The Regency of Banyuwangi is located at the easternmost end of the Indonesian island of Java and it is a very strategic area for those who want to go to Bali, as it serves as an important ferry port between Java and Bali. It is surrounded by mountains and forests to the west; by sea to the east and south. Banyuwangi is only separated by Strait of Bali from Bali. The regency had a population of 1,488,791 at the Census held on 30 June 2000; by the 2010 Census it had risen to 1,554,997. The city of Banyuwangi is the administrative capital. The name Banyuwangi is Javanese for "fragrance water", connected to the Javanese folklore of Sri Tanjung.
Banyuwangi Regency in East Java province
The Regency of Banyuwangi consists of 24 subdistricts (Kecamatan):
- Banyuwangi Kota
Society and history
colonial period]]. Banyuwangi is — as are other Indonesian areas — a heterogeneous area where many ethnic groups are mingled and live together under the same roof. One of the native groups is the Osing community which has a distinctly Hindu culture although they can be considered as a Javanese sub-ethnic group. They live mainly in the central part of Banyuwangi and they sometimes consider themselves as Majapahit descendants. Other groups are Javanese (living mostly in the south and west), Madurese (mainly in the north and coastal area) and Balinese (scattered but more concentrated in the east). Other smaller groups include Chinese, Buginese, and Arabs.
This heterogeneity reflects history of this region. Once known as Blambangan (or its variation: Balambangan and Balumbungan), it was a vassal of the Majapahit Kingdom and a regional trade centre. After the Majapahit Kingdom ceased to exist, it became an independent kingdom and, as such, the last Hindu kingdom of Java. In order to defend itself from the troops of the Sultanate of Demak, which tried to occupy it, Blambangan asked for help from Balinese kings, which caused it to lose its independence to Balinese kingdoms. During this time Blambangan was deeply influenced by Balinese culture. After around 150 years of Balinese occupation, the Sultanate of Mataram gained control of the territory and renamed it Banyuwangi. Later, it was part of the Mataram territory controlled by the VOC (1770). During the expansion of plantations in 19th century, many parts of Banyuwangi were planted with coffee and sugar cane, which feature its landscape even now. The Chinese and Arabs came mostly during this period.
Banyuwangi people are known for their deep Islamic belief but combined with pre-Islamic practices.
Because of its location along Java–Bali road, Banyuwangi is rich in culture, where Javanese, Madurese, Balinese and other cultures had met. This area has got unique arts, traditions and natures. In addition, Banyuwangi has its own trademark arts.
This is a Banyuwangi-typical dance which performed by a woman and along with simple music like violin, triangle (called kluncing), gong (or kempul), kendhang and sometimes with keyboard as result of modern influence. It is performed during night until dawn particularly in parties.
Janger or Damarwulan
This is a traditional theatre art which has been developed since the 19th century in Banyuwangi. This theatre is a combination between Balinese, Javanese and local cultures. Balinese influences can be seen in its performers' costumes (which remind one of Arja costumes) and instruments, meanwhile Javanese influences is in its "lakon" or stories as well as language in dialogues. It is distinct from the Balinese Janger.
Many European tourists visiting Bali come to Banyuwangi to surf in Plengkung and dive in Tabuhan Island. Ferries from Bali arrive at the port of Ketapang, some 8 km to the north of Banyuwangi city. Plekung Beach is also known as G-land or green land have 3 types of waves which the greatest has 6 to 8 meters tall. Merpati Nusantara Airlines operate a daily flight to Banyuwangi from Surabaya using their 56 seat MA60 turboprops. Since May 2011, Sky Aviation (Indonesia) has regularly flight with 9 passengers Grand Caravan from Denpasar-Banyuwangi vice versa and Banyuwangi-Surabaya vice versa uses new Blimbingsari Airport which has inaugurated on December 29, 2010.
Pulau Tabuhan terletak 20 km dar kota Banyuwangi,tepatnya berada di desa Bangsring,Kecamatan Wongsorejo. Luas Pulau Tabuhan kira-kira 5 hektar. Pemandangan kebun lautnya sangat mengagumkan. Batu Karang adalah rumah dari ribuan ikan kerang, bunga karang,udang karang, dan tumbuhan laut. Pulau Tabuhan sangat cocok untuk scuba diving, karena airnya yang sanagt jernih.
It is situated 20 km from banyuwangi city it is at the village of Bangsring, Wongsorejo Tabuhan island covers an area of about 5 Ha. There are spectacular marine gardens. the coral reef are homes for myriad of shellfish,sponges,crayfish and marine plants. It is good for scuba diving as the water is very clear.
Ritual Seblang Bakungan Seblang bakungan merupakan upacara penyucian desa. Upacara ini dilakukan satu malam, seminggu setelah hari raya Idul Adha. Tujuan dari upacara ini adalah menolak balak, yakni dengan mengadakan pertunjukan seblang di malam hari, setelah maghrib. Acara dibuka dengan parade oncor keliling desa (Ider bumi) yang diikuti oleh penduduk desa. Seblang ditarikan oleh seorang wanita tua di depan sanggar. Setelah diberi mantra mantra ia menari dalam keadaan kesurupan. Lagu lagunya ada 12 yang menceritakan tentang kehidupan, karamahan, lingkungan hidup,dsb. Kegiatan berakhir tenganh malam setelah acara"Adol Kembang". Para penonton kemudian berebut berbagai bibit tanaman yang dipajang di panggung dan mengambil kiling (baling-baling) yang di pasang di di sanggar. barang-barang yang diambil tersebut dapat di percaya dapat digunakan sebagai alat penolak balak.
Seblang Bakungan constitutes a village purification celebration. It is done a week after Idhul Adha. The purpose of this activity is to ward off misfortune by organizing a Seblang show in the night. After dusk, it is opened by a parade around the village by bringing torches (ider bumi).
Every household makes tumpeng(rice cones)and "pecel pitik"(grilled chicken). After the "ider bumi" procession, "tumpengs" are put in the main place of Seblang Performance. After the amin fiqin visitors, followed by all community in the village. Seblang Bakungan is performed by an old woman in front of "sanggar" -a kind of small stage. After being spelled the seblang dancer dances in a trance condition. There are 12 songs in the performance. They tells about the life, hospitality, environment,etc.
The activities are over in the middle of the night after "Adol Kembang"(a dancer pretends selling flowers). The spectators, then, snatch the various seed plants, and the highest windmill away. The people believe that these things can against evil spirit, and they put at the door of homes.
Place : Kelurahan Bakungan
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