Welcome to Sulawesi


Flanked by teeming waters and reefs, Sulawesi's interior is mountainous and cloaked in dense jungle. Here rare species such as nocturnal tarsiers and flamboyant maleo birds survive – as do proud cultures, long isolated by impenetrable topography from the onslaughts of modernity.

Meet the Toraja highlanders, with their elaborate funeral ceremonies and beautiful architecture; the Minahasans in the north, who offer spicy dishes made of everything from fish to stewed forest rat; and the lowland and coastal Bugis, Indonesia’s most (in)famous seafarers.

It all combines – the land and the people – to make Sulawesi one of the most compelling islands in Indonesia.


Top experiences in Sulawesi

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Sulawesi activities

$671 Cultural & Theme Tours

South Sulawesi in 8 Days

ARRIVAL MAKASSAR, if arrive early take sightseeing visit Fort Rotterdam and Paotere harbourMAKASSAR - TORAJA drive northward through the west coast of Sulawesi with two visits beforehand: Leangleang - the pre-historic cave with thousand years old car wall painting. Visit Ramangramang at Maros Pangkep Geopark by motorised wooden boat is includedExplore TORAJA visit places of interests in Toraja. There are possibilities to attend cultural activities if any. Explore TORAJA small walk or hiking is needed to enjoy the beauty of Toraja. There are weekly Toraja Market held in every Tuesday ad FridayTORAJA - SENGKANG Drive southward through east coast of Sulawesi to arrive in Sengkang - one of the heart of Bugis Civilisation for Silk weaving and enjoy motorised canoe ride towards Tempe Lake for afternoon activities of locals by the riverSENGKANG - KAJANG - BIRA At your leisure. Enjoy the white sandy beach of BiraBIRA - MAKASSAR AIRPORT visit Tana Beru - the place where Phinisi - the Bugis schooners are built.

$57.50 Day Trips & Excursions

Full Day The Malino Highlands

Spending slightly longer in Makassar is not a bad idea when admiring Indonesia’s natural splendour, beyond the South Sulawesi’s capital city borders, is what you’re after. The cool climate and fresh air of the Malino Highlands were once the weekend retreat of choice for the Dutch settlers at times, Makassar was controlled by the Dutch East India Company as one of the main trading gateways between the East and the West. It’s cool and clean air, 1050 meters above sea level, have made the Malino Highlands an ideal place for various plantation projects, an in particularly tea. This private full day excursion starts with a pick-up from your booked accommodation by your guide and driver. The Malino Highlands is situated approximately 75 kilometres east of Makassar in the more mountainous regions of South Sulawesi. This was once a favorite weekend retreat for the colonial Dutch, the highlands nowadays attract many locals when they want to escape city life and enjoy the cool, fresh air. En route, you will get a good picture of the local life style of the local inhabitants as we slowly climb higher up into the mountains. Once passing the entrance gates, we head straight to the spectacular Takapala Waterfalls with its impressive 50-meter drop of fresh water. It is one of the few waterfalls at Malino but in terms of size and sheer power, this remains the most impressive one. The fertile soil and abundance of water around the waterfall have created excellent soil for rice cultivation; when harvesting season arrives, a verdant green landscape makes the area around the Takapala Waterfalls even more beautiful. Ample time to explore the region, take pictures or simply enjoy the sound of clashing water is among the favourite pastimes of previous visitors Lunch will be served at a local restaurant at the highlands where you can spend your free time before we make our way back to Makassar. Before we reach your hotel, we head into the Ballampoa Museum, a vast collection of artifacts and heirlooms of the former Gowa Kingdom. This kingdom was once the greatest kingdom of Sulawesi governed and ruled by various sultans and kings. Its history, portraits of the rulers and how the region prospered under its rulers are displayed here and have spread throughout large parts of South and East Sulawesi. We end the day when entering Makassar and reach your booked hotel at around 4:00pm.

$25 Tours & Sightseeing

Half Day Makassar City Tour

The once mighty port city of Makassar in south Sulawesi has seen its fair share of Dutch in the past. A central point for the trading routes for transporting spices and good around the world, Makassar still bears lots of resemblance to these times of prosperity. Food plays a very important part of Indonesia’s sixth largest city where the abundance of seafood Warungs (local street stalls) along the main streets and alleys brighten up the mood almost 24 hours. The social interaction with its very friendly residents and the historical sites that are spread around within easy distance and the blend of various nationalities makes Makassar a city not to skip on your Sulawesi travel endeavours. Ready for a half day of seeing the historical and cultural sites of Makassar, your guide and driver will be waiting for you at around 09:00 hrs to get exploring.  Formerly known as Ujung Pandang and still bearing the prestigious title as the capital city of South Sulawesi, the Dutch have left some truly remarkable buildings behind that remain intact. We commence our morning tour heading towards Fort Rotterdam and the enclosed Lagaligo Museum (closed on Mondays). The remains of the ancient Gowanese fort and typical Dutch architecture are striking examples of the influence of this sea-faring nation centuries ago.  The Lagaligo Museum has a nice collection of ethnological and historical artefacts spread around two buildings so we highly recommend trying to avoid making reservations on Mondays when this suits your interest! A visit to Makassar requires a visit to the old harbour; the main gateway for centuries, Makassar Harbour has been the focal point for all trading between the East and West for centuries. A collection of traditional, wooden schooners, called Phinisi or Bugis are used, in a more modern version, for sailing the waters. Excellent photo opportunities await, once you follow your guide as he explains how these boats played an essential role in Indonesian maritime history. We end the morning with a stop at the Clara Bundts where a nice collection of shells and orchids can be admired before heading back to your Makassar overnight address.