In this post I outline how to visit the Rafflesia Sanctuary in Batang Palupuh near Bukittinggi, Sumatra, Indonesia. It includes logistical requirements such as maps and facts. This is a self-guided cultural experience on a shoestring.
Following provided by Ulrich Rudolph, RAJAWALI-HOTEL, Bukittinggi, firstname.lastname@example.org or +62.752.31905
Total Cost Range of this Activity is: $
The Rafflesia Sanctuary in Batang Palupuh
There are only a few rare known spots in South East Asia where the Rafflesia (Rafflesia Arnoldii) is still blooming. One of this spots is the Village BATANG PALUPUH, 15 Km in northwesterly direction out of Bukittinggi. In the forest of Batang Palupuh you will find the Rafflesia blooming all the year around.
To reach Batang Palupuh take the minibus from the Pasar Banto around the corner. The fare is about 4000,- to 5000,- Rupiah and the bus stops at the gate at the entrance of the village (tell the driver where you want to go and he drops you there).
In Batang Palupuh you need a guide, otherwise you will never find the flower in the jungle.
Ask for the guide “JONI”. His house you will find at the main road, where the bus stops. He checks always the flower and gives notice if the Rafflesia is blooming.
If you can’t find him or he is busy, ask for the guide “IBU IMUL”. She owns a house inside the village (about 500 m from the main road), behind the mosque.
The guide charges you with 60.000,- Rupiah (per group or alone).
Sometimes you walk 20 minutes out of the village up the mountain and through the jungle, sometimes 1 hour or a little more. It depends on where the Rafflesia is blooming at the time you want to see.
The way back to Bukittinggi is very easy: Stop any bus at the main road, outside the village, behind the gate. All the busses going straight to Bukittinggi if you choose the right direction back to Bukittinggi (15 Km) and NOT the wrong direction. If you choose the wrong direction you are on the road to Bonjol, the Equator, Lubuk Sikaping, Lake Toba or Medan (Medan 750 Km!).
The prices changing without notice and whatever you do, you do it on your own risk.
Ulrich Rudolph, Rajawali-Hotel, Bukittinggi, Westsumatra, Indonesia (Dec. 18, 2008)