Blogs from Bukittinggi, Sumatra, Indonesia, Asia - page 2

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Asia » Indonesia » Sumatra » Bukittinggi June 17th 2013

Just two nights at serene Maninjau, and it was time to move on again, I am on a schedule after all. You might ask, a schedule for what? Since I don't have any concrete, immediate life plans anyway. And that would be a good question, for another day, but I digress. In any case, I do have a visit to the much larger, and more famous Lake Toba penned in imminently, and so I took the 1.5h bus ride up the 44 hairpins again, and back to the highland city of Bukittingi from whence I came. Lying some 900m in altitude, Bukittingi boasts of agreeable temperate weather all year round, and to some extent reminded my of another highland city Baguio in Luzon, North Philippines, where I was a couple of months ago. Except Bukittingi's quite ... read more
Jam Gadang
Fort de Kock
"The Bridge"

Asia » Indonesia » Sumatra » Bukittinggi March 18th 2013

George Town (Malaysia) - Bukittinggi (Sumatra, Indonesia): 4th - 17th March 2013 Distance covered so far (since 20 Dec): 5654 km Imagine that you have popped into a quiet UK town to do some shopping. Today, however, you are 8 foot tall, have chosen to wear a hat that has a neon flashing sign reading “LOOK AT ME”, and you are wearing a suit made entirely out of daffodils. Furthermore, instead of arriving in town conventionally (by walking, or by car, for example), you have trotted into town astride a rhinoceros. The two of us are putting on the equivalent of this spectacle in Sumatra. We have found ourselves in places that receive no visitors, and quite frankly... we look a bit odd. AND we are travelling in a bizarre fashion (bike). We get A LOT ... read more
Stage Map - Northern Sumatra, Indonesia
Equator - True and False
Leaving Malaysia for Sumatra

Asia » Indonesia » Sumatra » Bukittinggi November 7th 2012

As we headed to the town of Bukkittingi, we passed dozens of pickup trucks packed with men and dogs, heading in the opposite direction.. This was curious because it was a Muslim area, and I thought that Islam forbids people to even touch dogs because they are "unclean". (Maybe because they lick their balls. Although that's only to take the taste of the dog food away). I asked our driver about all these dogs, and apparently they are for hunting wild boars. It's not strictly permitted under Islam, but the dogs are kept because the boars damage the farmers crops. Once caught, the boars are not eaten by the men but given to the dogs as a reward. Whereas the hunting of boar was once a necessity, it has now become a national sport. Every Sunday, ... read more
What? Am I covered in mud again?
Say CHEESE!
Steep and Slippery

Asia » Indonesia » Sumatra » Bukittinggi February 23rd 2011

Having travelled from Rantapau in Sulawesi to Padang in Sumatra, by way of Makkassar and Kuala Lumpur, and enjoying not a jot of sleep in the 56 hours that the journey took to complete, I began to have serious doubts as regarded my choice of location for our much needed rest and recuperation as we approached Bukittinggi in the cramped rear seats of a battered opelet. The road had become entirely blocked by smoke spewing vehicles, and the view of battered concrete mobile phone shops and dilapidated bike repair joints was far too ubiquitously Asian to have me believe that Bukkitingi would prove to be the cool highland retreat I had imagined and desired. We were unceremoniously ejected from our opelet in the middle of a noisy, confused and confusing out of town bus-come-opelet station, from ... read more
Traditional house on the edge of Danau Maninjau
The shit coffe just after being pooped by a civet cat
Waterfall

Asia » Indonesia » Sumatra » Bukittinggi July 9th 2010

So, after Berastagi and its volcano, we went down to Lake Toba, a few public buses later, squeezed into the back of minivans with various little Indonesian children climbing over us, and then a short ferry ride we made it to the island in the middle of the lake. All was ok, though it rained a lot and so took away some of the splendor of the lake, but a night was enough and we decided to get ourselves down to Bukittinggi. Just south of the Equator. We found out that all the buses were full for three days and so eventually settled on a taxi company that does the trip for 220,000 per person. 8pm the guy told us. Be half an hour early. So we wandered around the mess of Parapat for a few ... read more

