Jepen Dance in Tarakan City, North Kalimantan Province


One of the allures in Tarakan City is none other than cultural performances. That means tourists may visit the region to watch events, traditional dances, and other attractions. Here is an example. The name is Jepen Dance and it has become the part of North Kalimantan’s culture for generations. The dance even becomes an important feature in local festivals, as well. The locals call it Festival Jepen and it is available for both villagers and tourists. The dance is indeed beautiful, but it also has an interesting meaning for tourists to learn while watching. They only need to ask villagers or local guide to get the information.

The Nuance
One thing that makes Jepen Dance unique is the mixture or richness of culture that applies in the dance. According to the locals, it belongs to Kutai People’s tradition. However, the dance gets affected to both Islamic and Malay culture. In terms of nuance, it emits a friendly and warm ambiance. As for the dancers, they can be either adults or kids. Not to mention both female and male dancers are allowed to perform it.

More about Jepen Dance
The mixture of culture values makes Jepen dance unique and attractive. It even gets a better popularity over time. The development is good and the locals keep retaining the dance as the part of their culture. The role of tourists is also important, though. For instance, tourists often take photos while watching the dance and post them on social media sites. That means they help to promote the dance to other people. As the result, more other tourists are interested to visit Tarakan City and watch the dance directly.

Jepen Dance becomes an attractive entertainment for both the locals and tourists. Many factors make it interesting, actually. For instance, it is related to the attire. The dancers wear color traditional attire and ornaments. Male dancers wear Teluk Belangga pants while female dancers wear both Kebaya and sarong. The attire is colorful and emits a cheerful ambiance. No wonder, the dance won’t bore the audience. For the information, the dance is performed pair up. These can be either adults or kids depending on the type of the event.

The next reason why Jepen Dance becomes more popular is due to the swift and energetic moves. Not to mention the dance features beautiful accompaniment, including ketipung and gambus. The music chant is even able to soothe the audience’s mind. No wonder, Jepen Dance becomes the part of Tarakan’s tourist allure these days.

How to Get There
The best place to watch Jepen Dance is none other than Tarakan City. In order to get there, tourists should take an airplane service. For those coming from Jakarta City, in this case, they may spend around 1 day and 11 hours to reach Tanjung Harapan Airport at Tanjung Selor City. From the airport, they need to ride a boat and head to Tarakan Island afterward. This is going to be a long trip, so everyone must come with a good stamina and enough supplies.

Where to Stay

  • Grand Citra Hotel
  • Mutiara Hotel
  • Surya Golden Hotel


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