Embark on an amazing adventurous journey! Traverse overland and sea along Sulawesi Island from the south to the north to discover unique cultures and get closer to the locals and nature. Trek through the Tomohon mountain range, ancient Bada Valley and relax along the Togean sea teeming with marine life.

Trip Highlights

Traversing Sulawesi



Arrive to Makassar – Hotel

Makassar Hasanuddin international Airport – Makassar City Centre (17 km): 30 minutes

Arrival in Makassar should be on Monday*, Wednesday or Saturday.

Arrive at Sultan Hasanuddin Airport in Makassar on the island of Sulawesi, which was once referred to as Celebes and is sometimes called Ujung Pandang - the islanders use both names freely. In addition to being the fourth largest island in Indonesia, it also has one of the richest traditions, cultural heritage, ancient history and some of the most exceptional natural wonders.

Recommended flights (price not included and quoted separately – airfares and schedules subject to change without prior notice):

Domestic: Garuda Indonesia from Surabaya to Makassar GA671, departing at 16:35 and arriving at 19:10 or Garuda Indonesia from Denpasar to Makassar GA620 departing at 17:20 and arriving at 18:50.

International: Silk Air from Singapore to Makassar MI142 (Monday and Thursday), departing at 07:55 and arriving at 11:00 or MI144 (Sunday), departing at 14:45 and arriving at 17:55.

Meet with an airport assistant and be introduced to the guide and driver for a private transfer to the hotel in Makassar.

Please note: Depending on the arrival time a Makassar city tour can be added as well as lunch.

After checking in and settling down, spend the rest of the day at leisure either exploring independently or relaxing at the hotel.

Dinner at leisure.


Overnight in Makassar.


Makassar – Pare Pare – Rantepao

Makassar – Pare Pare (148 km): approximately 3 hours 30 minutes Pare Pare – Rantepao (175km): approximately 4 hours 30 minutes

This morning, check-out from the hotel and depart for a short sightseeing tour of Makassar before leaving for the drive to Toraja via Pare Pare. Start with a visit to the bustling Paotere Harbour to learn about the famed Bugis Phinisi Schooner shipbuilders of the region and continue to the city’s most iconic landmark, Fort Rotterdam. Recently refurbished, it is perhaps one of the best preserved Dutch forts in all of Indonesia; learn more about the diversity of Sulawesi at the La Galigo Museum here.

Afterwards, the journey leads us through several villages of the Bugis people, whose stilted houses line magnificent mountain passes. Stop at a local restaurant in Pare-Pare for a late lunch.

The drive continues through the hills reaching Rantepao in the late afternoon. Rantepao is the small capital of Toraja, with an estimated population of around 450,000. The Toraja ethnic group is renowned for their elaborate funeral rites, traditional houses and spectacular carving and dancing. Here, spend the next two days exploring the Toraja villages and learn about their unique culture and customs.

Check-in to the hotel in Rantepao.

Dinner at the hotel.

Overnight in Rantepao.


Southern Part of Tanah Toraja

Depend on that day road conditions, may be varian. Rantepao – Bolu Market (3 km): approximately 15 minutes Rantepao – Lemo/Suaya/Kenbira (23 km): approximately 45 minutes Bolu Market – Lemo/Suaya/Kenbira (26 km): approximately 1 hour 15 minutes Lemo/Suaya/Kenbira – Maruang (20 km): approximately 1 hour Maruang – Londa / Kete Kesu (6 km): approximately 20 minutes

This morning after breakfast, if the timing is right, have the chance to be immersed in the bustling life of the Torajan’s with a visit to their once-a-week traditional Buffalo Market in Bolu. This market is important to the local society as buffalos and pigs are an essential part of the intricate funeral ceremonies that take place here.

Please note: Bolu Market visit depends on the schedule and is only held once every 6 days. In case there is no market on the day of visit, we will replace it by a visit to a local market in Rantepao.

Afterwards, head south of Toraja and visit two traditional villages. After exploring these cultural hotspots, head to the villages of Lemo and Suaya, which are enveloped by cliffs pierced with graves and tau tau (hanging effigies) of deceased nobility. These cliffs are also referred to as the ‘death balconies’ due to their perilous locations.

Lunch is served in a traditional Liong Tongkonan (local name for housing structure). While enjoying some unique local food, learn about the spiritual elements of ancestral Torajan architecture.

