The Meru Betiri National Park, covering 580 sq km between Jember and Banyuwangi districts, is an area of magnificent coastal rainforest and abundant wildlife, making it one of Java’s finest parks. It’s famous as having been one of the last refuges of the Java tiger, now almost certainly extinct. Meru Betiri is very difficult to access (often impossible in the rainy season), which keeps the number of visitors to a trickle, but the park authorities are actively trying to promote tourism.
The future of the park is under threat on several fronts. Illegal loggers, farmers and hunters encroach on its territory. Mining companies, and illegal miners, are also eyeing up the park after significant gold deposits were found here.