Jakarta. Tanjung Lesung, the special economic zone for tourism in Banten province, commemorated the 72nd anniversary of Indonesia's independence with an underwater flag-raising ceremony on Thursday (17/08).
Tanjung Lesung area management director Poernomo Siswoprasetijo said this year's celebration was special, because it also promoted the region's underwater beauty.
"It is an exciting and fun experience to hoist the flag under the sea. The sensation is different, and it is also unique, compared to the regular ceremony on shore," Poernomo said in a statement.
Twenty professional divers hoisted the flag at exactly 9 a.m., coinciding with the time President Sukarno read the independence proclamation on Aug. 17, 1945.
Divers formed a ceremonial line, complete with the inspector, line leader and flag carriers. The national anthem was also played during the ceremony.
Various tourism industry stakeholders in Banten, including 200 members of Saka Bahari in Pandeglang, attended the event.
Tanjung Lesung is being transformed into the Venice of Indonesia, with a shoreline spreading up to 15 kilometers containing white sands bordered by trees.
The beach has small waves, allowing visitors to swim and snorkel to observe an array of coral reefs and other sea creatures, such as jellyfish.
Tourism Minister Arief Yahya said more tourists will visit Tanjung Lesung upon completion of the Serang-Panimbang Toll Road.
"If the Serang-Panimbang Toll Road is completed, tourists will be able to travel faster from Jakarta to Tanjung Lesung. This will open access to Tanjung Lesung and boost maritime tourism. The celebration of Indonesia's independence may become a new attraction for tourists," Arief said.