Situated just across the border from Sabah, Malaysia, the town and island of Tarakan is a part of young province, North Kalimantan. It was once a major oil producing region during the Dutch colonial period and had great strategic importance during the Pacific War and was among the first Japanese targets early in the war.
Remnants of the clashes and great battles can still be found throughout the city. Among these remnants are the Peningki Lama Site at East Tarakan, the Museum Roemah Boendar (Roundhouse Museum), Pillbox/Stelling Post, The Australian Monument at the Kodim (Military Command Center) on Pulau Kalimantan Street, and The Japanese Ash Monument.
Aside from the various World War II remnants and monuments, the city of Tarakan also holds other fascinating places worth visiting. Among them are The Tarakan Orchid Garden, Amal Beach, Juwata Crocodile Breeding Center and The Mangrove and Proboscis Monkeys Conservation Area which is the home of the rare proboscis monkeys (locally known as Bekantan).
The Juwata International Airport serves both domestic and international flights. There are direct flight between Tarakan and Balikpapan, Surabaya, Tanjung Selor, Nunukan, and Berau. Tarakan’s Airport also serves an international route to Tawau in Malaysia.
For sea transportation, the city has 4 main sea ports which are Tengkayu I Port, Tengkayu II Port, Malundung Port, and Juwata Laut Port. Through the sea routes, the city is connected with Tawau, in Sabah, Malaysia, the island of Java, and Sulawesi.