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Nanggroe Aceh Darussalam Sumatra

Weh Island: Diving the Untouched Edge

Weh Island
Weh Island. (Sumber : indonesia.travel)

Overview

Embraced by vivid and healthy coral reefs, Weh Island is naturally untouched despite its small size and convenient access. It is another garden often forgotten. Its location is at the westernmost island of the Indonesian archipelago. Situated at the entrance way of the Malacca Strait, the island is commonly a sea passage and a jewel for many yachts and cruise ships to visit and see.

Diving in Weh Island is a well established recreational activity. Dive masters and dive instructors are ready to offer a variety of dive sites like the fabled Sea Garden in Rubiah Island. You’ll find many delightful sea creatures, most notably manta rays, whale sharks, dolphins and sea turtles.

Come and enjoy a swing on a shady hammock by the high tide hut in an island that many divers call it the unparalleled underwater universe. Although it is a small island, it gives you the sea experience and waterfall up in the rain forest as well. A gateway you can always remember as an Eden.

To Buy

Handmade souvenirs from coconut wood will delight your loved ones and perhaps you’d like to keep one as a memento.

Traditional markets offer fresh tropical fruit and traditional side dishes and snacks. Dodol (some kind of sweets made of certain flour, sugar, palm sugar and sometimes fruit), chips, cake and bread (specialty of this island) can be found here. It’s a lively place to mingle with the locals. Most foods here are organic. Come in the morning when the market is at its busiest time.

To Stay

You will be able to swing it, no matter how tight your budget is. Various accommodations are available and you just choose one that fits. Try basic wooden hut if you want to experience the simple life. Perhaps a pricey bungalow is your option for more comfortable surroundings.

Iboih Beach is famous among backpackers, world travelers, and divers. Iboih Beach presents simple life with horizon of fisherman villages. Live like them and use facilities they use. New businesses are opening such as bungalows and dive centers. Open air cafes are irresistible. Everything here is affordable.

Some of the guesthouses along the beach is O’ong Guesthouse, Yulia Guesthouse, Erick Guesthouse, Ayub Guesthouse, Anna Bungalow, Fina Bungalow, Fatimah Bungalow, and Mamamia Bungalow.

Gapang Beach is another resort in the vicinity of Rubiah Sea Garden. This beach is nothing strange to divers. Among the available accommodations are: Gapang Jaya and Ramadila.

To Eat

You can have your fill of sea food dishes in the restaurants throughout the island. Try to visit Bungong Sakura at Ujong Kareung, Mama’s Jungle, Dang Dang Na, Naguna, and Coco’s Café at Gapang, or Olala, 7 Bungalows, and Chill Out at Iboih.

To Do

Diving is surely one of the most recognized activities in the island. Many dive masters and instructors will gladly escort you to explore the underwater universe in Weh island. The current here can be strong and gliding is quite fun. Be careful and always accompanied by a dive master if you are a beginner. You can see how the island separated itself from the Island of Sumatra million years ago.

Sabang is the capital city of Weh Island. Why not explore the town as well? You might want to take a picture of a sign bearing “Indonesia Nol Kilometer” (Zero Kilometer of Indonesia). Water Front Resort is also interesting if you want to see the diversified marine life.

For shopping enthusiasts, try visiting traditional markets to get fresh tropical fruit and snacks.
Many other fascinating points of interest include a waterfall, volcano and hot springs, the Japanese bunkers from WWII, the historical graveyard, Durian Keramat (sacred Durian), and Sabang town.

Get Around

Minibuses are available, motorcycles and three-wheeled pedicab or becak are there to explore this island. For a more comfortable journey, you can also rent a car.

To explore Sabang and the beaches, nothing is more enjoyable than walking on foot, although taxis are also available.

Get There

From Banda Aceh, you can take a ferry in the morning in Ulee Lheue Sea Port and arrive in Gapang Beach. The trip will only take a couple of hours, or 45 minutes if you decide to ride a speedboat. Or if you’re from Medan, you can go to Banda Aceh first by bus or plane. Traveling from abroad? Several airlines can be used as well to reach Banda Aceh.

Tips

  • Dress casually but be sure to respect the locals. The locals are mostly Muslims, and modest clothing is therefore preferred.
  • Bring your own bathing suit and sun block, as well as other necessary equipments.
Categories
Nanggroe Aceh Darussalam Sumatra

NANGGROE ACEH DARUSSALAM

MAPS

NANGGROE ACEH DARUSSALAM
NANGGROE ACEH DARUSSALAM

DESCRIPTION

Aceh is a special territory (daerah istimewa) of Indonesia, located on the northern tip of the island of Sumatra. Its full name is Nanggroe Aceh Darussalam. It is thought to have been in Aceh where Islam was first established in Southeast Asia.

In the early sevententh century the Sultanate of Aceh was the most wealthy, powerful and cultivated state in the Malacca Straits region. Aceh has a history of political independence and fierce resistance to control by outsiders, including the former Dutch colonists and the Indonesian goverment.

Aceh has substantial natural resources, including oil and gas – some estimates put Aceh gas reserves as being the largest in the world. Relatively, to most Indonesia, it is a religiously conservative area.

ENTRY POINTS

Banda Aceh is only a forty-five minute flight from Medan. If you depart from Singapore or Kuala Lumpur, it’s best if you use a connecting flight to Medan and then to Banda Aceh. If you need to depart from Jakarta, the flight will take about two and half hours from its airport, Soekarno Hatta (CGK).

