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Banda Aceh | Covid-19 Travel Restrictions | Lockdown | Coronavirus Outbreak

Banda Aceh is the capital of the Indonesian prrovince of Aceh on the island of Sumatra. Introduction to Banda Aceh Around 150,000 people were killed in Banda Aceh in the Tsunami of 26 December 2004. Some parts of the city became permanently submerged. Many aid agencies have been present since then to help rebuild. The long […]

Wolfgang Holzem

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Banda Aceh is the capital of the Indonesian prrovince of Aceh on the island of Sumatra.

Introduction to Banda Aceh

Around 150,000 people were killed in Banda Aceh in the Tsunami of 26 December 2004. Some parts of the city became permanently submerged. Many aid agencies have been present since then to help rebuild.

The long conflict between the Acehnese independence movement (GAM) and the Indonesian army (TNI) has been solved for the time being by the peace agreement on 15 August 2005. The peace process has been quite smooth since. In 2006 the province held its first direct and democratic local elections. In 2007 the first democratically elected Governor, Irwandi Yusuf, was inaugurated.

Get in

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The main terminal building of Sultan Iskandar Muda International Airport, Banda Aceh

Foreigners no longer require a travel permit (Surat Jalan) to enter Aceh, but an Indonesian visa is required. It is possible to get a 30-day Visa-on-Arrival at Banda Aceh Airport. The embassy in Kuala Lumpur can sometimes process the visa in the same day if you complete all the paperwork before noon, though this is supposed to apply only to Malaysian residents.

Travel by bus to Banda Aceh

There are non-stop night buses, with travel times ranging from 9–13 hours – from Medan to Banda Aceh. Major bus companies such as PMTOH, Pelangi, Kurnia and Pusaka have offices on Jl. Gajah Mada, Medan. Price ranges from Rp 110,000 in a regular-sized-seat bus to Rp 200,000 in a wide-seat bus.

Mini-buses can also take you to Banda Aceh from the Medan area, but journeys are generally longer. Prices are a bit cheaper than the coaches. It is also possible to travel over from Medan to Banda Aceh via Kutacane and Takengon. This will be 20 hr in total.

Fly to Banda Aceh

  • x5.52333395.4202781 Sultan Iskandar Muda Airport. Named after the 12th sultan of Aceh, Iskandar Muda. Lua error in Module:Wikibase at line 96: attempt to index field 'wikibase' (a nil value). (Q2673757) on Wikidata Sultan Iskandar Muda International Airport on Wikipedia 

Airlines fly daily between Banda Aceh and either Medan, a 1 hour trip, or Jakarta, a 2 hr 40 minute trip.

  • AirAsia, Kuala Lumpur. , daily flights
  • Batavia Air, Jakarta-Soekarno-Hatta, Medan
  • Firefly, Penang, , Malaysia’s community airline now flies from Penang to Banda Aceh every Tuesday, Thursday and Saturday
  • Garuda Indonesia, Jakarta-Soekarno-Hatta, Medan, 3 daily flights from Jakarta and two daily flights from Medan. The Jakarta-Banda Aceh direct flight on Garuda takes 2 hr 40 min on a Boeing 737, although it is often changed to stopover at Medan without warning. Seasonal to Jeddah in Saudi Arabia during the Hajj season
  • Lion Air, Jakarta-Soekarno-Hatta, Medan. They have two daily flights from Jakarta and one from Medan.
  • SMAC, Blang Pidie, Meulaboh, Simelue, Takengon, Tapak Tuan. Flies daily from Medan to Nias Island and Simeulue Island.
  • Sriwijaya Air, Medan
  • Susi Air, Meulaboh

Visa

Visa formalities at this airport are similar to those of other Indonesian immigration gateways.

  • Visa On Arrival (VOA) service is available at Sultan Iskandar Muda Airport.

Airport bus

A DAMRI bus provides a service from Banda Aсeh to the airport, and from the airport to Banda Aceh. Operating hours are 10/11:00-26:30 (the last one is after the flight JT-306 LionAir from JKT), price to the city is Rp 20,000/person (May 2016)

The bus departing from the airport to Banda Aсeh leaves a few minutes after airplanes land. So departure time depends on landing time, more or less. Thus, it’s advised to hurry to catch the bus. It is on your left when you leave the airport building (taxi drivers will tell you there is no airport bus, just keep on walking because the bus is there).

Please note that this bus goes to Banda Aceh City Centre; it does not go to the Bus Station or Ulee-Lhue Harbour. If you want to go to the Bus Station or Ulee-Lhue Harbour, take a becak after being dropped off in the City Centre by the airport bus.

To go to the airport, you can catch the bus at 08:00, 14:00 or 15:00 in front of the Big Mosque.

Travel by boat to Banda Aceh

The closest big (international) ferry terminal is Belawan Port, close to Medan. It receives vessels originating from Batam, Indonesia (a common route when coming from Singapore). The ferry from Penang is no longer operating. From Ulhee-lhee, the port of Banda Aceh you can go to Pulau Weh and to Pulau Aceh.

Get around

The main methods of getting around are becak (motorbike taxis) and labi-labi (public minibus). Due to the sudden influx of money post-tsunami, locals have gotten used to overcharging, but now stabilisation has returned. Example becak fares are: Airport – Grand Mosque: Rp 40,000; Bus Terminal – Grand Mosque: Rp 8,000; Grand Mosque – Penayong: Rp 5,000. Inside the city, generally Rp 10,000 should do it.

Sightseeing in Banda Aceh

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“Cakra Donya” Bell

  • Masjid Raya Baiturrahman/Grand Mosque (Muslim dresscode). Baiturrahman is a great mosque located at the heart of Banda Aceh, The mosque has five black coloured domes and white four minarets. The mosque stands upon an elegantly green landscape. The white washed walls and minerals and charcoal blacks domes of the Grand Mosque are the most famous landmark in Aceh. The Mosque was built in 12th century and caught fire several time including during a Dutch attack upon Kutaraja (Banda Aceh) in 1873. A replacement mosque was built by the Dutch military government and was completed in 1883. The mosque is extraordinary in architecture and ornamentation. It has five onion shaped domes, two tall minarets, wide white walls and decoratively ornamented pillars. Non-Muslims will be asked to remain in the plaza and not enter the mosque. (Jan 2019) 
  • Cut Nya Dien House. Cut Nya Dien was an Indonesian woman revolutionist from Aceh. The house is a replica of the heroine Cut Nyak Dhien House, from the Aceh War. The colonial forces burned down the house but a replica was built later. This house in Lam Pisang, about 6 km from Banda Aceh and is now is a museum. The house is in Lampisang Village, Lhok Nga subdistrict, Greater Aceh district. Although Lhok Nga was the area worst hit by tsunami, the Tjut Nyak Dhien House survived. The daughter of a chieftain, Tjut Nyak Dhien joined the fight against the Dutch invaders in 1875. Her first husband fell in battle, and she remarried. When her second husband also died fighting, she continued the struggle with her children. After six years in the jungle, she was captured by the Dutch and exiled to West Java where she passed away in 1906. Tjut Nyak Dhien is recognised as one of the National Warriors of Indonesia. 
  • Gunongan and Taman Putroe Phang. Gunongan had erected by Sultan Iskandar Muda (1607-1636) as a private playground and bathing place for this wife Putro Phang (From Malaysia). This whimsical architectural fantasy had access to the sultan’s palace through the traditional ‘Pintu Aceh’, used by royalty only. This building likely functioned as an important recreational peace located in the Taman Sari Park for the Queen and other royal family members to climb. It is quite enjoyable to visit this place during the late afternoon or sunset. 
  • Graveyard in Bitay Village. In Bitay the grave of a saint, Teungku di Bitay, may still be seen. The tomb of Tuan di Bitay, who taught the Achehnese among other things the art of casting cannon, and the mosque which stands beside the grave are revered as sacred up to the present day. Aceh and Turkey had a close relationship in times past. Many technicians and weapons from the Turkish fleet came and settled in Aceh. Historical remains of this time include a mosque and a monument and headstone Turkish people in the village Bitai (~ 3 km from Banda Aceh). 

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Museum Aceh

  • The Museum Aceh, Sultan Alaidin Mahmud Syah St.. The museum exhibits ceramics, weapons and many cultural artifacts such as clothing, jewellery, calligraphy, Islamic ornamenation, kitchen equipment and many other items. A most interesting item is a big bell called “Lonceng Cakra Donya”, a gift from China Grand-Duke (Ming Emperor, in the 15th century) for Sultan Aceh that was delivered by a Chinese Moslem, Admiral Cheng Ho in 1414, an inscription on the bell reads; “Sing Fang Niat Toeng Juut Kat”. In this complex there is also ‘Rumah Aceh’ house that was built by Dutch Governor Van Swart in 1941 in a style typical of classic Aceh’s house architecture. To the west of the museum or north of Aceh House of Custom there is graveyard complex holding the remains of Aceh Sultans. 
  • Indonesian Airline Monument (Seulawah-Indonesian First Airplane). The monument was erected to commemorate the heroic contribution of the Acehnese to the emergence of the Republic of Indonesia. When Indonesia became independent in 1945 the Dutch intended to reoccupy the country. In the ensuing struggle in 1949 much area had fallen to the Dutch, the Republic of Indonesia was badly in need of an airplane to avoid the blockade of the enemy. Soekarno, Indonesian president at that time, urgently asked the Acehnese to donate money for an airplane. A Douglas DC-3 was purchased shortly afterwards, and paid for with the donation. This very early plane was the precursor of Garuda Indonesia fleet. 
  • Kerkhof (Dutch military graveyards of Banda Aceh), Teuku Umar St (the entrance gate is in front of the south eastern corner of Blang Padang). Kerkhoff or War Memorial Cemetery or known by local peoples as Peucut Kerkhoff, 2,000 Dutch soldiers who died in an Aceh War were buried in this graveyards. On the walls of the Kerkhoff entrance gate you may see the names list of the persons buried including details of where and when they died. 
  • Ulee Lheue-Banda Aceh (Tsunami Ground Zero). Ulee Lheue is a shore line facing the Malacca straits; when the tsunami hit Banda Aceh on 26 December 2004, the beach line and the village nearby were severely damaged and submerged by a 10 m high wave. Now the local government has built a new seaport at Ulee Lheue, and if you have plans to visit Sabang and Weh island, you can take a Ro-Ro ferry or speed boat from Ulee Lheue. Ulee Lheue beach has still kept its enchanting beauty, and almost every day people come to this place to enjoy the blue horizon of sky and sea, to see a beautiful sunset in the evening, or to enjoy the beach at night on the weekend. 
  • Aceh Culture & Tourism Agency, Jl. Tgk. Chik Kuta Karang No. 3 (There are two eateries in number 3-5. The tourism agency is inside the government building right across the street of these eateries.). Very friendly and helpful staff. They provide (free): a map of Banda Aceh and the region around Banda Aceh, a map of the Aceh-province, a very nice Aceh Guide Book (colorprint). These items are put in a small, really beautiful, shopping bag with pictures of Aceh on it. 