After lunch, visit Londa Village where wooden coffins are suspended by ropes and poles extending from the cliffs. Continue to Kete Kesu, a village which has one of the finest ensembles of Tongkonan (Toraja traditional houses) on the island. These boat-shaped houses have tall roofs made of slender bristles and create strange silhouettes in the sky. The Tongkonan facades boast many carved and painted motifs and a wooden buffalo head typically adorns the wealthiest homes. Kete Kesu Village also has a rice granary of the traditional Toraja country style.

Return to the hotel late in the afternoon.

Dinner will be served in the hotel.

Overnight in Rantepao.


Northern part of Tanah Toraja

Depending on the day road conditions may vary. Rantepao – Rantepao Market MALLANGO (2 km): approximately 20minutes Rantepao – Bolu Market (3 km): approximately 15 minutes

After breakfast in the morning, head to Palawa, a typical Toraja village, and then on to the highlands of Batutumonga for stunning views across the Toraja Valley.

In this incredible surrounding, take lunch at the local Mentirotiku Restaurant.

According to preferences, take a 1 or 2-hour light trek through fascinating Toraja villages.


Perched on the slopes of Mount Sesean, these villages offer beautiful views of rice fields dotted with large black rocks -remains of ancient volcanic eruptions. The one-hour trek leads through the villages of Lempo and Tinongbayo, while the easy two-hour walk leads through the villages of Bori and Tikala. In both instances, there will be an opportunity to meet locals and observe their traditional lifestyles. These villages have ancestral stone circles, part of the local lore of the Toraja people, with each stone representing an important noble who has passed away. They also feature impressive Tongkonan houses.

Return to Rantepao, with a stop at a Todi weaving factory where the ancient technique and motifs for Torajans textile known as Ikats are preserved.

Return to the hotel late in the afternoon.

Dinner at the hotel.

Overnight in Rantepao.

Note: Between July and September (dry season) many funerals take place and during this period many Toraja migrants return home for the holidays. The program will be tailored to allow for an attendance of such ceremony during stay in Toraja if desired and possible. On weekends (Saturday and Sunday) such ceremonies do not take place, and there is never any guarantee that it will be possible to attend


Toraja - Pendolo

Transfer: Rantepao – Pendolo (267 km) - approximately 7 hours

This morning at 07:30 depart for Pendolo Village at the shore of the Poso Lake. Poso Lake is a deep freshwater lake with white sandy beaches.  It takes about 7 hours drive along the 270 kilometers of mountain road with some stops along the way to enjoy the natural scenery.

Lunch en route at a local restaurant.

Arrive at Pendolo Village in the afternoon and then check-in at simple local lodging hotel.

Dinner and overnight at hotel.


Pendolo – Cruise lake Poso – Tentena - Saluopa Waterfall

Boat: Pendolo to Tentena (57 km) – approximately 4 hours boat trip around the lake Tentena – Saluopa Waterfall (23Km): 40 minutes

After breakfast, board a local boat and cross the Poso Lake to visit the villages around.

The first stop is Tindoli Village to see a small waterfall. Continue cruising by boat and pass the Buffalo Stone and Grind Stone. Stop for a visit to Dulumai Village and learn about the local people’s daily life.

Lunch en route.

Arrive in Tentena , get off the boat and proceed to check-in the hotel.

After freshening up, in the afternoon visit Saluopa Waterfalls, 60 metres high with 9 natural pools.

Return to hotel, dinner and overnight in Tentena

Please note: Be met tonight by a local guide during dinner for a briefing of the upcoming Bada Valley trip. Prepare a light backpack to carry for the 4 days of trekking in Bada. Leave the main luggage in the hotel in Tentena.


Tentena – Lore Lindu National Park – Bada Valley

Tentena – Bomba (45Km): 1 hour 30 minutes Bomba – Bada Valley (28Km): 1 hour

After a simple breakfast, start today’s expedition to the Lore Lindu National Park.  Hop on the jeep and travel through the rainforest up to the mountain to Bada Valley.

This UNESCO National Park is classified as a World Network of Biosphere Reserves. Famous for its megaliths dating from before 1300 AD most of them are located in Bada Valley. The origin of these megaliths is until today unknown. Learn all about the local legends around it through the local guide.

Trek along a nicely paved but small road from Lake Poso with a climb from 700m to 1800m in altitude and spot many different bird species.  Arrive at Bomba Village and be welcomed by the friendly locals and check-in for a simple homestay. Late lunch at the village.

In the afternoon, visit some of the surrounding megaliths with a local guide and jeep.

Dinner and overnight at the homestay.


Bada Valley Trekking – Bomba - Kolori

Trekking: around 20km per day – 7 to 8 hours Difficulty: Hard

Enjoy a simple breakfast at the homestay.

