The Enchantment of the Beauty of Lembeh Island, Indonesia

Location: Lembeh Island, Bitung City, North Sulawesi.

INDONEWTRAVEL.COM - The number of islands in Indonesia does provide its own advantages. One of them is the beauty and natural charm that we have that is able to attract tourists from other countries around the world. Such as Lembeh Island, an island that is the prima donna of marine tourism in North Sulawesi. Many local and foreign tourists also recognize the beauty it has. In 2014 the Bitung City BPS itself released data which officially stated that Lembeh Island had 92 diving spots.

This is something that cannot be ignored so that people can explore the potential that exists to become a famous tourist attraction. Although the name is not as famous as Bunaken, the beauty it offers is no less beautiful than Bunaken. From existing data, about 20 foreign tourists come to this attraction by staying at Froggies Dive Resort. The reason is that they want to see firsthand how beautiful the underwater world is in the Lembeh Strait.

The Attraction and Beauty of Lembeh Island

The many dive points on Lembeh Island are one of the interesting reasons why many tourists come for tours. The number of dive points is also inhabited by about 300 families of underwater animals and tens of thousands of species that exist in them. The most prima donna species is the mini octopus. But other species are no less interesting, such as Nudibranch, Pigmy Seahorse, Hairy Frogfish to Flamboyant Cuttlefish.

The visitors who come can go around the island and visit several diving spots using fishing boats. But have to rent, yes! For one way, the price is set at around Rp. 200,000 to Rp. 300,000. But you should also negotiate with the ship owner when going to rent. This is to prevent any party from being harmed.

After touring at several dive points, visitors can also come to see the mangrove forest. Some tourists on Lembeh Island are curious about the green and dense mangrove forest. This area is often used to take pictures or just take a leisurely walk and breathe fresh air. Because, the forest is dense and free from air pollution, it supports the atmosphere of the tourist attractions to be more attractive. There is a path made of wood deeper and makes it easier for tourists to see the lat which is flanked by two hills.

This mangrove tourism area has an area of ​​about 4 hectares with 4 types of mangroves such as Soneratia Alba, Soneratia Caeolaris, Rhizophora Mucronata to Rhizophora Apiculata. This variety of beauty and charm is presented on Lembeh Island in Bitung.

Lembeh Island is located in Bitung City which is divided into two districts. The first is the North Lembeh sub-district and the South Lembeh sub-district, where the island is also separated from the mainland of Sulawesi Island by the Lembeh Strait.

To arrive at Lembeh Island, tourists can travel from Manado to Bitung City which takes about 45 minutes. Public buses and taxis are available on this route. Only later after arriving in Bitung, tourists must head to the Pateten Ruko Pier. From the pier, tourists can cross to Lembeh Island in 15 minutes. The cost needed to cross per person is around Rp. 8000.

Tourist Destinations Around Lembeh Island

As previously mentioned, tourists can get around to several tourist destinations around Lembeh Island. Destinations that can be visited are Tri Kota Monument, Sarena Island and Pasir Panjang Beach. Sarena Island also has a giant rock with a hole in the middle. The existence of this rock allows seawater to slip in between the gaps.

Not only as a tourist attraction, but Lembeh Island is also used as a place for marine conservation, especially for coral reefs. The role of each community is indeed important in maintaining marine and coastal ecosystems. They have agreed to the establishment of a Marine Protected Area or Marine Protected Area. The area chosen as PL is believed to be an area where coral reefs grow with relatively good conditions compared to other places.

One form of this conservation effort is to transplant coral reefs. The goal is to reduce as well as improve existing corals. The local community was also assisted and accompanied by activists from the Manengkel Solidaritas. The activist is a conservation organization in Manado.

Trikora Monument Around Lembeh. Island

The first place to visit besides seeing the underwater beauty is the Trikora Monument. This building is known to have been built in 1992 and inaugurated in 1993. In the building there is a relief that tells about the liberation of West Irian. Visitors can also see the Bitung harbor and Gunung Dua Brothers from a distance. This building has a height of 62 meters and an area of ​​2 hectares.

Lembeh Island Development Becomes Popular Tourism

North Sulawesi has indeed been named The Rising Star in the Indonesian tourism sector. This is due to an increase in tourist visits of up to 600 percent which in fact still has great potential to be developed. North Sulawesi has Lembeh Island as the main attraction.

The response from the Government is to develop Lembeh Island which is not well known because it is not as popular as Bunaken. Reportedly, the government will build a bridge that can connect the mainland of Bitung City with Lembeh Island. This is to increase access to tourist areas and make it easier for tourists to come.

According to the plan, the bridge that will be built is 1 km long and divides the Lembeh Strait, which is a narrow body of water and becomes a place for ships to go back and forth. The investment cost of this bridge is estimated at Rp. 500 billion. The bridge will also be connected to the Manado-Bitung toll road which President Jokowi is targeting to complete next year or 2020.

This island is known to be the best location for divers and underwater photography lovers. One of the alternative tourist destinations in North Sulawesi, although not as popular as Bunaken.

Optimistic to develop this tour because there are indeed many supporting facilities for the Bitung SEZ which are not considered to be running. For example, a new port development began in October 2019. This development is to separate the people's port and the current port.

Port separation is also a synergy between the central and regional governments. Later, after these supporting facilities function, the Bitung SEZ is certainly expected to develop. There are many countries that want to enter such as the Philippines and East Asia. In addition to the port, there are also other developments and developments such as the Manado-Bitung toll road which will facilitate the path to Lembeh Island as well.

The charm and beauty of Lembeh Island in Bitung is certainly the main attraction for Indonesian tourism. Although currently it is not as popular as Bunaken Island, Lembeh Island has great potential to be developed and become a new tourist attraction, especially in the international arena.

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