Saturday, February 15, 2014

Tanjungputus, where I found my childhood’s best friend: SEA

Tanjungputus Sea
“Welcome sir, may I take your order?” the cashier at Dunkin Donuts greeted me with his big smile.
“Yeah, I like to order some cold beverage.” I replied while looking at menu board.
“Bla bla bla bla ….” The cashier directly offered me many kind of cold beverages.
“Okay, I try Green Beans Ice Blended.” I ordered.
“Donuts?” the cashier added while he was inputting my order.
“Ah, no thanks.” I replied with no no hand waves.

With a cup of green beans ice blended in my hand, I sat around the table which was full already by my friends (some are new) who joined this trip. Trip to Tanjungputus Island – Lampung – Sumatera (about 1,5 hour from Bandar Lampung City).

It’s always a pleasure and awesome to share our stories with other travelers. We talked about how we got there and the beauty of the destination itself. We compared the cost without any “cheapest” competition; just being fair compared the cost and the facilities. We shared about couple destinations that we had been visited, shared tips and information, etc.

There we were, twenty five of us, gathered and just about to start our journey with 3 hour bus-ride from West Jakarta to Merak Harbor. From The Merak Harbor we continued the journey by a ferry, crossed the Sunda Strait to Bakauheni Harbor and passed Bandar Lampung City by mini buses to Ketapang Dock. We still had to ride a wooden single motor boat to Tanjungputus Island. Yeah it was quite long journey to Tanjungputus Island from Jakarta (around 10 hour).
The worst thing was, I forgot to bring either my ipod or books, while I found that night was one of my insomnia nights.

On the way to Merak Harbor.
“Merak Merakkk MERAKKKKK” the bus’s driver assistant shouted loudly.
“Are there enough seats for all of us?” my friend asked.
“Yeah” the assistant answered.
And there, two of our companion had to sit not on passenger seats. Well it was an economy bus with air conditioner, which didn't work normally; and cheap, so yupe the seats were way far from comfortable especially for me who are 178cm tall with 85 kg weight. Thanks God, after 45 minutes, many passengers got off the bus and left couples of empty seats, made the bus less crowded.

On the way to Bakauheni Harbor.
“DOOOOTTTTTTTT…” the ship’s horn’s blown, left the echo far from where we stood. The horn was the sign that we started to cross The Sunda Strait, sailed to Bakauheni Harbor.
A couple minutes we spent to enjoy the wind blows before we entered the passenger’s hall inside the ferry which was equipped with air conditioner. We could sit or try to sleep in the hall. We could rent some pillow or thin mattress also.

On the way to Ketapang Dock.
Finally i could close my eyes for a while and fell asleep even only for an hour before the car stopped at some random local restaurant for breakfast.

On the way to Tanjungputus Island.
“Welcome” Buyung – the captain, greeted us at Ketapang Dock with big smile and warm handshake. Jumped on the boat and we were ready to sail.
Ketapang Dock
The Boat
Just couple minutes pass midday we finally stepped on the white sand of Tanjungputus.
Tanjungputus Beach
One of The Guest Houses
View from Dinning Room
It took a while to check in, lunch and suit up for our first activities, snorkeling! YAY. I felt so excited! Lunch with amazing view and followed by snorkeling.

Our first snorkeling destination was Tegal Island.
“Are you ready kids?” “Aye aye captain.” The captain started the engine and we headed to Tegal Island.

Tegal Island! One by one we plunged into the water, felt the warm yet so fresh water. The marine park was beautiful, even at some deeper spot the park destroyed by boat’s anchors (I guess) which were dropped without caring about what's underneath.

The twilight was about to come and we had to skip Maitem Island (for the next trip) and rushed back to Tanjungputus, cause we didn’t want to spend the evening in small wooden boat with strong wave.
The sky turned to dark and the stars started to light up the night when we were docked at Tanjungputus.

Yet the night was too young to rest, so after delight dinner we split into many groups. Some did night snorkeling at the beach, some did karaoke, some played with cards and some just did nothing except sat on the chair, enjoyed the sea wind and the laughs.


The sun has come and the dark sky turned into blue with white spots of cloud. Dawn snorkeling was cancelled because no one woke up early and chance to see turtle was vanished haha. Well the party must go on with canoeing. Canoeing and good breakfast definitely were our mood boaster today.

Suited up and jumped into the boat and we headed to our second snorkeling spot which was near the dock. Well actually the second and the third spots were just in the front yard of Tanjungputus.

The spot was so beautiful with many kinds of coral and fish. We spent quite a while in this spot before we moved backward; back to The Tanjungputus Coast (less than 50 meter from the beach) which was the third snorkeling’s spot. The third spot had same equal condition with the second spot and because the spot was near the beach, the boat left us and went back to the dock and let us swim back to the beach (yupe, fins did much help ).

Packed up and before check out, we were served with seafood delight meal for lunch. The hero of the lunch definitely was the grilled fish. What a yummy closing meal.

Checked out and jumped back into the boat and we were ready to leave Tanjungputus and went to Pahawang Island for a quick visit before sailing back to Ketapang Dock (and left Kelagian Island for the next trip).
Pahawang Beach
Pahawang Beach

The sea wind of Sunda blew to my face, my bare skin, seduced me to come back and laid my body on the water where the kingdom of the sea was beneath my shadow down there. The colors of the sea were blue and turquoise like a paint of Poseidon’s Castle. The marine park was beautiful and there would be no “bored” word at it. The white sand of the beach and the sunshine was a perfect place for sunbathing. A perfect place to just sit at the beach and enjoyed the wave and the water that ran among your feet.

Definitely, one of my best trips. Yes, we spent a long time on the road (and yes, it was exhausted) yet it was so worth it! Hundreds picture of Tanjungputus still couldn’t represent the actual beauty of it.

For me personally, Tanjungputus would always have a special place in my heart. In this place, finally, I found again my childhood happiness with my old friend, sea. Thank you to my friends who always supported me to give a second chance to sea “Hi old friend how are you? It’s been a while.”

“Kebun Jeruk?” my friend asked the bus’s assistant driver.
“Yes, yessss.” The assistant replied and we jumped on the bus, back to Jakarta.

Special thanks to AT for my English translation review

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