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Sumatra - various questions

Sumatra - flowers, route Padang - Medan, Kubu tribe, traditional dance or singing, etc.
10 years ago, July 6th 2010 No: 1 Msg: #114998  
N Posts: 12
Hello fellow travellers,

im new to this forum but not to travelling. Despite this, I have some questions i need to resolve about Sumatra for you.

as im counting down days to my departure for Indonesia, im getting anxious to put all my plans together. I will spend approximately 14 days in Sumatra.


1) I am attracted to the idea of seeing the Kubu tribe in Sumatra. How much time should i reserve for this activity? I was advised that i'll need a guide from Kerinci to see them. How much can expect to pay? Has anyone actually tried this?

2) I would like to see flowers Rafflesia Arnoldi and Amorphophallus Titanum. I am aware that one the places where I can see these flowers is Kerinci National Park. In what other places in Sumatra can i for sure see the flowers? The thing is that i am still thinking if I will ever visit Kerinci NP, or I will give it a miss.

3) I'm keen to see and some exhibits of the local traditional dance or singing performance. I've heard of Minangkabau performing arts centre in Bukittinggi open on thursdays. Is it worth? I look for nothing organized or posed only for tourists; rather something that is sort of ad hoc. Are there any other places in Sumatra to experience this?

4) When in Padang, how long in total does it take to get from there to Medan? To understand this, I dont want to make any trips or long breaks on the way there since i just want to absorb the countryside and the journey this way; ...thus missing out on the Lake Toba, etc.. My objective is to get to Medan as soon as possible and then proceed to Pulau Banyak islands.

5) Upon this, what is the best possible way to Medan? The cheapest option of transport is preferable. Could you please specify exactly what modes of transport should i take? im used to a rough solo travelling, so i don't mind using slow public buses (or even hitchhiking and individual transport if necessary). I'm open to any suggestions and if you say its not worth or its no spectacle, i may skip this route and will fly direct to Medan, actually...

thanks a lot

Reply to this

10 years ago, July 9th 2010 No: 2 Msg: #115271  
for the flowers, you cannot see Rafflesia or Amorphophallus "for sure" anywhere -- they flower unpredictably and the actual blooms only last a few days before dying and rotting away, so you just need to hope to be at the right place at the right time. The best place to try for them though is Bukittinggi. There is a Rafflesia Reserve right outside town which is easy to reach and both species are found there, but as I said you'll only see them if you just happen to be there when the flowers are out.

These are my blog entries about Bukittinggi with reference to Rafflesia and Amorphophallus:

there are other entries there too about Mt. Kerinci, Gunung Leuser, etc (I'm a birdwatcher so most of the writings are about the wildlife) Reply to this

10 years ago, July 10th 2010 No: 3 Msg: #115333  
One post deleted. Please remember that tour guides and travel agents are not allowed to post on the forums.
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10 years ago, July 24th 2010 No: 4 Msg: #116378  
N Posts: 12
thank scary for your suggestion and invaluable in your blog
read all your entries regarding indo and gotta say: well done

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10 years ago, August 30th 2010 No: 5 Msg: #118427  
please contact me a while you in medan . Reply to this

10 years ago, September 1st 2010 No: 6 Msg: #118492  
N Posts: 12
thnanks andi for the input, but I am off Medan and currently absorbing the last couple of days in indonesia Reply to this

10 years ago, September 2nd 2010 No: 7 Msg: #118617  
i have to say good idea to decide make a travel to Sumatra island, beautiful island rich mountains, countryside, flower (include Rafflesia). you can find Rafflesia in Kerinci NP. so i suggest, better you start from south Sumatra (Kerinci NP perhaps) - Bukittinggi west Sumatra - Medan north Sumatra. you can go by bus and jump to another bus for your main destination. sure if you like adventure, its will be very interesting. i like it too..😊

for another interesting place in Sumatra, you can visit Bukittinggi. there is worth to visit. you can stay in Bukittinggi but you can make trips each day to some interesting place. for example; Harau valley in Payakumbuh, but there is so touristic spot. you can go to Harau valley by public transportation from Aur kuning bus station, from this bus station you can visit Lake Maninjau with a beautiful panoramas. and you visit equator line in Bonjol village. just tell to the co-driver from the bus about your destination. easy and cheap.

last time i make this travel also but i go with guest. i'm as tour guide for individual travel, so i'm not bring my guest to tourist spot as travel agent. i suggest if you make travel alone, better you have contact with local people. some of local people not speak English and even bahasa Indonesia. they speak by local language. but dont worry a local people are friendly. my guest always make communication with a local people, some time playing backgammon and smoke cigar, drink a local coffee or tea. we go to our destination by local transportation.

Minangkabau performing arts center in Bukittinggi open on thursdays. Is it worth? we dont go to and visit Minangkabau performing arts center, there is touristic place, but if you interesting for art center that is another reason.

well, for 14 days i think you can make a long journey in Sumatra island. the last destination in Medan north Sumatra. from there you can flight back to your connecting flight Jakarta or Singapore.

enjoy your travel and explore Sumatra island.

Hans Reply to this

10 years ago, September 3rd 2010 No: 8 Msg: #118623  
N Posts: 12
i have finished my travel in indonesia and am currently in Malaysia. I am about to write a comprehensive report about my journey and post it on this forum. Thank you all for your tips Reply to this

10 years ago, September 3rd 2010 No: 9 Msg: #118629  

We would love to hear about your journey but please post it on your blog site, not on the forum.

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