The Jakarta Post
Mangrove tourism aims to bring awareness to the importance of preserving coastal ecosystems. (Shutterstock/File)
Semarang in Central Java is home to a number of mangrove forests, popular for tourism. One is located in the Maron Mangrove Edupark.
The 50,000 square meter destination is located on Maron Beach, near the Ahmad Yani International Airport, approximately 20 minutes from the heart of Semarang. According to Antara, it sees 50-100 tourists per day during the weekdays and approximately 500 people on weekends.
Maroon Mangrove Edupark management head Rusmadi stated that the place was created after the developer saw the lack of tourism spots in Semarang. It also aims to bring awareness to the importance of preserving coastal ecosystems.
The park was developed by local residents with the help of college students who were carrying out a community service program, Kuliah Kerja Nyata, and by Semarang-based pharmaceutical company PT Phapros through its CSR program.
(Read also: Mangrove coastal shield rapidly being destroyed)
Visitors can learn more about mangroves, including how to plant and tend to the trees and can even try planting them themselves at the Maron Mangrove Edupark. To navigate around the area, tourists may opt to walk or ride on a rented boat.
One visitor, Winarno, said he was in awe of the mangrove forest’s beauty but felt that access to the area was rather difficult. “Especially after the rain,” he said, adding that he wished the management would add more rest areas for visitors and enlarge the tourism area.
Edupark’s management team plans to add more transportation options to ease access into the park, such as by providing new boats to transport passengers to Maerokoco Park, a nearby tourism spot.
Aside from Maron Mangrove Park, other mangrove tourism spots in Semarang include Maerokoco Park, Mangrove Ecotourism in Tapak village and the Trimulyo Beach. (mas/kes)