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Revision as of 18:24, 5 October 2006

Map of Sulawesi in Indonesia

Sulawesi (formerly Celebes) is one of the main islands of Indonesia. With four spindly arms spinning outward, Sulawesi's spidery shape is easily recognizable.



  • Gorontalo
  • Makassar (Ujung Pandang) — capital of the South and Sulawesi's largest city
  • Manado — proudly Protestant capital of the North and the gateway to Bunaken
  • Palu

Other destinations

  • Bunaken — marine park with some of the world's best diving
  • Tana Toraja — highlands famed for their elaborate burial rites
  • Togian Islands — diving destination way off the beaten track


Sulawesi's tough terrain and massive size (174,600 km²) have meant that the island has a wildly divergent set of peoples and cultures, speaking eight major languages and professing Christian, Muslim, Hindu and animist beliefs (not to mention various mixes thereof).


Get in

By plane

Sulawesi's main ports of entry is Makassar, which has frequent flights throughout the archipelago. Manado acts as a secondary hub, with some direct flights to Singapore and some interesting connections eastward to Halmahera and Papua.

Get around

By plane

The sheer size of Sulawesi and the poor state of its roads make plane the transportation method of choice. Flights radiate out from Makassar and Manado to all points on the island.

By bus

The Trans-Sulawesi Highway winds for over 3900 km from Makassar to Manado. Despite the grand name, the road is narrow, twisty, spottily paved and dangerous.






Stay safe

Central Sulawesi continued to be wracked by sporadic ethnic violence, with bombings and violent riots in Poso, Palu and Tentena as militant Christian and Muslim factions battle. South Sulawesi and Southeast Sulawesi have also experienced some unrest. North Sulawesi is generally calm.

Get out

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