Tana Toraja was my first solo backpacking trip in life that I did in 2011, I only had a short time to travel this place. I arrived at Rante Pao in the morning after a one night sleep in a bus from Makassar the night before. I didn’t really have any idea how to travel around. At my first step out of a bus, a motorcycle taxi (ojek) came over me. I negotiated with him and hired him for one day to travel around Toraja, I think is was around 100.000 rupiah.
My first destination around was the northern hills around, where you could find the Bori Kalimbuang menhir, some kind of a round ceremonial yad with menhir tower like Stonehenge.
Later on that day in continued my trip to the famous Kete Kesu village, the Londa grave cave dan finally the cliff gradeyard of Lemo. I wasn’t on the best physic that time because of the one night sleep at the bus the night before; I finally looked for a hotel to get some short rest, because on the night I have to continue back to Makassar with the same bus.
Rantepao is a very peaceful area with surrounding karst landscape and paddy fields along the streams of Sadan river. If I had more time I would’ve add the Lokomata giant grave in the northern hills, and the baby tree grave in Kambira. And of course hunting the famous Rambu Solo cemetery ceremony.
My advice is you better give more time to explore, arrange a better way to get there (needs 10 hours bus from Makassar), and check first for schedules of the great ceremony.
Must visit place around here: Kete Kesu village, Lemo cliff grave, Londa cave grave, Bori Kalimbuang menhir, Lokomata, Kambira tree grave.
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