Posts Tagged With: Java

The hike on a holy mountain of the Majapahit kingdom in Java, Indonesia

During my flight from Jakarta to Surabaya I filmed a few scenes from the animated film ‘Battle of Surabaya’ and learned about the historic event of 19 September 1945 where the Dutch flag (red-white-blue) was taken down, ripped from the blue banner, and hang back as the red and whit flag of Indonesia.

A couple of days later I was awestruck when I unsuspecting walked into the Majapahit hotel in down town Surabaya and found out this event happened exactly there.


A day before that I climbed the Gunung Penanggungan, a holy mountain of the Majapahit Kingdom. Temple ruins of this middle age culture are everywhere on the sloops of this holy mountain. I finally reached the top and found a group of young Indonesian hikers who were planting the Indonesian flag on the puncak- the top – of the mountain.


Later I visited some other Majapahit monuments and learned from local visitors that this lost civilization already waved the red-white flag on the high seas of South-East Asia since the 13th century.

So in a couple of days I was exposed to three stories of the Indonesian flag, or bendera merah putih as the Indonesians call it. It seems that this vlog was destined to tell the story of this flag and that is how it comes quite often. You set out for a specific idea for a vlog, and you come back with a complete different story.

And I like it that way!

The flag of Indonesia has a philosophical meaning. Red means courage, white means holiness. Red symbolizes the human body, while the white symbolizes the human soul. The flag of the Republic of Indonesia, which is briefly called the State Flag, is Sang Saka Merah Putih, Merah Putih, or sometimes called the Dwiwarna (two colors).





Categories: Film en televisie, Indonesia, Ontdekkingen, Reizen | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

Mini Indonesia: visiting 17.000 islands in 1 day

Indonesia in one day! That is the tagline used by ‘Beautiful and Miniature Indonesia’, a cultural park at the outskirts of Jakarta. Here you can explore all diversity the 29 provinces of the archipel in one single park. 

IMG_0059As from the start I already understood this would be a Mission Impossible. The park measures one (1) square kilometer and contains countless traditional and religious houses, museums, parks, and an enormous map of the sea nation in a central lake over which cable cars ride.

IMG_0128My original plan was at least to vist each of the 16 museums. But that was just a plan. Once I walked around I got easily lost and missed several attractions. Secondly I underestimated the heat. A cloudless day in Jakarta gives the sun full opportunity to burn you down including all your plans. All you want is to escape the heat and run somewhere inside. Somehow there were not a lot of visitors in the park and so not a lot of people to interact with.


It was Benni from the Papua section who made my day. He was super friendly and explained a lot of his own culture, traditions and art. It changed my mind about this far away island in the east and I might visit it one day just to see the vast and wild nature in real life.

Categories: Indonesia, Jakarta, Ontdekkingen | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

The Blue Fire Ghosts of Kawah Ijen

The climb of Gunung (mount) Kawah Ijen was steep and cold, very cold. I was not prepared for such an icy wind in the tropical island of Java. After a couple of hours we reached the rim and descended into the crater. Meanwhile miners were passing the hikers upwards. A shame: if I say a fifty hikers for each miner, then I even estimate it low.

The miners carry baskets with at least 50 kilo sulfur each as they are paid by the kilo. The more the better, but not for their health. Once approaching the sulfur mine, the penetrating gases are giving you tears in your eyes. Miners are chopping pieces of sulfur in the middel of blasts of smoke. Right behind them is the blue fire. There are only two vulcano’s in the world with this phenomena, and this is the biggest.

Was it the cold, the anorganic gasses, the fatigue or combination of them all that made me halucinative? Just watch your self what I saw in the blue flames…

Categories: Hiking, Indonesia, Ontdekkingen, Reizen | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

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