Depart this morning for a day of trekking and exploration. Walk to Kolori Village to the entrance of the park. Walk along the Laliang River and discover the biggest megalith of the Bada Valley. Standing at 4 metres high, learn about this archeological site. 

Then, enter the National Park and start trekking in the dense rainforest. Climb up to a viewpoint of the valley and continue trekking to the campsite.

Take a simple lunch en route.

Bonfire dinner in the wilderness and overnight at the campsite.


Bada Valley Trekking – Kolori - Tentena

Trekking: around 20km per day – 7 to 8 hours Difficulty: Hard

Breakfast at the camp and start the morning trek through unspoiled and thick rainforest of Lore Lindu National Park.

Observe some wild animals like the Sulawesi macaque monkey, hornbill, wild pig and wild bear. Arrive at a viewpoint over the large and majestic Besoa Valley from a hilltop before going back to Kolori.

Take a simple lunch en route on the way from Kolori to Tentena.

Dinner and overnight at hotel in Tentena.


Tentena - Ampana – Wakai – Togean

Ampana – Wakai (60Km): 2 hour by ferry Wakai – Kadidiri Island (10 Km): 30 minutes by boat Wakai – Una-Una Isalnd (39Km): 1 hour 30 minutesby speed boat

Breakfast at the hotel before departure to Ampana.  It takes about 5 hours to drive from Tentena to Ampana. Arrive just in time to catch the 12:00 ferry to Togean. 

Arrive at the harbour at a small seaside town of Ampana, just in time to catch the 12:00 ferry to the Togean Islands. The ferry from Ampana takes 2 hours to reach Wakai Harbour in Batudaka Islands.

Togean is an island in the gulf of Tomini, part of the Togean Archipelago in Central Sulawesi. It lies within the Togean Islands National Park which holds the largest area of preserved coral reefs in the country. The island is also home to many endemic animals.

Be welcomed by the hotel staff in Wakai and be transferred to the hotel in Kadidiri Island or Una-Una Island.

Enjoy the rest of this day in the Island, dinner will be served at the hotel.

Overnight in Togean.



Spend the day free at leisure.

Suggested optional activities:

  • Start the day with an early morning walk to spot birds before having breakfast at the hotel.
  • Take a half day or full day trip to Jellyfish Lake, Karina Beach and Tapei Island for snorkelling. Jellyfish Lake is a sea water lake with thousands of harmless jellyfish. Swim in the lake and be fully surrounded by them without getting stung.

Lunch and dinner is served at the hotel.

Overnight in Togean.

Please note: Snorkelling gear and dive equipment are chargeable, available upon request on the spot at the hotel.



Spend the day free at leisure.

Suggested optional activities:

  • Una-Una Island Volcano Trekking or multisite snorkelling. This is a volcanic island 45 minutes by speedboat from Kadidiri. Great for scuba diving and also snorkelling. It is possible to hire a local guide and trek to the top of the volcano and back. It takes 6 hours in total to do the trek.
  • Meet the locals – Trek through the jungle, meet the coconut farmers and fishermen living in the forest on the island. Palm sugar and coconut oil is made at a very local level on the island. Walk through the jungle to the wood cabin where the local guys sometimes stay in when they’re working and see the process of making palm sugar and coconut oil.

Lunch and dinner is served at the hotel.

Overnight in Togean

Note: snorkeling gears and dive equipment are chargeable, available upon request on the spot at the hotel


Togean - Gorontalo

Wakai – Gorontalo: 12 hours overnight by ferry

Enjoy the last morning in the island and depart after having breakfast.

Be transferred from the hotel to Wakai Harbour and be on board a ferry* to cruise to Gorontalo. Departure time is 16:00 and the journey takes 12 hours.

*Ferry Tuna Tomini depart 3 times a week: Mon-Thu-Sat

Overnight on board ferry Tuna Tomini.


Arrival Gorontalo

Ferry port orontalo – Hotel area (5Km): 15 minutes

Be picked up by driver* at Gorontalo Port after the overnight cruise pass Tomini Bay.

*Please note: Today’s transfer from the port to hotel is with driver only.

Gorontalo is a small city that lies along the northern coastline of Tomini Bay in North Sulawesi which is characterised by its ancient buildings, beaches, rivers and hot springs.

Early check-in to the hotel in Gorontalo city center, spend the rest of the day at leisure and choose to explore the city independently or relax at the hotel.


Gorontalo - Bolaangmongondow

Hotel area – Otahana fortress(7Km): 20 minutes Gorontalo – Molibagu (164Km): 4 hours Molibagu – Bolaangmongondow (46Km): 1hour

This morning, be met with the guide and driver at the hotel and set off for today’s trip of around 6 hours on the road driving along the south coastlines to Bolaang Mongondow via Molibagu.

