The largest volcanic lake in the world

Sumatra is the sixth largest island in the world, divided by equator almost half-and-half, hides a wonderful lake Toba in the north. More than 70 thousand years ago the super volcano created giant caldera of 640 sq km, which is now full of water and known as Lake Toba with the Samosir Island in it.  Some facts: the lake is 87 kilometers long and 31 kilometers wide, and 525 meters at its deepest point in Haranggaol village.

To get the lake is better by the road from Medan to Parapat through Pematang Siantar  [where you can try something interesting], but not by bumpy road from Brastagi [the road is also twice longer]. Medan is the third largest city in Indonesia after Jakarta and Surabaya. It is also a capital of North Sumatra province (Sumatra Utara) and the largest city in Sumatra. All necessary tickets to this destination you could purchase through our company

 


 
Medan is quite modern city where are a lot of motorcycles and becak (auto rickshaw) and huge malls. One of the most famous and popular tourist destination is Maimoon Palace, home of the Sultan of Deli, built in 1888 at Jalan Brig. Jend. Katamso.
There are 30 rooms and the whole area of the building together with the garden is 2772 sq m. Architecture and decoration are a great mix of Indian, Islamic, Italian and Spainish elements.
 
This throne is used for crowned ceremony.
 
So,  it takes approx 4 hours from Medan to Parapat by car. The driveway to Parapat will charm by its views to the lake.

 


 
Parapat is a small but very crowded city full of guest houses and hotels. All beauty of the lake and the interesting cultural heritage should be searched in the island of Samosir in the middle of the lake. To get there is easy; just use a ferry from Adjibata (every three hours) or a boat from the main market of Parapat (every hour or more often). It takes one hour by the ferry and half an hour by the boat.

Cold nights, concave roofs, orange sunsets, happy batak people and carved ornaments - are the main association with this magic place.
 

 
 

 
Batak people who used to practice ritual cannibalism long time ago, now are protestant. "The Last Supper" by Leonardo da Vinci  could be seen in almost each house of Batak  family, and every Sunday they go to the nearest HKBP (Huria Kristen Batak Protestan = Christian  community of  Protestant Batak) church for a two hours service in festive clothes on. There is no any mosque in the island but every 200-500 m are Protestant churches with the sign of HKBP.

Traditional Batak house has concave roof  and carved ornaments of red, white and black paints.


 
There is some talk that long time ago, the red paint was non other than blood of one of the family member. But it is just a story, and now it is even hard to find new houses built traditionally cause there are some masters who knows all the secrets.
 
Samosir has two waterfalls - one is Sipisopiso, 120 m, and not so high Binanalom.
 
 

 
If to drive to Pangururan and pass the chanal built by the Dutch, which nowadays separats the island of Samosir with the island of Sumatra, you will get a wondeful panaramic view of the lake. The road to the left  is going up to the mountains  and  than to Berastagi and Medan. The road to the right is going to the hot spring.

This area has many swimming pools which are collected hydrosulphuric water from the hot spring. The water is very hot but it still  ok to bath after 10 minutes of habit.
 


 
The beautiful view of the Lake from the highland.
 


 

There is a cave which can be reached only by boat,

 
 
in order to take a look inside.


 

Next post is about cultural heritage of Batak people and interesting places for visit there.