Tsunami tour

It is possible to go on a “Tsunami Tour” as there are many boats still inland and other monuments devoted to the devastating day in 2004.

  • Fisherman boat on an inhabitant house, Desa Lampulo, Kota Alam. 59 people were reportedly saved by boarding this small boat and riding it to safety. Very dramatic image indeed. free. 
  • Floating Electric Generator Ship, Kampung Bunge Blangcut, Jayabaru. A ship was carried 5 km inland during the tsunami. You can get a nice overview of the city from the top of the ship. 
  • Tsunami Monument & Garden. Located beside the electric generator ship. 
  • Apung 1 ship, a 2,600-ton vessel that was swept 2 km inland. Now it is a tourism attraction.

What to do in Banda Aceh

  • Mountain Biking Cycling Hiking, Jl Al Huda Blok B, No 2 (close to food court). Cycle around the mountains, rice fields and beaches near Banda Aceh. Hike and bike tours and mountain bikes available from Rp 50,000. 
  • Banda Aceh city highlights tour on a Bicycle., Jln Al Huda Blok B, No 2 (close to food court). A bike is a great way to explore both the long history of Banda Aceh as well as the impact of the 2004 Tsunami. Bicycles, maps and route descriptions are available at Aceh Adventure. 
  • Tour around on a Motorbike (A motorbike is an easy and adventurous way of exploring Aceh), Jl Mesjid Al Huda Blok B No 2 (close to food court). 24 hr. After the tsunami international donors and the Indonesian Government build plenty of excellent roads. The road along the west coast is of great beauty. Expect green hills and mountains and behind every corner an even more beautiful beach. Rp 100,000. 
  • Island dropping, Jl Mesjid Al Huda Blok B no 2. 09:00-17:00. The uninhabited island of Pulau Kreusik has a splendid, mosquito free white beach and is about 1 hour from Banda Aceh. The island has safe swimming. You can either make a day trip to the island or stay overnight. around Rp 800,000 (round-trip). 
  • Discover Aceh Divers Club, Jl Utama No. 1 Lamjamee. There are some nice diving spots around Banda Aceh such as Pulau Tuan, Pulau Bunta and Lhok Mata Ie with underwater fish and corals. If you are lucky you will see Manta rays. The price includes the boat from Banda Aceh. Certified divemasters will accompany you when diving. €25 per pax per dive, minimum 4 pax. 

Work

There are roughly 65 NGOs operating in Banda Aceh; however, they generally do not recruit non-Indonesians locally. These NGOs include various UN and EU agencies, USNS, Care, Americare, Islamic Relief, International Federation Of Red Cross and Red Crescent, Australian Red Cross, Turkish Red Crescent, Kuwaiti Red Crescent, French Red Cross, IMC, IOM, WHO, Japan International Cooperation System, Habitat, Medecins sans frontières, Japan Platform, USAID. AT the peak of the post-Tsunami aid effort there were 850 NGOs, but many of these were non-Muslim religious organisations and their permits were not extended by the Indonesian government.

Shopping in Banda Aceh

Markets

There are interesting fish, meat and vegetable markets in the centre of town. There are also some small souvenir shops selling various local items.

Mall

The recently opened Hermes Palace mall is located at the city centre of Banda Aceh. The mall has over 100 stores with foodcourt, supermarket and clothing stores.

Where to eat in Banda Aceh

The Acehnese breakfast staple is nasi gurih, rice cooked in coconut milk, sold in coffee shops everywhere. Food stalls and Padang restaurants are open across the undamaged part of town, and fruit carts are ubiquitous.

  • Canai Mamak KL Restaurant, Jl Teuku Umar No 51, Seutui. Malay Food, Halal Toyibah. 
  • Shidqi Cafe, Jl. Malikul Saleh, Lamlagang, (on the left side of the Red Crescent Hospital), . Naturalis Cafe.
  • PaceBene (Bene Restaurant), Jl Bhakti no 33A-B, Kampung Laksana. Best restaurant in town, not just for its fresh seafood, pasta and pizza, but also its great roof top garden. Dishes work from an Italian template, but with the best ingredients Banda Aceh has to offer. And watch out for when the salsa comes on, for the wait staff burst into spontaneous song. Also open weekdays for lunch. 
  • Imperial Kitchen, Jl Teuku Umar. High quality Chinese restaurant.
  • Country Steakhouse, Jl Sri Ratu Safiatuddin 46D. Steaks, hamburgers, salads; western style food.
  • Banda Seafood Restaurant, Jl Panglima Polem 125, (near the Kartika Hotel). Fine chicken, meat and vegetable dishes.
  • Big Top, (across the road from Warung Ibu Pocut). Chinese and Indonesian dishes.
  • Tower Coffee, (previously Putra Jaya), Jl Tgk Haji Abdullah Ujung Rimba No 14, (off Jl Muhammad near Masjid Baiturrahman). Panang style dining in nice A/C atmosphere with some English-speaking waiters.
  • Niagara Cafe, Jl Hasandek 8-9. Has every fruit juice imaginable and a satay stand outside.
  • Istana, Jl. T. Panglima Polem, No. 66-68. Two locations. Offers your typical Aceh fare in an A/C dining area. Careful ordering – they may serve and charge you two dishes. 
  • Hermes Palace (formerly Swiss-Belhotel). The restaurant here presumably offers the best hotel food in town and has nice dinner buffets as well as a la carte. 
  • Sultan Hotel, has a popular cafe, while the chef at the hotel’s Koetaradja Restaurant boldly tries his hand at a Sultan Burger.

There are some nice coffee houses with soothing rice paddie views around Ulee Kareng, along Jl Tengku Iskander on the town’s western outskirts.

Three fast food chain restaurants may be found in the centre, A&W, KFC and Pizza Hut.

Drink

Drinking alcohol is not allowed. Coffee-drinking is the main activity.

  • My Juice, Jl. Twk M. Daud Syan, No. 9-11. On what you might call “Auto Blvd”, this clean, friendly restaurant features some of the best juice combos around. Try the terung belanda fruit juice, which is only indigenous to Sumatra. 
  • Friends caffee, Jalan Kartini (from Hotel Medan, turn left, the first right, then first left, and walk into the Jl Kartini untul you see Friends caffee on your left hand site). from noon. Excellent expressos, latte, iced-lattes and great juices. 
  • Glee Cafe & Resto, Mataie Hillside Adventure & Water Park (Mataie – Keude bieng). 
  • Black and White rumoh kuphi, Jl. T. Umar No. 19 Banda Aceh. A cozy place to hang out with friends. You can find friendly faces although if you come solo. Coffee, local food including mie Aceh and various fresh juices. Free wifi is available. 

Aceh/ Where to stay in Banda Aceh

  • Hotel Lading, Jl Cut Meutia 19, Banda Aceh (next to Bank BRI). Check-in: 14:00, check-out: 13:00. A 5-min walk to the Baiturrahman Grand Mosque and Pasar Aceh market. With a nice view of the Aceh River. Close to several banks, restaurants, supermarket and internet cafe. Airport shuttle services also available. US $15-30. 
  • Hermes Palace Hotel (formerly known as the Swiss), Jl. T.Panglima Nyak Makam. IDD telephone, refrigerator, hair dryer, internet access and 32-channel TV, wake up call service, concierge, meeting room, business centre and 24-hr room service. From US $70. 
  • Hotel Sultan (in the centre). 2 star hotel, around US $30–40.
  • Pavilliun Seulawah, Jl. Prof. A. Majid. Ibrahim II No. 3, (in the centre,). Good hotel with a restaurant, WiFi is included. Next to a park with sports possibilities. Around US $50.
  • Oasis Hotel (just outside the centre). More cozy than the Swiss Bell and the rooms are just as nice, with WiFi in the lobby. Around US $75 per night.
  • Uncle’s Homestay, Jl Mujahidin No. 2A, Lambaro Skep. ☎+62 852 6028 4432 (mobile phone) or homestay ☎+62 821 6821 5200 or ☎+62 852 0673 5330. This place is not the same since “Uncle” (Abdul) passed away. Now his widow Yulia runs the place. A bit far away from town center, offers basic rooms (water in the toilet after request) Rp 90,000.
  • The Pade Hotel, Jl Soekarno Hatta 1. Check-in: 12 :00, check-out: 12:00. Boutique hotel in the town, Spacious and modern rooms, individual terrace, WiFi. Saturday night BBQ, Wednesday pasta party US $50-120. 
  • Hotel Wisata, Jl. Jend. A. Yani 19-21 (in the centre, next to Hotel Medan and Hotel Prapat). Clean basic rooms with fan, cold shower and Wi-Fi for Rp. 125.000. A room with A/C costs more (Rp. 175.000?). Hot water also possible (costs more). Night food stalls are right in front of the hotel. 

Stay safe in Banda Aceh

As with all travelling common sense and a good attitude is all you need to get along in this small city. However there are some points to keep in mind. Although Banda Aceh is nowadays safer than most European cities it is still best to not go out alone after 22:00. Because Sharia law is enforced, drinking alcohol is not permitted, although it is still possible. Infractions upon the locally perceived interpretations of Sharia law may result in arrest by the Sharia police with physical punishment and public ridicule imposed upon an offending Muslim. Muslim women should normally wear headscarves in public areas. Western-style swimsuits are not advisable except in Sabang. Pick-pocket activity is rare but do be aware and observant in crowded places.

Go next

  • Lhoknga and Lampuuk, beautiful beaches 17 km west of the city, great for surfing or just relaxing on the beach.
  • Sabang (Indonesia) is a neighbouring island, with the city of Sabang and some of Indonesia’s finest diving.

