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Places of interest in Bengkulu
|Bengkulu |Bukit Daun |Bukit Kaba Crater |Curup |Kerinci Seblat National Park |Lake Dendam Tak Sudah |Lake Emas |Lake Gedang |Lake Tes |Panjang Gading Cempaka Beach |Pulau Tikus Sea Garden |Rafflesia Arnoldi |Seaside Resorts |Semidang Bukit Kaba |Tabot Ceremony |Talo

The province of Bengkulu is located on the southwest coast of Sumatra. It occupies an area of 19,831 sq. km. and has a population of around one million, comprising mostly the people of Rejang, Malay, Bugis and Chinese ethnic ancestry.

The Bukit Barisan mountain range constitutes its northeastern border, beyond which lie the provinces of South Sumatra and Jambi.

In the past, a kingdom named Selebar existed in this area. A vassal state of Banten, it was the latter's main source of pepper, cloves, nutmeg and coffee, the trade commodities on which the Javanese Kingdom thrived.

On July 12, 1685, Selebar signed a treaty with the British East India Company, giving the latter the right to establish a warehouse and fortification. First, the British built Fort York. Then, another one arose, located more to the north. Built in 1713-1719, this latter fortification was named Fort Marlborough. It was the seat of the British power and influence in these western parts of the archipelago until 1825, when under the terms of the Treaty of London, England handed over the territory to the Dutch in exchange for others, ending 139 years of British power in Bengkulu.

An important figure in the history of Bengkulu was Thomas Stamford Raffles, who in 1817 was appointed Lieutenant-Governor of Bencoolen, the only territory in the area which the Dutch had never managed to bring under their control.

Raffles was an extraordinary and energetic man of wide-ranging interests. In the year of his arrival he, together with a botanist named Joseph Arnold, discovered the world's largest flower, at Manna River near Lubuktapi, in South Bengkulu. The flower is now known as Rafflesia Arnoldi and is the official symbol of the Bengkulu province.


Bengkulu, the capital of the province, is a port town facing the Indian Ocean. The shores around the town of Bengkulu are scenic and unspoilt. Presently growing as a tourist destination, Bengkulu offers many new sights and experiences.

Bukit Daun

This is a protected recreation forest located between Bengkulu and Curup, about 45 km from Bengkulu. It is inhabited by a great variety of animal species.

Bukit Kaba Crater

For those who like mountain climbing, this crater complex is in the sulfurous mountains, 19 km from Curup, in the Rejang Lebong regency. Of the three craters, one is still active. Vapors incessantly escape from 12 fissures in the earth and hot water springs are found in the vicinity.


Curup is the capital of the Rejang Lebong regency in Bengkulu. Located on the slopes of the Bukit Barisan mountains, this is an area rich in recreation spots. There are hot water springs at Suban, 7 km from Curup, and at Tambang Sawah about 4 km away. Kepala Curup waterfall is 31 km from town.

Kerinci Seblat National Park

Home to members of a great variety of animals species, such as elephants, tigers, deer, wild boars, monkeys, crocodiles, birds and reptiles. This park is located in North Bengkulu, about 110 km from Argamakmur.

Lake Dendam Tak Sudah

This small lake, located 8 km from Bengkulu, has been curiously named Dendam Tak Sudah ('never-ending grudge'). The lake has facilities for water-skiing and boating and its surroundings feature an abundance of orchids known as Vanda hokriana. When they bloom, the lakeside transforms into a huge exotic flower garden.

Lake Emas

Inhabited by schools of carp, this lake is located near Curup, in the Rejang Lebong regency. Cottages have been built around the lakeside to accommodate holiday makers.

Lake Gedang

Located 23 km from Bengkulu towards Argamakmur. This lake is popular for fishing, picnics and camping.

Lake Tes

This lake is 3 km long and is the biggest in the province. It is located 50 km from Curup on the road to Muara Aman.

Panjang Gading Cempaka Beach

This beach is located 3 km west of the town of Bengkulu, and stretches for approximately 7 km. Cottages are available as well as other recreational facilities.

Pulau Tikus Sea Garden

Tikus is the name of a cluster if islets surrounded by coral reefs that teem with various forms of marine life, soft and hard corals, and fish of all colours and sizes. The islets can be seen from the town of Bengkulu and can be reached by speedboat from the old harbor.

Rafflesia Arnoldi

The world's largest flower is found in many areas in the forests of Bengkulu, on the slopes of the Bukit Barisan mountains. The flower has a diameter of about one meter in full bloom. It has no visible root or stem, and no leaves. Weighing up to 7 kg., it takes the buds up to 8 months to mature. The flower stays in bloom from 1-15 days and can be seen during the months of September-December.

Seaside Resorts

In the regency of South Bengkulu there are 3 seaside resorts with beautiful views: Muara Kedurang, Beringin Padang Guci Bay and Linau Beach. The shorelines are open to the Indian Ocean and the waves along this stretch are huge. Smooth rocks of various colors give an interesting appearance to the seaside.

Semidang Bukit Kaba

This is a hunting park which is about 15,300 hectares in size. It is located about 14 km from the town of Bengkulu.

Tabot Ceremony

An interesting festive ceremony which recalls the death of Hasan and Husen, the grandchildren of the Prophet Mohammed, who were killed in a fight to defend Islam. The Tabot feast is held annually, in the Islamic month of Muharram.


The village of Talo is in the regency of Rejang Lebong. Here one can see weavers at their looms, producing traditional textiles. The villagers also make plaited rattan articles, as well as paintings and carved objects.


Rattan plaitwork, hand-printed batik, paintings, carvings, hand-woven textiles.

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