Dutch Angles in East Java: Van Den Bosch Fortress

Posted on February 14, 2013

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Echos Cover-esque

Courtyard

Main Entrance to the Fortress

Main Entrance to the Fortress

During the week I spent in East Java, we went on what I considered to be three main excursions. The first involved a long bike ride from Paron to Ngawi Town early on Saturday morning to check out the Van Den Bosch Fortress. East Java was once Dutch Colonial territory, and Ngawi Town is located at the intersection of two rivers, the Solo and Maduin. Naturally, such a river connection warrants what would be considered a “stronghold,” so the Dutch colonists built a military fortress within 100 meters from where the rivers meet. It has been a long time since the fortress was used for Dutch military purposes.

Entering the Fortress

Entering the Fortress

Dilapidated Doorway

Dilapidated Doorway

Entrance from inside the courtyard. Notice the motocross banners?

Entrance from inside the courtyard. Notice the motocross banners?

I once inside the courtyard, I noticed that there were a bunch of motocross banners. John enlightened me by explaining how the grounds were commonly used for motocross races during the past few years, and it was easier just to leave the banners up year-round I guess. It would be a pretty awesome and unique place to watch a race, to say the least.

Also, not long after we arrived, we noticed a group of school kids following us around, who were somewhat shy until I asked if I could take their picture. Then, I noticed, it was hard to get them to stop getting into every photo!

Big Walls and Little Kids

School Kids in the Courtyard

I promise I did not ask them to pose.

I promise I did not ask them to pose.

My favorite thing about this place was definitely how the straight lines of the worn building juxtaposed with the invading nature. It made for some interesting photography!

John on Guard

John on Guard

Green vs. Grey

Where the Solo & Maduin meet

Where the Solo & Maduin meet

After getting a fill of photos, we headed back into Ngawi town for a couple of laps around the park’s track and some breakfast. Somewhere along the way we lost the kids who followed us around, but not before I was able to snap one last shot of John having a conversation mid-ride.

John and Companion

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Posted in: Biking, Indonesia