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Raja Ampat beach charm

Raja Ampat Islands

Raja Ampat Islands is a series of four adjacent group of islands located in the western part of the Bird's Head (Vogelkoop) Papua Island. Administratively, it is under the cluster of Raja Ampat, West Papua Province. The islands are now a destination for divers who are interested in the beauty of the underwater scenery. The four islands that belong to the four named after its largest island, which Waigeo Island, Misool Island, Salawati Island, and Island Batanta.

    Table of contents:

    1 Origins and history
    2 People
    3 The wealth of natural resources
    4 Relics of prehistoric and historical
    5 Access
    6 Threats to islands
    7 conservation efforts
    8 External links

The origins and history

The origin of the name of Raja Ampat by local myth comes from a woman who found seven eggs. Four grains of which hatch into four princes who separated and each became king ruling Waigeo, Salawati, Misool Misool East and West. Meanwhile, three other eggs became a ghost, a woman, and a stone.
In the course of history, the Raja Ampat has long been inhabited by the nobility and implement a custom system Maluku. In this system, the human skumpulan. Each village was led by a king. Since its establishment five Muslim sultanate in the Moluccas, Raja Ampat become part of the Sultanate of Tidore claims. After the defeat of the Dutch Empire Tidore, Raja Ampat Islands became part of the Dutch East Indies claim.


Raja Ampat Islands society generally traditional fishermen who live in small villages are located far apart and different islands. They are a friendly community receive visitors from outside, especially if we brought gifts for them in the form of nuts or candy. This product is a kind of 'indian peace pipe' in Raja Ampat. The event chatting with eating nut is also called "The-the Pinang" often take turns throwing each other mob, the local term for funny stories.
They are followers of Islam and Christianity, and often in the same family or clan members are embracing one of the two religions. It makes the Raja Ampat still get along despite different beliefs.

The wealth of natural resources

Raja Ampat Islands is a great potential to serve as a tourist attraction, especially the dive. Raja Ampat Islands waters according to various sources, is one of the 10 best waters for diving sites around the world. In fact, it may also be recognized as number one for the completeness of underwater flora and fauna at this time.
Dr. John Veron, coral experienced experts from Australia, for example, in a site he revealed, the Raja Ampat Islands located at the westernmost tip of New Guinea, about 50 miles northwest of Sorong, has the best reef areas in Indonesia. Approximately 450 species of coral had been identified during the two weeks of research in that area.
A team of experts from Conservation International, The Nature Conservancy, and the National Institute of Oceanography (LON) Indonesian Institute of Sciences (LIPI) have done a quick assessment in 2001 and 2002. As a result, they noted in these waters there are more than 540 hard coral species (75% of the total species in the world), more than 1,000 types of reef fish, 700 species of mollusks, and the highest record for gonodactyloid stomatopod crustaceans. This makes 75% of the world's coral species in Raja Ampat. Nowhere the same area has a number of coral species as much as this.
There are some coral reefs are still very good condition with the percentage of live coral cover by 90%, which is in the Dampier Strait (the strait between P. and P. Waigeo Batanta), Kofiau Islands, and South East Misool Kepualauan Wayag Islands. Types of coral reefs in Raja Ampat is generally fringing reef with gentle slope to steep contour. But it also found atoll type and type of burns or taka. In some places, such as in the village Saondarek, when the lowest tides, coral reefs can be seen without a dive and the adaptation itself, corals can still be alive despite being in the open air and direct sunlight.
Unique species that can be found when diving is some kind of dwarf seahorses, wobbegong, and manta rays. There are also endemic fish Raja Ampat, namely Eviota king, which is a kind of fish gobbie. At Manta Point supernal Arborek Dampier Strait, you can dive in the company of some tail Manta Ray benign like when you dive Derawan Islands, East Kalimantan. If diving in Cape Kri or Chicken Reef, you can be surrounded by thousands of fish. Sometimes a collection of tuna, giant trevallies and snappers. But a tense when we are surrounded by a collection of barracuda fish, even though it is relatively harmless (dangerous if we see barracuda solitary or alone). Reef sharks are also frequently seen, and if you are lucky you can also see the turtles were quietly eating sponge or swim around you. In some places, such as in Salawati, Batanta and Waigeo also seen Dugong or sea cow.
Because of the many local islands and narrow straits, then most of the dive at any given time has a strong current. It is also possible to do a drift dive, dive while the flow is fast with very clear water while fishing through the collection.

Remains of prehistoric and historical

In the cluster of Misool discovered prehistoric form of a hand stamp engraved on the rock wall. Uniquely, hand labeling is very close to sea level and not in the cave. According to estimates, hand labeling age of approximately 50,000 years and became part of the guide lines of human spread of the western region of the archipelago to Papua and Melanesia.
The rest of the plane wreck from World War II can be found in some dive sites, such as on the island of Wai. 


Visiting these islands is not too difficult although it takes time and considerable expense. We can use the airline's flights from Jakarta to Sorong via Manado for 6 hour flight. From Sorong-town big enough and quite complete facilities for exploring the Raja Ampat-there are two choices, take a boat tour with pinisi or staying in the resort of Papua Diving. Although most of the tourists who come to Raja Ampat is currently divers, actual location is interesting also for non-divers as tourists also have white sandy beaches are very beautiful, clusters of karst islands nan fascinating and unique endemic flora and fauna like paradise red, paradise Wilson, maleo Waigeo, various parrots and parrot, possum Waigeo, as well as various types of orchids.

The threat to these islands

Biodiversity in Raja Ampat has made itself has a high level of threat as well. It can be seen from the destruction of coral reefs and forests. Damage to coral reefs in general is due to fishing activities which are not environmentally friendly such as bombs, cyanide and roots bore (liquid from processed roots of beech to poison fish).

Conservation efforts

To preserve the underwater Raja Ampat Islands, conservation efforts are urgently needed in this area. There are two international agencies are concerned about the preservation of the natural resources of Raja Ampat, namely CI (Conservation International) and TNC (The Nature Conservancy). The government has set the seas around South Waigeo, which includes the small islands such as Gam, Mansuar, Yeben groups and groups Batang Pele, has been endorsed as a Marine Wildlife Reserve. According to the Minister of Forestry Decree No.. 81/KptsII/1993, total area is 60,000 hectares.In addition, some marine areas have been proposed for a conservation area. Each is a Marine Wildlife Reserve South Misool Island, Sea Island Kofiau, Sea Island Asia, Sea Island and Sea Island Sweetheart Ayau.

External links

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    The official website of Raja Ampat type:


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