Toraja funeral rites & the majestic volcanoes of Java - Azimuth Adventure Travel Ltd
Culture

Toraja funeral rites & the majestic volcanoes of Java

This tour allows you to discover all the cultural riches of the Toraja people, nicknamed "The Mountain People", as well as climbing Java's not-to-be-missed volcanoes.

In Sulawesi, it is the originality of their culture and their impressive funeral ceremonies that have made the Toraja famous. The distinctive architecture of their boat-shaped houses and the fantastic landscapes of rice paddies will show you just what a land of encounters, sacred rites and beauty the Toraja are…

In Java, you will...

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Day 1Welcome to Sulawesi

Day 1Welcome to Sulawesi

  • Welcome at Makassar airport and transfer to hotel.

  • Makassar is the capital of the province of South Sulawesi on the Makassar Strait. In the middle of the afternoon, depending on your time of arrival in Makassar, visit the fish market, an essential meeting place, as fish is an important food in the culinary culture of the Indonesians. Transfer to the port of Paotere to admire the magnificent wooden schooners.

  • The tour ends with a visit to Fort Rotterdam, built in 1545 by Raja Tunipalangga: originally, it was nothing more than an earthen rampart known as a "makassar". It was not until 1634 that these were reinforced with stone walls, at the request of Sultan Alaudin. The fort was later (in 1667) conquered by the Dutch and renamed "Rotterdam" (Speelman's birthplace). Today, the fort has been fully restored and even houses a small museum tracing its history.

  • Evening welcome dinner. An opportunity to get to know your accompanying team.

Meal and accommodations

Dinner: Included

Accommodation: M-Regency Hotel

Day 2To Toraja Country

Day 2To Toraja Country

  • Morning transfer to the Maros region (once discovered by Alfred Wallace), renowned for its rice fields and karst peaks. Take a short walk in the surrounding area and explore a cave dating back nearly 39,000 years, with its many cave paintings. Your guide will also take you on a dugout canoe trip on a river near which many species of birds live. Meet the local population, who live in houses built on stilts. At the end of the morning, transfer to the seaside town of Pare Pare, then head up the Sa'Dan river towards the mountains, through some magnificent scenery. The plain landscape is quickly replaced by thick coconut forest. Stop en route at Bambapuang, where you can enjoy a view of a so-called "erotic" mountain. Arrive in Rantepao (the capital of Toraja country) in the early evening.

Meal and accommodations

Breakfast: M-Regency Hotel

Lunch: Included

Dinner: Included

Accommodation: Toraja Misiliana Hotel

40m
40m
Kete Kesu

Day 3Funerary Art

Day 3Funerary Art

  • Today's programme begins with a visit to the Lemo burial site. This is a rock face into which balconies have been carved, housing numerous figurines known as Tau Tau. Transfer then to the royal tombs of Suaya and continue on foot to another interesting site: Tampangg'alo. In the afternoon, visit the Londa caves at the foot of a large cliff, home to coffins and scattered bones. Easy hike to Kete Kusu village (famous for its wood carvings and rice granaries), through rice fields, villages & bamboo forest. You'll also discover troglodytic tombs and other, older, suspended tombs.

  • Transfer then to the royal tombs of Suaya and continue on foot to another interesting site: Tampangg'alo. In the afternoon, visit the Londa caves at the foot of a large cliff, home to coffins and scattered bones.

  • Easy hike to Kete Kusu village (famous for its wood carvings and rice granaries), through rice fields, villages & bamboo forest. You'll also discover troglodytic tombs and other, older, suspended tombs.

  • Note: the course of the three-day programme exploring Toraja country may be adapted if a funeral festival is taking place in the region at this time. Your guide will take you to attend this ceremony and introduce you to the family of the deceased. For your information, no rituals are organised in Toraja country for tourists: everything is absolutely authentic.

Meal and accommodations

Breakfast: Toraja Misiliana Hotel

Lunch: Included

Dinner: Included

Accommodation: Toraja Misiliana Hotel

Day 4Meeting

Day 4Meeting

  • In the morning, visit the village of Bori, famous for its megaliths carved in the shape of tombs, then Palawa (the largest in the region), and finally Sa'dan, renowned for its traditional textiles.

  • Transfer to the wild north of the Toraja region, offering magnificent panoramic views at 1,400 m altitude. Easy walk around Batutumonga through rice fields, traditional villages and bamboo forest.

