, the park and its surrounding forests have been identified as one of the five most important sites in the world for the long term survival of tigers in the wild. Sumatra capital city of Padang estimated that between 400-600 Sumatran tigers were likely to survive in the wild, reduced from a population of about 10,000 in 1900. They felt that the tiger population in Kerinci Seblat National Park was probably in the region of 76 animals. In fact, based on Fauna and Flora International’s five years of fieldwork in the national park, the 1994 estimate was, at the time, a considerable under-count (similar under-estimates were also made in Way Kambas national park in southern Sumatra).

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