Actually, I’m not really interested in the Thousand Islands region. I’m a little afraid of being disappointed because my standards for ‘under the sea’ were already imprinted when I first dived on one of the islands in Flores.
There are many stories circulating about the thousand islands that are no longer as beautiful as they used to be, such as Tidung Island. Garbage everywhere, murky water, and lots of sea urchins. Even though I know that there are more than 200 islands north of Jakarta. It can’t be all bad right?
Long story short, I received an invitation from my campus photography club to go on vacation there. Although not very interested, travel is not just about beautiful destinations.
Wet and slightly dizzy greeted us when we arrived at Muara Angke, the port that became the base for the ships that would anchor in the Thousand Islands.
On average they only aim to big islands such as Pramuka Island, Harapan Island, and Pari Island. To go to other islands, you can take a small boat from the big islands. Or maybe you can charter a speedboat if you have more funds.
The gray sky accompanied my first trip on the sea in Jakarta. This large wooden ship carried about 100 people more, who on average were weekend tourists like me. The sea is calm, the ship is moving slowly. The ship’s noisy engine made me choose to stand on the bridge.
Oh yes, my destination is Pari Island. One of the popular destinations in the Thousand Islands. I joined one of the tour agents who don’t know who because my friends took care of me so haha.
My first impression. This is Jakarta without traffic jams and pollution. Since the island is also not very big, most people use bicycles. In fact, every homestay has provided bicycles for people to get around the island. Every now and then the motorbike does pass, but it can still be counted on the fingers. No wonder the thousand islands are the prima donna of the weekend warriors.
On this island I am satisfied cycling. It doesn’t take long to explore the whole island. Almost like Gili Trawangan, minus the noise of foreign tourists.
As far as I can see, the residents here have organized tourism quite well. The bicycles in the homestay turned out to be from a place managed by residents independently.
There is only one beach on this pari island. Virgin beach. This beach is a typical white sand beach with a lot of mangroves around it. We toured this mangrove forest by renting a boat.
When it was time to snorkel, suddenly the weather changed like a storm was going to happen. The small boat we were on was struggling to break through the waves. Luckily when we arrived at a snorkeling location the weather had improved even though it was a bit dark.
The first spot near Pari Island is quite good, what is not good is the background. The background when we snorkelled was a large tractor that was building a big house, which he said belonged to a ‘merchant’ in this thousand islands. Maybe it’s an artificial island.
When snorkeling, many sea urchins are seen. Which is a sign that a coral reef ecosystem has been disturbed. Not a single soft coral can be seen here.
The second snorkeling spot that made me quite tired. I forgot the location. Near a small uninhabited island. Plastic waste flows out of nowhere. It seems that the currents are carried away from the big islands where the residents litter. I tried to get down, but it wasn’t just trash that was visible, my body suddenly felt like it was being stung. It turned out to be a lot of jellyfish! I rushed to the ship before the body became lumpy.
Well, indeed not much can be told from the island of pari. But what is clear, this place is perfect for relaxing on the beach on the weekends, without the need to go all the way to an island that is said to be exotic in the east.
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