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Wednesday, October 18, 2017

Mrapen Eternal Flame

Publish 06-06-2012 09:57:00 by Admin
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A. Overview

Grobogan, a district of Central Java province in Indonesia, has a unique potential of natural tourism that rarely can be found in another region of Indonesia. This natural phenomenon is Mrapen, an eternal flame that came out from the soil (stone) located at Manggarmas village, Godong, Purwodadi Grobogan district, Central Java, Indonesia. This eternal flame was created through natural geological phenomena; the leaking of natural gas from the ground. The location of this natural object tourism in well known as Api Abadi Mrapen.

The origin of Mrapen is often associated to the oral history of the surrounding communities, tells that around the beginning of the 15th century, Sunan Kalijaga along with his entourage of soldiers brought the pavilion from the Kingdom of Majapahit in East Java, which was on the verge of collapse, to the Sultanate of Demak in Central Java. That pavilion was intended to use as a porch of Demak Great Mosque.

During the trip, the entourage took break at a place, currently known as Manggarmas village, because they tired and thirsty. Sunan Kalijaga, as the leader, immediately searched for the fountain on the area by embedding his stick on the ground. Once the stick taken out, a fire came out of the hole (this fire is then referred as the Mrapen eternal flame). Sunan Kalijaga tried to embed his stick for a second time at another ground and there was a spring came out from the ground (this spring is then referred to as the Sendang Dudo).

Before the entourage left, Sunan Kalijaga put a stone around the holes of fire and water. This stone weighing about 20 Kg is then referred to as Batu Bobot (lit. stone weight).

B. Features

The Mrapen eternal flame is a natural phenomenon of the leaking natural gas from the ground. The flame never extinguishes, not even in the middle of rain or winds. Even though the flame is now not as big as in the past, but the flame is still visible from behind the stone covering the hole where the flame comes out.

The Mrapen flame is often used to light torches of the sporting events either international or national level. The international sport events use the Mrapen eternal flame include the Games of New Emerging Forces I (in November 1963), the Asian Beach Games I (in 2008, Bali), the Asian Beach Games II 2008 in Oman, the Asian Beach Games III scheduled (in June 2012, China), the SEA Games XXVI (November 2011), and the Islamic Solidarity Games (scheduled in 2013, Pekanbaru, Riau).

The national sporting events use the Mrapen eternal flame include the Pekan Olahraga Nasional X (8 September 1981) and XIV (August 23, 1996), the POR PWI in 1983, the Hari Olahraga Nasional, and the Vesak Day conducted by the Indonesian Buddhist Representative (WALUBI).

In addition to the Mrapen eternal flame, the site also offers a spring called Sendang Dudo. The water came out from this spring is believed to have specialties, such as able to cure rheumatic and skin diseases. The water is also unique because it seemed to boil as indicated by the bubbles came out from the water, but it is not hot. It also looks murky, but when it is put in a glass, the water will look clear. Moreover, the bubble that came out from the water will light up if ignited with fire.

Another interesting thing found on the site is Batu Bobot (lit. weight stone). The stone that is measuring about 20 kg is said to be a relic of Sunan Kalijaga, one of the Walisanga, who spread Islamic religion in Java during the end of the 15th century to the beginning of the 16th century. According to the myth in the society, if someone managed to lift the stone, then all his wishes will come true. Therefore, many people came to site not only to see the natural phenomenon, but also to seek blessings from Sunan Kalijaga.

C. Location

The Mrapen eternal flame is located in Manggarmas village, Godong, Grobogan, Central Java province, Indonesia.

D. Access

The site is very accessible considering it is located on the edge of the highway of Semarang-Purwodadi which is about 26 Km from the city of Purwodadi. The site can be reached by either personal vehicles or public transports begins from Puwodadi Bus Terminal to take the bus majoring through the district of Gubug, and request to stop right at the Mrapen eternal flame. Arriving in the nameplate of the Mrapen eternal flame, the site is located around 200 meters from the highway and visitors can reach the site foot.

E. Ticket Prices

Visitors who want to enter the site of Mrapen eternal flame are charged around IDR 500.00/person. For those who bring their own personal vehicle are required to pay a parking fee around IDR 5,000.00. (February 2012)

F. Accommodation and Other Facilities

The Mrapen eternal flame provides several supporting facilities, including parking lot, a pavilion that can be used for relax, and public toilet. Many food stalls can also be found easily around the site. (Tunggul Tauladan)

(Said/En-trans/15/06/12)

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From various sources

Photo credit: indonesiawonder.com

 



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