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Peeking into Maria’s Cave, a Religious Tourism Destination in Rangkasbitung

Lebak

In Rangkasbitung, Lebak, there is a religious tourism destination that is open 24 hours. The place is called the Canadian Hill Maria Cave (GMBK), located about 3 kilometers from Rangkasbitung Square.

The word ‘Canadian Hill’ is an abbreviation of Our Lady of Kampung Narimbang Dalam. That is, the name of the cave indicates the location of this cave.

According to the information gathered, the Maria Cave was built by the parishioners of Rangkasbitung with the help of the leadership of the Congregation of the Franciscan Sisters of Sukabumi who lived in Rangkasbitung in 1988. Initially, the cave was functioned as a place of worship for Catholics. Over time, GMBK has also become one of the religious destinations in Rangkasbitung.

One of the Catholics, Frans said, being at GMBK made him more solemn when praying. Moreover, it is supported by a cool and quiet place because it is surrounded by large trees and flower gardens. So that it creates a sense of comfort for people who worship.

“GMBK is one of the closest Maria Caves in Jabodetabek. Usually I pray at night, more solemnly, getting closer to God with devotion through Mother Mary,” said Frans to detikcom, Sunday (20/2/2022).

Maria Rangkasbitung Cave. Photo: Fathul Rizkoh/detikcom

Frans said, at the beginning of the construction the cave was not as big as it is now. At that time there were only old buildings, the Cave of Mary, and the Chapel of Santa Maria Lourdes. Now, there is the Grotto of the Resurrection, St Joseph’s Hall, the great and small way of the Cross with 14 stops.

For the route of the great cross path, visitors must go up and down stairs through the forest. No need to worry about getting lost, because you only need to follow the poving block road that has been provided. The estimated time around this trail is around 30 to 45 minutes.

For the route of the small cross path, visitors do not need to go up and down stairs. This route is right in front of the Awakening Grotto. The estimated time around this route is about 10 minutes.

“It’s not obligatory for everyone to take the long route, those who want to do it. If the conditions are not strong enough to walk, you can use the short route. Well, the elderly who can’t walk far can choose the short path,” he continued.

Maria Rangkasbitung CaveMaria Rangkasbitung Cave. Photo: Fathul Rizkoh/detikcom

Then, what if you want to visit GMBK? Here’s the route.

1. Using the Train

Rangkasbitung Station provides an electric rail train (KRL) heading to with the Tanah Abang-Rangkasbitung route. Travel time from Tanah Abang to Rangkasbitung is about 2 hours.

In addition, this station also provides local trains with the route of Merak-Rangkasbitung. Travel time from Merak to Rangkasbitung is about 2 hours.

2. Public Transportation/Ojek Online

Arriving at Rangkasbitung Station, visitors must first walk to Jalan Sunan Kalijaga or the direction of Rangkasbitung Market through the station parking lot. At the end of the road, take an angkot that goes to Narimbang and stop at GMBK.

In addition to taking an angkot, online motorcycle taxi options are also available. You only need to enter the GMBK address in the destination column, wait a moment and visitors will be directly escorted by the driver.

3. Private Vehicle

If you use a car, now access to the Serang-Panimbang Toll Road is available through the Rangkasbitung Toll Gate. After that, take the path to Jalan Ahmad Yani, then Jalan Soekarno-Hatta and head to the village of Narimbang Dalam. If you want it easier, exit the toll gate, you can directly open google maps.

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