Sulawesi is fantastic country to immerse yourself in culture and local traditions. A visit to Tana Toraja is like wandering through a National Geographic documentary. The Toraja ethnic group, are renowned for their elaborate and unusual funeral rites. The opportunity to attend a funeral, which are social events that last for several days, would be a highlight for any visitor. You can also take in breathtaking scenery, including the eerie cliff-side cemeteries and hospitality of the local people.
Sengkang, resting on the eastern banks of the wondrous Lake Tempe, is a charming town in south Sulawesi. This lovely destination hosts a historic market town feel, retaining cultural traditions such as silk weaving, colourful wedding celebrations and the quaint floating homes for the fishermen. Travellers to Sengkang can meander through the lively city centre, sample the mouth-watering local cuisine, tour one of the high-end silk factories, or visit one many delightful sites of worship. Nature enthusiasts and bird lovers will be thrilled at the spectacular bird watching opportunities of Lake Temple.
Airport: Sultan Hasanuddin Airport (Makassar)
Local Language: Bahasa Indonesia
Fun Fact: The soil is volcanic and very fertile and can produce between 2 and 5 crops per year.
Sulawesi is a truly unique Indonesian experience, visit if you like culture and ceremonies as they have a lot to offer. They have stunning architecture and the most fascinating family burial rituals. Sulawesi also offers excellent trekking and snorkeling expereinces.
This ceremony takes place in the Tana Toraja area and is performed for deceased relatives to allow their spirit to remain immortal and allow them to join their family in puyo. It is very important to the local people to carry out this ceremony so their family can cross over to Puyo. The ceremony can cost a lot to the family so the dead will remain unburied and often still in the house until the family can collect enough money for the ceremony. The number of animals sacrificed at the ceremony is a reflection on the social status of the family. Buffalo are the most expensive to buy and are often chosen as sacrifice as they are thought to lead loved ones to the afterlife.
The day before the burial the house is open to all and there are lots of celebratory games, dances and music.
October to December are the hottest times months in Sulawesi reaching up to 35°C. The average temperature is about 28°C. Monsoon season is November to April in the highlands and Southern Sulawesi. The Northern areas can have rain at any time of year. The peak season between May and October. The best time to visit is May to July where is is not wet a not too hot.
Diving is best April/ May and Sept/Oct. Water temperature is 25/26 °C If you would like to see seahorses head out between March and October. Avoid the rainy season of November to April.