Saturday, February 25, 2017

SAMOSIR - THE ISLAND IN THE MIDDLE OF THE LAKE [PART 2]



30th JANUARY 2017 ~ After the small village, we were taken to this small plot of land where there were old tombs of the Batak kings of the past. Visitor is required to wear this colourful piece of cloth across the body, which is called Ulos, something customary I suppose.






Batak people believe that after many years of someone's death, he/she would reach a stage when the soul is purified. Then, people dig the grace, collect all the bones, clean them and the later the bones will be stored in a special place near the grave. Even though many of them are Christians, this tradition is still practised until today. We could see these huge graves just beside the houses when we were in the car from Parapat to Berastagi.




















We did not spend a long time on the island even though there were many other places that could be seen. The itinerary provided by the tourist guide for Samosir was quite limited and I had seen people seeing more things there. If you plan to go there, you should try to explore more of the island, either by renting a motorbike or by cars. (Cars can be brought into the island on a special ferry)







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Friday, February 24, 2017

SAMOSIR - THE ISLAND IN THE MIDDLE OF THE LAKE [PART 1]


30th January 2017 ~ Right in the middle of Lake Toba, lie an island which is bigger than Singapore, Samosir Island.It is the fifth largest lake island in the world. The visit to Lake Toba will not be complete without stopping by at Samosir Island, to see and learn the lifestyle of the Batak people.


Majority of the Batak people here are Christians but they still practice many of their traditions.

As usual, we were greeted by rows of stalls selling souvenirs and the sellers calling the passers-by to stop and have a look at the items being sold.










We went to this place where we could see traditional Batak houses on display. We could not enter the houses though.
























We then went to visit the tombs of the past Batak kings.

TO BE CONTINUED...

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Thursday, February 23, 2017

CRUISING ON THE LEGENDARY LAKE TOBA


30th JANUARY 2017 ~ When I was younger, in the 80's, one's greatest achievement could be their ability to travel to Medan and Lake Toba. Lake Toba would be THE must-visit place at that time, when not everyone could fly. I was finally cruising on the legendary lake many, many years later and I still considered it as an achievement for myself.


We were taking the boat cruise on the lake at about 9:00 a.m. to get to the island in the middle of it, called Samosir Island.




Here are some interesting facts about Lake Toba from Wikipedia:
  • Lake Toba is actually a large volume of water filling in a supervolcano caldera (crater) after a very huge explosion when the content (the hot magma) had been emptied.
  • It is the largest volcanic lake in the world.
  • It is 100km long, 30km wide and 500m deep.






























We were a bit unlucky as the sky that morning was cloudy and the surroundings were foggy. I bet the photos would turn up more beautiful if there was sunshine and blue sky. However, the air was cool and pure, and this would be the place to live healthily without any pollution.










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