Timor West, mud wells of Semau Island

Written by on June 28, 2012 in Nusatenggara, Waterfalls, Lakes with 0 Comments

Timor West, mud wells of Semau Island

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The mud wells of Semau Island are quite a peculiar phenomenon, in need of an explanation by geologists.
Gray mud wells up from the bottom, in some places forming a pond in others the dried mud has formed pointed hills.
It is not a volcanic phenomenon, the mud is cold. But the holes – as is to be expected – are deep. Helen tried to fathom them with a stick, but could not reach the bottom.

The area is perhaps a km wide and borders the bay. Walk around, climb the hills, and meet the goats… the only living beings in sight.

We were reminded of a similar place on Java, Bledug Kuwu. Here too the mud is cold, but erupts with big gas bubbles. And the mud is salty so that people win salt from it. Whereas the mud on Semau island shows traces of black oil.

Directions:
Semau Island faces the western point of Timor at short distance, it looks like a broken off piece of Timor. The sea in between is relatively shallow.
The easiest way to see the wells is by chartering a boat from Tenau harbour for a day – then one can also visit a beach and a snorkeling spot.
It is cheaper to just cross with a boat taking locals (Rp 20,000) and once on the island to hire an ojeg to take you to the wells. That is how guide Ony Meda arranged the trip for us.

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