With the economic and infrastructure growth, West Papua now also focuses on its tourism segment. Featuring a magnificent natural view, the beauty of marine life, as well as unique and diverse culture, West Papua has so many to sell. In attaining foreign exchange from tourism sectors, the government emphasizes the importance of the environmentally friendly concept of the land of Cendrawasih.
By paying attention to that concept as well as maintaining and utilizing the cultural diversity of West Papua, the Indonesian government has a big dream of making this province as the world’s best eco-tourism destination. One strategy to achieve that is by making sure the tourism development is done with green investment.
Why tourism? It is because this industry holds a powerful connection with other sectors. This industry is the reciprocal relationship between tourism, businessman, government, as well as local communities in a certain tourist destination.
West Papua itself owns six kinds of tourism: pleasure, recreation, culture, sport, business, as well as conventional. By having those six elements they can offer for the industry, West Papua can be a big tourism spot to draw lots of attention from local or overseas tourists and investors.
Perfect and good management will provide economic growth not only for the country but also for locals who live nearby. The people of West Papua will have an open opportunity to play a role in the local industry—from selling their traditional crafts, offering services, to renting affordable places to a sleepover.
Moreover, locals will become more aware of the preservation of ethnic monuments in their environment, knowing that what their ancestors left could raise the curiosity of the tourist. When one area becomes a perfect spot for visitors, young people in the local society will step in to preserve and revive some traditional culture—such as arts, handicrafts, dances, music, traditional ceremonies, and clothing.
Now, let’s take a short trip to learn the West Papua tourism and several great things they offer.
Nowadays, who hasn’t heard about Raja Ampat? Yes, the popularity of this island has reached other continents. Raja Ampat is best known for one of the world’s ten best diving spots. The number of local tourists or people from different countries who visit Raja Ampat keeps increasing.
Raja Ampat is an archipelago out of many coral islands that are widespread throughout its territory. Four big islands in Raja Ampat are Waigeo Island, Batanta Island, Salawati Island, and Misool Island.
According to an international conservation report, Raja Ampat has 75 percent sea species out of sea species around the globe. It is a home for 540 reefs, 1,511 sea species, and thousands of other marine biotas. Not only offering the magical sea biota, but Raja Ampat is also storing unique and captivating cultures and arts.
Not without reason Papua is called the land of Cendrawasih. If you are curious about how beautiful and unique the beautiful birds of paradise are in West Papua, you can always visit Sawinggrai village.
There are four species of Cenderawasih living in this village. They are red Cenderawasih (Paradisaea Rubra), rattan split paradise (Cicinnurus Magnificus), a small bird of paradise (Paradisaea Minor), and a large bird of paradise (Paradisaea Apoda). Upon seeing them, you’ll understand why these species become an icon of Papua.
Several homestays are available in Sawinggrai village. If you are done enjoying the alluring Cendrawasih, you can also snorkel or feed wild fish around the pier.
Tapurarang Archaeological Site
Located in Fakfak District, West Papua, Tapurarang Archaeological Site is perfect for you who love to visit a place with a mystical history and feel. Here, you can see directly numbers of cliff paintings which are relics of prehistoric times.
The local community calls this cliff painting on steep rocks as Tapurarang. The images made from the human palms are so unique, taking you to the prehistoric times. Even after centuries, the colors made from natural materials have not faded up till now.
Locals believe that those palm paintings were forms of people who were cursed by the spirit of a grandmother who turned into a demon called kaborbor. It is said that the grandmother was sunk when she traveled on the boat with other passengers. When she was sunk, no one tried to help her. Because she felt hurt, she turned into kaborbor.
Want to spoil your eyes with natural beauty and feel the calming breeze in an open lake? Then, you must visit Framu Lake. Located in Ayamuru, Maybrat Regency, Framu Lake boasts an amazing watercolor alongside natural, shady, quiet, and pretty surroundings. You can also opt to swim in this lake that is still rarely known by tourists.
The great thing about West Papua tourism growth is that not only it will increase the country’s income, but also develop the locals’ community economic life. Besides, local will value their culture much more, knowing that what their ancestors gave are priceless.