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As the leaves of an orchid in the win - that's how the fierce peninsula's of Sulawesi stretch from the Celebes Sea, Moluccan Sea, Banda Sea and Flores Sea. Inside it's bizarre borders - formed by collisions of ancient continents -, extraordinary landschapes can be found. The inlands are dominated by the rough, fog covered mountains, tropical rainforests, green ricefields and deep, mysterious (...)

Traditional architecture from Sulawesi share several classical brands, which can also be found in other places in the archipelago. Pile dwellings with saddle-shaped roofs and outward tips, and mural decorations in the form of crossed horns, are widespread over the islands of Southeast-Asia. The imposant form of the Toraja-houses, with their bamboo roofs with wave upward, are clearly related to the (...)

Sulawesi's pieces of art are almost all made by hand: from the huge wooden ships, which look like Noah's Arc, to the very refined earrings which can be found in the Makassar street of gold; from the classically designed ikat fabrics from Galumpang to the simple rattan ricebaskets in Toraja. Just like elsewhere in Indonesia are fabric, metal, wood and bamboo the most important materials. (...)

Compared to other parts of Indonesia, Sulawesi is very complicated in a linguistic way. An astonishing number of 80 languages are spoken; Java only has five. The languages on the island all belong to the huge Austronesian family, which stretches over almost half the world from Madagascar to Easter Island. The biggest groups can be found in the densely populated South-Sulawesi. The peopl (...)

The huge diversity of Sulawesi's landscapes is only surpassed by the big ethnical, cultural and regligious diversity. Over half of the Sulawesi population lives in the fertile valleys and plains in the south, while another large group lived around Manado and the neighboring Minahasa region in the northeast. Makassar, the biggest city of Sulawesi, is a melting pot of populations and cultures. (...)

Most inhabitants of Sulawesi gain their income from the land, the forests and the sea. However, there is many variation in the way of life support. North- and South-Sulawesi are more wealthy than Central- and Southeast-Sulawesi because of their rich vulcanic soil. Agriculture and cattle The cultivation of crops - rice, corn, cassave, vegetables and fruit - probably put (...)

The well-known 19th century ecologist Alfred Russel Wallace discovered that the Indonesian archipelago is inhabited by two different groups of animals. 'Wallace Line' (1876), as this border is still called, runs from between Bali and Lombok and Borneo and Sulawesi. Birds and mamals on these island are remarkably different, however they are not separated by an important natural border. For botanics (...)

Travellers probably arrive in the capital of South-Sulawesi, Makassar, a city which is known throughout entire Indonesia for it's fish and seafood. Lobsters, shrimps, octopus and crabs are roasted on charcoal here and served with rice and a sauce of fresh hot Spanish peppers. Bandeng (milkfish) or baronang (rabbitfish) - loved by foreigners because it doesn't have much fishbone - is (...)

The peninsulas of Sulawesi are compared in the introduction with leaves of an orchid in the wind. With it's loose attachments the island can also be seen as a brunken spider. It's probably the worlds most strangely shaped island, which consists of a group of long stretched islands which have collided by movements in the earth, of which the results can still be seen. Flora and fauna are strongly in (...)

The Buginese prahu probably formed the most impressive fleet of wooden trading ships in the world. Nowadays an estimated 800 of these ships are involved in the trade of wood from Kalimantan to Jawa, varying in weight from 120 to 200 tons. In the seaport of Sunda Kelapa in Jakarta, you can find as many as 200 pinisi, while Peotere, the seaport of Makassar, is full with smaller boats: (...)

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