Mount Papandayan – Active Mountain with Many Craters
Mount Papandayan is a complex stratovolcano, located in Garut Regency, to the southeast of the city of Bandung in West Java, Indonesia. It is about 15 km to the southwest of the town of Garut. At the summit, there are four large craters which contain active fumaroles fields. An eruption in 1772 caused the northeast flank to collapse producing a catastrophic debris avalanche that destroyed 40 villages and killed nearly 3,000 people. The eruption truncated the volcano into a broad shape with two peaks and a flat area 1.1 km wide with Alun-Alun crater in the middle, making the mountain look like a twin volcano. One of the peaks is called Papandayan and the other Mount Puntang.
Mount Papandayan is a large composite volcano. It is constructed of alternating layers of lava and ash, and other fragmental volcanic rock debris formed by explosive eruptions over the past several hundred years. A large horseshoe-shape crater extended to the northeast resulting in an avalanche deposit consisted of intermixed volcanic debris and alternated rocks, Kawah Manuk and many others with solfataras emitting smoke and hot fumes from its inner sides.
The Mount Papandayan area is a popular tourist site. Tourists can walk across the crater and view phenomena such as bubbling mud pools, steam vents and sulfur deposits. The bubbling yellow crater (Kawah Papandayan or “Papandayan Crater”) is a popular sight. There are various other volcanic craters in the area to the south of Bandung as well. Another volcanic crater in the same region with easy access is Kawah Putih in the nearby Bandung District to the west of Mt Papandayan.
Above the crater are an elfin forest and several meadows with Javanese edelweiss. Papandayan Mountain is situated on the island of Java, at 7°32′ S and 107°73’E, rising 2.665 m. Papandayan Mountain is one of the natural wonder in West-Java. Papandayan is a complex strata volcano with four large summit craters, the youngest of which was breached to the NE by collapse during a brief eruption in 1772 and contains active fumaroles fields. This interesting place lies in the border of the Bandung and Garut regencies, about seventy kilometers south of Bandung and about 19, 25 km from Garut. It is one of the most spectacular volcanoes in this province and the top of the mountain are easily reaches, because there are special road leading to the crater.
Mount Papandayans crater is probably one of the most spectacular mountain scenes on Java Island. There is a Cangkuang temple situated by Cangkuang Lake, which was a major discovery of archaeological value as it was the first of its kind found in West Java, dating back to the 8th century. This volcano is situated 17 km from Garut or 50 km from Bandung.