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Serayu River

Publish 11-09-2009 15:13:26 by Admin
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A. Brief Information

Serayu River is one of the tourism destinations in Central Java. Its upper course is on the Dieng Plateau, flowing along 30 km to the sea, passing through five regencies that are Wonosobo, Purbalingga, Banjarnegara, Banyumas, and Cilacap. Its lower course is on the Indian Ocean. The river is approximately 12-12.5 m in width.

In addition to its function as the main water source for the people living surround, Serayu River is also well known for its challenge for the rafting lovers.  Because of its potentials, the local government focused on promoting Serayu River as a tourism object as well as an interesting place for rafting. The name of Serayu River has been largely known since 1977, when the river became the arena of national rafting competition.

According to the story among the local people, Serayu River was once the main traffic lane for the merchants of China, India, and Arab. Those merchants sailed to the upper course to sell their goods. It is proven by the discoveries of port ruins, Chinese ceramics, and foreign currencies that we can still see until now. Those historical remains are located in Plana village, Banyumas.

B. Distinctive Features

Coming to Serayu River, you can enjoy the uniqueness of the steeply sloping riverbank and the stones shunt to the river. Around the river, the greenness of the wet rice fields adding the beauty of the scenery. For those who love fishing, this river is an interesting spot to try, for it has many kinds of fishes, such as catfish, nila, shrimps, etc.

For rafting lovers, Serayu River offers you a challenging track to pump your adrenaline. The river has two crossing trips, each of which is 12 km in distance and needs approximately 2 – 2.5 hours to cross. While you are enjoying your rafting, you can also spoil your eyes by looking around the beautiful scenery along the river.

Another interesting activity about Serayu River is its annual tradition called Grebeg Suro, a tradition of thankfulness to God. In Grebeg Suro, you will find gunungan consist of crops such as chili, eggplant, string bean, and fruits such as snake fruit, bananas, apples, etc. You can try your luck by joining the local people rushing to get those crops and fruits from the gunungan after the sacred part of the tradition are done.  

In addition to the “Grebeg Suro”, Serayu River also has another interesting event called Festival Serayu. It is an event contains many of races and contests such as boat race, kite contest, etc. In the rowboat race, the racers should row along 1 km, with each rowboat consists of nine rowers. To add the interest of the race, the management usually holds many other events such as leather puppet show, kuda lumping, karaoke, etc.

C. Location

Serayu River is a part of five administrative areas that are Wonosobo, Purbalingga, Banjarnegara, Banyumas, and Cilacap. However, the “Grebeg Suro” is only held in Rawalo sub-district, Banyumas Regency, while the rafting is mostly started from Tunggoro Village, in the sub-district of Sigaluh, Banjarnegara.

D. Access

To reach the rafting area, you can start your trip from the train station in Purwokerto. From the train station, you must take taxies or rent cars to reach the starting point of the rafting. The price to rent a car is IDR200.000.

While to reach the “Grebeg Suro” location, you must start from the bus station of Purwokerto. Take the bus to Banyumas, and then continue with the public transportation provided in Banyumas to reach the location of “Grebeg Suro”.

E. Ticketing

If you want to enjoy the “Grebeg Suro”, you are free of charge. However, to enjoy the challenge of the wide crossing track, you must pay IDR150.000 - IDR200.000 for local tourists and IDR350.000 for the foreign tourists (January 2009). The price includes boat rent, lifebuoys, insurance, guide-tour, and logistics.

F. Accommodation and Other Facilities

The rafting area in Banjarnegara is facilitated with the boat rental and other equipments, bathrooms, and transportation to reach the starting point. There are also food courts and lodges near the area.    

Junardi (wm/40/01-09)

Elisabeth Murni (trans/06/09-09)


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