Private Tour Sulawesi 25D/24N
The Private Tour Sulawesi 25D/24N is a journey where you will discover and explore the nature, culture, and culinary of Sulawesi. Sulawesi is a beautiful island located in Indonesia and is known for its unique culture, stunning landscapes, and diverse wildlife. The island has become increasingly popular with tourists in recent years, with many attractions and activities to offer. Overall, Sulawesi has a lot to offer visitors, from stunning natural scenery and cultural experiences to world-class diving and delicious cuisine.
Some of the popular tourist destinations in Sulawesi is Bunaken National Park, it is a marine park in the north of Sulawesi Island, Indonesia. The park representative Indonesian tropical water ecosystems, consisting of seagrass plain, coral reef, and coastal ecosystems. Meanwhile, The Tangkoko Nature Reserve is a flora and fauna conservation area on Mount Tangkoko. However, the reserve is particularly attractive for its unique wildlife that can be observed roaming free in the forest. The tarsiers, the black macaque monkeys, maleo birds, cuscus and the hornbills make this their habitat.
DAY 01. PICK UP AIRPORT IN MAKASSAR
You will arrive at Makassar’s modern airport and transfer to the hotel. You can spend the rest of the day relaxing or seeing the city. Makassar (formerly called Ujungpadang) is the lively capital of South Sulawesi. Being on a central sea route between the various Indonesian islands, it always had an important port function. The city also played an important role at the time of Dutch rule. The Fort Rotterdam is a reminder of this. Meanwhile, at night it is very pleasant on the boulevard when dozens of food stalls are set up, especially the supply of fresh fish is overwhelming.
DAY 02. MAKASSAR
After breakfast, the driver will pick you up and then take a boat ride to a coral island. Then you will take a city tour of Makassar. You will visit the port Paotere where the wooden traditional sailing ships ‘phinisi’ have been on display for centuries. After this, you will continue to Fort Rotterdam (Benteng Ujung Padang). Then you will transfer back to the hotel.
DAY 03. MAKASSAR – MALINO
Today the round trip starts via Maros to Malino. You will do an excursion to the Maros Mountains. The wonderful and uniquely shaped limestone rocks where recently the Bantimurung – Bulusaraung National Park has come to life. Meanwhile, you will hike through sawas (rice fields), past typical Buginese houses and limestone rocks to a cave with prehistoric images. Along the way you will drink tea in a traditional house and canoe down a narrow river. Arriving in Malino, you will go to the accommodation for check-in. Then you will spend the night amidst the sawas in a cozy accommodation equipped with all amenities.
DAY 04. MALINO
Today we will hike through sawas, kampungs and then to waterfalls. Malino highland is a cool mountain town located on the lower slopes of Mount Bawakaraeng and was popular in colonial times as a weekend retreat. However, the fresh mountain air, forests and waterfalls make this area perfect for a long hike. Also, the fertile soil creates green rice terraces where you can take beautiful photos. Along the way, you will cheerfully be welcomed and waved at by the curious locals. Besides, not many tourists come here, which makes meeting the locals extra special.
DAY 05. MALINO – BIRA
After breakfast, the driver will pick you up and continue your journey to Pantai Bira. Before you reach Bira, you will stop at Marumasa or Tanaberu beach where people often build large wooden boats. These so-called phinisi boats are world famous. It is an impressive sight to see the tropical beaches full of wooden ships being worked on. The ships are built by the Buginese. Then along the way you will also see many typical Buginese houses. Upon arrival in Bira, you will transfer to your accommodation.
DAY 06. BIRA
In the morning we take a boat to the small island of Liukang Bira, it’s a beautiful beach. You can snorkel here to admire the colorful fish and corals. Then we have lunch with a fishing family on the islet. After the boat trip you will go back to the hotel. Furthermore, you can explore the village and its surroundings on your own. However, the people are engaged in fishing, building boats and weaving colorful clothes. Or relax on the white beach and enjoy the clear blue sea.
Note: The continuation of this snorkeling excursion depends on weather conditions.
DAY 07. BIRA – SENGKANG
In the morning you will leave the white sandy beach of Bira and drive north to Sengkang. A beautiful route along the east side passing rice terraces, a rugged coast and Sulawesi’s only rubber plantation. Then you will arrive in Sengkang late in the afternoon.
