Image by Kiko Turteliny - Flickr: Sentani Lake, CC BY 2.0

Lake Sentani is one of the biggest lakes on Papua Island. The lake is situated in the Cycloop Nature Reserve and has the size of 9,360 hectares. It is 75 meters above sea level. There’re a great number of marine biotas and Papuan endemic animals.

30 species of fresh water fish are found in the lake. Some are the endemic of Lake Sentani, such as Sentani Rainbow Fish, snakehead fish and sawfish.

Lake Sentani is located 20 kilometers west of Jayapura. The public transport is convenient and travelers can also drive their cars to the destination. It is an ideal place for swimming, diving, waterskiing and fishing.

You can rent a boat if you want to travel around the small islands in this lake. Agapo is the most visited island. On the island, there’re a lot of artists who draw special motifs on bark clothes.

The Lake Sentani Festival usually attracts many tourists and it is celebrated on June 19 each year. It’s a kind of cultural preservation, which shows the harmony and unity of the inhabitants. Ethnic conflict often happens in Papua, so that peace should be encouraged.

Habitually, the festival is celebrated by all the communities in the city and Jayapura Regency. You’ll see the genuine Tabi cultural performance that means unity in diversity. There is sometimes the crocodile show in the festival and you might capture the right moment if you’re lucky.

The celebration of the festival begins with the traditional dance on the boat. Afterwards, a Papuan war dance involving mock combat is shown to the public. Then, a traditional ceremony of crowning the Ondoafi (the indigenous leader of Sentani) is performed. And the last is that everyone is served with Papuan traditional food.

The water in Lake Sentani comes from the Cycloop Mountains. There’re various types of aquatic plants, such as underwater grass, water spinach, water hyacinth, lotus, algae, etc.

Besides, tourists can also have a nice hiking at the Cycloop Mountains. Everything is very attractive and it’s time to find the suitable video shooting locations. It’s necessary to capture the lovely moments while we’re traveling.

Sentani is the name given by a Christian priest in 1898, which means we live here peacefully. It is hoped that Lake Sentani is able to bring peace to the inhabitants.

The legend says that long ago there lived a king who ruled a wide area of land in Cycsloop. The waterfall at the mountain gave life to all the plants and vegetation. The flying birds in the sky spread the news of prosperity everywhere.

One day, the neighboring kingdom heard that the king of Cycloop was kindhearted and owned the main sources of water. Therefore, the messengers of the neighboring country came to the king of Cycloop.

They asked the king whether he could give some water to them because a severe drought had occurred in their beloved country. They were willing to buy the water with gold and silver.

The king of Cycloop gave them a warm welcome but refused to accept the precious things and money. The king told the messengers that they could take as much water as they wanted. The king also advised them to drink enough water before going home as they should spend a long time on the journey.

The king picked a young fruit from the palm tree and formed a cube shaped container. Afterwards, the king filled a little water in the small cube and gave it to the messengers. He told them to set out before dark.

The messengers said farewell to the king and his people and left Cycloop kingdom. As they were too happy, they forgot the king had told them that they shouldn’t stop on the way before arriving home.

They took a nap under the trees. When they woke up, one of the messengers touched the baby cube and it fell down. Although there wasn’t much water in that little container, it flowed unstoppably and a lake was formed in that location.


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