Former founder of Asiarooms.com and now reporting mainly on the Asia Pacific region and the global Coronavirus crises in countries such as Thailand, Germany & Switzerland. Born near Cologne but lived in Berlin during my early teenage years. A longterm resident of Bangkok, Udon Thani, Sakon Nakhon and Phuket. A great fan of Bali, Rhodes & Corfu. Now based on Mallorca, Spain.

Indonesia

Pontianak | Covid-19 Travel Restrictions | Lockdown | Coronavirus Outbreak

Pontianak is the capital of the Indonesian province of West Kalimantan, on the island of Borneo, and bisected by the Equator. The city is mostly populated by ethnic Chinese, Dayaks and Malays, as well as significant numbers of minorities such as Bugis and Javanese. Understand History of Pontianak The word pontianak — probably from bunting […]

Wolfgang Holzem

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Pontianak is the capital of the Indonesian province of West Kalimantan, on the island of Borneo, and bisected by the Equator. The city is mostly populated by ethnic Chinese, Dayaks and Malays, as well as significant numbers of minorities such as Bugis and Javanese.

Understand

History of Pontianak

The word pontianak — probably from bunting anak, “pregnant with child” — means the undead vampire of a woman who died while during childbirth. Disguised as a beautiful woman, the pontianak goes around murdering unwary men, harming pregnant woman and eating babies, but they can be controlled by plunging a nail into a hole in the back of their neck.

According to legend, when Abdurrahman Alqadrie’s group arrived in the uninhabited area of Pontianak, it was haunted by pontianaks/kuntilanaks, which deterred many of his companions by their scary voices at night. To sweep these ghosts away, Alqadrie ordered his men to fire their cannons to the forest which was believed to be their base. Afterwards, no more pontianak’s voice was ever heard.

In 1771, Abdurrahman Alqadrie cut down the forest which was at the crossing between Kapuas and Landak river, then settled there. He was awarded the title Sultan. Under his leadership, he succeeded in attracting many traders, most of them ethnic Malays, and some Dayaks from the upstream parts of the Kapuas River.

Following the civil war and widespread poverty in China at the end of the 19th century, many Chinese migrated to Indonesia, and some settled in Pontianak due to its strategic location for trading. This later added Chinese culture to the history of Pontianak. Chinese in Pontianak are mainly of Teochew, Hakka, and Cantonese descent.

In the early part of the 19th century, the Dutch occupied Pontianak and the rest of West Kalimantan’s cities as part of its colonial campaign. Pontianak was occupied to become a trading post in order to gain rich natural resources, mainly rubber and wood, from upstream Kapuas River. Resistance by both ethnic Malays and Dayaks continued sporadically and this forced the Dutch colonial armed forces to frequently request reinforcements from Batavia/Jakarta.

Dutch occupation ended in 1941 during World War II when Japanese Imperial forces overran Dutch bases from the north. These bases were not able to deploy sufficient numbers of soldiers in order to defend the strategic island of Java. During the Japanese occupation, tens of thousands of civilians and intellectuals were massacred, mainly those who refused to recognise the emperor of Japan.

When the Japanese retreated, the Dutch under the Allied Forces umbrella re-entered West Kalimantan. Their colonial government over Pontianak ended a few years later after a series of diplomatic missions and local resistance which also freed the other Indonesian territories at the same time.

People

You may find that Pontianakians of each ethnicity tend to live homogeneously. For example, areas along Jalan Gajahmada are overwhelmingly Chinese whereas Sungai Jawi in the suburb are settled mostly by ethnic Malays. Intermarriage is not common, especially between ethnic Chinese and the indigenous people (Dayaks, Malays, Javanese, Madurese, etc.) But that’s not to say these people like to fight against each other. Visit a restaurant somewhere in the middle of Pontianak and you might find both Chinese and Dayaks chatting hilariously with each other.

The locals of Pontianakians are mostly easygoing, at least compared to those of other metropolitan cities such as Jakarta and Surabaya. Their tone of speaking may not as soft as the Jogjanese, but if you try to blend yourself with them you will almost definitely be reciprocated.

Get in

By bus

Bus trip to Pontianak can be arranged from Kuching in neighboring Malaysia. A trip from Kuching to Pontianak or vice versa will last at least 8 hours which will pass the border area of Entikong. Some of the bus providers serving this route are Damri, SJS and Biaramas Express (www.mybus.com.my). The fares for the trip ranges from RM45 to RM75. Click Pontianak to Kuching for travel itinerary on this route. A bus trip to Brunei is also available. There is also a bus available from Pangkalan Bun. It takes around 14 hours and costs ~450,000 (2018/01).

By plane

  • x-0.150556109.4038891 Supadio Airport. There are very frequent flights from Jakarta’s Soekarno-Hatta International Airport operated by all major Indonesian airlines. In addition, there are flights from many other major Indonesian cities, including Bandung, Yogyakarta, Surabaya, Medan, and Batam, and the larger cities of Kalimantan such as Balikpapan and Banjarmasin. XpressAir operates international flights to Kuching, and AirAsia to Kuala Lumpur.

To get to or from the airport, DAMRI runs hourly bus service to the city centre for IDR35,000. The easiest spot to catch the bus in the city is at the DAMRI office at Jl. Pahlawan 232, Pontianak (phone +62 561 744859). For taxis, coupons at a fixed price of Rp70,000 are sold.

There are Damri Bus from Supadio Airport to Singkawang and Sambas for Rp 100,000/person.

By boat

While being the cheapest inter-island transportation mean, it is recommended only for travellers to board on a ship to Pontianak. Tourists would do better to fly instead. The tide in Java Sea is unstable, which may make you feel sick on board, if you are not used to high tide. A trip will spend 12-18 hours to/from Jakarta. Contact nearest travel agent to conduct your trip.

By car

Pontianak can be reached by car from Kuching in 6-8 hours, although the road is not in very good shape. See Pontianak to Kuching for a detailed itinerary.

Get around

The most convenient way to explore Pontianak is either by taxi or rented car. The entire Pontianak is integrated by road link, parts of which are not well maintained. There are also plenty of cheap (Rp2,000) public buses but sometimes it can be kind of adventure to use them since the buses are not well marked, drivers and most of the locals do not speak English and the orientation is difficult. Also there are boats crossing the river and this is in general the most convenient and the cheapest (Rp1,000) way to get in to the other side.

See

  • Kebun Binatang Pontianak (Pontianak Zoo), Jl. Adi Sucipto, a reconditioned zoo with a reasonable variety of animals from the jungles of Borneo and from some parts of Indonesia. Some of the collection, including some orangutans, were said to had been freed from illegal ownership by an Italian lumber mill owner.
  • Tugu Khatulistiwa (Equatorial Obelisk), built directly under the 0 degrees equator line. It is 11 km from the city centre and is comparably easily and quickly reachable by public buses (Rp2,000). There you can learn lots of interesting facts about the equator and to see how unique is Pontianak, one of the few cities in the world situated exactly on the equator line. There are friendly English-speaking staff and a sоuvenir shop, actually maybe the only one in Pontianak.

Do

  • Sungai Kapuas (Kapuas River) divides Pontianak into two different sides. Get a boat ride along the river about five or six o’clock local time and you will see amazing views along this river. The locals who live along this river taking a bath in this river during these hours throughout the year. A unique tradition that should not be missed.
  • During the end of the Muslim fasting month of Ramadan, there is a Meriam Karbit festival that is well worth visiting.

Buy

Equatorial souvenirs from the Equatorial Obelisk sоuvenir shop, as well as, cheap textile and many craftwork items as everywhere in Indonesia.

Eat

Pontianak is quite popular among domestic tourists due to its wide range of food with strong cultural touch, most notably the Chinese. There are plenty of eating options for the culinary adventurers, from street hawker food to local restaurant culinary to internationally franchised fast food.

  • Street hawker food, where you can taste the local delicacy such as Beef Rice Noodle & Beehoon (fried, with soup, dried), Seafood Noodle (with soup & dried), Nasi Goreng (fried rice with chicken, beef), Nasi Uduk, Kwe Kia Theng (Teochew phrase, rice noodle in soya sauce soup with pork and intestines (optional), Bakso (fish or beef ball soup), Sate (chicken or beef satay), Kari Peng (Teochew phrase meaning curry rice), Koi Peng (Teochew phrase literary “chicken rice”, but content also include pork, cucumber, etc. also known as “Nasi Campur” or mixed rice), Martabak, Kue Terang Bulan, Otak-otak, Pempek, Tui Jiu He (Teochew phrase literary “beaten cuttlefish”, dried cuttlefish are beaten until tender and flossy, woodfired until cooked, then served with belacan sauce, best to have it with friends and beer), Sio Bi (also known as Siomay, made of pork served in soya sauce with the options of chilli and mustard), Siomay Bandung (fish cake, beancurd, potato, vegetable, egg served in peanut sauce, with the option of chilli and tomato), He Mue/Bubur Ikan (fish porridge), and many more. These street hawkers are usually found from dusk until 10PM – midnight, depending or business, but some operated from dawn to dusk or midnight. They are usually clustered around busy commercial streets such as the CBD: Jalan (Jl.) Gajahmada, Jl. Hijas, Jl. Setia Budi, Jl. Agus Salim, Jl. Diponegoro, Jl. Patimura, Jl. Nusa Indah 1, Jl. Tanjung Pura, Jl Siam or around the suburban such as Jawi (Jl. Merdeka, Jl. Hassanudin, Jl. Wahid Hasyim), Kotabaru (Jl. St. Abdurrahman), Purnama, Siantan, Sungai Raya Dalam and Sungai Raya. Price per meal ranging from Rp5000 to about Rp25,000.
  • Satria Wangi Dining, Jl. Nusa Indah II No. 62. They have great local menu at very affordable price and average-English-speaking staff. The restaurant is centrally located. Its signature dishes such Ikan Gurame Terbang, Gulai Kepala Ikan, Ikan Jelawat Kukus, and have been featured and reviewed by many national TVs cooking show. 
  • Restoran Star, Jl. GajahMada. Pontianak cuisine 
  • Restoran Gajahmada, Jl. Gajahmada. Pontianak cuisine 
  • Restoran Hawaii, Jl. Nusa Indah 3. Pontianak cuisine 
  • Dangau, Jl. Arteri Supadio. Malay cuisine 
  • Italian Steak House, Jl. Nusa Indah 3. 
  • Sari Bento at Museum, Jl. Ahmad Yani. Japanese food 
  • Papyrus Restaurant at Gardenia Resort and Spa, Jl. A Yani (5 minutes from the airport). offers all-day dining with a selection of Asian, Western, and authentic Indonesian favourites. At open deck area, you can enjoy the views of the landscaped gardens while enjoying the chef’s specialities. 

