My tranquil escape to beautiful Bogor Botanical Garden (Kebon Raya Bogor) in Indonesia, away from hustle and bustle of city life, gives me pleasure whenever I think of it. I had heard a lot about this tropical garden and I made it sure to visit it anyhow. Being the best attraction at Bogor in Indonesia and lying in the city centre, this garden adjoins the Presidential Palace. Covering about 87 hectares, it was initiated by Thomas Stamford Raffle between 1811 and 1816 but was officially established in 1817 by the Dutch East India Company under the direction of botanist Professor CGC Reinwardt. A memorial in Honour of Raffle’s wife still stands there.
Bogor Botanical Garden harbours around 17000 plant species, which includes 400 species of exceptional palm trees. Nearly five thousand trees are gathered here from around tropical region. It has an orchid house which contains 3000 varieties of colourful and rare orchids collected from different countries. The Garden is open all days for visitors. Through the paved walkway, I strolled in the Garden to capture its beauty in my camera. I couldn’t help admiring the variety of old and ornamental trees as if calling me and giving me a silent message. Names of the plants and trees were written both in English and Bahasa. Colourful flowers, especially the giant water lotus, all around were adding to its beauty. More than 50 different varieties of birds take refuge here. I looked up to find bats roosting in the trees. My ears loved the sound of river rushing to the large rocks. The wonders of Indonesian flowers, cacti and bamboos are in abundance. This garden is surrounded with lakes, two rivers and hilly pathways. It also boasts of huge arum ‘Amorphophallus titanium’, the tallest flower cluster that can reach an amazing height of 2.5 m.
Bogor botanical garden stands for its outstanding, world-class collection of various flora and fauna. This tropical research garden also acts as a respite and recreation place, which one would always remember. This hilly peaceful trail would always stay in my mind and would keep me always afresh.