North Sumatra’s tourist destinations development speeding up


PARAPAT, North Sumatra, Indonesia – The Ministry of Tourism is speeding up the development of various tourist destinations in North Sumatra with Lake Toba as its tourism icon to attract local and foreign tourists.

“North Sumatra Province has a lot of attractive tourist destinations that need to be developed. After all, a presidential regulation on Lake Toba Tourism Management Authority Board has also been established last June,” Tourism Minister Arief Yahya told the press here Saturday.

The minister made these remarks in connection with the Lake Toba Charm Independence Day Carnival (KKPDT) on August 20 and 21, 2016. President Joko Widodo (Jokowi) will open the carnival Sunday.

The authority board is assigned to accelerate the development of Lake Toba, which is one of the countrys 10 prime tourist destinations, Minister Yahya said.

The presence of the authority board and the opening of many direct flight routes to the airports of Kuala Namu, Silangit and Udara Sibisa, will boost further the arrivals of local and foreign tourists in North Sumatra.

Besides the airports, a toll road will also be built to make it easy for tourists to visit Lake Toba. The toll road will be built to connect Kuala Namu with Tebing Tinggi, Siantar and Prapat.

The Lake Toba Charm Independence Day Carnival was based on President Jokowis desire that the celebrations of Indonesias Independence Day should not be centered in Jakarta alone, the minister said. Last year, the same carnival was held in Pontianak, West Kalimantan, to observe Independence Day, he added.

The carnival constituted a realization of the presidents commitment to enhance the independence anniversary commemoration to other areas so that the August 17 celebration atmosphere could be felt as far as outside Java, according to the minister.

The carnival would start on a floating stage in Prapat and would conclude with a carnival and a peoples fiesta in Balige, KKPDT chief organizer Premita Fifi said.

The floating stage will present Slank musicians in collaboration with Edo Kodologit, Dewa Budjana and Tohpati, as well as with Oppie Andaresta, JFlow and Sammy Simorangkir.

“The floating stage concept at Lake Toba is the first of its kind, as Toba has never organized such a stage before,” Premita said.