Talk

Nearly all Pontians, regardless of their ethnicities, speak Bahasa Indonesia, albeit it is slightly mixed with Malay accent close to that of neighbouring Malaysia. Most ethnic Chinese people at the southern bank of Kapuas river speak Teochew, and those at the northern bank speak mostly Hakka (called Khek by locals). Mandarin is spoken mostly by those aged 30 years old or above, but don’t be surprised if they mix it with Hakka or Teochew dialect as it is not very commonly spoken in town. English is mostly spoken by also the young locals, but is usually not mastered beyond some basic knowledge despite many English courses, so it would be wise to know some phrases of Bahasa Indonesia. Hiring an English-speaking guide could smooth your travel a lot.

Stay safe in Pontianak

Pickpockets and motorcycle thefts are quite common in town. Exercise necessary caution even when being in a shopping mall. Be careful when travelling in a public bus (called oplet) as somebody could threaten you with a knife to hand over your valuables. (This safety note is from March 2009 and might be outdated)

Drink

Where to stay in Pontianak

If you arrive by Pelni ferry late at night then it’s better option to sleep aboard until morning as there is usually a long layover at Pontianak.

Budget

  • Hotel Wisma Patri, Pontianak. No air, no fan, no window and fairly mosquito-ridden with no insect spray available. Rp70,000. 
  • -0.0359109.334191 Ateng Guest House, Jl. Gajah Mada No. 201, Pontianak. Located in the centre of the city. All rooms are air conditioned and fairly clean. Breakfast included. Published rate is Rp130,000 single but compare price with Agoda. Travel agent is at the same location. Rp120,000 single. (updated Oct 2016)

Mid-range

  • Hotel Sentral, Jl H.O.S. Cokroaminoto no 232 (Ten minutes walk from drop off point for most Kuching buses, turn right at traffic light.). Check-in: 2PM, check-out: noon. Faded rooms. Staff friendly enough. All have AC and attached bathrooms. On a busy junction between two streets so window rooms will be slightly noisy, (but non window rooms are a bit musty). Travellers have reported overpricing and demands for security deposit from the staff here From Rp160,000. 

Splurge

  • Gardenia Resort and Spa, Jl. A Yani II. 
  • Hotel Sentral, Jl. H.O.S. Cokroaminoto 232. Commercial Hotel 
  • Hotel Gajahmada, Jl. Gajahmada. 
  • Hotel Grand Mahkota. 
  • Hotel Peony, Jl. Gajahmada. 
  • Hotel Kapuas Palace, Jl. Imam Bonjol. 
  • Hotel Kini, Jl. Nusa Indah 3. Double from Rp400,000. 
  • Hotel Mercure, Jl. A. Yani. 
  • Hotel Orchardz, Jl. Gajahmada. 
  • Hotel Santika, Jl. Diponegoro. National Chain Hotel 
  • Star Hotel, Jl. Gajah Mada 189. 

Telecommunications in Pontianak

Phone call

Most national GSM and CDMA operators have their signal towers spread throughout the entirety of Pontianak, meaning that there should not be too many problems communicating around the town and the tariffs are also reasonable, at least for tourists coming from the West. Shops selling SIM cards and their top-ups are also in abundance, even in the outskirts of town, just like in other cities in Indonesia. Fixed line phones are also available everywhere. There are also few phone stalls (Warung Telkom) offering you phone call with a reasonable fare.

Internet access

Internet cafe businesses are flourishing, but you’ll only find a few without distracting gamers like you might find in typical East Asian internet cafes. Don’t worry about the billing (that’s how the locals say). An hour of internet access will cost you Rp3,000-6,000. But don’t expect a speed-of-light one out of it, though. Many locals have internet access varying from snaily dial-up to ISDN (most notably Telkom Speedy) installed in their houses. GPRS and 3G access from your cellphone exists, but you will not necessarily find GPRS signal everywhere even in the middle of the city.

Consulates in Pontianak

  • Malaysia Malaysia Consulate, Jl. Sutan Syahrir No. 21.  

Go next

Pontianak is the gateway for travellers wishing to travel deeper inland. Singkawang, another one of the most Chinese-influenced town is reachable by taxi. Kuching, which lies in the Malaysian part of the island, offers some modernity you wouldn’t find in the Indonesian part.

If you want to explore the rest of Kalimantan there is a bus heading East to Pangkalan Bun which leaves the Interstate Bus Station at 07:00, costing around 450,000 Rupiah as of 2018/01. It is however a long journey, expect arrival in the late evening in Pangkalan Bun.

 

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Tomohon | Covid-19 Travel Restrictions | Lockdown | Coronavirus Outbreak

Tomohon is a city in Northern Sulawesi. It is the fourth-largest city in the province of North Sulawesi after Manado, Bitung, and Kotamobagu. Tomohon is south of Manado. Tomohon Districts Eruption of the Lokon-Empung volcano (2020) photographed from Tomohon North – Tinoor, Kinilow, Kakaskasen, Wailan, and Kayawu. The first region to be discovered in Tomohon […]

Wolfgang Holzem

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Tomohon is a city in Northern Sulawesi. It is the fourth-largest city in the province of North Sulawesi after Manado, Bitung, and Kotamobagu. Tomohon is south of Manado.

Tomohon Districts

  • Image of Destination Guide

    Eruption of the Lokon-Empung volcano (2020) photographed from Tomohon

    North – Tinoor, Kinilow, Kakaskasen, Wailan, and Kayawu. The first region to be discovered in Tomohon from Manado. There is mat production, fruit and flowers vendors in several parts such as in Tinoor for fruits and Kakaskasen for flowers.

  • Central – Talete, Kamasi, Kolongan, and Matani. Downtown of Tomohon, center of public activities, hospitals, and Mayor office and city hall.
  • West – Woloan and Tara-Tara. Traditional House (knockdown type) production, Woloan Ancient Park where Waruga, the ancient tombs are collected in one area, in the same area are 9 springs.
  • East – Paslaten, Rurukan, Kumelembuai. Vegetable Farms on the slope of Mt. Mahawu and Mt. Masarang, and the famous Tomohon Traditional Market.
  • South – Walian, Sarongsong, Pinaras, Lahendong. Hotspring areas, the outstanding Lake Linow is located in Lahendong.

Understand

Tomohon is an important town in Northern Sulawesi. It is young but holds an important role in tourism of the province. The panorama and nature of Tomohon are attractions for those who travel this far. It lies between two volcanoes, Mt. Mahawu and Mt. Lokon. The town is shaped like a starfish, with long tentacles visible from higher ground. Because of its position on the highland, Tomohon has a very mild climate, for which it is famous. The friendliness of its people is also well known in the region.

Most people in Tomohon are Christian. Christianity plays an important role in all aspects of life. The Christians are diligent churchgoers. Mostly are Calvinist Protestants, members of Gereja Masehi Injili di Minahasa (abbreviated as GMIM). Instead, the synod of the churches that spread over the Minahasa region is in Tomohon. Christianity has been developing in the area ever since the time of Dutch colonization. Every village in Tomohon has a church from this denomination. The oldest one is GMIM Pniel Kakaskasen 2.

Besides the Calvinists, there is also a Catholic congregation, which is the second biggest in Tomohon. Several parishes exist in Tomohon. The big ones are St. Fransiskus Xaverius in Kakaskasen and St. Joseph. In Kakaskasen, there is a Monastery called Biara Bukit Karmel or Karmel Monastery. There are also other congregations from other denominations such as Pentecostal, Adventist, and several minor denominations. Every village from north to south and east to west has luxurious churches (or at least luxe for its congregation). And also, one village would normally have more than one building according to the number of the denominations. That is one reason you will see a church every several hundred meters.

Holidays

  • Christian

During holiday times, the people will decorate their houses, the lanes, the streets and so on with special themes. For example, during Christmas and New Year Christmas ornaments can be easily found anywhere in town. In several corners and intersections or in front of the church, a big white candle would stand up illuminating the lightless surrounding or a big decorated Christmas tree. Christmas musics starts playing as soon as September. They normally say “the months end in ‘-ber’ are Christmas.” During 1st – 24th December, the smell of Christmas cookies usually fill the air. The standard Christmas cookies in Tomohon such as nastar, kastengels, rambutan, biji-biji, sultana, snow white, kacang koek, corn flakes, and so on. The names of Christmas cookies are varied too. Christmas season would normally end with together with New Year on January 31st. During December, there would always be celebration they called it pre-christmas. In one month, a person could attend more than 10 pre-Christmas celebrations, for example pre-Christmas of the office, of the church, of the neighborhood, the school, the relative, family, youth organization, woman organization, from NGO, Sunday schools and so on. All the celebrations will end in a certain day called “kuncikan”, literally means closing day.

  • Chinese’s Holiday

The Chinese in Tomohon also still maintain their tradition of celebrating Chinese New Year and the biggest festival is on the 15th day after New Year, called Cap Go Meh. There will be a procession of calling the spirits of the Chinese Gods or Goddesses to possess mortal human bodies and they will be carried on sedan chairs from the temple around downtown to bestow their blessings on its believers. In this procession, the possessed mortal will perform magical things such as piercing his own cheek with some solid and sharp stick without from one to the other side without any bleeding out, a sword carrier will hit his own back with a very sharp sword without injuring himself, the other will cut his own tongue without injuring himself as well. This procession usually attracts attention of the whole town.

  • Islamic Holiday

Islam believers, although, a few, but they still have number in Tomohon. There is a special community in Southern Tomohon, they lived in a village called Kampung Jawa, literally means Javanese Village. Idul Fitri and the Month of Ramadhan are also celebrated here. However, there is not special procession for the holidays like at the other cities in Indonesia but praying in the open field on the day of Idul Fitri.