DAY 08. SENGKANG – RANTEPAO
After breakfast, take a boat ride on National Park of Lake Tempe. On Lake Tempe, people live in floating houses. However, after the boat ride, you will continue to Rantepao, the capital of Toraja country: Tana Toraja. This is 1 of the most special areas of the Indonesian archipelago with its own culture. Meanwhile, on the way to the hotel, we will visit the silk weaving mills in Kampung Sutra. Upon arrival in Rantepao, you will transfer to the hotel for check in.
DAY 09. TORAJALAND DAY EXCURSION
Today you will do a cultural tour by van and a short walk along the main villages of Torajaland with a local guide. First, you will visit the Ketekesu village, where you can see the “tongkonan houses or Toraja Adat”. The richly carved Toraja houses with their beautiful gabled roofs. Although most Toraja are Christian, their traditions live on unabated. Next, you will see the different ways the Toraja bury their dead. Furthermore, you will take a look at the high rock tombs Lemo and Londa, these are beautiful graves with carved stones and are guarded by the tau tau ‘statue’ dolls.
DAY 10. TORAJALAND WALKING TOUR
After breakfast, you will hike through the kampungs in Torajaland. The picturesque villages are set in a mountainous landscape dominated by rice terraces and then bamboo forests. The culture of the Toraja can be called unique. Because they live in beautiful houses (tongkahans) with characteristic roofs full of buffalo horns, carved doors and windows. Meanwhile, the hike takes about 5 to 6 hours, and you will stay overnight in a Toraja house or a local Homestay.
DAY 11. TORAJALAND CYCLING TOUR
After a simple breakfast, we will take a bicycle tour through the kampungs. If there are ceremonies or a Karbauwen market, these will be scheduled during the tours. However, it is very special to witness a funeral ceremony. Usually, it takes place in July and August. The graves are often interred in rock walls. Also, you will see the famous Tau Tau dolls representing the deceased.
You should travel during summer. So, you may witness a burial ceremony. However, during a ceremony, which usually lasts several days, the family of the deceased receives dozens and sometimes hundreds of guests. Then everyone is dressed traditionally. Meanwhile, the family will provide drinks and meals. Also, traditional dances performance at the ceremony, guests bring gifts, including pigs and buffaloes. Because at the ceremonies, you are expected to give a gift in the form of cigarettes, sugar or similar. Then you will spend the night again at the same hotel as on days 8 and 9.
DAY 12. RANTEPAO – PENDOLO
Early in the morning you will leave Rantepao and drive north. Also, on the way the landscape is varied, you will pass tropical forests and a vast coastal plain. Then you will arrive late afternoon in the small town of Pendolo, beautifully situated on the southern shores of the clear Lake Poso.
DAY 13. PENDOLO – TENTENA
In the morning, sail by chartered boat from Pendolo to the northern shores of Lake Poso. Meanwhile, your luggage will transfer by car to the next hotel. However, Lake Poso, originally a flooded gorge, covers an area of over 32,000 ha and reaches a depth of 450 meters, it is one of the deepest lakes in Sulawesi. Because the lake is bordered on the west by steep mountains and on the east by rolling hills, from which it also gets its water.
Then the trip across the lake takes about 3 hours and at the end of the morning you will arrive at the beachfront bungalows a short distance from the town of Tentena. The rest of the afternoon is free. You can enjoy swimming in the lake. Or visit the Saluopa waterfall, 18 km west of Tentena. The waterfall is surrounded by lush tropical rainforest and the water plunges down from tens of meters high via smooth and rounded rocks and collects here and there in pools before flowing to the next plateau. Also, in some puddles you can paddle. Then in the afternoon, you will return to your hotel.
DAY 14. TENTENA
Today is a free day at Lake Poso and can be filled as you wish. Optionally, you can take an excursion to the Bada Valley.
DAY 15. TENTENA – AMPANA
We continue the journey to Ampana, a medium-sized town in north central Sulawesi. A place where you will see many horses with wagons. Moreover, it is the port for the boats sailing to the Togian Islands. Then you will sleep in Ampana in a simple accommodation.
DAY 16. AMPANA – TOGEAN
You will ride to the port by horse and carriage. Then you will travel by boat to the Togian Islands. Meanwhile, the Togian Islands is located in the middle of the azure Teluk Tomini. Sea gypsies also live on the Togian Islands. They live in wooden houses on stilts on dead coral. At high tide, the houses are sometimes completely submerged. You go to the Togian Islands mainly to get away from civilization. Pure white sand beaches surrounded by green, impenetrable jungle await you.
