Sunday, 22 June 2008

Thousand Islands

White sand, coconut palms fringing the shore, multicoloured coral reefs, abundant shoals of unique, colourful fish, a golden sun setting in clear blue skies….does that fit your image of Jakarta? Unlikely, but then you’re probably forgetting that the beautiful Pulau Seribu (Thousand Islands) are also part of what is known as the city of Jakarta.

Located on a gulf facing the Java Sea, Jakarta has four main ports from which to access the Thousand Islands: Ancol Marina, Sunda Kelapa, Tanjung Priok and Tanjung Kait. Ancol Marina is the most usual departure point, speed boats leaving regularly to whisk you away from the city heat to the cool, palm fringed beaches of paradise. However chartering a boat is also possible for anyone with a more adventurous spirit. The Marina Jaya Ancol itself is buzzing with yachts, motor and sail boats, and is the place to go for marine recreation. Jet skies canoes, sail boats wind surfering and waterskiing are all to be found, along with all kinds of fishing gear you may need for hire. Numerous stalls along the beach serve drinks and snacks while tents are available for sunbathers and sea-lovers.

But it is the Tousand Islands which are the real jewels. The Kepulauan Seribu, as they are known locally, are a group of islands sprinkled across the Java Sea to the north of Jakarta. As the name suggests, the way the islands lie seemingly scattered closely to each other offers you a thousand of beaches, a thousand pleasures and a thousand golden sunsets. The surrounding waters in particular are a paradise for snorkelers and scuba divers, Kotok being the most famous.

Despite the romantic name, there are in fact about 340 islets in Kepulauan Seribu. Islets that have been developed for tourism include Bidadari, Ayer, Laki, Puteri and Tanjung, and bungalows, restaurants, diving and sailing facilities are available on all these islets and others. For anyone with dreams of Robinson Crusoe style seclusion, delightful beaches can also be found in Matahari, Kulkul Kotok, Pelangi, Sepa, Onrust, Edam, Bokor, Kelor, Rambut, Ubi Kecil, Untungjawa, Pari, Perak, Melinjo, Pancalirang, Gosong, Ringgit, Sebaru, Hantu, Antuk, Bira, Panjang, Kelapa, Panggang, Lang, Tidung Besar, Payung, Kongsi, Pari, Damar Besar, Kelor, Kapal, Cipir and Nyamuk.

So if you are in Jakarta and become weary of the frenetic turbulence of the modern metropolis, hop on an early morning boat and escape across the Java Sea to a paradise island in the sun…. you can be there in time for breakfast on Saturday morning, and back in town by sunset Sunday evening without even leaving Jakarta!

Thousand Islands (Pulau Seribu) scaterred in the Bay of Jakarta, accessible ranging from 20 minutes to 2 hours by speedboat off Marina Jaya Ancol or Tanjung Kait. The Thousand Islands or Kepulauan Seribu consist of around 340 isles, including sand bars.

Set in a clean blue sea filled with myriad of tropical fish living among muticolored corals, the Thousand Islands are tremendously tempting places to spenc your vacation. Some of them have been developed into holiday resorts for real lovers of sea, sand and sun.

Furnished with ample, holiday comforts such as accommodation, restaurants, pools and other sport facilities it is an ideal place for a change from the routinism of your life. For water sports and underwater world lovers, it’s a paradise.

Pulau Ayer Island Resort & Cottages

Located about 14 kilometers north of Jakarta, or 30 minutes boat trip from Marina Ancol, Jakarta, part of the Thousand Island’s covering a total area of 60 hectares, a beautiful spot to witness the famed sunset of the Jakarta bay.

Bidadari Island Resort

Being the nearest Island Resort, Pulau Bidadari is reachable in 20 minutes ride on speedboat, about 15 kms, from the Ancol’s Marina. The cottages are built among trees which provide shady and comfortable envronment giving you the

feeling of being integrated with the nature. And those floating over the sea give you the touch of fishermen’s home atmosphere.

Pelangi Island Resort

Pelangi Island is 70 kms from Marina Ancol, Jakarta and can be reached by speedboat around one and a half hour trip.Densely covered by lush palm and pine trees which is surrounded by watch sandy beach in the middle of silver clean blue waters will make this green tropical Pelangi Island on ideal gateway to enjoy the sea, sand and sun.

Putri Resort Hotel

Located just a few breast-stroke away from Jakarta, Putri Island offers paradisian beauty on its soft and white sandy beach and crystal clear water all around. A holiday resort of which you will dream to return over and over again.

Alam Kotok Island Resorts

Alam Kotok offers a chance to holiday in the untouched island habitat of the exotic “ Thousand Island” just 90 minutes from Jakarta. This peaceful tropical atoll has been kept in its original pristine state, the flora and the fauna undisturbed by cozy cottages tucked amongst the foliage, looking out to sea. Here the only sounds are the wind in the trees, birdsong, and the gentle waves lapping the shore. Discover the gentle rhytm of island life, diving the colorful coral reefs, swimming and wandering at leisure.


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