Maluku is one of the oldest provinces in Indonesia’s history. Maluku name itself is taken from the word al-Mulk, which means Land of the Kings. Maluku Islands, known for its abundant natural wealth, especially spices, which was then targeted by many countries such as the Dutch and Portuguese colonizers.
Ambon city is an island and the capital city of Maluku, internationally known as Amboina. In 1513, the Portuguese were the first Europeans to land in Ambon, and it became the new centre for Portuguese activities in Maluku following their expulsion from Ternate.
The Portuguese were dispossessed by the Dutch already in 1605, when Steven van der Hagen took over the fort and without a single shot. Ambon was the headquarters of the Dutch East India Company (VOC) from 1610 to 1619 until the founding of Batavia (now Jakarta) by the Dutch.
During the Dutch period, Ambon city was the seat of the Dutch resident and military commander of the Moluccas. The town was protected by Fort Victoria, and a 1911 Encyclopædia characterized it as “a clean little town with wide streets, well planted”. There are many tribes and races that inhabit this city. Among them are Arabs, Buton (who has lived up to five generations), Sino initially came to trade. In addition there are also Tribe Minahasa, Java, and most are Alifuru Tribe which is a native of the Moluccas.
Alifuru people is the designation for the first Melanesian sub race who are inhabit the island and spread to other islands in Maluku. Alifuru derived from the word Alif and the word Uru, Alif is the first Arabic alphabet while the word Uru is derived from the Austronesian languages, which means Tana, then Alifuru means First People.
In ancient times, Ambon city famous throughout the world and this make the city as a destination for many Europeans who are doing the Kingdom of exploration. Not surprisingly, many residents of Ambon which have similar features like the Europeans and the Arabs (as a result of mixed marriages of their predecessors in the past) beside the denomination of the Melanesian race which is a native resident of Ambon race.
Ambon is an exotic city, that is why it has some potentials destination that worth to be explored. For instance, Pattimura sculpture in Lapangan Merdeka, Martha Christina Tiahahu sculpture in Karang Panjang, Dolan monument in Kudamati, Trikora monument in Urimesing, WW II Australia heroes cemetery in Tantui, Australia monument in Laha, Jepang monument in Tawiri, Franciscus Xaverius sculpture in Batumeja, Fort Victoria in Belakang Kota. Moreover they have, Namalatu beach in Latuhalat, Natsepa Indah beach in Natsepa, Santai beach in Latuhalat, world peace gong, Batu lobang cave in Amahusu village and many more.
How to get there
Ambon is served by the Pattimura Airport. The Pattimura airport was named after Pattimura, an Indonesian national hero who fought against the Dutch in 1816. Ambon Pattimura airport is the regional air hub with daily connections to Jakarta via Surabaya, Makassar, Manado and limited connections to Papua. Ambon's Pattimura Airport is located 9km west of the city across the sea. The distance by road is 30km. Taxi are outside the terminal and a ride to Ambon would take almost an hour with a fare of around Rp. 200.000. You can also walk to the road and take a bemo to Poka Ferry (Rp. 3500), there get a ferry to Galala (Rp. 1400). At Galala are bemo's waiting to take you to Ambon city itself. Travel time this way would be more or less an hour as well.
Travelers visiting Ambon usually start their flights either from Denpasar, Bali or Soekarno-Hatta International Airport in Jakarta. Garuda Indonesia has recently started flying to Ambon, and serves a brand new route from Jakarta to Ternate, North Maluku transiting in Makassar.
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