The annual 15th Sail Indonesia Yacht Rally 2015 which set sail from Darwin last Saturday, 25 July 2015, will criss-cross the Indonesian seas for three whole months from Australia to Singapore. The route taken this year will include calls on Kupang(Timor) where the yachts are expected to arrive around 4 August , on to the Alor islands – then to the marine paradise ofWakatobi (Southeast Sulawesi) – to the other sea wonder of Taka Bonerate in South Sulawesi – then cross south to Lombok, – Bali – and again sail northward to Teluk Kumai by the Tanjung Puting National Park, habitat of Borneo orangutans, – to Manggar in West Kalimantan– then on to Belitung – Bangka – to end the Indonesia visit at beautiful Bintan island, just across Singapore. The yachts are expected to leave Indonesian waters by the end of October.
At each port of call, local governments and communities are already set to warmly welcome yachtsmen and crew with entertainment, cultural performances and sumptuous meals. In Kupang is already ongoing the Flobamora Festival, organized with the special purpose to welcome the Darwin yachters. The festival takes place from 27th July to 4th August , participated by the municipality of Kupang and the regencies of Alor, East Flores, Rote Ndao and Sikka. The week-long event will showcase art and cultural performances, that include the unique sasando traditional musical instrument. Meanwhile, according to Marius Ardu Jelamu, East Nusatenggara Head of Tourism and the Creative Economy, so far two yachts have arrived in Kupang .
The Sail Indonesia Rally is organized by ASWINDO, the Indonesian Sail Tourism Association under Dr. Aji Sularso, with the full support of the Indonesian National Government and local governments. (For details log on to : www.sailindonesia.net )
Meanwhile, in the Moluccas, the Sail Maluku Festival will take place in conjunction with Indonesia’s Independence Day on 17 August. The Sail Maluku Festival will last from 15 – 20 August 2015, to also welcome those who wish to sail to Maluku but donot wish to join in the Darwin-Ambon Race.
While the annual Darwin-Ambon Yacht Race and Rally 2015 itself will start from Stokes Hill Wharf in Darwin on 5 September at 11.00 hrs. heading straight to Ambon in the Moluccas, in East Indonesia. The event has been expressly postponed to September upon request of the Governor of Maluku to coincide with the Gull Force 70th Commemoration of the freedom of POW’s from Camp Tan Tui in the town of Ambon on 11 September. After which yacht racers may choose to return home to Australia or continue and join other yachters on the Sail Indonesia Rally. The Darwin-Ambon Race and Rally is organized by Helen de Lima.
Last year a special anchorage has been constructed at Amahusu village in Ambon to receive yachters here. The exciting welcoming program includes friendship games, receptions, and cultural performances galore. (For more details checkwww.darwinambonrace.com.au )
In addition, starting August, yachts from Samal Island, in Davao the Philippines will sail off heading south to participate in theSail Tomini Festival (16-20 September) and the Sail Raja Ampat 2015 Festival that will be held from 15-20 October 2015.
This year the Sail Tomini 2015 is the official government event. The Gulf of Tomini in the north of the island of Sulawesi, faces two provinces, namely the province of Gorontalo to its north and the province of Central Sulawesi to its south. The event will be participated by international yachts, fishing boats and a sail past by navy warships. The Festival comprises an entire schedule comprising seminars, exhibitions, and cultural performances.
It is expected that through the organization of Sail Tomini, more tourists will be attracted to visit the surrounding regions and through Tourism, develop the regions. (For more information check www.sailtomini2015.com)