The Juwata International Airport, also known as the Tarakan Airport, is an airport serving Tarakan, in North Kalimantan, Indonesia. It is located off the coast of Borneo, in the island of the same name. The airport is a public and commercial airport operated by PT Angkasa Pura I, a state enterprise of the Indonesian Department of Transport that is responsible for the management of airports and air traffic services in Indonesia. The airport has a single asphalt runway measuring 8,202 feet long, and an elevation of 20 feet.
The airport was previously the main Allied objective during the Battle of Tarakan in 1945, and was the destination point of the ASEAN Single Aviation Market under Protocol I and II. The airport today now serves at least one million passengers per year, contributing to the almost 31 million passengers of the PT Angkasa Pura I arm. Airlines that serve the destination include flag carrier Garuda Indonesia, Kal Star Aviation, Lion Air, MASwings, Sriwijaya Air, and Susi Air. These airlines bring travellers to the major airports within the country, including that of Jakarta, Balikpapan, Tanjung Selor, Tawau, and Makassar.
Due to the fact that the airport is both used as a military and civil aviation port, the airports authority of Indonesia planned to build a 183-metre taxiway to extend to the military apron to accommodate four Sukhoi and two Hercules aircraft together. The project is predicted to be finished in 2014.
What to see & do
Tarakan is one of the major cities in northern Borneo, just across the border from Sabah, Malaysia. Once a small oil producing region during the colonial period, the city has been a strategic entity during the Pacific war and was among the first Japanese targets early in the war. It is the sole city within the newly established province of North Kalimantan, and is one of the more progressive areas in the region. Although Tarakan is just a transit hub for many, the city is actually has one of the remaining natural parks in the area. The mangrove forest in Jln Gajah Mada is the home of a thick group of mangrove trees, and is the home of two Borneo exclusives, proboscis monkeys and ikan tempankul – a fish that walks out of the water. The location is just 300 metres from the city centre, and is spread over nine hectares with shaded boardwalks and benches. Aside from the mangroves and the endemic animals, the forest is also shelter to many bird species and macaques. Aside from the forest, the local street food and activities are also great for travellers.
How to get around within Tarakan
Within the destination, travellers may go around via blue mini vans, although the cost can climb up when going to the airport. Taxi vans also are available, but travellers should first ask for prices before boarding. Some travellers experienced paying as much as 100,000 rupiah for four people, while the maximum fare should only be at 50,000 rupiah. Other modes, including buses and others, are not available.
How to get there
The Juwata International Airport is the main airport serving the city of Tarakan. The airport connects the capital Jakarta and other areas to the city. Airlines that travel to the destination include Garuda Indonesia, Kal Star Aviation, Lion Air, MASwings, Sriwijaya Air, and Susi Air. If coming from a different departure point not covered by these airlines or has no available direct flights to Tarakan, travellers are advised to fly down to other ports in Indonesia where direct flights to Tarakan are available.
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