However, the small group of islands is known worldwide for its fantastic underwater world, where colorful fish and the most beautiful coral can be found. So, the next few days you can enjoy sun, sea, beach and the underwater world on one of the beautiful bounty islands. Then you will spend the night on Kadidiri Island.
DAY 17 – 18. TOGEAN
These days are free, and you can fill it as you wish. We can recommend exploring the underwater world. How about a night dive this evening? The animals are often more active, and it is a wonderful experience. Actually 1 that should not be missed during your stay on the breathtaking Togian islands.
DAY 19. TOGEAN – AMPANA – LUWUK
You will travel back to Ampana by boat and transfer to the hotel in Luwuk. Luwuk is a small coastal town located against a mountain. About 20 minutes from the center is a waterfall. Then in the evening you will have a beautiful view of the mountains and the many points of light.
DAY 20. LUWUK – MANADO – TOMOHON
Today you will leave from Luwuk airport by domestic flight, you will fly to Manado, located in northern Sulawesi. Then from Manado you will travel to Tomohon. Meanwhile, Tomohon is located about 700 m altitude is the heart of the Minahasa region. This fertile mountain area was also called “The Twelfth Province” by the Dutch.
However, the Dutch considered the Minahasa’s the most loyal people in Indonesia. In return, they were given schools and churches, making the Minahasa’s among the best educated indigenous peoples in the Dutch East Indies. Moreover, the cool town of Tomohon is nestled between two active volcanoes: the Lokon and the Mahawu. So, many vegetables and flowers are grown in the wider area.
DAY 21. TOMOHON – TANGKOKO NATIONAL PARK
In the morning we travel via the lively market of Tomohon in about 3 to 4 hours to the Tangkoko Batu Angus Nature Reserve. This park takes its name from the adjacent active volcanoes Tangkoko (870 m) and Batu Angus (1109 m). Meanwhile, the reserve measures an area of about 4,450 hectares and contains lush tropical rainforest, sandy beaches, basalt rocks and coral reefs. There are many fruit trees, making it home to a relatively large number of fruit-eaters such as the black macaques and red-knobbed hornbills.
However, the tarsiers, which are the main attraction for most visitors, benefit little from all the fruit presents. Not much bigger than a human hand, the little monkey lives on insects, birds and other creatures, but it is only too happy to nest among the crisscrossing roots of the fig trees. So, the best chance to see this nocturnal creature is in the late afternoon when the tarsiers leave their roost in search of food. Together with a local ranger, you will take a walk through the forest in search of the tarsiers and other animals. After the trek, you will go back to the hotel.
DAY 22. TOMOHON – BUNAKEN
After breakfast, we will take a trek to Mahawu volcano. This active volcano is located west of Tomohon, also the trek is relatively easy. However, the views of the Klabat and Lokon and the islands in Manado Bay are impressive in clear weather. The crater lake is teal and sulfur fumes emanate from several sources. You will hike to the top in about 45 minutes and then return by the same way. We continue drive to the port in Manado and then cross by boat to Bunaken. It is about an hour boat ride to Bunaken National Park. There are no restaurants on the island, hence meals are included at your resort.
DAY 23 – 24. BUNAKEN
These days are at leisure. You can do fantastic diving here! If you prefer not to dive, you can also choose to go snorkeling. Of course, you can also choose to do nothing at all, laze on the beach or by the pool of your resort.
DAY 25. BUNAKEN – MANADO – NEXT DESTINATION
The driver will pick you up at the desired time and transfer to the port to return to Manado. From the port, you will transfer to the airport for your flight to next destination or to return home.
End of service.
Bungalow Sea View
Hotel BBC Sengkang
Porsch Mountain View
Toraja Adat Home
Bungalow Mountain View
Bungalow Mountain View
Bungalow Sea View
Mountain View Resort & Spa
Bungalow Garden View
Happy Gecko Resort
Bungalow Sea View
Bed & breakfast
Private car/ minivan with AC
English speaking driver
Fuel, toll & parking fee
Private boat Manado ↔ Bunaken
Local guides at Makassar, Malino, Toraja, Tentena, Tangkoko National Park, Trekking Mahuwu Volcano
Lunch at Maros
Dinner Toraja Walking Tour
Tickets Ferry Ampana ↔ Togean
Canoes in Malino & Tempe Lake
Boat in Makassar & Bira
Bicycles in Toraja
- Flight tickets
- Lunch and dinner (exc. lunch Liukang Bira, dinner Torajaland and Bunaken)
- Boat & Snorkel equipment Bira
- Tipping driver/ local guides
- Other Personal Expenses