Tomb of Abdurrahman Wahid (Gus Dur)

The tomb of Abdurrahman Wahid – popularly known as Gus Dur – is in the village of Cukir in the sub-district of Diwek on the southern edge of Jombang, eighty kilometres south-west of Surabaya. Gus Dur was Indonesia’s fourth president (in office 1999 – 2001). He died on 30 December 2009. His tomb is one of the most crowded pilgrimage sites in Indonesia.

By bus from Surabaya’s Purabaya (also called Bungurasih) bus terminal, the trip to Jombang takes about two hours depending on traffic. Jombang can also be accessed by train from west or east: buy tickets online, or if in Surabaya buy tickets at the Gubeng or Pasar Turi stations. In the main street of Jombang – Jalan Jenderal Ahmad Yani – turn south into Jalan Kiai Haji Wachid Hasyim at an intersection marked by a large raised water tank [7°32’18.12″S  112°14’16.67″E]. Jalan Kiai Haji Wachid Hasyim runs about eight kilometres straight south to the tomb, though the street changes its name to Jalan Kiai Haji Hasyim Asya’ri after crossing a railway line about half way there.

Gus Dur’s grave is in a small burial ground in the centre of the Tebuireng Islamic school complex. The plain graves of his grandfather Kiai Haji Hasyim Asya’ri, and his father Kiai Haji Abdul Wahid Hasyim – both pioneer educators, religious activists, politicians and National Heroes of Indonesia – also lie in the burial ground. The entrance to Tebuireng is on the righthand (west) side of the road [7°36’22.95″S  112°14’17.03″E]. After passing through alleys of souvenir stalls and a tall entry building visitors are delivered into the small, triangular burial ground where they take a seat on the floor of a double-level viewing stadium overlooking the grave. The complex is closed between 4:00 pm in the afternoon and 8:00 pm at night to give Tebuireng’s students a break from the relentless crowds of visitors.