Asia » Indonesia » Sumatra » Bukittinggi May 28th 2010

Checked out and went on net to waste a few hours then had an early tea, picked up our big bags and grabbed a taxi to bus station. After waiting about half an hour at the bus ticket office we were asked by the office bloke (on behalf of a giggling couple in their late teens) if he could video us saying a special birthday message to their friend.....we did though we felt like complete prats. It went something like 'Happy Birthday Dendy, wishing you all the best on your special day', but that apparently didn't cause us enough embarrassment so they asked for a retake with an additional sentence in Indonesian that they'd wrote out for us, god only (and the group giggling) knows what we said but I hope their friend is easy pleased ... read more

Asia » Indonesia » Sumatra » Bukittinggi May 27th 2010

Checked out, we've spent about 45GBP each during our 4 days here which isn't bad considering that inc. accommodation, all our food and laundry. Ali was going to Bukittinggi today too so we walked with him up to the main road and waited till a car stopped that had free seats. The 3 of us were squashed into the back seat with our huge bags! To make matters worse Ali got travel sick so he spent much of the journey looking sick or being sick into a carrier bag whilst I rubbed his back hahah. Thankfully travelling with a local definitely makes things cheaper. We paid 40,000 to get to Lake Maninjau and just 15,000 to get back :) and we were dropped off right at the door to hotel Asia where we said bye to ... read more

Asia » Indonesia » Sumatra » Bukittinggi May 22nd 2010

Last night me and Suse got a ridiculous amount of sleep, broken up by many different sources of noise during the night. At 4am about 4 mosques began their prayers awaking anyone within a 20 mile radius, this continued for what seemed like an age. At 7.30 a man with a microphone (we think selling stuff) decided to blast out some repetitive message into the streets (which he did every few hours). This of course got all the local dogs barking and made it impossible to sleep. Despite all this early morning commotion we did manage a great sleep. Once finally up and ready we left our bags at reception (changing rooms) and headed off for breakfast. After a yummy serving of banana porridge we headed back to Bukitinggi canyon where we scaled the steep steps ... read more
Followed by monkeys
Canyon 1
Canyon 2

Asia » Indonesia » Sumatra » Bukittinggi May 21st 2010

Checked out and left bags at hotel while we tried to figure out how to get to Bukittinggi. Then the best thing happened we walked into a tour place and the guy in there said 100,000 for the two of you, then he came with us to help carry our bags to the lovely air-con 4WD he had! There were 2 other women in the car with us and a teenage boy (it was a 7 seater and we picked another woman up on the way), we thought maybe we had invaded a family trip or helping to fund it :p. Journey was stress free, only hard part was the toilet stop where I had to wee in a room with gutters in it, a bush out back would have been nicer! Scenery was fantastic, jungle, ... read more
Opulets
Opulets
Opulets

Asia » Indonesia » Sumatra » Bukittinggi February 21st 2010

I woke early, a glance out the porthole window showed the advancing arc of Bungus Bay. The morning mist evaporating to reveal volcanic mountains, and a scattering of tiny fishing boats returning to port with their catch. Leaving these sights and our aquatic transport behind we turned inland and caught a predictably overfilled minibus north to Bukittinggi. Surrounded by coffee plantations, volcanoes, richly diverse forest, crater lakes and waterfalls the town of Bukittinggi is certainly well located for exploring. The thriving market town itself also impressed us, it turned out to have something for everyone. But before any of that we had to find some accommodation. Hotel Rajawali was a quirky ramshackle hostel, and Ulrich the German owner was as scatty as Basil Fawlty. When we arrived he animatedly flitted about the foyer imparting his wisdom ... read more
Hotel Rajawali
Bukittinggi Street
Padang Food




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