THE existence of Keraton or palaces in various regions throughout Indonesia is considered to have the potential to be developed and promoted to the world as part of wellness tourism.

This emerged at the 2023 Indonesia Wellness Tourism International Festival (IWTIF) Workshop which was held at the Surakarta Palace, Tuesday, September 19 2023. The activity carried the theme Ethnowellness Nusantara (ETNA), Indonesia’s Traditional Health Destination.

According to the General Chair of the Board of ETNA (Ethnowellness Nusantara), Tanri Abeng, at the talk show discussed wellness tourism which is linked to the existence of 56 palaces in Indonesia said, wellness tourism is holistic health or complete health, which includes not only physical but also mental, spiritual, emotional and social. Meanwhile, in the palace there is local wisdom.

“So, there is a real connection between wellness tourism and the existence of these palaces. Here the potential for economic wellness is huge,” said Tanri when met by journalists after the talk show.

According to Tanri, if keraton or palace tourism can be promoted, then his party will promote it further to the world to attract more foreign tourists to come to Indonesia. “The target is inbound tourists from abroad because there is wellness there. So, it’s not just tourists coming to Indonesia but because there is an opportunity to use ingredients for health,” he said.

In general, said Tanri, foreign tourists do not understand that Indonesia has wellness tourism, like Malaysia, Thailand or Singapore. “We are much bigger,” added the former Minister of State for the Empowerment of BUMN.

The Keraton Doesn’t Have an Exhibition Concept Yet
Tanri admitted that so far he does not have a marketing concept for keraton (palace) wellness tourism. According to him, if you want to market it, there must also be improvements including the product and tourist destination.

“So far the problem is our ignorance that we have great wellness potential. Even though there are many doctors who have developed this wellness. Apart from that, Indonesia is not promoting wellness tourism well,” he said.

Meanwhile, the Daily Chair of the Royal Archipelago Traditional Council (MAKN), Kanjeng Pangeran Haryo (KPH) Eddy Wirabhumi said that currently the potential for wellness tourism in the world reaches trillions of rupiah. Unfortunately, only 5 percent can be utilized in Indonesia. The use of wellness tourism must be done holistically.

“It’s not just about what products are produced, but also how they are packaged and how they are marketed. To get there, needs to be careful planning. One of them is learning from those who have successfully run it,” he said.

Eddy explained that we can see that in Tawangmangu, which has been under the guidance of BRIN (National Research and Innovation Agency), it turns out that it has been using this wellness for a long time. We need to learn, and the most important thing is that the palaces in the archipelago can work together to develop this wellness.

Likewise, the Chair of the 2023 IWTIF Committee, Jajang Gunawijaua, added that this Solo workshop activity is a program of the Indonesia Wellness Tourism International Festival (IWTIF) which has become a permanent program of the Board of ETNA.

“Through IWTIF, we will continue to try to reach more market potential and the younger generation to increase awareness of anti-body, immunity, increase wellbeing and increase real economic activities in the wellness sector,” concluded Jajang. [ special]