Travel

[travel] Batu Secret Zoo & Eco Green Park & Pohon Inn (Batu Malang)

Had heard a lot about this place, and finally decided to go there early October 2013. Before we had kids, we had been to Bandung Zoo, Singapore Zoo, and Taronga Zoo. And with kids, we had been to Gembira Loka (Yogya), Ragunan (Jakarta), and (of course) Taman Safari. From all of those zoos, our expectation on this Batu Secret Zoo was set near to Taman Safari. But, surprisingly, this zoo is, apparently, becoming the best zoo we’ve ever been.

First of all, to be clear for some of you who may not familiar with Batu and this area :

  • Batu is a city (since 2001), 20 km from Malang, East Java.
  • Pohon Inn, Batu Secret Zoo, Eco Green Park are three out of four main venues (the other one is Museum Satwa) at Jatim Park 2 (official website).
  • Beside Jatim Park 2, there are other similar attraction in Batu, Malang.
  • How to get here? From Surabaya, driving will take around 3-4 hours.

POHON INN

Pohon Inn is a hotel located inside Jatim Park 2. Since the zoo and museum opening hour is at 10am, if you have your own vehicle, you can find any other hotel. But staying in this hotel will give you these :

  1. The design is unique.
  2. The dining room has a rotating section, facing three cages (windows). So while you enjoy your breakfast, leopards and wildcats are directly looking at you.
  3. Walking distance to Batu Zoo, Eco Green Park, and Museum Satwa. This can be a very good point, when you bring kids, and purchase day-pass. You can rest first at noon, and continue in the afternoon.
Your breakfast companion : LEOPARD!

Your breakfast companion : LEOPARD!

If you do not factor in above points, then this hotel could be overpriced for you, because at their pricing, the facility is at par. Neat but minimal.

Batu Secret Zoo

The admission fee is Rp 90k for weekends and holidays (Rp 65k for other days), including the Museum Satwa.

Here are some great points about this zoo :

1. TRAFFIC ENGINEERING.

We really admire whoever design this zoo. Very thoughtful. Ragunan may have better species, but the distance between cages is killing the legs.

In Batu Secret Zoo, there is a path starting from the entrance. It reminds me a lot with Ikea shopping experience where visitor’s traffic is engineered. Here, the path is very enjoyable with stops (F&B, toilets) here and there.

And at each stop, there is something to be enjoyed. For instance, there is a rest area where you can sit and watch the flamingo birds area. Very beautiful.

Other good example is savanna section. We just walk inside a windowed-corridor with air conditioning to see the animal.

Convenient way to watch the animal

Convenient way to watch the animal

The itinerary is simple : start at 10, watch animals, lunch, activity area (theme park, ghost house, animal feed), and then more animals until closing hour at 18.00.

2. INTERACTIVITY

Taman Safari allows you to feed the animal from your car window. In Batu Secret Zoo, you are in open train, so be ready to be licked by animals.

Face to face encounter. Are you ready for it?

Face to face encounter. Are you ready for it?

There are several other areas (separated, so the queue should not horrible) where you can interact with the animals. Parrots, rabbits, orang utan, horse, camel.

3. EDUCATIONAL / INFORMATION / GAMES

There are a lot of teasing questions in the form of question and answer, matching photo with names (for instance, bird name and their eyes photo).

I know maybe their budget is not as big as San Diego or other famous zoo, however, they are very creative in games. By projecting IOS game, you can stomp on ‘chickens’ on the floor to collect points. There are a lot of options for activities : theme park, ghost house, swimming pool and water playing activity.

4. e-BIKE

If you want to avoid walking, e-Bike rental is available (the cost is more expensive than the admission fee – Rp 100k for 3 hours). Pls write down their mobile number, because they can deliver the e-bike whenever you want to stop walking.

Some Tips :

  • The sea lion show is very good. I watch the San Diego performance from YouTube. Although the stage is very minimal, the tricks are comparable.
  • This zoo operating hours is only 8 hours (10am-6pm), so you need to maximise it.
  • Although you may hear that Batu Malang is cold, be ready with your sun protector, hat, water, etc. It’s hot.
  • Prepare some Rp 10k, 20k denominations for tipping if you want to take picture holding the animals. Some are with price list, some are in the form of direct tip.
  • On the way out, there are some cool animals and activities (Girrafe, White Tiger, Gorilla). Allow some time, don’t spend too much on theme park.
  • If you bring toddlers who still require naps, consider to take 2-day pass, especially if you intend to go to the Museum. One day is simply not enough.

Eco Green Park

We only have 1 hour to explore this before going back to Surabaya. Too bad, the place is (again) way above our initial expectation. We thought it would be like Ancol Eco Park, but we are wrong.

eBike for rent..

eBike for rent..

Here, there is a huge selection of Parrots. You do not need to go to Jurong Park just to get interact with birds. Here, you can feed toucan, parrot.

Beside that, there are a lot of interesting and creative spots : 3D illusions (you can take picture), strawberry corner, mushroom corner, recycle corner.

And we just pass them using eBike.

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Overall, this Jatim Park 2 is very recommended. For us with 2-yr-old twins, we should have 2-3 full days, instead of 1 day. Definitely will come back.

 

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