Makasaar City Tour,
Tana Toraja, South Sulawesi
Info : Makasaar City Tour
Described by Joseph Conrad as 'the prettiest and perhaps, cleanest looking of all towns in the islands', Makassar is certainly a delight to the foreign visitor. As a port town and provincial capital, Makassar has historically dominated Sulawesi's trade with the outside world and is the gateway to its unique culture. It was an important stop in the spice trade and was of great interest of the Dutch colonial forces who wanted to monopolise the flow of goods.
Various sites of cultural importance dominate the city. Fort Rotterdam, for example, was built by the Portuguese in the 16th century and was later taken over by the Dutch. It was here that the Javanese Prince, and national hero, Diponegoro was imprisoned in the struggles for power across the Javan War in the early 19th century. Later in WWII, it was used by the Japanese as a prisoner of war camp. Now a museum, you can walk through history and learn about what makes Makassar the city it is today.
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It was a little disconcerting to be met by a stranger who took our passports and $50 with the instruction of "wait here for me". However, the fact that he then fast-tracked up through customer and immigration was amazing - we felt like rock-stars!