Stumble Into Indonesia's Unseen Places
Submitted by mumunmumun on 9 April 2015 • Itinerary
Manado is located on the tip of the Sulawesi’s north peninsula. Many might know it for Bunaken, the Marine Park, but Manado has a vast spectrum of interesting things up its sleeves. This trip to Manado was a lot more satisfying, having to travel about 12 days around the area. So, what did we see and do?
Attention all divers! Bunaken Marine Park is an underwater park packed with walls that drop down to oblivion. The walls are carpets of life with organisms filling each nook available. Turtles, schools of fish, nudibranches and abundant soft corals would be an endless sight. It’s also a great reef for beginner divers. With so many dive centers and suitable dive spots, it’s also a place for those that want to do a Try Dive.
For more information on the diving read more here.
You can also dive with the Minahasa Dive Center located in the Hotel Tateli Manado. They make packages to dive, which include lunch, transport to the Bunaken Islands, and oxygen.
Tomohon Market or Pasar Tomohon has established its name amongst travelers as one of the more ‘interesting’ places to visit. The market has a range of unique produce compared to many other markets out there. Hmm… just to spoil little of the story, bats and snakes are the norm of the market. let’s just say it’s worth the visit if you’re into cultures of the world. Manado’s protein is a culture on its own.
Curious? For more of it, click on to this link.
If there’s one thing you can’t find on a plate of the Manado people, it’s these little creatures. It might be because they’re too small of a creature, hence less meat, or they’re too darn cute. Tarsiers of Tangkoko Nature Reserve are adorable and worth walking into the lush forest of North Sulawesi, on the south coast of the peninsula.
Want to see the smallest primate of the world? Check out our story about them here.
Off the south coast of the peninsula, just 15 minutes from Bitung city by boat, is Lembeh Island. This island is worldly known as the muck dive paradise, where creepy crawly underwater critters roam amongst the seemingly barren sandy bottom. Looking closely, we could see the odd-looking sea community. It’s like a treasure hunt when diving here. Really!
Read more of our story here.
Manado food is underrated for unknown reasons. The fresh yet rich tasting dishes should be on the food map in bold. It’s so good and one of our favorites, we even chose it once in a while when in Jakarta.
We show more love about Manado food in this post.
The coffee culture of Manado has a page on its own for us. Jarod or ‘Jalan Roda’ is an alley of local traditional coffee shop, selling side by side, catering to people with caffeine fix. It’s a meeting place, mostly by men to talk about politics, the future of the nation, and gossip. Allegedly. Nothing fancy, just good coffee, snacks, and good company.
Read more of our story here.
Have a peek on some of the budget accommodations around Manado. There are both old and new affordable accommodations around the city center, which probably could help you save money for more activities around town and about.
Read more here.
Of course, you can opt to stay in a nicer hotel like the Hotel Tateli Manado. It’s located just on the outskirts of the city but in a nice coastal area with a beach front. With air-coned rooms with AC, a real resort feel, and a pool, Tateli Beach Resort Manado would be nice beachy getaway.
Jl. Raya Tanawangko, Desa Tateli,
Kecamatan Mandolang, Manado,
Phone:+62 431 825888
The fastest and most convenient way to get around is surely by renting a car. Car rentals were about IDR 750,000 per day (2014), including gas. If not, there are taxis with running meters that you can use.
Another alternative for getting around town would be the public mini buses or mikro. These cars have a reputation on its own amongst Indonesians being one of the loudest and pimped out for a swag ride. The most prominent trait would be their unbelievably-loud music, which is said to attract more passengers. Manado people love to sing, so I get why speakers are a main attraction. The upside is you can sing along.
The downside would be, screaming and shouting asking the driver to stop at your destination.
Fares are at least IDR 4,000 / pax (2014).
To get to Lembeh, you can hop on a public bus from Paal 2 (read: pal dua) heading to Bitung city. Fares are IDR 9,000/pax (2014). From here, you can book transport from the dive center located on Lembeh Island or work out something with local fishermen.