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Explore the essence of South Sulawesi, with a unique Sengkang & Toraja tour. Start with a visit to Makassar’s La Galigo Museum for an introduction to the island’s diversity. Then take a closer look with visits to authentic villages inhabited by the Bugis and Toraja ethnic groups, learning about their unique traditions and ancient customs. Unveil the ancient customs and traditions of this mountainous ethnic group, visiting their distinct villages, spectacular tombs and natural wonders. Take in the beauty of the highlands while discovering Sengkang and Toraja’s special cultural heritage on this adventurous multi-day tour.
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DAY 01: MAKASSAR ARRIVAL
Upon your arrival, a guide and driver are awaiting to transfer you to your hotel in the city center of Makasar for check in.
Start your Essential Sulawesi Tour with a walk through the local streets to Paotere harbour to learn about the famed Bugis Phinisi schooner shipbuilders of the region. Next, visit to Fort Rotterdam a 17th century Dutch outpost, which also houses the La Galigo Museum.
Visit the Phoenam coffee shop, a typical Chinese coffee shop where people meet to discuss business. At the coffee shop, Teh Tarik and snacks are in the menu. Here you can also see an abacus which is still used to calculate the price of the coffee. Sample a cup of coffee or tea. Afterwards, enjoy our welcome dinner then return to hotel. Overnight in Makassar.
Note: Depending on the arrival time a Makassar city tour can be adjusted.
Begin you Sengkang and Toraja Tour by sitting back and relaxing as you drive up into the hilly region of Toraja, for a day long transfer through the picturesque countryside. Drive along traditional Bugis villages, before a lunch-stop in the coastal city of Pare-Pare.
Continue to drive into the highlands this afternoon, stopping to take in spectacular panoramas of Gunung Nona’s stunning hillside. Arrive in the mountainous town of Rantepao in the late afternoon, the gateway to your Sengkang and Toraja Tour. Rantepao is considered the cultural centre of the Toraja ethnic group. Dinner this evening is at the hotel.
This morning after breakfast, you will have the chance to immerse yourself in the bustling life of the Toraja residents with a visit to Bolu market, once a weekly traditional Buffalo market. This market plays an important role to the local society as buffalos and pigs are an essential part of the intricate funeral ceremony.
Note: Bolu Market depends on the schedule and is only held twice a week every Tuesday and Saturday. In case there is no market on the day you visit, we will replace it by a visit to a local market in Rantepao.
After the market visit, unveil more of the majestic beauty and captivating culture of Toraja, as you head off deeper into the highlands. Proceed to Palawa, a typical Toraja village, and on to the highlands of Batutumonga perched on the ridge of Gunung Sesean for stunning views across the Toraja valley. See the megalithic stone monuments of Bori before spending time to take lunch at a local restaurant.
After lunch, take a 1 or 2 hour light trek through fascinating Toraja villages. Pass through villages offering beautiful views of rice fields dotted with large black rocks, remains of ancient volcanic eruptions. Stop at Lempo and Tinambayo for jaw-dropping views of the valley and rice terraces from over a thousand metres above sea level. These two villages have ancestral stone circles, part of the local lore of the Toraja people, with each stone representing an important noble who has passed away. They also feature impressive Tongkonan houses. If time permits, snap a few photos before continuing on to Lo'ko Mata Stone Graveyard, another fascinating grave site. What sets Lo'ko Mata apart is its sheer size, the immense scale of the gigantic boulder, covered in colourfully decorated wooden doors that house final resting places of departed Torajans.
One the way to Rantepao, make a visit to a Todi weaving factory where the ancient technique and motifs for Torajans textile known as Ikat’s are preserved.
Next, set off towards the unique village of Ke’te Ke’su, one of the most traditional and well-preserved Toraja villages. Wander along the Tongkonan (Toraja traditional houses), with their distinctive saddle like appearance. These boat-shaped houses have tall roofs made of slender bristles and create strange silhouettes in the sky. Absorb the unique and colourfully detailed woodcarvings of some structures, and learn more about the traditional rites and daily customs of the Toraja before transferring back to your hotel. Dinner at the hotel.
After an early breakfast and check-out you tour south of Toraja to explore the fascinating cultural and historical sights of Toraja. Start with a visit to Lemo, a hauntingly beautiful burial cliff. Marvel at the sections of the rock that have been carved out and filled with colourful wooden effigies of the dead, referred to as Tau Tau statues. Learn more about its interesting history, before continuing on to Kambira. Another mesmerizing site, witness Toraja beliefs materialized, at these truly unique graves amongst the trees. In Torajan tradition, a deceased infant must be buried uprights as it is said they will continue to grow with the tree.
Have lunch at a local restaurant in Makale. After lunch, continue for a longer overland drive to Sengkang where we spend the night stay. Check in to your hotel in Sengkang and enjoy a local Bugis style feast dinner at hotel.
DAY 05: SENGKANG – LAKE TEMPLE – MAKASSAR DEPARTURE
Wake up early this morning at 05:15 to capture picturesque scene across the Lake Temple. The Bugis people on the lake have a unique housing style where their traditional houses float over the water. Take this opportunity to travel on a local longboat to enjoy the Bugis hospitality with a cup of tea or coffee, and maybe some fried banana (a favourite snack in Indonesia). There are about 30 houses that remain on the lake and participate in the old traditions of fishing and fish drying.
After that, head back to your hotel for breakfast before continuing visit a local silk home factory in Sengkang. Check out then drive back to Makassar to connect the onward flight. Wrap up the Essential Sulawesi: Sengkang And Toraja Tour.
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Private Tour (for 02 pax, cheaper if more)
Tour Price Includes
04 hotel night accommodation
Local English speaking guide
Meals as mentioned
Boat for sightseeing in Sengkang (Lake Temple)
All sightseeing as specified and entrance fees included
Bottled drinking water per touring days
Tour Price Excludes
Visas if required
Items of a personal nature such as laundry, drinks, etc.
Tips for your guide and driver (discretionary)
Any camera or video fees at any sites
When to Go
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