Is there a possibility to book the bus ticket for this long journey online? I haven't found any website to do so? We are planning on travelling with the Bintang Primus bus from Makassar to Torajaland/Rantepao, stay there for four nights, and than take another bus to Manado in the north. Is this at all possible?
Indonesia is so far not good for online booking, exept for some low cost airlines (i know hotels witch you can get 50% cheaper if you don´t book online). The not rather uncomfortable bus from Rantepao to Manado will take about 3 days, you should make a break als in Palu / Dongala, or more interresting a boat from Ampana to Togian islands, then to Gorantolo (only 2 boats per week for this part). A bit more comfortable then buses are Kijangs, 7 seat vans, about 30-40% more expensive
imho you'd better go back to Makassar (also known as Ujung Pandang) and take a fligth to Manado. The bus would stop at airport if you ask, it's normal.
I did so, you'll arrive quite early morning to be able to take first flight to Manado, I did so.
In the past there was a [one way] trecking of days from Toraja to North.. I don't know, mid-Sulawesi is not a good area for tourists.
Hello, thanks for the information. So it is possible to take a bus from Ranepao to Palu or Ampana, travelling should be one day? And how easy is it to take the boot to Togian island an from there go to Manado?
You don't say how long you have for your travels - public transport on Sulawesi is incredibly slow - largely because of the roads and the mountainous routes they must pass through.
The trip from Makassar to Rantepeo is fine - plenty of comfortable buses, 8 hour trip that can be done either overnight or during the day. Toraja itself is fascinating.
From Rantepeo to Manado is a long, long bus trip. I agree with others, if you have the time, break up the trip. From Rantepeo to Ampana, it is a long day of travelling and you'd probably have to stay overnight before getting the ferry to the Togian Islands. If you are travelling with others and if you have the funds, I'd recommend breaking that up into two days - stay a night in Tentana (or Pendolo), get up early and go to Ampana in time for the ferry.
Stay a few days on the Togians and then get the ferry to Gorontalo. From Gorontalo there are buses to Manado. Again, if you have time, stay a night or two in Tomohon - it is quite different to other parts of Sulawesi, volcanoes to climb, and you'll find interesting (!) cuisine in the markets.
There is not really any need to book buses a long way in advance. For example, you should have no difficulty booking onward transport from Rantepeo once you arrive there.
I have really enjoyed two trips to Sulawesi. If you have time take a look at some of my tips about Sulawesi that I have recently updated - they may give you some more advise/ideas.
I hope you have a great time.
In the Rantepeo area, a great guide is Mr Yulius Tandirerung who can be contacted on 62-813-5519-4677 or [email].
I've used him twice - both for Toraja and south Sulawesi and others have recommended him too.
Bus from Ranepao to Ampana should take about 20 hours, Pendolo was nice but the accomoadion there was destroid (maybe now new?), it was also difficult to get a place in a passing throu bus (no problem getting seats in places where the bus starts, nothing starts in Pendolo, from Tentana only to Poso).
Weather permiting there are every day small boats from Ampana to Wakai / Togian (boats from the Kedidiri resorts will wait there, Paradise resort is connected with Oasis hotel in Ampana). The boat to Gorantolo (coming from Ampana) is bigger and runs also in bad weather.
From Gorontalo there are buses to Manado, but Kijangs are in this case better, in both town the bus terminal has a unconvenient location, but Kijangs will wait at the pier and bring you to the hotel, take about 10 hours
I travelling to Makkasar in Febuary 2011.
I looking forward to rent a car to ravel to rural side.
Can Anyone advice me the rental rate and where the interesting