South Toba Lake Part I : Bah Butong Tea Plantation & Parapat
South Toba Lake Part II : Tarabunga Beach
South Toba Lake Part III : Dolok Tolong
South Toba Lake Part IV : Huta Ginjang
South Toba Lake Part V : Alam Bakara
South Toba Lake Part VI : Tele
South Toba Lake Part VII : Sipiso-piso
South Toba Lake Part VIII :Mount Sibayak & Berastagi
Finally the we reach the final installment of Danau Toba south edition 2010. Mount Sibayak at the height of around 2172m (7125 feet) is the second highest mountain at North Sumatera. The highest mountain is Mount Sinabung (2451m) which can be seen clearly from Mount Sibayak.
In this picture from google earth is the sibayak mountain range. At the far behind you can see Mount Sinabung.
Sibayak is located just beside Berastagi, one of the famous wisata (tourist) destination which started during the dutch colonization. The dutch use Berastagi as refreshment resort. Nowdays people going here for shopping and also to visit some Batak cultural museum and traditional houses. Some tourist attraction around here is the fruit market and also horse riding.
One this that make my visit at Berastagi fruit market area a bit unpleasant is the relentless of some trader to sell "ubat kuat" (local version of viagra) directly to you. Some even offer cewek (girl). Maybe this is the bad effect of tourism here. Fortunately most of them will stop when you firmly say NO.
If you would like to hike Mount Sibayak or Mount Sinabung, most hotel will has their own inhouse guide which can arrange your hike. Or an alternatively you can sought the service from the local wisata (tourist) office run by the pemerintah (goverment) with reasonable fee. The local wisata office is located just beside the round about near the fruit market. They can even arrange taxi to fetch you from Medan airport for 400,000 rupiah (one way). (I'll update this blog with the office contact number later).
A better arrangement would be to rent a car with supir (driver) in Medan (6 seated driver with supir would cost around 400,000-500,000 per day) but you will need to know where you are going with proper plan and destination especially if there is no guide to accompany you. The guide is essential to know which city has accomodation, which route is still passable with passenger vehicle (in some area, the road condition is very bad and access might be cut of if there is a landslide) and they can share local knowledge or local history with you.
Sibayak hike is very easy. Among easiest mountain hiking i ever done. Very similar duration to Bukit Tabur hiking or even Bukit Broga hiking. One of the main reason is there is a tarred road available to the height of almost 1800m. Since the highest point of Mount Sibayak is around 2171, you just need to hike another 300m-400m vertically. But not all vehicle strong enough and able to reach the highest point as the road is very steep and damaged alot. During our return, one passenger vehicle not able to go up so their passenger need to start their hiking earlier along the steep tarred road.
A normal hiking would take around 40-45 minutes to reach the peak and you can start to enjoy the beautiful panorama. During our trip few fella including me manage to do it in 30 minutes as we were hurrying to capture the sunrise picture. Watching the sunrise at 2000m+ elevation is simply marvellous as you can see the sun rise from above the cloud. You can alse see Mount Sinabung clearly from here. We planning for Sinabung trip hopefully before the end of this year
Some of the picture taken here
The starting trail from the end of tarred road
Sibayak mountain range
V shape sunrise
Panorama of Sibayak.. you can see Mount Sinabung at the far behind..
Me at the crater :D
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