If you visit the Sangeh Monkey Forest Tourist Attraction, do not forget to stop by at Pondok Jaka situated to the south of the Sangeh Nutmeg Tree Forest. This tourist attraction in the North Badung area relies on ancient Balinese houses estimated to be hundreds of years old. “This residence on the moor is called a pondok or cottage, and around it grows sugar palm trees so it is called Pondok Jaka,” said Manager of Pondok Jaka, Ida Bagus Dipayana, recently.
This house is considered ancient, so that it is often used as a photo or video shooting spot scattered on social media. Pondok, this typical Balinese house, still uses traditional raw materials, such as walls using polpolan orsoilmanual rough finishing. Layout of the building is in accordance with the concept of a Balinese house in general, consisting of four buildings, namely the kitchen in the south, Bale Dauh (west pavilion) in the west, Bale Daje (north pavilion) in the north as the main house and Bale Dangin (east pavilion) in the east which functions as a place for the Manusa Yadnya ceremony.
As the name suggests, Pondok Jaka is surrounded by jaka or sugar palm trees, so the atmosphere of the house is very peaceful. In this house, visitors can also find several traditional agricultural equipment, such as traditional plow. There are also household utensils, such as a mortar (a tool for pounding rice) and several plates made from coconut shells. Pondok Jaka provides facilities for photography activities as well. Photographers or video content creators here are subject to donations. “The funds will later be used for the needs of maintenance,” he said.
The architecture is still natural, so Pondok Jaka can become an educational tourist destination, especially about Balinese architectural art. Because of this, Pondok Jaka is often used as a photo shoot location, be it pre-wedding photos or theme photos with a Balinese background with a classic vibe. Apart from that, many foreign tourists also make a visit to this location. “The existence of Pondok Jaka has encouraged the formation of Sangeh Traditional Activity,” added the former Chief of Sangeh customary village.
Pondok Jaka belongs to the native resident to Sangeh. Since he is the only son in the family, this house was left at the village for more than 30 years. As consequence, the house was neglected and the roof was damaged. “We only repaired damaged roofs using reeds. Meanwhile, only the basics of the kitchen, Bale Dangin and Bale Dauh buildings remain, so we added the buildings according to the original design with traditional materials, namely popolan-style wall finishing as well. Then, it was equipped with agricultural tools from the past,” he explained plainly.
To provide something more for tourists, this area is developed by preparing an outbound place. Pondok Jaka can be an alternative for outbound tourism if you are reluctant to go to the Bedugul tourist area. This natural tourist area is no less cool than the outbound tourist attractions in Bedugul because it is filled with sugar palm plants and other plants, so the place has become a spot with deep nuance of village.
The new tourist attraction is open every day from 08:00 to 17:00 Local Time. This place is often chosen as a venue for reunions, social gatherings, birthday events and most often camping activities. Many tourists sat on mats, then opened their lunch and ate together. “We are indeed preparing Pondok Jaka as a venue for outbound activities and camping, so we have prepared a special place for these activities in an area of around 1 hectare,” he added. (BTN/015)