balikpapan the oil city

last month, ny father suddenly told me that he must go to balikpapan due to his job and he is asking me, whether i want to join or not. After balikpapan, we will go to Derawan Island.

Thanks God, at that time i am already resigned from the hospital and there is no way i will say NO!

so here we come to balikpapan

we depart from soekarno hatta and arrive in this super new modern balikpapan airport sultan aji muhammad sulaiman. HOW come balikpapan airport is better than our airport in Jakarta?! seriously soekarno hatta airport, you should start to do some improvement, put some make up or do some plastic surgery?

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during our trip in Balikpapan, my father is working, me and mom travel together with 1 of my dad’s friend. The best thing for this kind of travel is you can hear all about balikpapan from the citizen own eyes. He told me several interesting facts about balikpapan

  1. Eventhough balikpapan produced ton of oils, their electricity is sucks. In 1 day, balikpapan can have power failure several times. Balikpapan is the only city during my entire life that experience power failure in Hotel. But, they have really good power genset that will turn on immediately. That is why most people have their own genset in every home. Oil city huh?
  2. Their quality of water also really2 bad.
  3. But, the strange thing is, balikpapan people never complained about anyhing, they live peacefully. Never go on strike like jakarta’s people.
  4. Balikpapan also very safe, unlike any other city in Indonesia. You can live motorcycle in street without any locks, and nobody will steal it. In jakarta? 5 minutes maximal maybe?
  5. Balikpapan people are so friendly, polite and genuinely kind! When me and my mum want to buy batik, the seller kindly offering us all the batik we ask and eventhought we take loooong time to make up our mind, which batik we will choose, he patiently wait for us. In the end we only buy 1 batik :p and he didnt complain at all LOLIMG_7318
  6. Balikpapan people do not have any local dialect because most of them are people from another city, mostly Java and Sulawesi.

because they are business type of city, there is not much we can do here. Several interesting places we visit are very unique though

Kebun sayur, the famous traditional market. You can find batik with traditional kalimantan pattern and amplang, their local food, that actually is some kind of kuku macan. They also sell batu akik and other Dayak handicrafft. We try their Unique fruit called Lay. Looks like durian, smell nothing like durian, taste almost like durian. I LIKE it! No annoying smell at all!

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the color is more bright yellowish, and the texture is more firm than durian. The size is alot more smaller. True Durian lover wont love Lay.

KWPLH, kawasan wisata pendidikan lingkungan hidup. Not very well developed but you can see the real beruang madu sleeping and running free here. In my case, they are sleeping peacefully. In this enclosure, beruang madu can live as close as their natural habitat and not live inside their small cage. When i ask the local guide, why dont you return the bear to their original forest? The answer is heart breaking, “our bear is the one who have been saved from illegal trading. Some of them are severely beaten and didnt have their claw and teeth. So there is no way they can survived in their original place.” Their previous “owner” treat them badly and forget the fact that beruang madu is almost extinct. So sad, to hear what has happen to all the bears. The cute facts is their leader is female, a cute bear name Anna. Talking about girl power Anna!

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you can read more about all the sad story of the sun bear from this site http://www.beruangmadu.org/sun-bears/meet-our-bears/harris/#about-harris

Penangkaran Buaya. There are huge amount of crocodile here, from the small size to the huge one.  First time in my life, seeing such a huge crocodile laying quietly, almost no breath, no movement, and suddenly they move very fast. Freak me and my mom LOL

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Balikpapan are famous for their delicious and huge size crab, everytime my father went to Balikpapan, he will bringing back the huge crab home. But, at the time i eat in Balikpapan, the crab is so small! Rumor says, that all the good and huge one were send to Jakarta.

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the blood clam/kerang dara was huge though! The biggest blood clam ever!

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After spending 2 days in Balikpapan, we go to 1 day trip to Samarinda. Will write about it in the next post.

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