Discover the city of Gorontalo on the way to Bolaang Mongondow and stop for a visit to the Otahana Fortress built in 1522 by King Ilato of Gorontalo with a view of Lake Limboto.

Stop for refreshments and photos along the way and have lunch enroute.

Arrive at Bolaang Mongondow in the late afternoon and then check in at the homestay

Please note: The accommodation in the area is a very basic local homestay. 

Dinner is served at homestay


Bolaangmongondow – Tambun - Tomohon

Bolaangmongondow – Tambun (18Km): 30 minutes Tambun – Tomohon (211Km): 4 hours 30 minutes

Depart early morning around 04:00 to Bogani Nani Wartabone National Park in Tambun area, a protected forest with rich biological diversity and a habitat for various flora and fauna. In this park, there are endemic animals namely the maleo bird (Macrocephalon maleo).

Take a soft trek to observe the maleo, a shy bird that is usually active at night and during the hours of dawn and dusk. They do not incubate their nests using body heat rather, they tap on natural resources of the land, relying on heat from thermal vents or sun-warmed sand to incubate their eggs.

Trek towards Tomohon, a mountainous region known as the town of flowers located between two active volcanoes.

During this 4-5 hours drive, enjoy the trip and pass through picturesque villages, sandy beaches and clove plantations all the while stopping for photos.

Arrive in the late afternoon in Tomohon, check-in to the hotel, and spend the rest of the day at leisure.



Tomohon hotel area – traditional market (4Km): 15 minutes Traditional market – Woloan (3Km): 10 minutes Woloan - Tondano Lake (24Km): 1 hour Tondano Lake – Pulutan (21Km): 40 minutes Pulutan – Linow (10Km): 25 minutes

After breakfast visit Tomohon Market, a lively, colourful place with plenty of fresh fruits and vegetables on display. The market is also known as the market of extremes with a section that sells bush meat, displaying everything from bats to rats and many more – certainly not for everyone’s taste.  (Please note: A visit to this section of the market is possible but not recommended.)

Then, embark today on a discovery of the Minahasa Highlands. Continue for a short stop at Woloan, one of the last villages where the wooden typical Sulawesian-style houses that can be seen everywhere along the roadside are still made (not everyday activities can be observed).

Visit the shores of Tondano Lake, the largest lake of north Sulawesi.  Tondano Lake is nestled among the rolling hills of the Minahasa Highlands and there’s always a fresh breeze across its large silverish surface, which makes cycling through the lush landscapes a relaxed venture. Its shores are lined with aquaculture farms and seafood restaurants, one of which will be the host of today’s lunch.

Then visit Pulutan Village, a pottery village where nearly every household is involved in pottery. Pieces such as pots, vases and also sets of small pottery tables and chairs have traditionally been produced for the local market and nowadays are mostly commissioned works for customers outside of Sulawesi and Indonesia. Apart from the local families involved in the production of pottery, a training center provides the community with the respective skills and ideas for new shapes and means of production.

Visit Linow Lake, where the smell of Sulphur fills the air and the fascinating turquoise surface of the lake indicates its volcanic origin. Relax with a cup of coffee or tea and enjoy a local specialty which is typical for Indonesia: fried banana. Here in north Sulawesi, fried banana is not enjoyed with honey or sweet dips, but is served with spicy chilli sauce.

Return to hotel.


Tomohon - Departure

Tomohon – Manado (32Km): 1 hour 15 minutes

Breakfast at the hotel and spend the remainder of the day free at leisure until pick up time for the transfer to Manado airport and the onward flight to the next destination.

Recommended flights (not included in package and quoted separately – airfares and schedules subject to change without prior notice):

Domestic: Garuda Indonesia daily from Manado to Denpasar GA625, departing at 15:45 and arriving at 18:10 or daily to Jakarta GA601, departing at 16:15 and arriving at 18:25.

Important Information

  • Hotel accommodation in half-twin/double room with daily breakfast.
  • Meals as mentioned in the itinerary (B = Breakfast, L = Lunch, D = Dinner)
  • Tours and transfers by private air-conditioned vehicles.
  • English speaking local guide (other language available).
  • All entrance fees and donations as indicated in itinerary.
  • Visa arrangements.
  • International and domestic flights.
  • International and domestic departure taxes.
  • Meals other than mentioned above.
  • Camera/video entrance fees.
  • Personal expenses (drinks, laundry, telephone, tips etc).
  • Travel insurance.
  • Other services not clearly indicated in the package inclusions above.

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