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Monday, February 26, 2018

Gong Cave

Publish 28-09-2009 11:44:19 by Admin
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A. Brief information

You might never thought that behind the view of barren mountains in Pacitan regency, laid many dazzling nature potentials that you cannot find in any other places. One of those potentials is the Gong Cave, one of so many small caves concealed between the mountains and hills in Pacitan. The length of this horizontal cave is about 256 meters. There are stalactites, which are formed by the process of calcium sedimentation, shaping cones hanging on the cave‘s ceiling, and stalagmites, also formed by the same process, shaping cones on the cave‘s floor. According to some researchers and tourists from foreign countries, the stalactites and stalagmites in Gong Cave are the most beautiful ones in South East Asia.

The name Gong itself comes from the story spread about the cave. According to the people living surround, they often hear the sound of gong from inside the cave. The Gong Cave was discovered unintentionally. Once upon a time, a long dry season caused a drought in Pule Village. Water became rare. People in the village could not cultivate their land or even drink. Two people from the village, Mbah Noyo Semito and Mbah Joyo, initiated to seek for water to the caves in the area. They traced every vein in the caves with the help of torchlight. After seven torches, finally they discovered several springs in a cave and bathing there. It happened in the 1930s.

The cave was ignored for 65 years later until March 5, 1995, in the day of Minggu Pon in Javanese calendar, when the exploration upon the cave began. To shorten the story, there were eight people discovered and traced the lines in the cave ( It is their effort that now; we can enjoy the beauty of the charming Gong Cave.

B. Distinctive Features

You can enjoy the beauty of Gong Cave right from your very first step in the area. The suite of limestone hills and the greenness of thick wood trees, which you can even smell the aroma from the parking area, are too beautiful to miss.

Your first step in the cave‘s nozzle would be welcome by a magnificent view of straw like-ornament, forming such stack of hoses racing each other to fill up the cave‘s ceiling. The further you step into the cave, the more beautiful stalactites and stalagmites will spoil your eyes, each of which fulfill every lane in the cave and decoratively stand in every meter of the stairways. In some spots, the stalactites and stalagmites meet each other forming such huge column looking like pillars in gothic buildings. Those ornaments are estimated attaining the age of hundreds years old. The beauty of the ornaments is even more dazzling with the colorful lights from the lamps installed surround.

Stalactites and Stalagmites in Gong Cave
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Another fabulous ornament is a collection of giant drapery fulfilled by fluorescent spots as thousands of fireflies gather to mesmerize every single person looking at them. In the dimness of the cave, the fascinating shimmering spots will be able to make you stand for hours to enjoy its beauty. The names given to those ornaments represent their beauty, such as Selo Cengger Bumi, Selo Gerbang Giri, Selo Citro Cipto Agung, Selo Pakuan Bomo, Selo Adi Citro Buwono, Selo Bantaran Angin, and Selo Susuh Angin.

In addition to the charm of its stalactites and stalagmites, Gong Cave also has five springs, which have magical power for those who believe. Those springs are Sendang Jampi Rogo, Sendang Panguripan, Sendang Relung Jiwo, Sendang Kamulyan, and Sendang Relung Nisto, which are believed for their power of healing.  

There are some chambers in Gong Cave. The first one is the chamber of Sendang Bidadari, which has a small spring known for its clean and fresh water. Next to the spring is the bidadari chamber. According to the story about the place, glances of shadowy beautiful woman often emerge in the chamber. The third and the fourth chambers are the chambers of crystal and marble. In those chambers laid crystal and marble stones with almost perfect quality. The fifth chamber is the largest one. The chamber was once used as the concert hall of four countries (Indonesia, Switzerland, England, and France), in order to promote the Gong Cave abroad. The next is the chamber of asceticism, while the last chamber is the chamber of Batu Gong (gong stones). In the chamber, you can find the stones, each of which will produce the sound of a set of gamelan when hit.

C. Location

The Gong Cave is located in Bomo village, sub district of Punung, Pacitan Regency, East Java, Indonesia

The Nozzle of Gong Cave
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D. Access

The Gong Cave is 30 kilometers away from the city of Pacitan. Smooth road and direction will ease your trip to the cave. You can choose one of two ways to reach the cave. The first way, you can choose to go through Pracimantoro, Wonosari, Gunung Kidul. Another way, you can start from the city of Pacitan. The easiest way to reach the city of Pacitan is through Solo, because there are many buses to Pacitan from Solo. If you are from Surabaya, the first bus you should take is the bus to Madiun. From Madiun, take the bus to Ponorogo, and then change your bus to those going on direction of Pacitan.  

E. Ticket Price

You do not need to spend a lot of money to enjoy the beauty of Gong Cave. The price of the ticket is very cheap, it is only IDR4,000. If you want to use flash light, you can rent it only with IDR3,000.

F. Accommodation and other Facilities

The Gong Cave is already facilitated with souvenir counter, restaurants, parking area, restroom, and mosque. To know more about the cave, you can use the service of tour-guides you can meet in the cave area. However, you can also get the detail information by buying the book contains everything about the cave. If you want to spend several days in this area, you can stay in the hotels or lodges in Pacitan.

Elisabeth Murni (trans/07/09-09)



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