Culture

Tomohon is one of Minahasa Tribe region. Therefore, the Tomohoners are Minahasans. However, Minahasa Tribe is divided into several sub tribes, Tomohon belongs to a sub tribe called Tombulu. Pakasaan Tombulu spreads from Tombuluan in the east of Pineleng and Tombariri in the west and from Tomohon in the south to Manado in the north. Pakasaan Tombulu speaks Tombulu Language, Manado Malay, and Bahasa Indonesia. It is believed that Tomohon is the center of Pakasaan Tombulu. Pakasaan Tombulu in Tomohon, especially those who live in the region of Kakaskasen have special customs that are still maintained up until today.

  • Bakerah Tradition

This is a tradition of steam bath to a woman in several weeks after giving birth to a child. This is a traditional body cleansing process. The process of bakerah will be started by a special woman who has ability to arrange the process. She will boil a pail of water and while in the process, she will also put several special herbs such as leaves of agati tree (sesbania grandiflora) or leaves of hummingbird tree, lemon grass (cymbopogon nardus), kajuputih oil, and several other herbs into the boiling water. After the water boils, she will prepare a bucket or pail and pour the water and the herbs inside the container. The new mother will be asked to sit on a special chair that the bucket is placed under. She will be sitting and having a steam bath for around one hour. She will repeat the process for 7 days in a row.

  • Mapalus

This is a tradition of working together on the farm. A long time ago when modern technology for cultivation was still a dream, people in the highlands of Minahasa, especially in Tomohon, created a system of working the land together, called mapalus. Mapalus is a group of male and female farmers who are associated in a system, bound on their own or by village regulations to cultivate their farm lands. The farmers usually were divided into a timer and the workers. The timer’s function is to watch the time while working, carry the drum and hit the drum or another instrument called a tetengkoren. The process starts at dawn, around 04:30, with the sound of the drum. As the timer hits the drums in a special pattern, the other members of the group come at the appointed time to a house of one member, the intersection, street corner or any other place where they are meeting. Then, guided by the drum carrier, they go to one member’s farm. They work as the sun rises. While working, the workers usually sing songs, either together or responsorily.

  • Kumawus

This is a first or second Sunday of mourn after funeral. Kumawus derives from kawus means finish. I kawus ola, means just finish it, which means the mourn shall be finished. Kumawus means an activity to finish the mourning and all things or issues regarding to the late person. The other point also is that the left family will not have any more customs debt of those who have gone. Also with kumawus, the family was relieved, comforted and strengthened through meetings, fellowship with even more devotions.

The name of this activity at first was ‘muntep remdem’ or ‘Maso Itang’ the meaning ‘enter in black’. The point is the family by wearing black clothing entered the worship in the church at 09.00. Another custom in Kumawus is the people will eat on the table covered with banana leaves by hands.

Get in

By plane

Tomohon is reachable from any place in Indonesia. The nearest airport is in Manado about 33 km and can be reach in 1 hour via Ring road or 1,5 hour via Manado. There are many airlines destination in this airport are from Jakarta, Makassar, Bali, Gorontalo, Tahuna, Ternate, Sorong, Singapore, Balikpapan and several other minor cities. The airlines with route to Sam Ratulangi airport are Garuda Indonesia, Silk Air, Lion Air, Batavia Air, Sriwijawa Air, Merpati Air, Wings Air, and several chartered air lines.

Travel by ship/cruise to Tomohon

Tomohon is also reachable by ship and the nearest harbor is Manado harbor for provincial area, and Bitung Harbor national and international service. There are several ship route by PELNI harboring at Bitung Harbor.

SHIP ROUTE

1. KM. DOBONSOLO

MAKASSAR (South Sulawesi) – BAUBAU (South East Sulawesi) – BITUNG (North Sulawesi) – SORONG (Irian Jaya) – MANOKWARI (PAPUA) – JAYAPURA (PAPUA)

2. KM. LAMBELU

MAKASSAR (South Sulawesi) – BAUBAU (Buton Island, S.E Sulawesi) – AMBON (Maluku) – NAMLEA (Maluku) – TERNATE N.Maluku) – BITUNG (North Sulawesi)

3. KM. DOROLONDA

BALIKPAPAN (East Kalimantan) – PANTOLAN (Central Sulawesi) – BITUNG (North Sulawesi) – TERNATE (North Maluku) – SORONG (Irian Jaya) – MONOKOWARI (West Papua) – NABIRE (West Papua) – SERUI (West Papua) – JAYAPURA (West Papua)

4. KM. TILONGKABILA

BENOA (Bali) – LEMBAR (Lombok, West Nusa Tenggara) – BIMA (West Nusa Tenggara) – LABUAN BAJO (Flores, East Nusa Tenggara – MAKASSAR (South Sulawesi) – BAUBAU (Buton Island, S.E Sulawesi) – RAHA (Muna Island, S.E Sulawesi) – BITUNG (North Sulawesi)

By car

  • Bus

Tomohon is reachable also by BUS or Car from cities in Sulawesi or Celebes Island such as Makassar, Pare-Pare, Tana Toraja, Poso, Tentena, Palu, Toli-Toli, Ampana, Gorontalo, Bitung, Kotamobagu, Manado and other minor cities.

Bus Terminals to Tomohon is from Tondano, Kawangkoan, and Manado and destined to Terminal Beriman, Tomohon.

  • Rental Car

Get a rental car direct from the airport on arrival. Cost around Rp. 500,000 per day Included Driver, or Self Drive approximately Rp.300,000.- per day, can be used for around minahasa. For Central Information tel +62 852-4022-0620 or +62 431-892-979

  • Bluebird Taxi (Bluebird) (Manado to Tomohon, Airport to Tomohon and other areas). Rp.100.000. 
  • Mikrolet Tomohon Tondano (AB), Terminal Tondano (Tondano-Tomohon-Tondano). 06.00-20.00. Rp. 4.000,-. 
  • Mikrolet Tomohon Sonder (AC), Terminal Sonder (Sonder-Tomohon-Sonder). 07.00-19.00. Rp. 3.500,-. 
  • Mikrolet Tomohon Tanawangko (AF), Terminal Tanawangko (Tanawangko-Tomohon-Tanawangko). 07.00-15.00. Rp.6.000,-. 
  • Bus Tomohon Manado, Terminal Karombasan, Manado – Terminal Beriman Tomohon (Manado-Tomohon-Manado). 05.00-20.00. Rp. 6.000. 

Get around

In Town

  • By mikrolet

There are several ways to get around Tomohon area. The first one is by Mikrolet. Mikrolet is the light blue Mitsubishi Colts and can be found everywhere with various destinations. They operate on set routes with established fares but also can be chartered when it is empty. The passenger seats in a Mikrolet face forward with maximum 9 passengers. Some mikrolets are fully furnished with a small LCD TV, CD Player or music player, comfortable seats and so on. All regular routes begin and end in the main terminal called Terminal Beriman.

  • By cart

Bendi is a local name for horse cart and can be a second option to go around Tomohon. Just like Mikrolet, Bendi also operates on set limited routes. Only from downtown to Areas such as Matani, Walian, Kamasi, and Kolongan. This bendi is the old transportation along with cow cart called Roda Sapi. While bendi served for public transportation in town, roda sapi served the route to the farm or rice fields. Nowadays, the fare for a trip by Bendi is Rp. 5.000 per person (as of Oct 2018) and can be chartered up into 4 hours to go around downtown Tomohon.

  • By ojek

Ojek is an Indonesian term for Public Motorbike. The fares are various depend on the distance of a particular destination but it usually starts from Rp. 3.000 until Rp. 20.000. This Ojek can also be chartered daily. The chartered fare is around Rp. 50.000 / per day without Fuel. By ojek, we can reach the places unreachable by Mikrolet or Bendi, even by Rental cars.

  • By taxi

Daily in front of Bethesda Hospital, at downtown, you can find many cars lining up. They are called black taxi or Rental Cars. The cars can be hired daily, weekly, monthly and even annually. The rate is various between Rp. 250.000,- up to Rp. 500.000/day. The service can be include driver and fuel or without them as well.

Out of Town

You also can reach other destination in Main Land of North Sulawesi from Tomohon.

  • To Tangkoko National Park, in Bitung (Via Tondano or Manado), ✉ info@flowerslane.com. Starts from 8AM. Tangkoko National Park is reachable from Tomohon also. It is two hours driving by rental car. You can ask the service from hotel but also from the address mentioned in the listing. €35 – €40/day (max 8 hours). 
  • Lake Tondano, Rental Car Service | Kakaskasen – Tomohon Utara (Via Kawangkoan and Langowan). Lake Tondano is more or less 15 km from Tomohon. To reach the lake, someone can hire a motorbike starting from Rp. 50.000 – Rp. 75.000 a day, or chartered a Mikrolet about Rp. 125.000 – Rp. 150.000 a day, or if preferred extra privacy and comfortable someone can rent a car for Rp. Rp. 250.000 – Rp.350.000 a day. You can call the phone number above or send text message for more information. 
  • Mt. Soputan (Gunung Soputan), Tombatu (Via Langowan), ✉ info@flowerslane.com. Start from 8AM. Mt. Soputan is also reachable from Tomohon, it is about 2 hours of driving to the southern area of Minahasa. If you are interested to go to Mt. Soputan you have to plan the trip very carefully. It is better to hire a guide who know the area very well. Mt. Soputan is one of the most active volcano in the region, even in Indonesia. € 50 per pax. 
  • Bentenan Beach. 
  • Nimanga River. 
  • Bukit Kasih (Hill of Love), in Kawangkoan. 
  • Batu Pinabetengan. 

See

As a cool highland, Tomohon has some very pleasant hiking and walking.

