Historical Tour While Enjoying the Underwater Nature? Try World War II Diving in Morotai

As far as the eye can see, fine white sand stretches straight across the blue sea water. As he walked across the sand, a breezy wind blew. The distinctive aroma of the sea enters the nostrils slowly.

At the end of the road, shady trees greet with leaves that "dance" in the wind. Not infrequently, several crabs appear and walk on the smooth white sand.

This paradise-like atmosphere can be found only in Indonesia, one of which is on Morotai Island, North Maluku.

The charm of Morotai Island is second to none. The island, which is located at the northern tip of Halmahera Island, North Maluku, has stunning sea views. Besides being blessed with beautiful natural scenery, Morotai Island is also rich in the history of World War II.

The history comes from the Japanese occupation which used Morotai Island as one of their military bases.

In 1944-1945, allied forces of the United States and Australia led by General Douglas MacArthur landed on the southwest tip of Morotai Island and launched an attack to take the island from Japanese forces.

The war made several aircraft and battleships of the two forces damaged and fell into Morotai waters. The war vehicle sank and became a carcass at the bottom of the Morotai waters to this day.

The carcasses of combat vehicles scattered in the waters of the Morotai Islands group then became the main attraction for tourists when visiting Morotai.

The reason is, the wrecks of ships and war planes are now filled with colorful coral reefs. Tourists who visit this tropical paradise nicknamed Pulau Tiga Matahari should not miss the opportunity to dive and enjoy the unique underwater scenery.

For information, the Morotai Islands are surrounded by approximately 37 groups of islands. Each island has its own beauty and uniqueness. This makes tourists have many options for island hopping.

Of the 37 islands, tourists can visit Dodola Island and Zum Zum Island first. If you have plenty of time, tourists can visit 25 diving spots spread across the Morotai Islands to see the carcasses of war vehicles.

To find out the uniqueness of each destination, consider the following reviews.

1. | Dodola Island

This island is the main attraction for tourists when visiting Morotai. Dodola Island is divided into two, namely Big Dodola and Small Dodola. The two islands are also connected to each other by white sand that stretches straight.

When viewed from the air, the stretch of white sand looks like a bridge that divides the ocean. Tourists can also cross this "natural bridge" when the water is receding.

However, this activity is not recommended when the water is high because the sea waves in the area are quite dangerous.

Dodola Island is not only blessed with beautiful white sand and island views, the underwater panorama should not be ignored. The reason is, the waters on this island are home to black fin sharks or blacktip reef sharks.

For information, blackfin sharks are often found in coral reef areas at a depth of 2-10 meters. This shark is also included in the protected animal because its status is almost endangered.

The main characteristic of the black fin shark is the black color on the ends of the fins. The black markings are most pronounced on the upper end of the first dorsal fin.

2. | Zum Zum Island

Zum Zum Island is located quite close to Morotai Island, which is only 7 kilometers (km). To get to this island, tourists can use a speed boat with a travel time of only 15 minutes.

When visiting Zum Zum Island, tourists will see the McArthur Monument standing proudly on the beach. The establishment of the statue of the general from the United States is not without reason. The local community wants to remember McArthur as a general who has a strong leadership spirit.

Besides being able to find out the long history of Zum Zum Island, tourists can also enjoy the underwater scenery with snorkeling activities.

Just like Dodola Island, the waters on Zum Zum Island are also home to blackfin sharks. For this reason, tourists must always be accompanied by a tour guide so that they can enjoy the underwater panorama safely and comfortably.

3. | 25 diving points

When visiting Morotai, tourists who already have a diving certificate seem obliged to do diving activities. The reason is, Morotai Island is rich in historical destinations under the sea.

In fact, the area has 25 diving spots or diving spots. The Wawama Diving Center, located off the coast of Wawama Village, is the most famous.

There, tourists can see the wreck of an Australian plane called Bristol Beufort which sank at a depth of 40 meters. In addition to the plane wreckage, there are also wrecked tanks that also decorate the underwater waters of Wawama.

Apart from Wawama, tourists can also visit the waters of Mira to see the view of the coral reefs that meet the shipwreck, the waters of Buho Buho which has a panoramic view of fighter planes decorated with beautiful coral reefs, and the waters of Zum Zum which presents the wreck of a Japanese submarine.

When visiting Morotai, don't forget to always apply health protocols (prokes) for the sake of mutual comfort. This process consists of washing hands, wearing double masks, maintaining a minimum distance of one meter, limiting mobility, staying away from crowds, and avoiding eating together (6M).

In addition, make sure that you have participated in the Covid-19 vaccination program. Minister of Tourism and Creative Economy (Menparekraf) Sandiaga Salahuddin Uno said the acceleration of vaccination and the application of health protocols based on Cleanliness, Health, Safety, and Environment Sustainability (CHSE) are tourism strategies and the creative economy (parekraf) that can be encouraged.

“The key to providing a sense of security and comfort for tourists as well as the revival of the tourism and creative sector is the vaccination and health promotion program. This is what we will continue to promote so that when the time comes, we are ready to welcome tourists," said Sandiaga on the website of the Ministry of Tourism and Creative Economy (Kemenparekraf), Tuesday (24/10/2021).

In addition, don't forget to buy a variety of Morotai's creative economy products. As a recommendation, tourists can #BuyKreatifLokal, such as wajik cakes, halua Kacang cakes, nasi bulu, white iron crafts, Morotai plaits, Morotai batik, and sibu-sibu coffee.

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