Meta: Respect The Residents And The Environment; Follow These Guidelines When Visiting The Arborek Tourism Village In Raja Ampat Regency, West Papua.
The very first thing that comes to mind about Raja Ampat is the beauty of its underwater ecosystem. But, as many people are unaware, there are other places to visit that are equally beautiful and would be a shame to miss. Have you ever heard of the Arborek Tourism Village in West Papua’s Raja Ampat Regency?
This village is a popular spot both for domestic and international tourists. You can do many intriguing activities there, such as staying at a homestay by the sea or diving accompanied by manta rays, one of the world’s largest stingray species.
If you want to travel there, there are a few points to be your attention. There are rules to obey, just like any other tourist attraction has. Let’s get acquainted with Arborek, the tourism village, and learn some of the rules you must follow when visiting it.
Arborek village is on a 7.2-hectare island in Meosmansar District, Raja Ampat Regency. You can see a stunning sea expanse and abundant fish and coral reef resources surrounding the island.
There are 48 families and 217 people on this small island. Fishers account for up to 35% of the total population. In contrast, the rest make a living through tourism and the creative economy.
Rules to Follow in Arborek Tourism Village
When you visit a tourist spot, there will be rules, either written or unwritten, that you must obey. In Arborek, you must follow some ground rules. Not just for tourists but also for villagers. Check out the details below:
Do not jump off the pier
Snorkeling is possible at Arborek’s pier area. But please note that jumping from the pier is not permitted when going down to the water. Instead, it would help if you descended gradually. It isn’t without reason because the area around the village pier is home to diverse fish and coral reefs. They may become distracted and stressed when people jump.
Do not step on coral reefs
Tourists who cannot maintain their balance while snorkeling frequently uses coral reefs as a footstool. It causes the coral reefs in Arborek Village, which were previously healthy, to be damaged.
This problem is common, especially before the pandemic. So, while the economy and tourism suffered during the pandemic, the good news is that many coral reefs are growing a bit and recovering.
In this regard, the Arborek Tourism Village management will place people around the pier in the future to control tourists who snorkel for them to obey the rules.
No fishing (in certain areas)
Arborek residents commit to making their community an eco-friendly place to visit. So, while fishing is permitted, all visitors are prohibited from fishing in certain areas, particularly the pier bridge to the predetermined limit area. This rule also applies to residents who work as fishermen.
Do not litter
One of the exciting facts about Arborek is: it won first place in the West Papua’s Cleanest Village competition in 2017. They invested months on preparations at that time. The assessment began with the cleanliness of the village environment and proceeded to the inside of each house, including the toilet, house arrangement, house color, kitchen.
Until now, the village has been excellent and clean. Thus, the management of the tourist village keeps reminding visitors not to litter while visiting.
Do not forget the courtesy culture.
Maintaining a culture of courtesy is a necessity. It is true in any situation, including when visiting a place. So, whether you’re visiting Arborek Village for business or pleasure, you should maintain good manners.
How to Go to Arborek Tourism Village
Arborek Village is about an hour’s speed boat ride from Waisai City on Waigeo Island. There are two ways to get to Waisai City:
- By boat from Sorong City. It takes about two hours.
- Take flight from Sorong City to Marinda Airport in Waisai via Domine Eduard Osok Airport Sorong. The flight takes about 30 minutes and is operated by Susi Air using a pioneering aircraft Cessna.
Since the schedule is uncertain due to the pandemic, please ask the ticket seller directly about ticket prices and availability.
What to Do in Arborek Tourism Village
Arborek village has an icon: manta rays. You can enjoy it at two locations: Manta Ridge and Manta Sandy. Manta Ridge is best suited to tourists who are used to diving in strong currents. Meanwhile, those looking to have an easy, fun diving can go to Manta Sandy. Don’t worry; a local guide who has experienced official training will accompany you.
In addition, other tourist activities available in Arborek Village include:
- Snorkeling by the pier.
- Stay in one of the seaside homestays.
- Enjoy the sunrise and sunset from every vantage point on Arborek Island.
- Indulging in traditional culinary treats such as cassava, tubers, and fried bananas.
- Playing with Arborek children.
- Take in cultural highlights such as the Cakalele dance, Mansorandak, and the welcome dance on the boat.
Also, of course, you can purchase creative economy items of Arborek Tourism Village such as necklaces, woven manta ray hats, nokens, shopping bags, flower vases, and so on.