Kalibiru is a water tourism location that cannot be missed when traveling in Raja Ampat. The river, whose water is as blue as crystal, holds a number of natural features and is full of legends. Located in the interior of the forest of Wasandim Village, Mayalibit Bay, the riverbed which contains large rocks can be seen with the naked eye, without having to dive.
The depth of the river is estimated to be more than 5 meters, while in some parts of the river the depth is 2-3 meters. The river flow is fairly calm.
Another specialty is the water temperature. Although exposed to sunlight, the river water temperature is around 10-20 degrees Celsius. When put into a bottle, the river water condenses as if it had just been taken from the refrigerator. We can also drink the water directly as it comes from mountain springs.
But the temperature is different in the estuary. The temperature of the water there is divided into two, one part is cold as ice and the other part is warm. Scientifically, this can happen as some part of the river is exposed to the sun, while the other part is covered in dense trees.
Initially, tourists were not allowed to swim in the calm river. Only in 2016, tourists are allowed to swim with a number of appeals to preserve the river flow and natural surroundings. Some of the appeals are to swim no more than 30 minutes, and also to avoid using skin care products. Tourists are also asked to shower and change clothes in the toilet.
Even though they are allowed to swim in the river, tourists are not allowed to swim in the springs located near Kalibiru. Apart from maintaining the purity of water, it is also a form of respect for the ancestors.
The popularity of Kalibiru is also closely related to local legends. For the Mayalibit Tribe, Kalibiru is one of their sacred places. It is said that before going to war, soldiers bathed in the river to make them stronger to defeat the enemy. Another legend tells that a white crocodile living in this river will show its form as an indication that a community has violated customary law.
Kalibiru also has different names in the local community. Some residents call it Waiyal. Wai means “water”, while Yal means “know what will happen tomorrow”. Other residents named Kalibiru Warabiar. In the Papuan language, Warabiar means “clear”.
To get to Kalibiru, it takes about 1 hour by speedboat from Waisai, the capital of Raja Ampat. From the estuary where the boat rests, tourists can continue by trekking into the forest for 30 minutes. Don’t worry, the area administrator has created a path that makes it easier for tourists to trace. The entrance fee to Kalibiru is around IDR 100,000 – IDR 250,000 per person.