  • Lake Linow (Danau Linow)
  • Mt. Mahawu (Gunung Mahawu)
  • Mt. Lokon
  • Mt. Masarang
  • Tomohon Market (Pasar Beriman): Comprises of the Traditional Market, Fresh Market Extreme Market (this is where they sell various exotic meat such as dogs, bats, snakes). It is called “extreme” for a reason. If customer buys an animal alive, it will get slaughtered on the spot. Not for the faint-hearted. Come in the morning before 8am if you want to see the Extreme Market. It gets quiet after 10am.
  • Tintingon Hill
  • Tumimperas Waterfall
  • Wawo Hill
  • Knockdown House Industry
  • Ancient Site and Amphitheater Woloan
  • Tinoor View Point and Tinoor Waterfall
  • Inspiration Hill (Bukit Inspirasi)
  • Temboan Hill, Rurukan
  • Geothermal Lahendong
  • Palm Sugar Industry
  • Pagoda and Buddhayana Temple
  • Sony Art Gallery (Painting Gallery)

Do

  • Bukit Doa Mahawu (Jalan Salib Mahawu), Jl. Lingkar Timur, Kakaskasen Dua. A quiet area made for Christian pilgrim. It has ‘Via Dolorosa’ at Mahawu (Jalan Salib Mahawu) to remember the sacrifice of Jesus until He died on the cross. . Inside the area is a Chapel of Virgin Mary, amphitheater Mahawu and man made grotto. All welcome Rp.2500 per person. (updated Oct 2018)
  • Buddhayana Monastery, Sunge, Kakaskasen tiga. a Buddhist religious and meditation complex. Chinese culture preserved in architecture of statues, Kwan Im goddess palace and pagoda. Religious service every Sunday 15.30. Free. 
  • 1.339082124.8351231 Sightseeing Around Tomohon, Flowers Lane Vacation | Jl. Kel. Tangkawarow No. 2 Kakaskasen. 08.00. When you stays in one of the resorts in Tomohon, having nothing to do, one of the option is go around Tomohon. FLV can arrange your sightseeing trip. starts from USD 30 / per pax. 
  • 1.339082124.8351232 Bird Watching, Flowers Lane Vacation (Jl. Kel. Tangkawarow. No. 2 Kakakaskasen). 05.00 – finish. There are several and special as well as incredible birds can be found in Mt. Mahawu and Mt. Lokon in Tomohon as well as the other part of North Sulawesi such as Rufus Bellied Eagle; Brown Cuckoo Dove; Mountain White Eye; Dark Fronted White Eye; Scarlet Honey-eater; Crimson Crowned Flowerpecker; Sulawesi Spotted Goshawk; Sulawesi Serpent Eagle; Bay Coucal; Yellow Bellied Malkoha; Superb Fruit Dove; Citrine Flycatcher; Streaky Headed White Eye; Grey Sided Flowerpecker; Island Verditer; Sulawesi Dwarf Woodpecker; Mountain Tailorbird; White Browed Crake; Cinnamon Bittern; Scaly Breasted Munia; Cinnamon Munia; Little Egret; Wandering Whistling Duck; Ziting Cisticola; Lesser Coucal; Glamorous Reed Warbler; Javan Pond Heron; Black Kite; Bhraminy Kite; Blue Breasted Quail. Start from USD 30 / person. 
  • 1.339082124.8351233 Horse Riding, Flowers Lane Vacation (Jl. Kel. Tangkawarow. No. 2 Kakakaskasen). 9AM – 2PM. There is a very interesting activity can be done in Tomohon, Horse Riding. The 4 hours trip is to Wawo hill. Start from US$40. 

Buy

  • 1.325153124.8378011 Grand Central Supermarket, Jl. Raya Tomohon. 9 AM – 9 PM. The first supermarket in Tomohon, very close to Bethesda Hospital. Selling many kinds of daily needs as well as fashion, computer, multimedia and so on. (updated Mar 2018)
  • Cool Supermarket, Jl. Raya Tomohon, Walian – Tomohon Selatan. 9AM – 9PM. Very nice Supermarket in Southern Tomohon. Selling many kinds of daily needs such as vegetables, herbs, fruits and the other stuffs as well as fashion, books, mechanical tools. 
  • Century Supermarket, Jl. Raya Tomohon. 
  • 1.315055124.8385042 Multi Mart Tomohon. a popular supermarket chain with restaurants and arcade on the upper floor. (updated Oct 2018)
  • 1.326618124.8455013 Pasar Beriman Tomohon (Tomohon Market), Pasar Tomohon (besides the Bus Station). 05.00 AM – 02.00 PM. Sell various kinds of vegetables, meat, spices, herbs, fish, meats, fruits, flowers, clothes. Comprises of the Fresh Market, Traditional Market, and Extreme Market (where they sell various exotic meat such as dogs, bats, snakes) (updated Mar 2018)
  • Gecko Art, Jl. Raya Tomohon, Kinilow (near by the intersection to Onong Palace and Highland Resort). 09.00 AM – 05.00 PM. This is one of the souvenir shops in Tomohon. Various kinds of souvenirs are displayed in this small shops. Travelers can choose according to their preferences. Rp. 20.000 + / Items. 
  • BLPT Kaaten, Jl. Raya Tomohon Tondano, Kaaten (Beside the road to Tondano). 9AM – 3PM. Locates in Kaaten, Matani 1 – Central Tomohon, BLPT is a coconut wood and arenga palm production. They make various kinds of furniture such as tables, chairs, desk, cupboards, beds and small items like toys, and also knockdown houses from coconut wood. Rp. 20.000 – Rp. 500 million / Item. 

Eat

Tomohon is very famous for Minahasan cuisine. Minahasan food or Manadonese food is usually very spicy. Among Indonesian Cuisine, Minahasan Cuisine is one of the spiciest cuisines. Traveler must pay attention to what they are asking in the restaurant. If you are not accustomed to spicy food, you will have to communicate with the waiter or waitress.

Check out the Tomohon Culinary Center (Pusat Kuliner Tomohon) at Jalan Nusantara, about 12 minutes’ walk away from the Tomohon Market.

Cuisine

Appetizer

  • Sup Ubi / Bete – is a very tasty home-cooking for appetizer. It’s made by Xanthosoma root with edible hibiscus leaves and or Water Spinach leaves.
  • Braunebonen – literally red bean soup. Cooked either with cow bones or pig legs with herbs such as clove, nutmeg, white pepper. The minahasan likes to eat this together with rice.
  • Sup Kacang Ijo – literally green bean soup. The preparation is very similar with braunebonen.
  • Kua Asam / Kua trang – Sour soup or Clear Soup. The local people has a riddle about this food. “Salt from the sea and Sour from the Mountains meets together in a pan, what is that?” – and the answer is Sour Soup, because it’s made by several herbs such as spring onion, lemon leaves, lemon basil, tomatoes, a little bit chilli, red ginger and fish with little bit salt and lime. Very tasty.
  • Sup kentangPotato Soup cooked in Pasta such as macaroni or rice vermicelli.

Main Course

  • Tinorangsak, pork cooked with herbs such as spring onion, lemon leaves, lemon grass, chilli, and other kinds of herbs; it is cooked in bamboo. Several prepare it using frying pan.
  • RW /err weh/, dog meat cooked with chilli, lemon grass, lemon leaves, spring onion and other kinds of herbs. “RW” stands for “Rintek Wu’uk” in the Minahasan dialect, which translates to “fine hair”, a euphemism for dog meat.
  • Paniki, bat cooked in coconut milk with spicy herbs.
  • Paku Popaya Bulu, Vegetables of Edible Fern and Papaya leaves (sometimes with flowers too), cooked in bamboo with spices and herbs. Some people likes to add the salty pork fat.
  • Ayam Bulu, Chicken cooked in bamboo.
  • Ayam Bumbu RW, Chicken cooked with spices for RW.
  • Bebek Bumbu RW, Duck cooked with spices for RW.
  • Ragey, a chunky pork satay marinated with spices.
  • Bebek Bulu, Duck cooked in bamboo.
  • Ayam Garo, literally means scratching chicken, because the preparation is a fast mixing of the herbs and spices on the frying pan similar to scratching it. This food is categorized to spicy food because of the amount of chilli.
  • Babi Garo, literally means scratching pork, the process is similar to Ayam Garo.
  • Babi Tore, literally means crisp pork.
  • Kapala Babi, literally means Pig Head. It is pig head boiled in spiced soup.
  • Acar, made of young bamboo, carrots, cucumber, peanut, herbs and other spices such as turmeric and onion.
  • Ikan Woku Blanga, any fish cooked in Main Minahasan Spices: chilli, turmeric, ginger, lemon grass, lemon leaves, lime, candle nut, lemon basil, turmeric leaf. It’s called blanga because it’s prepared by using frying pan.
  • Ikan Woku Daong, any fish cooked in Main Minahasan Spices: chilli, turmeric, ginger, lemon grass, lemon leaves, lime, candle nut, lemon basil, turmeric leaf. It’s called daong because it’s prepared by using palm leaves called woka.
  • Ikan Woku Kring, any fish cooked in Main Minahasan Spices: chilli, turmeric, ginger, lemon grass, lemon leaves, lime, candle nut, lemon basil, turmeric leaf. It’s called kring because it’s prepared with less of water and when it’s cooked, we can barely see any soup in it.
  • Rica Rodo, made of corn, aubergine (egg plant), long bean with spicy herbs, chilli, and smoked fish.
  • Sayor Pusu’ made of fluorescent or banana heart, cooked with entrails of animals, normally chicken or pork, such as intestine, heart, and liver.

and so on.

Dessert

  • Buah segar – literally fresh fruit, it is prepared from various kind of fruits but mainly papaya, apple, avocado, pudding or gel, young coconut, rambutan, longan, and soursop in syrupy and milky water.
  • es braunebon – red bean ice, prepared from red bean cooked in traditional made of palm sugar and then later mixed with blended ice and sweetened condensed milk.
  • Es Kacang Susu – Milk and Peanut Ice, prepared from peanut and served like red bean ice.
  • Gohu – prepared from chopping papaya with spicy syrup containing red ginger, chilli, vinegar (palm vinegar is better), sugar (brown sugar is better), onion. The local likes to add more chilli.
  • Klapertaart – literally coconut tart, prepared from young coconut mixed with milk, eggs, maize flavor, sugar and raisin and frozen in the fridge.

Minahasan Cookies

  • Kukis Kalapa, literally means Coconut Cookie, made of unripe coconut, rice flavor and brown sugar.
  • Binyolos, made of sweet potato and brown sugar.
  • Onde-Onde, made of rice flavor and brown sugar, after cooked it is rolled on grated coconut. It is good to have it while it’s still warm but be careful not to eat it while it’s still fresh from the boiling pan. It can be very tricky that the outside could be cool while the inside is killing hot. The other variant is Onde-Onde Pulo, the difference between this two are the type of the rice. Onde-onde Pulo is made by sticky rice flavor.
  • Cucur, made of rice flavor and brown sugar, some people put anise or aniseed.

