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Gunung Sewu Geopark

Gunung Sewu Geopark or Gunung Sewu UNESCO Global Geopark or Pegunungan Sewu (Thousand mountains) are elongated mountains in Kulonprogo Regency, Bantul Regency and Gunung Kidul Regency in Yogyakarta Province, Wonogiri Regency in Central Java Province, to Tulungagung Regency in East Java Province on Java Island, Indonesia.

The uniqueness of the ecosystem encourages the International Union of Speleology to propose the Sewu Mountains Karst Area into one of the world's natural heritages in 1993. On September 19 2015, UNESCO announced Gunung Sewu as the Global Geopark Network.

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Sewu Mountain is rich in biodiversity, archeology, history and cultural aspects. The Pacitan rock culture represents Paleolithic to Neolithic artifacts in Southeast Asia. About 1,802 square kilometers of the area contain traces of prehistoric settlements. Some prehistoric people lived in caves, while others lived in open spaces.

Characteristics

Gunung Sewu is a classic tropical karst landscape and is dominated by limestone. Rows of mountains formed by the removal of the seabed thousands of years ago. The karst landscape is very unique with exokarst phenomena or surface structures and endokarst phenomena or structures inside the earth.

The exokarst feature includes the positive formation of more than 40,000 cone-shaped karst hills, while the negative form of valleys and karst lakes. Endokarst features include more than 119 karst caves that have stalactites, stalagmites, and all underground rivers are well-known for caving and tubing activities.

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Gunung Sewu Global Geopark stretches east-west along 120 kilometers in the depression zone of Mount Merapi and Mount Lawu in the north, while the south is bordered by the Indian Ocean. The area has a height of 5 meters to 700 meters above sea level in the Upper Paleogene range and thousands of younger limestone hills.

The limestone is Neogen and consists of claustrophobic clastic facies in the Oyo and Kepek formations, as well as reef facies in the Wonosari formation. Late Oligocene rocks to Early Miocene from volcanic and marine sediments underlie these limestone rocks. Quarter river and lake deposits represent the youngest units.

Caves

The caves are classified locally as vertical caves ("Luweng") and horizontal caves. Jomblang Cave or Luweng Jomblang and Grubug Cave or Luweng Grubug in Semanu District in Kulon Progo are famous for speleological groups. Cerme Cave has an entrance in Bantul Regency and extends eastward to Panggang District in Gunung Kidul Regency.

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Luweng Jaran Cave in Pacitan Regency has a length of 25 kilometers and the Luweng Ngepoh Cave has a depth of 200 meters. The caves in the Sewu Mountains also contain ancient human fossils from old stone ages around 1.8 million years ago along with stone tools for hunting.

Ancient volcano

Tectonic activity is still active in this region where Gunung Sewu is located in front of the active subduction zone between the Indian Ocean, Australia and the Eurasian plate. Active lifting has lasted 1.8 million years and produced river terraces seen in the dry valleys of Sadeng and coastal terraces along the southern coast.



The ancient Nglanggeran volcano in Patuk, Gunung Kidul, is only 600 meters high but has beautiful views of the summit of Mount Merapi in the north and the Java coast in the south. The giant granite and andesite formations called "watu wayang" are found in the Nglanggeran Mountain area and nearby man-made lakes. It takes around 3 hours to climb from the Kali Song Hall to the top.

Beach

The coastal Sewu Mountains are famous for hundreds of unique and beautiful beach spots. Teluk Siung Beach has a length of 300 meters surrounded by cliffs with more than 200 rock climbing tracks. Jogan Tide Fall 10 meters in the Tepus district during the rainy season is the best time, while in the dry season it has a low water level.

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