Sulawesi from South to North

Duration: 12days /  11 nights

Number of pax: 23-6, 7-10 pax

Type of accommodation: Hotel and cottage

Type of transportation: Minibus, speedboat

Start/end:Makassar / Manado

Grade of difficulty:Moderate

This 12 days jounrey will bring you to explore the island of Sulawesi from the southern to the northern part. Exploring historical sites in Makassar, driving along winding road from the southcoast to the highland of Toraja, trekking from village to village along the terraced rice field, experience the stay at traditional house including witnessing an ancient rituals of Toraja.

In the northern part you will make a visit to an ancient tombs of Minahasa people, hike to the lowland forest on Tangkoko Nature Reserve to see the smallest mammals on earth. From this lowland area you will go up to the homeland of Minahasa people, the original ethnic group in Northern Sulawesi. And finally, you will have the chance to explore marine life of Bunaken national Park

Day 1: Arrival in Makassar (South Sulawesi)   Arrive in Makassar, pick up service by our ground network, transfer to the hotel, briefing for the trip. Free afternoon program that you can use to walk along Pantai Losari or along the old Chinatown not far from Pantai Losari. (LD)

Day 2: Makassar – Rantepao (Tana Toraja)   After Breakfast, by car leaving for Rantepao which is takes eight hours drive over lowland roads and see the Buginese Traditional house set on stilt. On the way, visit the Phinisi boat workers in constructing the boat in traditional style. Lunch will be served on the sea side Restaurant overlooking The Sulawesi Sea. After lunch, continue drive to Rantepao through winding mountain road and stop over at Bambapuang to see a spectacular view overlooking the green valley and The Sadang River flows meandering through the valley. Upon arrival in Rantepao, check-in for accommodation at hotel which is located in the middle of rice field. Dinner will be served at hotel. Overnight. (BLD)

Day 3: Toraja Exploration   After breakfast, a full day excursion in Toraja land by car to visit Lemo the most interesting burial area in Toraja land with the sheer rock face has a whole series of balconies for Tau-Tau. Visit Sangalla to see baby grave carved on the tree trunk. Visit the traditional village and burial side at Ke’te Kesu, where there are some grave caves and very old hanging grave full of bones and skulls. Lunch will be served at panoramic restaurant, Located in the middle of rice field. After lunch, a four kilometers hiking through the Torajan villages with a beautiful rice field view. Return to the hotel at noon. Dinner will be served at hotel. (BLD)

Day 4: Toraja Exploration   After breakfast, by car heading north of Rantepao visit Bori to see Rante memorial site of funeral ceremony contents with huge Menhirs where the water buffalos were slaughtered during funeral ceremony and stone grave carvers are working to dig out the rock. Proceed to drive up mountain to Batutumonga where a spectacular view set from high altitude. Lunch will be served at panoramic restaurant in Batutumonga. After lunch, hike down the mountain to Tikala village and on the way visit the black smith workers are working at their huts and produced farming tool and knifes. Proceed to visit the cliff cave at Marante village. At noon return to hotel. Dinner will be served at the hotel. (BLD)

Note: Any funeral ceremony held in this region, if it is reachable will be including in the visit

Day 5: Tana Toraja – Pare  Pare – Makassar   After breakfast leaving for Pare Pare by car which takes five hour drive. Pare-Pare is a quiet stop over between Toraja Land and Makassar. You will have lunch in this town. Your Trans Sulawesi journey will continue to Makassar, arrive in town at around afternoon. Check in at your hotel. Free program. (BLD)

Day 6: Makassar Excursion   After breakfast at hotel you will have this day to explore the city of Makassar including a visit to Port Rotterdam. This port was built in 1555 in the period of Gowa Kingdom. It provided protection for the Makassar Kingdom. It used to be called Benteng Ujung Pandang. When Admiral Cornelis, a Dutch troop leader, occupied Celebes in 1667, he rebuilt it and changed its name to Rotterdam. He made Fort Rotterdam a centre of the government. The architecture of the buildings at Fort Rotterdam resembles European styles from the medieval era, IV-XVII century. Fort Rotterdam is now a national archeological museum. People can see many artefacts and ancient things in the museum. It is called Museum La Galigo. Your excursion continues to Potere Harbor. Paotere is the harbour to the north of Makassar where traditional Buginese sailing boats (Phinisi) load and unload their cargo. It is fascinating to see the boat workers running across narrow wooden planks from the dock to the boats carrying unbelievably large loads. Nowaday the Phinisis have been motorized and the number and length of the masts have been reduced, but these boats still make attractive objects for photography. The boats sail to nearly all parts of Indonesia. Sails are used to reduce fuel consumption and in case of engine problems. Possible for you to go onboard and explore the interior. If time is available you can continue visiting the old Sultan Palace in the city centre. Lunch at local restaurants. Staying in Makassar is not enough before trying grilled fish at the local restaurant. Afternoon return to hotel. (BLD)

Day 7: Makassar – Manado – Batu Putih   Fly to Manado, arrive Manado and drive to Batu Putih Village the location of Tangkoko Nature Reserve. Lunch en-route or at local restaurant in Batu Putih. Late afternoon you will hike along the path within the reserve to watch the smallest mammal on earth; Tarsius (Tarsius spectrum), leaves the nest on the tree whole for foot hunting. This nocturnal animal will return to its nest the next early morning. Stay at local cottage. (BLD)

Day 8: Batuputih – Sawangan – Woloan – Tomohon   After breakfast you will do morning walk to the reserve. Endemic Sulawesi macaque (Macaca nigra) inhabit the forest area of Tangkoko Reserve. If lucky you may see the Knobbed Hornbill on its nest high up on ficus tree. Return to accommodation, pack your belonging and you continues by car to Sawangan Village. This is the location of ancient cemetery, called Waruga, of Minahasan ancestors consist of 144 stone sarcophagi, remnants of the Megalithic age. “Waruga” sarcophagi are unique square stone with holes in the middle and prism shaped lids. The tombs are carved with various motifs such as human beings, plants, animals, and traditional geometrical motifs like clouds, strings, curls and double braids. From Sawangan continue to Lake Tondano for lunch at local restaurant. Fresh water fishes are the main dish here. Local people use the lake to farm and breed fish. After lunch continue to Woloan the center for knocked-down wooden house construction. The houses made in this village are mainly sold for outside island including for export. Go to Tomohon to check in at hotel. (BLD)

Day 9: Tomohon – Manado – Bunaken   Breafast at hotel and continue by visiting Tomohon local market. Drive to the harbor in Manado for about 1.5 hours and continue by boat to Bunaken. Stay at cottage in Bunaken. (BLD)

Day 10: Day to explore Bunaken   Today you will have the chance to meet with Bunaken National Park Management Board to learn and get information about the history and process on collaborative management system in the park. You will also have the chance to swim and snorkel to explore the exotic marine life in Bunaken. (BLD)

Day 11: Bunaken – Manado   Leave Bunaken after breakfast to Manado City. Check in at hotel in town. You will have free time to explore the city. (BLD)

Day 12: Manado-Airport   Transfer to the airport according to your flight schedule. Fly to the next destinations. Journey ends. (BL)