Bukittinggi is a small town in the middle of the Minangkabau area. Because it is higher in the mountains it is not so warm and a good starting point for trips to the neighborhood. The market square is dominated by a clocktower in Minangkabau style.
Fort De Kock and the Museum
From Fort De Kock a footbridge leads high over the main street of Bukittinggi to the Museum and the Zoo. The museum has a nice collection of Minangkabau art and culture to exhibit. The Zoo isn't worth a visit, it's small not well kept and the animals do not have much space to live.
The entrance for Fort De Kock and the Zoo is 1,000 rp while it costs you a 300 rp extra fee for the Museum.
The Sianok Canyon or Ngarai Sianok stretches out for about four kilometers southwest of the town. It is a valley with not more then a river and rock walls rising up to 120 meters at some places. It is possible to walk trough the canyon and at the end climb up along a small steep trial after which you can walk through the rice fields and Kota Gadang back to Bukittinggi. Because you have to cross the river a few times in the canyon it is worth to take, next to a good pair of walking shoes, some plastic sandals because the river is full of sharp stones.
Start your trip south of Bukittinggi near the bridge over the canyon which leads to Kota Gadang. From here go to the left into the canyon and just follow the river. For some parts you will have to follow a small trial leading through the vegetation and over some rocks. After some minutes walking you will see a small house of an old Indonesian man who lived here all his life alone with his family. Sometimes one of his sons is there who can guide you through the canyon. After a few hours you will reach the end of the canyon near a waterfall. From here you can walk back or climb up to Kota Gadang. A little bit back from the waterfall the trial leads up at the right side of the canyon (when you are faced to the waterfall). It is a heavy climb but when you are at the top you can walk through the ricefield and the main road to Kota Gadang from where it is about two hours walking back to Bukittinggi.
Kota Gadang is eight kilometers from Bukittinggi and famous for it crafts. Here you can see the silversmiths at work with filigree or see the weaving of shawls. It is a small village and famous about the number of professors who were born here. Because the children had to walk the eight heavy kilometers to school at Bukittinggi twice a day, only the ones who really wanted to learn something did this year after year until graduation.
To visit Kota Gadang walk to the bridge over the Sianok canyon. At the other side of the bridge steep stairs will lead up to Kota Gadang. It is also possible to catch a minibus from the bus station in Bukittinggi.
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Record created on 2000-04-10 03:50:28.670
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