  • Later, hike from Lokomata (where the tombs are carved out of a giant rock) to Mariri, where you will have the chance to meet children on their way home from school and stop off at some of the cutlery-making workshops.

Meal and accommodations

Breakfast: Toraja Misiliana Hotel

Lunch: Included

Dinner: Included

Accommodation: Toraja Misiliana Hotel

Day 5Rantepao

Day 5Rantepao

  • Visit the colourful Rantepao market, where many buffaloes and pigs are on sale. Then it's time to attend a funeral ceremony (see "Note" above). In the afternoon, transfer to Pemancar, where you begin a lovely walk towards Salu, through rice fields and plantations (mainly coffee and cocoa).

Meal and accommodations

Breakfast: Toraja Misiliana Hotel

Lunch: Included

Dinner: Included

Accommodation: Toraja Misiliana Hotel

5h-210km
Sengkang

Day 6To Sengpang

Day 6To Sengpang

  • In the morning, we travel to the charming little town of Sengkang, which stretches along the banks of the Walanae river. In the afternoon, visit the traditional silk weaving workshops.

Meal and accommodations

Breakfast: Toraja Misiliana Hotel

Lunch: Included

Dinner: Included

Accommodation: BBC Hotel

Sengkang

Day 7On the waters of Lake Tempe

Day 7On the waters of Lake Tempe

  • In the early morning, transfer to the shores of Lake Tempe and board motorised canoes for an extraordinary discovery of this marshy lake, home to numerous species of birds and an astonishing lakeside village. This is your chance to immerse yourself in the habits and customs of the villagers, for whom time seems to have no hold.

Meal and accommodations

Breakfast: BBC Hotel

Lunch: Included

Dinner: Included

Accommodation: BBC Hotel

Day 8See you soon in Sulawesi

Day 8See you soon in Sulawesi

  • Transfer to Makassar airport and flight to Yogyakarta.

  • Lion Air / Makassar – Yogyakarta / 1810-1910 Meet at Yogyakarta airport by your guide and transfer to your hot̂ el. The rest of the day is free. In the evening, welcome dinner, an opportunity to get to know your accompanying team.

Meal and accommodations

Breakfast: BBC Hotel

Lunch: Included

Dinner: Included

Accommodation: Gallery Pawirotaman Hotel or The Phoenix Hotel

Day 9Yogyakarta, Cultural Capital

Day 9Yogyakarta, Cultural Capital

  • The morning is devoted to visiting Yogyakarta, the cultural capital of Java, and in particular the area around the Sultan's Palace, built in 1756, where life is good. Your city walk will take you to Taman Sari, known in the days of the Dutch colonial empire as the "Water Palace", and then to the puppet and batik workshops. At the end of the morning, you head for the Ratu Boko temple, perched on the Gunung Kidul hills overlooking the Prambanan plain.

  • You then begin a short hike to the Hindu temple of Prambanan, through forest, traditional villages and rice fields. You then visit the Prambanan temple complex, and in particular Loro Jonggrang, a sumptuous 47-metre-high temple dedicated to the goddess Siva. It is considered́ to be the most elegant and breathtaking Hindu temple on the island of Java. Possibility (optional) of attending the Ramayana show.

  • Return to the hotel in the early or mid-evening.

Meal and accommodations

Breakfast: Gallery Pawirotaman Hotel or The Phoenix Hotel

Lunch: Included

Accommodation: Gallery Pawirotaman Hotel or The Phoenix Hotel

Day 10Rice fields of Java and the temple of Borobudur

Day 10Rice fields of Java and the temple of Borobudur

  • In the early morning, transfer to the banks of the Kulon Progo river, where you will enjoy a pleasant countryside start in a small Javanese village, from where you will discover the surrounding countryside by bicycle (Dutch). You'll have a gentle introduction to the Javanese countryside, and will make a few stops in the surrounding villages, where you'll have the chance to observe the local handicrafts. In the middle of the afternoon, transfer to the temple of Borobudur. Return to the hotel in the early evening.

