It's Not Just LIFE, It's an ADVENTURE!

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Just a couple of weeks ago I have this amazing chance of visiting one of Indonesia's popular tourists destination, Makasar City of South Sulawesi. This rare chance came when one of my relatives is getting married there at Makasar City. It's funny to call this trip an adventure though, because my main purpose of visiting Makasar City was suppose to be attending my family member's wedding ceremony... instead I'm enjoying the city more than I could help for. LOL

The trip was set for four days, starting from Thursday, July 5th, 2012 to Sunday, July 8th, 2012. So about a week before the trip, without any hesitation I took my leave at the office for two straight days, gets approval from the higher ups and the rest is all ADVENTURES.

Hey, this is my first time going to Makasar CIty so pardon my enthusiasm for once, hahaha... So a couple days went by and I've prepared all I need to experience new adventures at this new place... awesome! I tried to travel lite, brought my camera (off course), couple of shirts, pants, swim suit and goggles, candies and snack for the flights, hmmm... whatelse... oh yeah, I also brought my binocular to spot on any "delicious view" from the hotel where I'm staying and just around the city.

So there I was ready for the trip, getting to the airport and waiting for departure with lion air at 2:00 PM, which was the cheapest (Rp 1.7 million round trip) and decent flights at that time. Waiting for sometime at the designated gates when suddenly just a couple minutes till boarding, I heard an announcement to lion air passenger departing to Makasar to go to another gate... great! After a while I'm finally boarded the plane and starting to get anxious because I haven't been on a plane for a while now, especially short trip small planes like this one... T_T I hope everything goes smoothly...

Finally the plane start taxing and ready for take off, I'm still nervous at that time fyi... until after the plane goes above the clouds. I'm not nervous or anxious anymore because I saw one of the world's most amazing view, greatest creation... I'm very grateful to have seen such wonderful view... I was flying above the mountains of Java, above the clouds with the sun rays shining through and reaching those mountains...

Then after a while the plane starts flying to cross over the sea of Java... I felt sleepy because the trip took longer than I thought, as much as I want to enjoy the scenery, its getting hard to see outside because now the clouds are thicker and I imagine only the sea down there... So I open the desk in front of me, take a magazine and try to read something to kill time...

Almost two hours has pass since take off, I think we nearly at Ujung Pandang now... and I was right, moments later the captain calls all flight attendants to get ready for landing and touchdown... making sure all chairs are back in their straight position, all passengers are properly seated, putting back their seat belts. I'm starting to get nervous again when the plane is about to touch down... and finally the plane landed safely, a bit rough but safe... thanks to a special someone that prays for my safety, love you!

Just a couple of minutes later, the elephant trunk is attached to the plane and all passengers starts queuing towards the airport terminal of Makasar, Sultan Hasanudin. The airport is a beautifully designed piece of architecture, they said it's only a couple of years back that they build this magnificent airport terminal. So first time here, not to waste a moment of time, I immediately took out my camera and starts shooting randomly... what can I say, I'm a narcissist trigger finger guy around new places, I just couldn't help it :D

Bandara Sultan Hasanuddin Makasar

We wait for all of our baggage to turn up and collect them and ready to go... it was 6 PM Makasar time which was 1 hour ahead of Jakarta. Car from the hotel was supposed to pick us up at the airport, a few seconds later we found the chauffeur and helps him put all the baggage into the trunk. And everything is set!

First things first, it was already dark at the time of arrival and we are all hungry and a bit tired from the plane trip. So we all decided to find someplace to eat and rest at the hotel for the night. We ask the chauffeur where the famous and delicious place to eat in Makasar? And he said what would you like to eat? Do you like seafood? seafood is what Makasar people eat most of the time, and they are delicious... So okay we said, let's eat seafood for tonight... Okay the chauffeur said, I will take you to this nice restaurant called Bahari, they served great dishes of seafood.

To get to the main street of Makasar city from the airport, it took about an hour, quite the distance, around 40 km. After an hour we arrived at Bahari restaurant and starts looking at the menu... The name of the fish is different here in Makasar so we have to ask the waitress what kind of fish is it... for example a Baronang fish is called Sunu fish in Makasar. I have taken a couple of pictures of the dishes that we have ordered for tonight's dinner, see them in the gallery down below...

After dinner, we are going straight to the hotel to rest, we all tired and decided to save up for tomorrow. We are staying at Singgasana hotel Makasar, a gorgeous four star hotel, we all love it. Got the key to my room at 5th floor and the bellboy helps us with our luggage. Arrive at my room, give him a tip, and unpack a couple of stuff and go straight to sleep... zzzzz, good night everyone see you tomorrow!

In the morning, breakfast at the lounge, they served four star standard menu, nothing special, but I must say that the sweet bread is quite delicious and makes me want to have another one again and again, hmmm... yummy! So, now I'm stuffed, ready to go exploring the city of Makasar. The hotel car has been booked to show us around Makasar city...

Fort Rotterdam Makasar

The first thing we went for is this old fort called fort Rotterdam. It was once the netherlands stronghold for keeping prisoners and such... It's said that Pangeran Diponegoro has been kept prisoner in one of Fort Rotterdam cells in his exile. The history that came with it is not very pleasing but right now they are only memories and turns out to be a great place to start shooting randomly... again :P (pardon my narcissistic rave).

Fort Rotterdam Inner Courtyard

A couple of shots, okay maybe more than just a couple of shots... going around the fort to satisfy my narcissistic rave. They also exhibit some of the old artifacts from those time. There is also a merchandise store inside if you are interested in anything related to Makasar or the fort itself. I bought a lovely bracelet and some cool Phinisi shirts there.