HISTORY

Aceh, at the northwestern end of Sumatra, came into contact with the outside world as early as the sixth century AD. Chinese chronicles of that time speak of a kingdom on the northern tip of Sumatra named Po-Li. Several Arabic writings of the early ninth century, and later inscriptions found in India mention the area. In 1292, Marco Polo, on his voyage from China to Persia visited Sumatra and reported that on the northern part of Sumatra there were as many as six trading ports including Ferlec, Samudera and Lambri. It is ironic that this area is presently one of the least known of Indonesia.

The Baiturrahman Grand Mosque
The Baiturrahman Grand Mosque. (Source : rri.co.id)

Islam is reported to have reached Aceh between the seventh and eighth centuries AD and the first Islamic kingdom, Perlak was established in 804 AD. Then followed Samudera Pasai in 1042, Tamiah in 1184, Aceh in 1205 and Darussalam in 1511. In this year the Portuguese captured Malacca and many Asian and Arabic traders sought to avoid the Malacca Strait and called instead on Aceh’s port, bringing wealth and prosperity. Aceh’s dominance in trade and politics in northern parts of Sumatra began, reaching a climax between 1610 and 1640.

With the death of Sultan Iskandar Thani in 1641, Aceh’s decline began. The British and Dutch both started to vie for influence. In 1824 the London Treaty was signed, giving the Dutch control over all British possessions in Sumatra in return for a Dutch surrender of their establishments in India and an abrogation of all claims on Singapore. The Dutch fought a long drawn out struggle in their attempt to subdue the Acehnese. The Aceh War, which lasted intermittently from 1873 to 1942, was the longest ever fought by Holland and cost the Dutch more than 10,000 lives. This struggle has stamped a deep imprint on the Acehnese outlook and mentality.

The era of industrialization arrived, and with it has come a more open attitude towards things alien. Visitors should keep in mind, though, that the Acehnese take their religion, their manners and their morals seriously.

CUISINE

BANDA ACEH
Aroma
Jl. Cut Nyak Dhien 18 Penayong
Phone: (0651) 32779

Braden
Jl. Lhok Nga Km. 8
Phone: (0651) 22056

Cindy Baru
Jl. Cut Nyak Dhien
Phone: (0651) 21761

Taman Tepi Laut
Jl. Lhoknga Km.18
Phone: (0651) 32029

Happy
Jl. A. Yani 74-76 Penayong

Tropicana
Jl. A. Yani 90-92 Penayong
Phone: (0651) 21442

Ujong Batee
Jl. Krueng Raya Km. 14

Asia Utama
Jl. Cut Meutia

Sinar Surya
Jl. Ratu Safiatuddin
Phone: (0651) 22308

LHOKSEUMAWE
Happy
Jl. Sukaramai
Phone: (0645) 21597

Golden
Jl. Perdagangan
Phone: (0645) 22313

Indra Malaya
Jl. Perdagangan
Phone: 21127

Horizon
Jl. Sukaramai No. 43

Bali
Jl. Sukaramai No. 40

Atra Baru
Jl. Cut Meutia

Juriza
Jl.. Sukaramai
Phone : (0645) 21708

TAKENGON
Minang Surya
Jl. Sri Ratu Safiatuddin

Selecta
Jl. Perdagangan
Phone: (0652) 21273

Sinar Surya
Jl. Jend. A. Yani

Sativa
Jl. Khairil Anwar

Sabang
Jl. Perdagangan
Phone: (0652) 21363

Al Hilal
Jl. Pasar Inpres

Bismi
Jl. Blang Mesra

Delima
Jl. Malem Diwa

Yusra Baru
Jl. Lebe Kader

Rakan Ayu
Jl. Malem Diwa

Sinar Pagi
Jl. Putri Ijo

Sedap
Jl. Sengeda

SIGLI
Dua Berlian
Jl. Iskandar Muda
Phone: (0653) 21256

Riza
Jl. Blok Sawah
Phone: (0653) 21527

Permai
Jl. Iskandar Muda
Phone: (0653) 21060

PEOPLE AND CULTURE

The city of Banda Aceh, capital of province of Aceh, is 18,5 Km from the site dand takes about 20 minutes by car. The local International airport is about 30 minutes away by car. Many surfers around the world are frequent the nearby of Lhok Nga village during the winter moths. Climate after 10.00 am it gets quite hot but seldom-above 30º C in the shade.

Banda Aceh city was named Kutaraja. On 26 December 2004, this city had damaged by tsunami that damaged about 60% of this city buildings. The city, which is also called Rencong Land, has 9 district, namely:

1. Baiturahman
2. Kuta Alam
3. Meuraxa
4. Syiah Kuala
5. Lueng Bata
6. Ulee Kareng
7. Banda Raya
8. Jaya Baru
9. Kutaraja

Banda Aceh, which was established on April 22, 1205 by Sultan Alaidin Johansyah, is one of the oldest Islamic cities in the South-East Asia. It has been known since the seventeenth century as following.

* Metropolitan City
* Trading City (economic)
* Center of Science
* Center of Political Activities
* Center of Islamic Education
* Center of Islamic Culture in Southeast of Asia

TOURISM OFFICE

Jl. Tengku Cik Kuota Karang No. 3, Banda Aceh. Phone. (62-651) 23691, 26206, 21108 Fax. 33723 http://www.aceh.net