Sunday, March 21, 2010

Granite Rocks by the Beach

* Picture copyright by FF, taken in Belitung, April 2009

Belitung Island is a perfect getaway from Jakarta. Located in the south-eastern part of Sumatera, it's approximately one hour by plane, and you can choose either Sriwijaya, Batavia, or Linus Air - I've heard that Garuda have also recently opened a route to Tanjung Pandan (the name of the airport). The beaches are white and clean, with calm waters that are perfect for swimming. Don't expect to surf there because the waves are not good for surfing.

What struck me the most in Belitung is their granite rocks along the beach. I am not a geologist, thus I was very confused how the hell did those huge granite rocks end up along the shores of Belitung, such as in Tanjung Tinggi, and Pulau Lengkuas. I've asked the locals and they also can't give an answer how such huge rocks can end up in the middle of the sea. The locals did explain, however, that the reason why the beaches are so white because it's due to the crushed granites that have mixed with the sand and corals.

*Picture copyright by FF, taken in Belitung, April 2009.

Belitung is one of the poorer areas of Indonesia, although in the past their natural resources have made BHP Billiton one of the largest mining companies in the world to date. They acquired a tin concession in 1860 in Belitung, which was then a no-named island that is later named after the company, Billiton.

Today, Belitung still focuses on their natural resources: palm oil, some leftover tin mining (which are not always legal), and what I've heard, granite.

I sincerely hope Belitung Island's tourism sector will thrive. In terms of beaches it is superb and still pristine. In terms of culture, their mix of Malay and Chinese roots should be explored more if they do expect more tourists to come, if they ever want to compete with Bali in terms of cultural attractiveness.

*Picture copyright by FF, taken in Belitung, April 2009


mdonny2001 said...

The rocks on the beach are part of the whole island structure, which is based on granite. Granite is formed by frozen magma which initially flow from the center of the earth. Must have happened million years ago :)

marena.diarja said...

Anjrit keren banget.. bravo dah teh fika!