A few weeks ago, I got a call from a friend asking me if I wasn't busy. I wasn't sure why she was asking if I wasn't but as soon as I answered "Nope, I'm free. What's up?". She immediately asked if I wanted to come to Indonesia. At first, all I was able to say was "Weh?? Di nga?" (It sort of translates to "What? Really??"). I couldn't believe that she was asking me if I wanted to come. I think I even teared up a little. I've been wanting to go to Indonesia for the longest time and I'm so glad that it finally happened. I've been to Indonesia before but it was only for a weekend so I don't think that counts. Ha! Fast forward to a few days after the phone call, I found myself at the airport (still in shock that I'm going to Indonesia for 11 days!) meeting up with my friend who called me and new faces also traveling with us. We were to explore Makassar, Lombok, Banyuwangi, and Bandung (I'll be writing one blog post per place just so the entry doesn't get too long.)
We arrived in the middle of the night in Jakarta and was scheduled to leave at 5 in the morning to go back to the airport and fly to Makassar, the capital city of South Sulawesi. Our first stop in Indonesia.
We arrived in Makassar just right before lunch. We hopped on the bus and made our way to Bantimurung National Park. The park is in Maros Regency, 50 km north of Makassar (an hour drive) or 20 km from Sultan Hasanuddin International Airport (30 mins drive).
At first I thought that we had to hike somewhere to reach the waterfalls but luckily it was just an easy stroll. At the end of the path, the Bantimurung Waterfalls will greet you.
This path leads to a cave which unfortunately I wasn't able to get to.
One of the many activities you can do in this place is rent a life saver and ride down the water. It seemed really fun. I kinda felt bad that I wasn't wearing proper attire and didn't have extra clothes with me. Else, you'd see a photo of me here in a life saver riding down the falls.
There are also huts around the park so you can just sit and listen to the sound of the water falling while having lunch or a cup of coffee.
Day two in Makassar, we woke up early to head to the dock and ride a boat to Kodingareng Keke Island. It is one of several uninhabited islands in the region of South Sulawesi. The island is located 14km from Losari Makassar, or 20- 30 minutes from the island of Samalona.
After about 30 minutes, we finally saw the island. We couldn't wait to get off and start swimming! The water is super clear. And just from the shore, you can already start snorkeling. Tip: Better wear some aqua shoes or sandals if you plan on swimming since the corals might hurt your feet.
There were boats parked at the shore and of course, we didn't let this opportunity pass! We grabbed our cameras and started taking photos. Haha!
On our third and last day in Makassar, we tried out some local food (Yay!)
Pallubasa - a traditional food found in Makassar. It is made from long boiled internal meats/organ parts of a cattle and is served with slices of meat and an egg yolk on top.
Making Jalangkote - a fried pastry with veggies, some egg and meat.
Left: Fresh from the fryer Jalangkote / Right: Es Pisang Ijo - It's banana warpped in sago flour dough and served with ice, coconut milk and rose syrup. It's one of the most interesting desserts I've had in Indonesia. It's one of South Sulawesi's specialties so if ever you find your self in the area, don't forget to try it!
That's it for our Makassar adventure. After all the food we ate, we headed to the airport to fly to our next destination, Lombok.
Disclosure: I was invited by the Ministry of Tourism of Indonesia to be part of their blogger tour #TripOfWonders