Prague Dragon Boat Club introduces traditional Indonesian dragonboats

New style of paddling on boats without benches and without drum brings new life into the dragonboat classics. Indonesian boats have wide sides where you can partly sit on and party you need to kneel with your knee close to the middle of the boat. Wooden paddles are long and narrow. And compared to classic paddles they are markedly heavier.

Boats themselves pride on their beautiful large dragon heads and tails. The hull of the boat is decorated by the scale pattern. This together makes the sailing boat look like a giant floating dragon.

Therefore riding an Indonesian dragonboat is like riding a real dragon!

Prague Dragon boat club obtained two traditional Indonesian dragonboats as a gift from the representatives of Tanjung Pinang City. This city is located on Indonesian Bintan island where every year in November a great dragonboat race is held. Boats were gifted to Prague Dragon Boat Club as a demonstration of friendship and also to give publicity to Tanjung Pinang dragonboat race and to propagate the rich and colorful Indonesian culture in Czech Republic and whole Europe.

Boats arrived to Czech republic at the beginning of august. The collection of the boats as an important event was filmed by the Czech television (czech nation wide TV station) The report about this event was broadcasted in the "Z metropole" programme ("From the metropolis" - programme with news and event from Prague the capital of Czech rep.) on the August 22nd. This report can be seen in the internet archive.

Photographs from this event are now part of the club history and you can see them here:

Indonesian boats will be for the first time introduced to public during the 5th annual Prague Dragon Autumn festival. They will be festively baptized and initiated to the club boat fleet during the Evening programme of the first festival day on Saturday, September 12th. On Sunday, 13th September they will be already part of the festival's sport program. A special cup - a race for 250 meters on Indonesian boats will be held for teams who are interested. It will be the Zero year for this cup in our festival because the entering teams had no opportunity to train on this boats. Therefore this we be the first experience for people. It will be also probably the first race on Indonesian boats in whole Europe!

Next year our club will enable the possibility for the applicants to train and to practice on Indonesian boats regularly. And we will also organize 1st year of official race during the Autumn festival. The winner will get the nomination for the races in Tanjung Pinang city as the national representation of Czech republic.

Prague Dragon Boat Club would like to thank kindly for the gracious gift to the major of Tanjung Pinang city - Ms. Suryatati A. Manan. We thank for the warm welcome in Indonesia, for the hospitality and for the mutual friendship. We would like to thank also to Mr. Sapril Sembiring for the invitation to Tanjung Pinang race and for arranging all necessary matters of making of the ship and their preparation to transfer. Our thanks goes also to the Tanjung Pinang Toursit and Culture office for their consenting position.

Our thanks belongs also to PELMI company (spedition, logistics, international transport) namely Ms. Mirka Švestková for fast, cheap and trouble-free container transport of the dragonboats.

Last but not least we would like to thank to the Embassy of Indonesian republic in Czech republic, to Mr. Azis Nurwahyudi and Gustaav R. Ferdinandus for their help with the boats delivery to Czech Republic.

Other photographs of indonesian boats and from Tanjung Pinang race can be found here:
Link to webgallery