Phinisi Scale Model at The Airport

Phinisi is what Makasar people called their traditional seaworthy ship or boat if you are wondering... they are great fishermen by blood. They don't need a modern instrument to tell them where to go around the sea anywhere, especially the sea of Makasar. They are one of Indonesia's greatest and proud sailors. And with their phinisi, they have become one with the sea, understanding nature like no other.

Elly's Gift Shop

Moving on to the next adventure, well it's not exatcly my kind of adventure because it's shopping time... Did I mentioned that I was travelling with my family members too, and most of them are shopaholics... We have just arrived at Elly's Gift Shop. This shop has everything one needs to satisfy their shopping craves...From otak-otak, crabs, snacks, marquissa syrup, t-shirts, bracelets, key chains, handicrafts, and more... just name it, you got it!

The Humble Shop Owner: Elly

I can't tell them not to shop can I?? so I said to myself, if I couldn't beat them, join them... So there you go, Me, Shopping, Like Crazy... LOL that shirt looks good, I want one, no I'll take two, three, ok four should do the job... Those huge shrimps looks yummy, how much? I'll take 2 boxes please... and so on and so on... Once you get into the circle there is no turning back, muahahahaha...

Unusual Stool

It was Friday, and it's almost noon... I almost forgot at this time I must prepare myself for my Friday prayers or Sholat Jumat for the locals. So I told one of my family member that I'm going for my Friday prayer for at least 45 minutes at the nearest mosque just around the block. Okay, we'll wait for you... I doubt that we're going to finish our shopping spree here for another 45 minutes though... so take your time, she said. Well at least I don't have to worry getting stranded in Makasar... I'm more worried about the never ending shopping spree that she mentioned T_T

So I told the chauffeur to take me to the nearest mosque, just a couple of minutes later we arrived at the Nurul Al-Amin Mosque which was quite nice. One thing about the mosque that draws my attention is the place of ablution or tempat wudhu as they called it. It's the place where you cleanse your body parts before entering the mosque as a requirement to do the prayers for Moslems. Most tempat wudhu only provides water taps every 20-30cm with a drainage near your feet... but this mosque has an addition of a seat made of the same porcelain covered cement construction just the size of an average buttocks... A square 20x20x20cm. And the water taps are positioned so low that forces you to sit down to cleanse... I just found this kinds of things interesting :D It's one of a kind I guess.

Phinisi Boat Scale Model

An hour has passed, and now I'm back with my family at Elly's gift shop, and belive it or not they are still at it, shopping their way through the shop... I don't know what to say... they are one crazy bunch :D Told you so, said one of my family member. sigh...

After almost half a day at the shop, they finally finished and satisfied their thirst for items to buy... So we move on... to the next shop,...wait WHAT?! OMG, are you kidding me? what else have you not bought could you possibly buy at the next shop?? Well, this shop looks different and have some things that the first shop didn't have...said one of them. Ookaay, let's just go and get it over with... Like I said if you can't beat them, join them... even after joining them I couldn't keep up with their natural instincts... LOL

So I decided to just let them be in peace in there... I went outside the shop and calmly look around, sightseeing... taking some pictures... at some point I'm feeling a bit tired and I just sat down at the front of the shop's small steps waiting... and waiting... they will finish eventually right? RIGHT? hahaha... I'm trying to convinced myself.

Kampoeng POPSA (Persatuan Olahraga Perahu motor dan Ski Air)

Later we are going to a famous spot in Makasar called Kampoeng POPSA (Persatuan Olahraga Perahu Motor dan Ski Air), it's a place where they practice their Water Skiing skills. The place was located just across Fort Rotterdam, inside you will find a food court where you can eat, relax, and enjoy the sea breeze while looking at the sunset. Awesome!

Sunset View from Kampoeng POPSA

So many food to choose from, appetizers, main dishes, desserts, they have it all. There are sofas to and a live music at some particular time, or a huge screen to watch live shows together, like the recent European Football Leagues. All and all it's a great place to hangout, people love this place, it's one of Makasar's favorite spots.

So, night came, and it's time to go back to the hotel, get a bit of a rest and prepare to go out for dinner. This time one of the groom's family invited us for a dinner at the local famous seafood restaurant called Apong Seafood. You can tell from the name that this restaurant is a Chinese restaurant serving great seafood dishes. And like all Chinese restaurant, there are a lot of customers come and go, the place was bustling with seafood lovers. A bit crowded, but still manageable, not to mention the yummy food! (^_^)

Fresh Flat Fish

Sunu Fish

Something Fish, I Forgot the Name :P

About 30 people joins the dinner party at Apong's... first came the crab dish, next sunu fish, fish soup, otak-otak, fried grouper, calamary, and a lot more... some of them were served in local recipe called palu. It's a sour and spicy yet refreshing soup recipe to be served along with the fish dishes. And all's well the party turns out great! We go home separate ways with a full stomach... drowsy... craving for a soft bed to lay down and rest at the hotel.

The next day is the wedding ceremony day... I'm going to skip this part... I just going to say that the ceremony went smoothly, every body's happy, I'm happy, we've got a parting gift from the ceremony, a big box filled with cookies and fruits. Great! Congratulations!

Losari Public Beach

After the ceremony, we spare some time to visit Makasar's Losari Beach, take some pictures, smile, don't forget my narcissistic pose, tried some huge fried cassava chips which was quite good actually... you should try some to if you've ever visit Makasar!

Me at Losari Beach Makasar

Then we all went to Kampoeng Popsa again, because this time another member from the groom's side wanted to treat us something nice... I love treats, hohoho ;). So we all ordered anything that we want and start the chow fest! Some of the menu that we have ordered are a vanilla with cookie dough ice cream parfait, baked caramel banana, palu butung (banana with shaved ice), and a lot more...

Palu Butung: Iced Jelly with Banana and Coconut Syrup

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