The beauty of Kaimana, West Papua, has been dazzling people for ages. The old song composed by Surni Warkiman titled “Senja di Kaimana” (Twilight in Kaimana) depicts how exquisite the area. While the book of “The Last Best Place – Secret Sea Visions” written by Burt Jones & Maurine Shimlock describes the beauty of Kaimana beach.
Kaimana is a regency previously a part of the Fak Fak Regency. Locatedin the “bird neck” of Papua, on the west side it is overlooking the Arafura Sea,thereby providing exquisite views of the ocean during the dusk. However, the regency has more than just beautiful Kaimana twilight. “The tourism potentials of Kaimana are so unlimited. The land, under the sea as well as the sea surface, all has incredible charms,” said Regent Kaimana Matias Mairuma while talking to The President Post, in Jakarta, on Tuesday (16/9).
With area of 16,241.84 km2, Kaimana is also blessed with the wonderful Lake Kamaka. The local people call this lake by the name of Amafata. The lake is located in the Lomira or Kamaka Village extending to Saria Village, Triton Bay, Kaimana, with the length of 30 km and the width of 1 km. This lake is unique as it has an extreme difference between ebb and flow that can last until 5 to 8 years. When the water subsides, people in the surrounding area usually utilize the lake for farming. We can also find fresh lobster in the lake.
There is also another lake in Kaimana called Siwiki. The trip to Siwiki has to pass through the Arguni Bay coastline and the village of native tribe Irarutu. On the way we can see how the local people fish crabs in Urisa Kampong. Then we can also cook the crabs in Urisa style.
Another beauty of Kaimana is the karsts hill decorated dozens of ancient walls looking like paintings on the coastline of Maimai, Triton Bay, extending to Namatota Island. The red-colored “paintings” depict various forms, ranging from humans, palms, fish, lizard, sun shape, until the woman’s womb. The walls of the karsts hill are like a gallery of paintings capturing the natural past. The location of the “paintings” is in the steep cliff, 5-25 meters above sea level, which is difficult to reach.
“Foreign ships often stop by at the Triton Bay,” said Matias. According to him, there are many foreign tourists who want to enjoy the beauty of Kaimana. Especially after Burt Jones described how beauty the Triton Bay as a major destination to see the diversity of fish and soft coral reefs. “Soft coral reefs can be found in Triton Bay, but not in Raja Ampat,” explained Matias, a Kaimana origin. He added that in the Triton Bay people will also get the opportunity to see a whale shark with the length of 14 meters and a width of about two meters.
In addition to the beach and lakes, Kaimana also has Mount Emansiri which is rich in various kinds of flora and fauna. Many Papua endemic birds live in this mountain. In fact, according to the legend, a giant Garuda (a kind of eagle which becomes the symbol of Indonesia) ever lived on Mount Emansiri. “People believe Garuda came from Mount Emansiri,” said Regent Matias who is a member of the tribe Maerasi.
Kaimana’s great tourism potentials cannot be utilized optimally due to the lack of infrastructure. “We are currently renovating the airport,” he said. Matias hoped the central government would help Kaimana by building infrastructure such as roads, hotels, and a port so that the potentials can be developed well. (jok)