Overview of Kalimantan: Provinces, Characteristics, and Culture

Kalimantan is the third largest island in the world located in the eastern part of Indonesia. It has an area of around 747,000 square kilometers and is divided into four provinces: East Kalimantan, West Kalimantan, Central Kalimantan, and South Kalimantan.

About 73% of Kalimantan's land is covered by tropical rainforests which are home to various rare flora and fauna. Some species that can only be found in Kalimantan include orangutans, elephants, tigers, and rhinos.

Most of the people in Kalimantan are the Dayak ethnic group who have a rich and unique culture. In addition, there are also Banjar, Malay, and Chinese ethnic groups living on the island. The official language used in Kalimantan is Indonesian, but there are also local languages used by the local people.

As an island rich in natural resources, Kalimantan has great economic potential. Some of the main economic sectors in Kalimantan include mining, plantations, and the timber industry. However, unsustainable and environmentally damaging resource management has become a major problem in Kalimantan.

Kalimantan Island

List of the provinces in Kalimantan

Here is a list of the provinces in Kalimantan along with a brief description of each province:

1. West Kalimantan

Capital city: Pontianak

West Kalimantan is located in the western part of Kalimantan island. This province has natural beauty with tropical rainforests that serve as a habitat for various rare species such as orangutans and tigers.

2. Central Kalimantan

Capital city: Palangkaraya

Central Kalimantan is located in the central part of Kalimantan island. This province has several national parks and nature reserves that protect the biodiversity of its rainforests.

3. South Kalimantan

Capital city: Banjarmasin

South Kalimantan is located in the southern part of Kalimantan island. This province is known for its water tourism, such as floating markets and river tours. Additionally, South Kalimantan is also famous for its rich Banjar culture.

4. East Kalimantan

Capital city: Samarinda

East Kalimantan is located in the eastern part of Kalimantan island. This province has abundant natural resources such as oil, natural gas, and coal mines. Moreover, East Kalimantan has beautiful nature such as beaches, mountains, and captivating forests.

Special Characteristics

Kalimantan has several unique characteristics that differentiate it from other regions in Indonesia. Some of these characteristics include:

  • Biodiversity: More than 50% of the plant and animal species in Indonesia can be found in Kalimantan. The island has various natural habitats such as tropical rainforests and savannas, which are home to various endemic species such as orangutans, tigers, elephants, and rhinos.
  • Rich in natural resources: Kalimantan has abundant natural resources such as coal mines, oil, and natural gas. This makes Kalimantan one of the largest economic centers in Indonesia.
  • Dayak culture: The Dayak people are an indigenous ethnic group in Kalimantan. They have a unique and rich culture such as dances, traditional weapons, and customary houses. Many of these Dayak cultures are still preserved and are a popular tourist attraction.
  • Large rivers: Kalimantan Island has several large rivers such as Mahakam River, Barito, Kapuas, and Kahayan which pass through the provinces on this island. These rivers provide many benefits such as transportation facilities, water resources, and nature tourism.
  • Rich in traditional cuisine: Each province in Kalimantan has its own unique traditional cuisine. These dishes usually rely on local ingredients such as river fish, vegetables, and spices. Some famous traditional Kalimantan dishes include soto Banjar, nasi kuning, and rawon.

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