Mount Gede Pangrango

The Rich Diversity of Mountain Forest

mount gede pangrangoMount Gede Pangrango National Park is a national park in West Java, Indonesia. The park is centered on two volcanoes— Mount Gede and Mount Pangrango— and is 150 km² in area. It evolved from already existing conservation areas, such as Cibodas Botanical Gardens, Cimungkat Nature Reseve, Situgunung Recreational Park and Mount Gede Pangrango Nature Reserve, and has been the site of important biological and conservation research over the last century. In 1977 UNESCO declared it part of the World Network of Biosphere Reserves.

Mount Gede (2,958 m) and Pangrango (3,019 m) are twin volcanoes. The two summits are connected by a high saddle known as Kandang Badak (2,400 m). The mountain slopes are very steep and are cut into rapidly flowing stream, which carve deep valleys and long ridges.

Visitors usually enter the park by one of the four gates of the park: the Cibodas, Gunung Putri, and Selabintana gates, all give access to the peaks; the Situ Gunung gate gives entrance to a lake area set aside mainly for family-style recreation. Cibodas gate is the most popular entrance gate and is the site of the park’s headquarters. From Jakarta, the area is two hours drive, usually via Cibodas Botanical Gardens.

Because of its easy access, the Mount Gede-Pangrango National Park with its spectacular panorama is a favorite site with visitors. Located in the province of West Java this Park encompasses the peaks of Mt. Gede, Mt. Pangrango.  Around these peaks are tea plantations, recreation parks, waterfalls, hot springs, lakes and accommodation facilities within the park as around its periphery. The Park was declared nature conservation area in 1889, although prior to this the Cibodas Botanical Gardens was already established here in 1830, where cinchona (quinine) and coffee were first cultivated to become Java’s most prominent exports in the 19th century.

Most notable about the Gede-Pangrango Park are its three very distinct ecosystems: a sub-montane ecosystem (1,000 m to 1,500 m altitude), a montane ecosystem (1,500 m – 2,900 m) characterized by large tall trees, and a sub-alpine ecosystem (2,400 m. and higher), characterized by grassy meadows where the Java edelweiss grows in abundance. It also has a savanna as well as marshland ecosystems.

Today the Gunung Gede-Pangrango National Park covers 15,196 hectares that include Cibodas, Cimungkat, the Gunung Gede-Pangrango Reserve, the Situgunung recreation area, and the forests on the slopes centered on two volcanoes. These are Mt. Gede, (2,958m) with its gaping crater and fumaroles, and Mt. Pangrango (3,019 m). The two are connected by a high saddle at 2,500 m above sea level.