Meal and accommodations

Breakfast: Gallery Pawirotaman Hotel or The Phoenix Hotel

Lunch: Included

Accommodation: Gallery Pawirotaman Hotel or The Phoenix Hotel

4h-12km
7h-290km
Tumpang

Day 11The last bastion of Hinduism

Day 11The last bastion of Hinduism

  • Morning transfer to the Sukuh temple, the last bastion of Hinduism in Central Java in the face of the spread of Islam. The temple's original iconography, including phallic figures and large turtle-shaped tables, suggests the existence of initiation and even orgiastic rituals. You then set off on a walk towards the village of Tawangmangu, on the slopes of the Lawu volcano. This walk is an opportunity to discover some of the plant species found in this region, as well as admiring superb panoramic views of the surrounding pine forest and high-altitude plantations. You finish your walk by crossing the Tawangmangu park, which leads you to a superb waterfall (Grojogan Sewu) in the middle of a tropical forest inhabited by a large community of monkeys. In the afternoon, transfer to Tumpang, near Malang, at the western foot of the Bromo-Tengger-Semeru massif.

Meal and accommodations

Breakfast: Gallery Pawirotaman Hotel or The Phoenix Hotel

Lunch: Included

Dinner: Rani Homestay or The Shalimar

Accommodation: Rani Homestay or The Shalimar

Tumpang
2h
Tumpak Sewu
2h
Tumpang

Day 12Magnificent landscapes

Day 12Magnificent landscapes

  • Morning departure for the Lumajang region, skirting the southern flanks of the majestic Semeru volcano. You will then reach the Tumpak Sewu waterfall ("Thousand Waterfalls" in Javanese). As you descend into the gorge (on a slippery and sometimes steep path), you will feel the force of the hundreds of streams as they "plunge" over 100m. Seen from above, the beauty of this waterfall seems ephemeral as the fine mist soaks everything in its path. No wonder, then, that a photo of Tumpak Sewu with Mt Semeru in the background won the award for "best aerial shot" in 2019. And, if you're also taking your camera equipment with you, remember to protect it from moisture. Return to Tumpang in the late afternoon.

Meal and accommodations

Breakfast: Rani Homestay or The Shalimar

Lunch: Included

Dinner: Rani Homestay or The Shalimar

Accommodation: Rani Homestay or The Shalimar

Tumpang
2h-35km
Cemorolawang

Day 13Spectacular Mt Bromo caldera

Day 13Spectacular Mt Bromo caldera

  • In the early morning, 4x4 vehicles will take you to the Tengger region, where the famous Mt Bromo (2329 m) spits out its volutes and the surrounding caldera forms a gigantic sea of sand. On this journey, you pass through the stunning forest of the Tengger-Bromo-Semeru National Park, skirting part of the crest of the Bromo volcano caldera, before descending to the sea of sand to reach the village of Cemorolawang (located on one of the opposite crests). Mt Bromo is the most revered́ of the Tengger Hindu people who live in the region. Climb the Bromo volcano in the early afternoon. You'll be able to admire its crater resembling a steaming cauldron. It's easy to understand why the Javanese once considered this place to be the entrance to purgatory.

  • You then make your way to the summit of Mount Pananjakan (2,775m) to witness a fabulous spectacle. You will watch the world set against a lunar backdrop, with a breathtaking view of Mount Bromo, its sea of sand, and the Semeru volcano, both of which emit thick fumaroles. Unique! Return to the hotel in the early evening.

Meal and accommodations

Breakfast: Rani Homestay or The Shalimar

Lunch: Included

Accommodation: Lava View Lodges or Jiwa Jawa Hotel

Cemorolawang

Day 14East of Java

Day 14East of Java

  • Early morning transfer to the outskirts of Kawah Ijen. After settling into your hotel, your guide will take you to some superb rice terraces, from where you will begin a pleasant walk through traditional villages and other plantations (fruit, spices, etc.). Return to the hotel in the late afternoon.

Meal and accommodations

Breakfast: Lava View Lodges or Jiwa Jawa Hotel

Lunch: Included

Accommodation: Teras Ijen Hotel

1h 30m
1h 30m
Departure

Day 15Green Crater

Day 15Green Crater

  • In the early morning, you set off again in a 4x4 towards the slopes of Kawah Ijen ("green crater" in old Javanese), which you can easily climb in the company of the men who extract sulphur every day from the edge of the largest acid lake in the world.

  • These real "convicts" carry around 80 kg of ore on their backs for around 15 km to the processing plant! You then witness the weighing and the various employment contracts. A very powerful and striking image of your journey.

  • In the late morning, transfer to Ketapang port or Banyuwangi airport.

Meal and accommodations

Breakfast: Teras Ijen Hotel

Lunch: Included

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