... visitors can enjoy the elephant ride tour to get around the Way Kambas National Park as much as they can."
Jakarta (ANTARA News) - Renowned for its natural beauty, the Way Kambas National Park (TNWK) is an icon of East Lampung District and has been visited and known by people, both nationally and internationally.

Since Monday, the second day of the 2017 Eid al-Fitr, or popularly known as the Lebaran festivity, thousands of Lebaran holidaymakers have thronged the national park, and the number is forecast to continue to rise until Sunday.

TNWK Great Hall Chief Subakir remarked that more than five thousand tourists had visited the park on Tuesday and continued to trickle in on Wednesday.

During the weeklong Lebaran holiday this year, Subakir said the TNWK Great Hall did not specifically prepare tour packages for visitors, but they still continued to arrive in huge numbers.

Tourists visiting the TNWK were keen on exploring elephant ride tours and the attractions featuring well-trained elephants.

"By paying only Rp20 thousand, visitors can enjoy the elephant ride tour to get around the Way Kambas National Park as much as they can," Subakir explained.

According to Subakir, the East Lampung district government in Lampung Province is making every effort to transform TNWK into an international tourist destination.

Providing an ideal bird-watching location, with the presence of the rare white-winged wood duck, the WKNP is home to critically endangered species, such as the Sumatran tigers, Sumatran elephants, and Sumatran rhinoceroses.

With swamp forest, lowland rain forest, mangrove forest, and dry beach forest, along with expanses of grassland, this national park is an ideal habitat for thousands of different species and offers exciting opportunities for visitors to experience some of Indonesias most diverse wildlife.

East Lampung District is a rich, beautiful, and interesting area, with friendly people and several tourist attractions, he asserted.

The Great Hall of the WKNP is also drafting a strategy for including trained domesticated elephants as a tourist attraction at the Elephant Conservation Center.

The WKNP Great Hall is currently designing the development of an ecotourism village as a secondary destination for visitors.

Tourists visiting the ecotourism village in WKNP will be able to witness the extensive flora and fauna and have the opportunity to observe and learn about the endangered Sumatran elephant, rhinoceros, and tiger along with a vast array of other exotic animals, such as monkeys, tapirs, leopards, and birds.

The development of ecotourism aims to increase the number of tourist visits to the WKNP in addition to boosting the economy of the local community.

In addition, the ecotourism village offers homestays, various handicrafts of the local village, and a variety of cuisines typical to the region for the visitors.

Hence, the Great Hall of WKNP is collaborating with local NGOs to develop and manage the ecotourism village.

Taking into account its numerous tourist attractions, the Indonesian province of Lampung has been encouraged to develop its tourism sector as an important source of foreign exchange and employment.

Rapid expansion of the tourism sector in Lampung Province is expected to provide viable opportunities for sustainable development and poverty reduction.

Apart from the WKNP, thousands of visitors also thronged other tourist attractions, such as the Karang Mas Beach and Lake Kemuning.

Lampung is famous across the world due to the Krakatau island volcano, one of the most fascinating sites globally; and for agricultural commodities, such as pepper and coffee.

Given its central location, the Krakatau islands are accessible both from Jakarta through the province of Banten, and from Bandarlampung, the capital of Lampung Province.

The Krakatau islands comprise three small and beautiful islands: Rakata, Panjang, and Serdang.

Apart from Krakatau, Lampung also has several other tourist attractions that have to be developed properly in order to draw domestic and foreign tourists.

In an effort to boost the number of tourist visits, international cruise ships should be allowed to pass through Lampung and anchor near tourist attractions in the province.

The cruise ships should be allowed to make a port call at Lampung for three or four days to enable the visitors to see as many tourist attractions as possible in the province.

Hence, infrastructure and other supporting facilities on the islands should be improved in order to facilitate the journey of tourists to their preferred destinations in Lampung.

Roads and transportation, electricity, and security facilities must be improved, so that tourists visiting these spots can enjoy the experience and feel at home.

Hence, the Lampung provincial administration is encouraged to make all-out efforts to step up its international tourism potential to boost foreign tourist arrivals.

Numerous private parties need to be involved in a bid to ramp up the provinces international tourism potential.

Lampung Province has more than 150 tourist sites, but most of them are yet to be optimally managed.

In West Lampung, the coastal areas offer good surfing opportunities for tourists, and the infrastructure facilities there need to be improved accordingly.

With its white sandy beaches, pristine waterfalls, and lush nature preserves, Lampung is one of the several provinces in Indonesia that holds great appeal for international tourists.

Accordingly, the tourism promotion agency should play a greater role in drawing as many foreign tourists as possible to Lampung.

Reporter: Otniel Tamindael
Editor: Priyambodo RH
Copyright © ANTARA 2017