Gangga Island is located just off the coast of Manado in North Sulawesi, which is part of the incredible Indonesian Archipelago. This part of Indonesia is an amazing part of the country to visit for diving, but there are also many other reasons to put it on the top of your ‘places to visit’ list! Here are 5 reasons to visit North Sulawesi:
As we already mentioned, diving is the biggest draw for tourists visiting North Sulawesi. The waters here are some of the richest in the world for pure variety of sea life. There are protected areas and also islands like Gangga, where you will often have dive sites all to yourself.
Divers come to North Sulawesi for sightings of fabulous marine animals like sea turtles, white and black tip sharks, pygmy seahorses, many different species of goby, pipefish frogfish, scorpionfish, and nudibranchs.
2. Tangkoko National Park
Tangkoko National Park is located around 2 hours by car from Manado city. This famous national park is very popular thanks to the incredible creatures that can be seen there. Tarsiers, a rare primate species that are only found in a few places in South East Asia. These tiny primates come out to hunt at night, so an overnight trip or even a night visit to the park is a must.
You will also see crested macaque, black macaques, kingfishers, kus-kus, and hornbills. This is a rare chance to see these creatures in the wild and also discover the magic of trekking through a tropical rainforest that is preserved in its natural state. It’s possible to book a trip to Tangkoko through Gangga Island Resort.
3. Manadonese Food
Manado is known for its delicious food, but beware they love to make it spicy! The food is often called Minahasa cuisine, after the local Minahasan people from the area. Popular Manadonese dishes include Tinutuan – a vegetable rice porridge, Cakalang fufu – delicious smoked tuna, paniki or spiced fruit bat, and chicken or seafood in rica-rica spices.
If you have a sweet tooth don’t miss out on the Klappertart, a gorgeous coconut tart that is a beautiful mix of tropical and European tastes.
4. The Highlands of North Sulawesi
The highlands of North Sulawesi are an easy day trip from Gangga Island or Manado. This is a stunning area of the island and there is plenty to see. Ancient sarcophagi, temples and traditional markets are amazing stops for learning experiences you won’t get anywhere else.
Visit the craterlake at Tondano where fish are bred and fishermen live on beautiful stilted houses. Close by is also Lake Linow where waters change colors from green, blue and amber due to the sulfur buried underneath.
The local Minahasa culture is also incredibly interesting, and you can visit traditional villages to see their way of life. Their traditional wooden houses are made in this region and also exported all over the world.
5. The Peace and Quiet
Gangga Island is one of the only islands in North Sulawesi that has just one resort on it. The beaches are beautifully white, the sea crystal clear and the stars shine bright because of the lack of light pollution.
This incredible area of Indonesia does welcome tourists, but nothing like the numbers of famous islands like Bali. You may even find yourself totally alone on a paradise beach, free to sunbathe, swim and snorkel without another person in sight.
If you’re looking to party, North Sulawesi definitely isn’t for you, but for some real peace and quiet, culture, and nature at its best, book a trip right now!
Do you think North Sulawesi might be for you? What about it attracts you the most? Let us know on the comments below.