Curut, Apang, Apang Coe, Apang Polote, Nasi Jaha, Dodol, Bobengka, Ongol-Ongol, Geto’, Gabin Fla, Biapong, etc.

Restaurants

  • 1.317759124.8382821 Gloria. The best pig ribs in town. A full meal of white rice, 3 pig ribs (costellata), braunebonen (red beans) soup and vegetable only cost Rp 15.000 (US$ 1.5) 
  • 1.304904124.8325212 Kobong Cafe, Jl. Raya Tomohon. 
  • 1.325047124.8384483 Kit Sang Restaurant, Jl. Raya Tomohon. 
  • 1.330249124.8391084 Restaurant Sineleyan, Jl. Raya Tomohon. 
  • Risoma Restaruant (Restoran Risoma), Jl. Raya Tomohon – Manado, Tinoor (On the way to Manado). 11AM – 9PM. The best Minahasan Cuisine. It locates out of town and unfortunately the restaurant is hard to achieve just by microlet service. The menu includes Pangi, Acar, Tinorangsak (pork cooked in Bambu), RW (dogmeat), Paniki (Fruit Bat meat), Braunebonen (Red bean soup), Sayor pait (bitter vegetable) and many more. Rp. 20.000 / Person. 
  • 1.38573124.8337815 Heng Mien Restaurant (Restoran Heng Mien), Jl. Raya Tomohon Manado, Tinoor (On the way to Manado). 10AM – 10PM. The famous Minahasan Cuisine Restaurant in town. Unfortunaley, this restaurant also locates out of town on the road to Manado. The menu are almost all the famous of the Minahasan cuisine such as RW, Paniki, Pangi, Sayor Pait, Acar, and so on. To get here, you can charter a mikrolet the fare starts from Rp. 75.000 per trip, or ask the hotel to arrange the Dinner here. Rp. 20.000 / Person. (updated Mar 2018)

Drink

Cap Tikus and Saguer are two kinds of famous drink in Tomohon. Cap Tikus is distilled beverage from Zap. While Saguer is the Zap harvested from palm tree. Saguer has several tastes that are sweet, sour, bitter, sweet and sour, sweet and bitter, bitter and sour, all the tastes comes out depend on the technique of the farmers harvesting the zap.

There is also a certain kind of drink called Sukur, made of red ginger cooked with traditionally made of brown sugar in a clay pot. This drink is very good for health. Often time used when somebody get cold or cough.

Where to stay in Tomohon

  • Gardenia Country Inn Tomohon. About 30 minutes from downtown Manado, this countryside inn has bungalows, chalets, and standard rooms. Rates start at $88 for a single bed in the chalet, including free breakfast, welcome drink, a fruit basket, mineral water, tea and coffee in your room, afternoon tea and coffee with traditional snacks, and free Wi-Fi. It has a garden with fishponds, tropical flowers and plants, along with unique birds and butterflies give it the feel of an environmental sanctuary. In another part of the garden, you will find different organic crops like lettuce, tomatoes, cucumber, carrot, tropical exotic fruits, and local herbs like basil, chilies, lemongrass, ginger, turmeric and so on which is used by the kitchen there. 
  • 1.368756124.8335321 Highland Resort Tomohon (Highland Resort and Spa), Kinilow Jaga VI, ✉ mail@highlandresort.info. Check-in: 12.00, check-out: 14.00. Right outside of town and a 400-meter walk from the main road. There are five types of rooms: Standard, Superior, Deluxe, Highland Suite and Highland Grand Suite. All have private bathrooms with hot and cold water showers. Other amenities that are provided for your comfort in all our rooms are satellite TVs and large, comfortable beds. Free Internet. Tour arrangement from highland tour to volcano trekking and whitewater rafting. From IDR 340,000. 
  • Mountain View Homestay, Jl. Raya Tomohon, Walian Tomohon Selatan (In front of Cool Supermarket). It locates fifteen minutes ride on a public Microlet from Terminal Beriman Tomohon, and in front of Cool Supermarket. The homestay or inn have hot and cold shower. Mobile contact +62 81340363553 Rp.100.000 – Rp.175.000. 
  • Onong Palace, Kinilow. A ten minute walk from the Highland Resort. The bungalows are spaced further apart from each other than the Highland Resort and are also quite new. 250,000 Rp. per night (updated Mar 2018)
  • Volcano Resort. Five minute ride on a public mikrolet from the Terminal, and a 5 minute walk off the main street. Or you can charter a mikrolet for about 15,000 Rp. Wooden bungalows with attached cold showers cost 200,000 Rp per night. Economy double rooms are 100,000Rp. Includes breakfast. 100,000-200,000. 
  • 1.3699124.83432 Mountain View Resort & Spa (Mountain View Resort & Resto), Jalan Kali-Kinilow, Lingkungan VI, Tomohon Utara 95362 (from Manado 30 minutes by car), ✉ resortmountainview@yahoo.com. Check-in: 13.00, check-out: 12.00. This mountain resort features 12 traditional bungalows: double and twin bed, bathroom with western toilet, hot water shower and terrace. Flat screen television, free WiFi and mineral water. Own Spa with several wellness treatments. The restaurant serves specialties from the Minahasa Highland as well as Indonesian, Chinese and western dishes. Try the home made Mountain View Grog. They offer an early bird breakfast if you have a morning flight to your next destination. The resort is run by German management and offers a wide range of tours into the area as well as rafting and kayaking trips, caving, volcano trekking, waterfall tours, horseback riding, mountain biking, birding, cooking classes. .. From Rp. 375.000. (updated Mar 2015)

Go next

There are daily flight from Manado to several cities in Indonesia, and several days a week of Silk Air from Singapore. And Tomohon is only 33 km from the Sam Ratulangi International Airport, if you need a flight 1.5 hour from the check in time is the best time to go.

  • Manado
  • Terminal Malalayang to go to Gorontalo, Palu, Poso, Makassar. Manado harbor to Bunaken, Siladen, Sangihe, Talaud.
  • Sam Ratulangi International Airport to Jakarta, Bali, Makassar, Singapore, Balikpapan, Raja Ampat, Ternate
  • Bitung Via Tondano or Manado and to Bitung Harbor and Lembeh Island
  • Bitung Harbo for travel by ship to Eastern Indonesia such as Maluku and Papua, also to Central Sulawesi and South East Sulawesi
  • Tangkoko National Park
  • Pulisan

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Indonesia

Banjarmasin | Covid-19 Travel Restrictions | Lockdown | Coronavirus Outbreak

Banjarmasin is the largest city in South Kalimantan. The city population was 625,395 at the 2010 census. Average temperatures vary from 24ºC to 32ºC. The weather is mostly hot and it still has rain even if it is hot season. Introduction to Banjarmasin The official founding date of the city is 24 September 1526, but […]

Wolfgang Holzem

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Banjarmasin is the largest city in South Kalimantan. The city population was 625,395 at the 2010 census. Average temperatures vary from 24ºC to 32ºC. The weather is mostly hot and it still has rain even if it is hot season.

Introduction to Banjarmasin

The official founding date of the city is 24 September 1526, but its history is older than that. From the time of the ancient kingdom of Nan Serunai, to the Buddhist kingdom of Tanjungpuri and the Hindu kingdom Negara Dipa and its succesor Negara Daha, the rivers of Southern Kalimantan were always been the favorite spot of the Malay people. That’s why Banjarmasin old name was “Bandar Masih”, meaning the port of the Malay in Dayak Bukit dialect. In the chaotic time of civil war between the rightful heir of Negara Daha, Pangeran Samudera, and his uncle, Pangeran Samudera was forced to flee for his life. At this time, Bandar Masih received him warmly, stopped paying taxes to his uncle and support Pangeran Samudera’s fight to get his throne back. When his uncle finally surrendered, Pangeran Samudera decided to make Bandar Masih his new capital, converted to Islam, and begun his rule over the new Islamic Kingdom of Banjar. His day of victory was then celebrated as Banjarmasin’s birthday.

The name “Bandar Masih” slowly changed into “Banjarmasin” as the water tastes salty when in dry season (salty is “masin” in Banjarese language). The Kingdom flourished and back in its golden era, its power enveloped almost all of the area of what is now Indonesia’s part of Kalimantan. After the fierce Banjar War which produced a lot of highly-revered local heroes such as Pangeran Antasari, however, it was forced to surrender the colonial Dutch, following the total destruction of the palace ground and the capture of the last Banjarese Princess (Ratu Zaleha).

Banjarmasin continued to be the capital of Dutch Borneo throughout the colonial era. Even after the forming of the Indonesian Government, Banjarmasin was the former capital of Kalimantan province until it was divided into 4 provinces (West, East, Central and South), then it became the capital of South Kalimantan. Little is left of its previous glory, but Banjarmasin silently kept her forgotten charm in unexpected places for the persistent travellers to find.

Get in

Fly to Banjarmasin

  • x-3.442222114.76251 Syamsudin Noor International Airport (26 km from the city, about half an hour drive). There are daily flights from major Indonesian cities including Jakarta and Surabaya, as well as flights from most other cities in Kalimantan, such as Pontianak and Balikpapan. To go to the city, you can take a taxi (with fixed rate of Rp120,000 as of March 2016) or better yet, tell your hotel to pick you up. Or, if you walk about 2 minutes to the street outside of the airport, you should be able to share a mini-van which costs Rp15,000 to go to kilometre 6 terminal. 

Travel to Banjarmasin by car

The roads of Trans-Kalimantan are in bad condition, but if you’re patient and adventurous you can try to reach Banjarmasin from the neighbouring provinces of Central Kalimantan and East Kalimantan by car.

Travel by ship/cruise to Banjarmasin

Another alternative to get to Banjarmasin is by ship from various places in Indonesia to Banjarmasin’s main harbour, Trisakti. Be forewarned that the condition of passenger ship transportation in Indonesia is poor, albeit cheap, and you might want to consider that before spending the night (at least 1 night if you come from Java). You best bet is Express Ferry where it’s available, 8 hours from Java, and 2 days + 2 nights of sea trip from Jakarta Tanjung Priuk Harbor Passenger Terminal. Plus, there are ferries from Semerang and Surabaya, both on Java. There’s a ferry every 2 days between Surabaya and Banjarmasin.

