The Beauty of Raja Ampat Is Not Just for the Diver – by Melya Findi
Many people say that Raja Ampat is just for those who love diving. It was expressed by some of my friends, when I told them that I am going to Raja Ampat. Firstly I thought the same way too, that maybe they are true. It’s because of the point selling [sic] of Raja Ampat is for the underwater nature that known is very beautiful. However, I will never know before trying it by myself.
I went there with 6 of my friends. We stayed in one of inn near the harbour. This inn was located off the coast. For us, the non-diving, there are many things we can do to still enjoy the beautiful nature of Raja Ampat. Here I would like to share some activities that can do in Raja Ampat for the non-diving.
There are many beautiful beaches in Raja Ampat, both inhabited and uninhabited. And almost all of them make us feel at home for long stay there. White sand, green sea water, and clean beaches because there are very few people who visit it. Our primary transportation while in Raja Ampat is using speedboat. We go to one island to another. When we visited one of the uninhabited islands, we feel like being pampered in the Leonardo Di Caprio film, The Beach. Not all the islands there have a name, especially for small islands which are uninhabited.
2. Kabui Bay
We reached Kabui Bay by speedboat transportation. Along the way exploring Kabui Bay, we can see clift that aound in the bay. Our tour guide said that it be called a Hidden Bay. Our tour guide showed us a place like a cave, where there are stalactites in it. She invited us to go down into the water and walked into the cave. View in the cave is very beautiful to take pictures.
For those who cannot dive, we can still enjoy the beauty of the underwater world with do snorkeling in Raja Ampat. We did.t have to go into the water just to see the beauty of underwater. In Manta Point, we still can see black Manta from the up of the water. Manta is enough famous as marine The guide would show us some spot for those who want go snorkeling. By snorkeling, we can still enjoying the beauty of underwater in Raja Ampat.
4. Local wisdom
The village in Raja Ampat was designed as a rural tourism. There are some of point selling that offered from this rural tourism, such as the hospitality of the people, the clean village, and also their warm welcome. Arborek Island is one of the island that offers the local wisdom. Along walking in Arborek island, we accompanied by local children there. They seem glad that we visited and get around their village.
Sawing Rey Island, is another island that offer this local wisdom. This island is located in Meosmansar district. When we came there, the local society is welcoming us, by singing some Papua’s song, like Apuse, Yamko Rambe Yamko, and also Raja Ampat song that sang by local children there. Our time is up there, we decide to move into another island. When we are leaving, the locl society especially the children led us to the dock and wave their han for us. The warmth and friendliness are another point of selling that attrarct us as a tourist who comes in Raja Ampat.
5. Paradise of Bird to see Cendrawasih
There are two times to see the Cendrawasih, there are in the morning around 7-8 o’clock and in the afternoon at around 4-5. Its just because the bird just appear in certain time, as the local information. This location is in Sawing Ray Island. We prefer to see Cendrawasih in the morning, so that we have to wake up more early, because our boat would takes about 1,5 hours from Waisai. Arriving in the island, we need to walk through the forrest, it takes about 30 minutes. There are some local people who guide us along the way. We walk to the place where we can see the birds inside the forrest. It is desirable to use a closed clothing or insect repellent lotion, because there are a lot of mosquitoes. The guide told us to stay silent throughtout waiting the Cendrawasih coming. As long we were there, we only saw three Cendrawasih and cockatoo.
6. Mayalibit Bay
There are two things that we can get in this place, nature and culture. We came here on the suit time, that is on January 1, 2012. There is a special tradition customarily performed by local soiety. In this village there are two groups of people, they are the society from up village, and the society from down village. The first day of the new year celebration, the society from the up village coming down to the dwn village under the convoy and dance along the way, while the society from down village provide food and drinks to their guests, and vice versa on the second day. This tradition is aimed to keep their relation in brotherhood each other.
To reach this place, we use car and it takes around 1.5 hours’ drive. After we arrived there, we keep continue to use small boats to get around the bay and saw a rock shaped like male genitalia. Along the bay, we can see some pictures in the wall about diver. Its shown us that there are some spots that could be the purpose of diving. The guide said that there are sinking ship inside the water. Along the trip by boat, we could see a row of mangrove forests, and fishing activities that catch fish by traditional means.
So, who says that Raja Ampat is only for those the diver?
Many thanks to Melya Findi who share her story and her kindness to become our contributor.