Plantation town

Kalibaru, a mere blip on the map, clings to the cool foothills of Gunung Raung in rural East Java, encircled by plantations of coffee, rubber and cocoa and makes an ideal spot for a bit of R and R between climbing Java’s Gunung Bromo and Kawah Ijen.

More on Kalibaru

Kalibaru lies on the main Bayuwangi–Jember road connecting through to Probolinggo, Surabaya, Malang and Yogyakarta, also linked to the aforementioned cities via a well-serviced train line. This little town doesn’t see a lot of action, but is a good base for exploring the nearby plantations and its rural setting offers one of Java’s most scenic landscapes. With an elevation of around 400 metres, the town enjoys year round fresh temperatures that can get downright cold some evenings—pack a light jacket.

Sugar boiling down at Lonsum plantation. : Stuart McDonald.
Sugar boiling down at Lonsum plantation. Photo: Stuart McDonald

Kalibaru offers a surprisingly decent selection of midrange accommodation most with swimming pools and lovely gardens, but is a little bereft in the backpacker market. The town fills up with European tourists, often on package tours, during the high season months between June and September otherwise it continues merrily on its sleepy way for most of the year.

Other than kicking back by the hotel pool, be sure to visit the Glenmore Plantation in the neighbouring village of the same name where along with seeing where your coffee and chocolate start out in life, you can visit a rubber processing factory that though it seems like a life-size Dickensian museum diorama, is a fully functioning plant that has been click clacking along since the colonial days. ... Travelfish members only (Full text is around 500 words.)

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