Tuesday, September 1, 2015


    Jakarta, Sep 1, 2015 (Antara) - The word "Gorontalo" derived from "Hulontalangio", which is a name of one of Sulawesi's kingdoms. "Hulontalangio" was later shortened into "Hulontalo".
    Reportedly, Dutch colonizers had difficulty in pronouncing "Hulontalo" and instead called it as "Gorontalo".
       Gorontalo Province is a new autonomous region after separating from North Sulawesi Province on February 16, 2001.
        It has five districts - Gorontalo, Bone Bolango, Pohuwato, North Gorontalo and Boalemo Districts, and a city - Gorontalo City, the provincial capital.
        Based on the 2014 data, the population of Indonesia's 32th province is 1,115,633. It covers a total area of 12,435 km2 and shares borders with North Sulawesi and Central Sulawesi in the east and west respectively, Sulawesi Sea in the north, and Tomini Bay in the south.

       Tomini Bay is the largest bay on Sulawesi Island, and passed by equatorial line. It has abundant biological diversity and has becomes one of places where Gorontalo inhabitants rely on for living.
       The bay is part of flora and fauna-rich Coral Triangle area which houses some 262 species of coral reefs and 596 species of fish.
       Since parting from North Sulawesi Province, Gorontalo has been cultivating corn and fish as its iconic commodities to boost its economy.
         "Agricultural and maritime potentials have become the backbone of Gorontalo's economy. We have set a target of producing one million tons of corn this year, and partly export them to the Philippines and Korea," Gorontalo Governor Rusli Habibie said.
        Every district and city of the province have agricultural potential, while maritime and fishery potentials are mostly in Boalemo, North Gorontalo and Pohuwato. Its main aquaculture commodities include tuna, nike, grouper, shrimp and craps.
        In the tourism sector, undersea view in Tomini Bay that stretches from Boalemo, Pohuwato to Bone Bolango, has become an eco-tourism attraction.
        Exotic panorama of 136 isles in North and South waters have lured investors to manage those isles to boost the provincial economy.
        "Sea is the heartbeat of Gorontalo tourism. From the sea we hope to attract domestic and foreign tourists as many as possible. So we very much hope that Sail Tomini could give positive impacts on Gorontalo through Boalemo Festival," Rusli Habibie said.
         The tourism sector has contributed major economic benefits to the province, through job opportunities, handicraft businesses, culinary, and hotel industry, according to him.
          In 2012, the number of tourists visiting Gorontalo was 151,556,  and increased to 369,515 in 2014, comprising 19,507 foreign tourists and 350,008 domestic tourists.
          Most of the foreign tourists are diving lovers, who like to spend time in favorite sites such as Olele Marine Park, Biluhu, and  wreckages of  Japanese cargo ships that scatter around the isles.
         "Our target to triple the number of tourist arrivals than that of the previous year. Therefore, we have focused on developing infrastructure such as roads and power plants over the past three years," Habibie noted.
         "Saronde, pearls situated in the front yard of Gorontalo"
    Saronde is one of favorite maritime tourist destinations of Gorontalo Province.
        Located around 45minutes from Kwandang seaport in North Gorontalo, Saronde consists of three beautiful isles - Mohinggito, Bugisa dan Lampu surrounded by white sand beaches.
        The total land area of Saronde reaches 8 hectares including 6 hectares of forest area. Deputy District Head of North Gorontalo Roni Imran has describes Saronde ad a pearl situated in the front yard of northern Indonesia.
        Because of its beautiful panorama and white beaches as well as rocks along the coasts, Saronde is often seen as nice or exotic thanks to its nature scenery and underwater beauty.
        In the past Saronde was known as Hulapa isles because a lot of Hulapa bamboo grew there. Traditional fishermen like to rest in Saronde and sometimes they take families along for vacation.
       In the meantime, Gorontalo will host Boalemo Festival on September 10, as part of Sail Tomini maritime international event which will be kicked off by President Joko Widodo (Jokowi) in Parigi, Central Sulawesi Provnice, on September 19.
       Boalemo festival will take place at beautiful Bolihutuo Beach to showcase several art, cultural, and culinary activities, including a parade featuring the 10 ethnic cultures of Gorontalo, culinary festivals, and water sports activities.
       Bolihutuo beach located in the district of Boalemo, is a beautiful white sand beach where many giant pine trees grow, giving cool and calm atmosphere around the beach.
        As part of the Sail Indonesia series, Sail Tomini is the seventh event after Sail Bunaken in 2009, Sail Banda in 2010, Sail Wakatobi-Belitung in 2011, Sail Morotai in 2012, Sail Komodo in 2013, and Sail Raja Ampat in 2014.
(T.F001/A/BESSR/A. Abdussalam) 01-09-2015 23:51:25

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