Photo: Just awful.

Things to see and do

Why go to the Togean Islands?

Why would you spend a not inconsiderable amount of time trekking over land and water to visit Sulawesi’s Togean Islands? The archipelago in the southeast region of the Tomini Sea is not the easiest place to get to… but a few compelling reasons may make you want to take the Indonesian travel plunge and exert that extra bit of effort required to get ... Read more about Why go to the Togean Islands? .

Jellyfish lake and Karina Beach

Caused by a big and presumably sudden geological change that sealed off the lake, Jellyfish Lake (real name Mariona Lake) is what it says on the can -- a large lake full of jellyfish. Isolated from predators for untold jellyfish generations, they’ve lost the ability (and need) to sting and so the jellyfish here can be safely swum with and gently prodded. This is one of only a handful of places ... Read more about Jellyfish lake and Karina Beach .

Snorkelling trips

Most resorts can organise snorkelling trips, either to specific destinations the group requests or to a set route determined by the resort. Generally a snorkelling trip will require a minimum of four people (or at least four seats paid for) and will come in a half-day or full day flavour. Prices vary considerably -- both according to the resort and to the distances involved -- as does the ... Read more about Snorkelling trips .

Five days on the Togean Islands

One of Indonesia’s more glorious spots, the Togean islands, set within the Tomini Sea in Central Sulawesi, get a steady trickle of visitors year round, but are at their busiest in July and August, when, shock horror, a reservation may even be in order to secure that beach ... Read more about Five days on the Togean Islands .

Hotel California

Set an hour from Kadidiri, Hotel California is an atoll due north of Wakai that’s home to nothing but three fishing shacks, a single stone outcrop with a lone palm tree and some quite solid snorkelling. This is one of the few sites that is more popular with snorkellers than divers (due to the fairly shallow depth), and while some of the coral is very banged up, other parts are alive and well ... Read more about Hotel California .

Una Una

Pulau Una Una should really be called Pulau Colo, as that’s the name of the volcano that encompasses most of the island and spectacularly exploded in 1983. Today it’s a popular stop for diving trips and less so for snorkelling, but it’s also possible to arrange to climb the peak. To do so you’ll need to charter a boat -- we were quoted 800,000 to a million rupiah for a boat from Kadidiri ... Read more about Una Una .

Diving on the Togeans

While the Togeans are popular with beach lovers and snorkellers, it is the diving here that gets the best reports. As with snorkelling, some of the reefs are in quite poor condition thanks to cyanide and dynamite fishing, but the more isolated and deeper sites do serve up good conditions. Particularly noteworthy is the wreck of a B24 Liberator bomber that ditched on the south coast of Pulau ... Read more about Diving on the Togeans .

Learning to dive on the Togean Islands

While certainly not the cheapest place to learn to dive in Southeast Asia, the Togean Islands in Sulawesi, Indonesia are nevertheless a fabulous place to pick up a new skill — diving. Say hello to a variety of marine life and beautiful coral in this fairly isolated archipelago, where dive sites are blissfully ... Read more about Learning to dive on the Togean Islands .

The Togean islands with kids

Sulawesi’s Togean islands are a great place to unplug and get back to nature with your kids — though you’ll have to work a bit both to get here and while you’re here to get the most out of them. These few tips kept in mind ahead of a visit might help you keep your ... Read more about The Togean islands with kids .

Pulau Taipi

This small island sits about 30 minutes by boat northeast of Kadidiri and is well regarded for its house reef and a back outer reef. The island was once home to a resort owned by the same family behind Kadidiri Paradise but it’s been abandoned and is now slightly eerie -- and we saw it on a sunny day. The beach is still lovely and the house reef offers a pretty good drop-off with plenty of ... Read more about Pulau Taipi .

Pulau Taupan

One of the top snorkelling and diving spots at the far east of the archipelago, a trip to Pulau Taupan is highly recommended for those staying at Island Retreat or Poya Lisa. The island is home to a single village on the east coast and two lovely white sand beaches running down the east coast. Taupan is best known for its west coast reef and wall, which delivers excellent snorkelling and ... Read more about Pulau Taupan .

Visiting a sea gypsy village

Island Retreat organises trips to a nearby sea gypsy village, where some of the staff live. If you’ve not had much experience visiting Indonesian coastal villages, it’s worth doing to get a flavour of what life’s like by the sea. At this village, fish farms are set up by the formerly nomadic gypsies who reclaimed most of the land here to make their homes. Footpaths meander over rocks and ... Read more about Visiting a sea gypsy village .

Hornbill trip
Tumbulawa, Batudaka

A trip to Tumbulawa on Batudaka at around dusk is usually tied in with seeing the sea gypsy village. Here, at around 17:30 or 18:00, dozens of hornbills glide home to sleep in the trees. The day we went there would have been close to 200 swooping over our heads to land. Most of the village turned out too, it seemed -- to watch us! So it wasn’t quiet enough to hear the whoosh of the great ... Read more about Hornbill trip .

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Where to next?

Where are you planning on heading to after Togean Islands? Here are some spots commonly visited from here, or click here to see a full destination list for Indonesia.

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