West Papua Diary

Merauke, The Easternmost City of Indonesia

The Easternmost City of Indonesia

Merauke

Having the title of the easternmost city of Indonesia, you may imagine that getting to and out of Merauke is a hard thing to do. Well, in reality, it is not. Nowadays, you can simply get there by using airline companies’ service that has daily flights to Mopah Airport in Merauke from Jakarta, Makasar, and Jayapura.

 

The Merauke Regency is marked as the east-end of the Indonesian archipelago, bordering with Papua New Guinea. Spending a vacation in Merauke is a new and great experience for all. The tourism of Merauke is known for its beaches, historical sites, and highlands–not to mention their crafts and culinary treats in local markets.

 

In Merauke, you will find many cuisines using deer meat. To find them you can simply drive around the city. Recommended areas to visit for culinary street food experience is around Jalan Raya Mandala and Jalan Angkasa.

 

While you are looking around in Merauke, you might as well look for souvenirs and selected crafts. Merauke has a big population of crocodiles because of their area that consists of swamp and lowland. This condition makes it profitable for creative locals; they can make fashion items, crafts, and souvenirs out of crocodile skin.

 

Much like the other areas in Papua, the Merauke regency also has its own beauty, whether it is natural or manmade ones. Here are the recommended ones to visit!

Sabang Merauke Twin Monument

Sabang Merauke Twin Monument

This monument was built in 1994 to symbolize the unity of Indonesia. It is called “Sabang Merauke Twin Monument” because the other twin is located in the westernmost city of Indonesia, Sabang.

On top of this monument, a statue of Garuda Bird—the national symbol of Indonesia—is present. Meanwhile, at the bottom of the monument, there is a written fragment of the song “Satu Nusa Satu Bangsa” as proof of unity in diversity.

To get to this monument in Kampung Sota, you need to go as far as 80 kilometers from the heart of Merauke city. It takes around two-hour drive by a motorcycle or car. The road condition is fairly smooth via Trans Papua. Around the area, there are a few food stalls and a guard post for the authorities.

Wasur National Park

Wasur National Park

This national park is located at the southeast of Papua, close to the Papua New Guinea border. From Merauke the easternmost city of Indonesia, the journey is around 30 to 45-minute drive. The Wasur National Park is divided into two geographic areas, coastal, and plateau.

Apart from geographic areas, the national park itself is divided into two, namely Wasur Wildlife Reserve with an area of 206,000 hectares and Wasur Nature Preserve with an area of 4,000 hectares.  About 70 percent of Wasur National Park consists of savannas, while the rest of the area is mainly swamp and forests.

The national park is home to many fauna species, including Papua’s endemic faunas. Within the area, there are also 14 villages inhabited by indigenous tribes; their presence in the area means that they are keeping an eye on the wildlife conservation.

Wasur National Park is also a dedicated Ramsar Site because it is one of the most productive ecosystems in the world and also a natural habitat for many varieties of biodiversity. There are 74 species of mammals and 410 species of birds. Activities offered by the national park include fishing, bird watching, and more.

Lampu Satu Beach

Lampu Satu Beach

Just like other parts of Papua, Merauke also offers beautiful coastlines with blue waters and beautiful beaches. There are many beaches in Merauke Regency, namely Ndalir Beach, Payum Beach, Nasai Beach, Onggari Beach, Wambi Beach, and Kaiburse Beach recommended to visit. However, there is one unique beach in particular that has to be on your “must visit” list, and that is Lampu Satu Beach.

Lampu Satu Beach is the closest beach from the heart of Merauke City, making it the best option to go to if you don’t have much time left to explore. It’s about 2 kilometers away, and you can go there by using vehicles.

Most locals near Lampu Satu Beach are fishermen, which brings us to the uniqueness of this beach—the old lighthouse. Even though the lighthouse is old, it still operates well and is in use to this day. It functions as a signal for the fishers who are going to approach the land. Apart from local fishers, fishers from Sulawesi and Bugis are also present around the Merauke coastline.

In certain days, events are being held—such as horse and motor racing. If you are not into those events, the beach has other things to offer. You can do beach-walking and sightseeing, or watch the locals doing their daily activities. When you are tired, worry not, there are resorts and restaurants that you can find along the beach. Therefore, you can enjoy the magnificent view of the beach while eating local cuisines.

Those are the recommended places to visit in Merauke, the easternmost city of Indonesia. Well, are you interested? Considerable uniqueness and new experiences are waiting for you. It’s time to explore the Merauke Regency!

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