By: Marcus Phillips Silalahi –
A group of Australians touring North Sumatra recently were so much impressed by the panorama and cultural friendliness of the local Batak people that they expressed their desire to return for more touring.
Beginning their tour in Siantar, where they rented Megapro and Tiger bikes, one of the group got lost in Pasar Horas for one hour, and had to ask a local woman to show him the way out, while the others waited at Kedai Kopi Koktong and talked to a BSA becak driver.
They rode to Rumah Bolon Raja Purba and tugu tomb which looked like a ship to take him back to the stars.
The group continued on to Tongging, Sipinsur viewpoint, Tarutung hotsprings, and Belige cultural center.
Tour guide, Tommy, said the team enjoyed riding in the cool Toba highlands and relaxing in the hotsprings at the end of the day. Sipisopiso waterfall was impressive, but at the other end of Lake Toba, Sipinsur viewpoint had the most spectacular view he had ever seen.
Aussie Andrew said, the soda spring gave him a ‘new sensation’. Mister Buster said, he had to stop at a pesta in the middle of the road and the saksang was better than Aussie pork sausage.
Captain Steve said, he was amazed that everywhere he stopped local girls wanted a ‘selfie’ with him and gave him their facebook name. Mr Mark said, he enjoyed drinking bandrek and practising bahasa with the locals.
Mr Marcus said, even the police were friendly, but he didnt like the ‘polisi tidur’ on the road, but maybe it was the only way to slow down the local drivers.
Everywhere they travelled, they never saw another foreign tourist, which made it more special for them. Mr Arnold just said: I’ll be back…