Sunday, 8 July 2012

Visit Bau Bau and Around Pulau Buton

BAU BAU / Pulau Buton

Bau Bau is much smaller than Kendari, its accommodation and transport options are nicer

ACCOMMODATION (Feb-2008) – notes taken form the website
* Penginapan Wolio (Jln Mayjen Sutoyo No.20, GPS WOLIO) - my choice no.1
Central location, 8 simple and clean rooms, 6 at ground level and 2 on upper floor. Some rooms have fan, others have sufficient ventilation to do without. Windows are facing a nice inner yard, bathrooms are shared. Guests can park their motorcycles in the yard. Staff is very friendly and owner speaks English. At Rp 35,000 / room this place stands out from the rest. It is often full so staff is choosy about the guests.
* Hillhouse Resort, local name "Villa" (GPS VILLA) - my choice no.2
This place is somewhat special. Several wooden houses located outside town atop a hill, 3.3 km direct line from the harbour. It is by far the most scenic place to stay. Spacious rooms are Rp 100,000 per night and feature electric light, fan, mosquito nets and hot tea. It's cool enough as not to need air conditioning. Rooms share a covered deck or balcony as well as the bathroom (traditional mandi). Add Rp 20,000 if you want breakfast (note there's no warung nearby, so whatever you plan to eat, bring it or order it.
If you need a quiet, cool place to relax, if you can do without TV and shops, this is the place to go.
To get there, first go to the Kraton, then further up the mountain. The road is steep and some sort of motorized transport is desirable. Staff recommends you call them first before you actually go there, but my experience is that the phone is not answered while the resort has at least a caretaker who can take action if visitors show up.
* Hotel Ratu Rajawali (Jln Sultan Hasanuddin no.69, GPS RAJAWA)
Large, reputable hotel, 1 star, looks good from outside
* Hotel Rosichan (GPS ROSICH) from Rp 75000
* Hotel Liliyana: from Rp 66000 (fan, attached bathroom), average
* Losmen Yusrida: AC rooms, attached bathroom, Rp 100,000 / Fan rooms Rp 70,000
* Losmen Transit & Losmen Pelangi: Very basic, dark, cheap
* Losmen Wangi Wangi: Several single rooms, very basic, dark, Rp 30,000
The cheapest place in town. Motorbikes can be parked under a roof inside.
* Hotel Yan: Close to Transit and Pelangi, a little better but still basic
* Penginapan Maranu: AC rooms (Rp 100,000)/ fan rooms (Rp 60,000) both w/ bathrooms

SUKMA PENGINAPAN: in May 2012 we stayed in this hostel. It is owned by very nice elderly couple. The lady speaks very limited English. The home-stay is very nice and cozy. It is located only 1 street away from Kamali beach where there is Pasar Malam (night market every night). There are lots of stalls where you can have dinner but they offer the same food – only sea food and some might offer chicken too. If you are going to Wakatobi (Wanci or Kaledupa island) then you can walk from the home-stay to the harbour in 10 minutes. On a way to harbour you find many more very nice restaurants selling not only fish and sea food.
One night cost 130.000 Rp with air-con or 100.000 with a fan. They have lots of Indonesian tourists coming and staying there so during the weekends they might be full as they have only 4 rooms for guests. The rooftop has nice views over Bau Bau.

Other Places of Interest in Bau Bau
* The Bau Bau Kraton - castle ruins
* Batu Wolio - viewpoint inside Kraton area
* Wolio Tour & Travel (Jln Betombari 92, kantor 0402-21189, rumah 0402-24316, hp 081-58195119) - Hirte's travel agency
* Lawana Ecotone office (Jln Anoa No.16, 0815-24773195) - NGO that manages Wallacea's logistics in the area. The place is not far from Rajawali Hotel.
* Apotik Roza (GPS APROZA) - owner of this pharmacy speaks English
    • Wet market (just west of the harbour)

LAKEBA Beach is 7 km downtown from Bau Bau. This scenic white sandy beach and gentle rolling waves with shady coconut trees provide an ideal place for relaxation.  It is located around  7 kilometers from downtown Baubau.  It also boasts about one of the best restaurants in town.  Sit back and enjoy the sunset while tasting  a wide range of more palatable traditional dishes.
KOLAGANA Coral Reef: 18 km downtown from Bau Bau in Bungi District. This is a wonderful spot for snorkeling and especially diving. You could relish a plethora of coral reefs along with miscellaneous fish species.
KAMALI Beach at night: really nicely lightened up beach
KOLEMA HILL: This is the site of Baubau sign, just like the Hollywood sign, but much better.  Here, you can witness a fabulous  view of Baubau city, a bird’s eye view of Pulau Makasar island, and a flotilla of colorful boats sailing their way to another exotic location. Come here to enjoy the scenery and a beautiful panoramic sunset after a day exploring  the caves. A camera is a valuable tool in this spot.
NIRWANA Beach: It is known as the beach having three colours of water and located around 9 kilometres from downtown Baubau. The locals believe that its waters can serve as a miracle cure for wide variety of skin disorders. You can take pleasure in various water sport facilities available such as jet skis, banana boats, glass-bottom boats, a flying fish, traditional boats, snorkeling and diving. You can even take a closer look at a swarm of tame sharks swimming in groups when you dive into a particular spot, especially around the shark underwater cave as the shark-infested waters.
Locals prefer to go to Pantai BATAUGA (10 km from Pantai Nirwana) for swimming
PALABUSA Beach: It is the heart of pearl farm in Baubau where you can find two kinds of international standard pearls, i.e. the Pinctada Maxima (the round pearl) and the Pteria Penguin (the half pearl).  You could see on the spot the process of pearl farming.  It is 20 kilometers to the east of Baubau.
LAKASA Cave: This unique subterranean cave is thousand years old with miscellaneous stalactites and stalagmites inside. It was named after the one who first discovered it, Lakasa. It is perfect for those who like adventure or spelunking . As you walk through it, you will see subterranean fresh water converging in the cave forming crystallites and is guaranteed to make cave lovers gasp in wonder at this spectacular natural formation.  You have to think it over before deciding to explore it unless you have sufficient physical endurance.
SAMPARONA WATERFALL: It  reaches a height of 30 meters and is situated around 13 kilometers from downtown Baubau.   To get to this spectacular spot, visitors, along with a local guide, hike through the dense rainforest along two small streams. You will encounter two awesome waterfalls, i.e. La Mogawuna  and  Wa Samparona. The local folk myth believe that both of them are lifetime spouses. Your wildlife trips offer a thrilling encounter with wildlife in its natural state.  You are not supposed to explore this spot unless you are a real hiker.

  • There is an overnight boat from Bau Bau to Wanci Wanci (just over 103.000 Rp pr person) which leaves at 8.30pm every night and arrives to Wanci Wanci at around 6am. Then from Wanci you need to take a boat to Kaledupa (around 2 hours) and then from Kaledupa (Ambeua) to Hoga island (50.000 Rp per boat).
  • Another option is to take wooden ship (smaller than the one to Wanci) to Kaledupa, harbour Buranga, (you need to check the days the ship goes because it is not every day). We took it on Friday. The cost is around 120.00 Rp. If you are sea sick then it is not advisable as the sea can get rough. When you reach Kaledupa island you need to take motorbike from Buranga (around 10.000 Rp. Per person) to Ambeua and boat to Hoga (50.000 Rp per boat) – it takes around 20 minutes. – the official site of Bau Bau Tourism – the website for potential investment 

Bau Bau Airport

Bau Bau - the river side

People love to pose for the photos:)

Map of Indonesia

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