THREE LAKE’S A CHARM

HEAD A LIT­TLE BIT OUT­SIDE OF JAKARTA TO THE TANGERANG RE­GION AND VISIT THE BEAU­TI­FUL DANAU BIRU…

Bali & Beyond - - CONTENTS - By Edna Tari­gan

Vis­it­ing Danau Biru in Tangerang

Nes­tled on the west­ern out­skirts of Jakarta, Danau Biru or Lake Blue of­fers a short get­away if you want to es­cape from the crowded cap­i­tal for a while. Danau Biru lies in Tangerang and has not one but three lakes in one area, all of­fer a pic­turesque nat­u­ral view that will please your eyes.

How to get there? It’s pretty easy be­cause Danau Biru can be eas­ily reached by a train or a car. The eas­i­est way is for you to take the Tanah Abang-Maja or TanahAbang Rangkas Bi­tung train from Tanah Abang Sta­tion and stop at the Ti­garaksa Sta­tion in Tangerang in Ban­ten. The train jour­ney takes about an hour. Then, con­tinue your trip by tak­ing a lo­cal pub­lic trans­porta­tion or a mo­tor­cy­cle taxi. Al­most ev­ery pub­lic trans­porta­tion driver around the sta­tion knows the lake re­ally well.

TOSCA WA­TER

I opted to take a lo­cal mo­tor­cy­cle taxi or ojek, and I was glad I made that de­ci­sion as the bike went past the breath­tak­ing view of the rice fields and lo­cal houses. Dur­ing the jour­ney, my ojek driver also shared a lot of sto­ries about Danau Biru un­til we fi­nally ar­rived at the park­ing lot. As I set my eyes on the blue lake, my mind trav­eled back to Lake Kaolin in Beli­tung Is­land in Su­ma­tra that I vis­ited a cou­ple of years ago, and I think that Danau Biru of Cisoka Vil­lage is sim­i­lar to Lake Kaolin. It turns out they share quite the same back­ground as well.

Lake Kaolin be­came pop­u­lar due to its blue color caused by kaolin min­ing in Beli­tung Is­land, while Cisoka’s Danau Biru is caused by the ex­ploita­tion of sand min­ing around the area. My ojek driver, who was a lo­cal res­i­dent, said that the sand min­ing has been aban­doned since 2014. Ev­ery since then, the site has three basins. Other lo­cal res­i­dents I met said the min­ing ac­tiv­ity prob­a­bly reached sev­eral wa­ter springs that caused the basins to not only col­lect wa­ter from rain, but also from the ground.

The lake wa­ter used to look nor­mal. But two years ago, its sur­face started to change color, from tur­bid wa­ter that some­times looked al­most green to be­come re­ally green and then changed again into tosca green.

The first two lakes are lo­cated around 100 me­ters from the park­ing lot. The one on the left has a moss green color and is sur­rounded by trees that looked more like a small for­est. The lake on the right side

is pretty much dif­fer­ent with tosca green wa­ter, and is sur­rounded by white rocks and sandy ground. Mov­ing fur­ther, I could see the third lake is sit­u­ated be­hind the first two lakes. It is also the largest one among them. And like the se­cond lake, the sur­face is tosca green and the lake is sur­rounded by white rocks and sandy ground.

The lo­cal res­i­dents I met had no idea why these lakes have dif­fer­ent colors de­spite their lo­ca­tion that is pretty close to each other. They are even afraid to taste the wa­ter or use it for their daily lives. The sim­plest ex­pla­na­tion is prob­a­bly be­cause there is a chem­i­cal process un­der the sur­face or some­where deep un­der the bot­tom of the lakes.

SNAP SOME PHO­TOS

It has only been a year since Danau Biru be­comes a pop­u­lar des­ti­na­tion among the lo­cal peo­ple, all be­cause of so­cial me­dia posts that show how pho­to­genic the site is. Many peo­ple are also cu­ri­ous and can’t quite be­lieve such a beau­ti­ful lake with breath­tak­ing nat­u­ral scenery is avail­able only a cou­ple of hours away from the cap­i­tal city. With more tourists com­ing to the site, the lo­cal peo­ple from nearby vil­lages get the ad­van­tage. Some of them build a proper park­ing space while oth­ers sell food and drinks or even open a dinghy rental for tourists to cruise around the lake.

Like in other min­ing sites, the tem­per­a­ture at Danau Biru is scorch­ing hot. But the higher the sun is, the more beau­ti­ful the color of the lake is. That’s why it is vi­tal to bring a hat or sun­glasses and ap­ply sun­screen while vis­it­ing Danau Biru. Danau Biru is also a non-main­stream beau­ti­ful place for pho­tog­ra­phy en­thu­si­asts, be it na­ture or wed­ding pho­tog­ra­phy. In fact, if you’re lucky enough, you may find the lake is yours alone and you can eas­ily take pho­tos with­out a crowd of peo­ple dis­turb­ing your back­ground.

If you’re lucky, you can have the lake all to your­self.

The beau­ti­ful Danau Biru with tosca-col­ored wa­ter.

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