The ferry between Surabaya and Banjarmasin is 21 hours. If you have a problem with cigarette smoke, this is not a good method of travel. Smoking is permitted in the sleeping area. There are no cabins. Women travelling alone will receive a considerable amount of male attention. The food is not good.

Travel by boat to Banjarmasin

Alternatively, if you are coming from the neighbouring provinces of East Kalimantan and Central Kalimantan, there are a lot of boat transportations through the rivers of Kalimantan. This could be an adventurous or boring ride depending on your taste. A range of boats are available, from slow moving boats to speedboats. It’s a great choice if you are extremely adaptable with the locals’ way of life.

Get around

Your best bet would be the metered taxi, insist the driver to use the meter if you have to. Alternatively, you can use “angkot” or “bamikro” or public shuttle microbuses (Rp5,000 per passenger), which are also called “taxi” by the locals. Also available is by “ojek” (motorcity taxi) and “becak” (tricycle rickshaw), that cost around USD2.00-2.50 or Rp15,000 – 20,000 for inner city trips. There are some really old orange-colored “bajaj’ (auto rickshaw) on the city streets as well.

Another options is to hire a motor bike. Amelindo Bike Rent offers motorbikes from Rp75,000/day. And for a Rp40,000 service fee, they will bring the motorbike to or pick it from a given address.

With the arrival of “online taxi” transportation services like GoJek/GoCar, and Grab, visitors and locals alike can now get around the town at a much cheaper rate by downloading and using the associated mobile applications. A ride across town in a new car can be as cheap as Rp20,00-25,000. More traditional taxis are comparatively expensive in Banjarmasin (often charging a minimum fee of Rp50,000, even for a ride as short as crossing the street). Make sure you use Indonesian phone number! Good luck.

Sightseeing in Banjarmasin

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Banjarmasin

Architectural heritage

Banjarese, the name of South Kalimantan’s ethnicity, have a unique way of building their houses and other structures in harmony with nature. There are at least 12 types of traditional Banjarese houses, which have unfortunately lost their popularity in modern times. Still, you can see a few houses that were built with traditional techniques all over Banjarmasin if you really search for them. The palace ground was totally destroyed by the colonial Dutch, but you can still visit its remnants in Kampung Kraton, along Jalan Pangeran Samudera. There, you can see Masjid Sultan Suriansyah. Built during Pangeran Samudera’s rule, it is the first Mosque in South Kalimantan and contains the royal burial site.

  • Museum Waja Sampai Ka Puting – this was an old and genuine Banjarese traditional house in “Bubungan Tinggi” style (one of the 12 styles and the most bona fide one) before it was transformed into a museum.
  • Masjid Sultan Suriansyah – The oldest mosque in South Kalimantan, more than 300 years old.
  • Masjid Raya Sabilal Muhtadin – a giant modern mosque completed in 1981, the second largest in Indonesia. The name was taken from a very popular Classical Islamic Jurisprudence Written by Syeikh Muhammad Arsyad Al-Banjary called “Kitab Sabilal Muhtadin” means “the right path”.

Rivers

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Pandukuhan di Banjarmasin

Banjarmasin is abundant with wide and mighty rivers. The rivers have always been a part of Banjarese way of life. Every morning there are floating markets in which farmers and traders bring their goods to trade on boats. It has always been a farmers’ market and it’s interesting to see the river-based way of life. The rivers are also the main venues for boat races and other festivities. The main attractions are the waterlogged suburbs traversed by canals; much of the city’s commerce takes place on water.

  • Floating markets – trading is from dawn until around 09:00. Get there early. Journey takes around 20 minutes by boat.

Actually, in South Kalimantan, there are three floating market.

  • Canal trips

There are many destination or ways for canal trips, for example : kelayan river, kuin river, or other small rivers around Banjarmasin

  • Pulau Kembang (lit. Flower Island) – visit the long-tailed macaques at the decrepit Chinese temple, 20 minutes by boat. You can buy nuts to feed them. The monkeys are quite aggressive if you have food and will try to steal it from you. There is an entrance fee of Rp 150,000 and on Sunday it is Rp 250,000 (prices correct as of January 2018).
  • Pulau Kaget (lit. Surprised Island) – see the proboscis monkey (Nasalis larvatus), the mascot fauna of South Kalimantan. No guarantee you will have a good look at them, though, as they are really shy.
  • Pulau Bakut Island under the bridge, here there is also proboscis monkey. Rp 600,000, which can be haggled down (price correct as of January 2018). You don’t go onto the island but you can see from the monkeys from the boat.

To reach these islands, you will need to employ a local to take you by boat. One recommendation is to contact a tour guide called Mukani, who has 20 years’ experience. Telephone +62 813 511 94444. Alternatively, you can ask around and negotiate a price.

What to do in Banjarmasin

In Sunday mornings, people from Banjarmasin have a tradition of walking, running, jogging, cycling or go with whatever you want toward the suburbs that is called “Pal Tujuh”. There, they would go to the “Pasar Ahad” or “Sunday Market” which opens only on Sundays. Enjoy local treats such as Ketupat Kandangan and Apam as your warm breakfast over there.

  • -3.339501114.5884391 Waterboom Alfin, Jalan Tembus Mantui, Kelayan Selatan, Banjarmasin Selatan. Large outdoor swimming pool with some slides and other attractions. (updated Aug 2017)

2) You should visit the place called ‘Siring Banjarmasin’ ,there are a lot of seller that sell so many varieties of fruits and they are selling it on their boats. So it called “floating market” in banjarmasin. Happy travelling 😀(anonymous)

2. Siring Pierre Tendean. This place is nice to spend the family time, especially on weekend. People are coming from various places to enjoy the small, kind of replicaton of floating market, sellers, etc. What is more interesting is that people can try the motor boat (ketolok in Banjarmasin).

3.we can trace the river in banjarmasin by using “klotok” (small motor boat), the journey will start from siring to the port in front of the mayor’s office then back to siring

4.Fishing in Martapura River is also one of the activites that Banjarese people or the tourist do. There are some fish you can get like Haruan, Papuyu, Sapat, Patin, Lele and many more. So,prepare your fishing equipment and join the local group to get local fish in Banjarmasin

5. Why don’t you try going to Duta Mall in the center of town. You can find a lot of things to eat there.

Shopping in Banjarmasin

Semi-precious gems and stones. Rattan products. You can buy original clothing from Banjarmasin, it calls “Sasirangan”. Now, sasirangan fabric can be applied into other things like bags, shoes, viels, and so on.

You can also buy souvenirs like amplang, local labelled T-shirt, Accessories with Banjarmasin’s logo/attributes.

Where to eat in Banjarmasin

Banjarese love their foods and even though they are most of the times very excited about other kinds of foods, they adore their own local specialties more than others. The ones in restaurants, malls, or foodcourts are fine for beginners, but to find the real taste of Banjarese food, you have to go to hidden places in small streets because there you’d find the ones that are famous among the locals. Foods that are available throughout the year and are very popular with the locals:

  • Soto Banjar – “Soto” is a type of Indonesian soup. Soto Banjar is a uniquely Banjarese variant of Soto, popular in other places throughout in Indonesia. Don’t miss the chance to try the real and genuine taste in its place of origin! Soto in Banjar meant that it is served with lontong, while Soup is served with rice, for the same meal.
  • Apam – Although not specifically Banjarese, the Apam here has its own twist. Enjoy it sweet and warm, accompanied with tea.
  • Bingka – A specialty of Banjarese, it came in many flavours. The pride of the Banjarese people, it’s very sweet and creamy.
  • Ketupat Kandangan – It’s actually a specialty of Kandangan, but you can also find it in Banjarmasin. Known as a festive food, especially favored during Eid al Fitr.
  • Klepon Buntut – Similar to Klepon, a palm sugar filled snacks coated with grated coconut found across Java, however this one has smoother texture and the flling is more liquidy.
  • Nasi Kuning – it’s Legit, can’t get enough with this food, you guys must try it.

However, in the month of Ramadhan, the Banjarese went all out with their traditional delicacies. Heaps of wadai (traditional cakes) and other treats mostly unavailable throughout the year will suddenly appears in Ramadhan. Though most travel guides won’t suggest you to travel during the month of Ramadhan in Indonesia, it’s an amazing experience to see the emergence of many “Pasar Wadai” (Cakes Market) all over the city, with treats such as:

  • Amparan Tatak – banana pudding. It’s so sweet and creamy with coconut milk.
  • Bingka Barandam – Although named “bingka”, tasted nothing like it. It’s somekind of a cupcake soaked in sweet syrup.
  • Putu Mayang

Apart from localities, there are 3 KFCs, 2 Pizza Huts, and a Dunkin Donuts. If local taste doesn’t suits you, go to Duta Mall and you’ll discover National as well as International famous outlets.

Drink

One should try the Banjarese tea, which is somewhat different with the teas found elsewhere in Indonesia. It is a strongly Muslim area, so don’t expect to find alcohol outside large hotels. if you have interest to find tropical fruit there’s one new agrotourism area at banjarmasin its named Mek farm. there you can find and try some original tropical fruit its might be hard to find at other place. like durian, avocado, keledang, some kind of kalimantan local manggo and there is a restaurant too. the restaurant serve only Indonesian traditional food.

It’s easy to find the farm. It’s about 5 km from the airport and you can use taxi, car rent or local transportation service like angkot and becak.

Where to stay in Banjarmasin

  • There are many hotels at Jl. Angkasa by the Banjarmasin airport, in walking distance to the airport.
  • -3.326819114.5959261 Swiss Belhotel, Jl. Pangeran Antasari No.86A. From USD67. 
  • Save Hotel
  • Hotel SAS
  • Hotel Istana Barito
  • Hotel Arum
  • Hotel Victoria
  • Hotel Roditha, rates from USD35. Full air-con, free breakfast, slippers and cable TV.
  • Hotel CitraRaya, rates from USD10. Full air-con, free breakfast for two.
  • Diamond Homestay, Jl. Simpang Hasanuddin. They have clean rooms but outside bathroom. Free internet. USD 5. 
  • Borneo Homestay. 
  • Losmen Permata, Jalan Kol Sugiono. Rp40,000 for a single room. Rp70,000 for a room for up to 4 people. 

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