Leeches, Rafting and Floating restaurants

Leeches! Yes that was a black little worm stuck on my shin. I almost jumped out of my skin. There was no salt at hand while trekking in the protected forest up at Gunung Gede-Pangrango, to put over the leech.

One had to just pull of the little creepy sucker/vampire. We were revisiting the Lido lakes resort after many years and the leeches were a new experience. Article on my last visit here.

Lido Lakes resort is just an hour and a half from Jakarta at the end of the Jagorawi toll road towards Sukabumi. If you are looking some good outdoor fun and adventure sports this is the perfect place to go to for a weekend. The well appointed hotel now organizes all outdoor activities which include golf, river rafting, ATV, trekking trips, outbound trips etc.

Lido LakesThe hotel is surrounded by the lake on three sides and overlooks green forested mountains and the golf course. Well appointed rooms and service provide the base to enjoy all the outdoor adventure activities. The lake at the base of hotel provides access to bamboo raft boats which can be hired by the hour to have a lovely ride. Very picturesque and tranquil. It also provided a lot of photo opportunities.

There were eight of us all raring to go and our first stop was at the reception to sign up for river rafting on River Cisadane early morning. The rafting experience was in no way comparable to rafting on river Cicatih in Sukabumi due to the garbage and plastic bags stuck among the boulders and hanging from trees near the banks as well as an all pervasive background stench. The crew and equipment however was top notch. There were some stretches of exciting rapids but the best was when the raft went over a 4 m wall of a small dam in the river. That was awesome. We came back from the rafting experience totally wet and ravenous to enjoy the hotel breakfast.

A brick road from the resort takes you toward the forest conservation center. The Lido Golf course is just five minutes from the resort on the left. An ATV track provides for a lot of fun but the machines are old and ill serviced.

Further up the road we passed through fields of corn, bean, tapioca till the road peters into

Canopy Walk

a muddy track winding through the slopes to take us to the ‘Pusat Pendidikan Konservasi Alam Bodogol’. This was the starting point to the 2 km trek to the canopy walk. A few years ago the canopy walk was a rope bridge between 3 tall trees 25 meters above the forest floor.

A totally different perspective of the forest. The trees have since fallen and a concrete pillar has taken the place of the trees with a walkway with steel cables above the forest floor. It was so very damp after the rains earlier that the path although cobbled was incredibly slippery. One could barely enjoy the forest scenery as we were so busy looking at our feet to prevent falling down. This is also where we were attacked by the leeches.

It took us all afternoon to recover from the morning trek and then it time for some gastronomic adventures at the delightful floating ‘lesehan’ Pinandar, on the lake Lido. Small floating huts formed each individual seating area which could seat upto 10. It was wonderful to sit just above the lake watching the raindrops bounce of the surface like pearls and huge fishes gliding in the clear water. We had ordered grilled and fried ‘gurame’ fish, which the staff caught fresh from the lake. The local Indonesian food was very good as was the service. Stuffed to the ‘gills’, we headed back to Jakarta rejuvenated and refreshed.

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