Are you going to Tanjung Bira, South Sulawesi? I will tell you my experience when I was there this March.
Short facts :
- Car from Makassar to Tanjung Bira is available in Malengkeri Terminal, they use small car (such as Kijang car) as public transportation, price range for Makassar – Bulukumba Rp. 50.000,- and Makassar – Tanjung Bira Rp. 70.000,- Here is the phone of the driver you can trust to bring you to Tanjung Bira (because usually they only bring you to Bulukumba and from there you go to Bira with pete-pete, double works) Hafid +6285242732458.
- Journey from Makassar to Tanjung Bira is 6 hours drive – the road is fine, only need to be consider the small space if you are a foreigner. Total for passenger in the car can be 10 person, while the normal one only put max. 8 person/car.
- Be ready for waiting in such a long time, because the car only will go after the driver thinks it’s already full – or almost full. Of course they don’t want to waste their gasoline and want to get some returns. I already warned you 😉
- Food in terminal are not the excellent ones. So if possible, avoid to eat in Terminal and if you are hungry, better to go outside the terminal and find Coto Makassar nearby.
- Make sure if you are having above average height to take front seat. It will make your legs comfortable during the journey. How to get the front seat? If you see it’s empty, don’t lose it, keep sit there until the car goes on.
- It’s non-air conditioner car, instead, you will get fresh breeze by open the windows.
- This is what you should do when you see a passenger smoke inside the car (ah yes, that’s possible to happen! *sigh*) – ask them politely to turn off their cigarette.
This is kind of scenery you will see along the way.
Now talking about the guesthouse. Tanjung Bira is a special place with long main road which lots of guesthouse on the left and right sides. You can easily choose which place you want. But a friend recommended me to stay in Salassa Guest House. I was thinking, “okayy, let’s try for one night – if I don’t like it, I will go to another place.” But it turned out to be a very convenient place for me to stay! The owner, pak Erik, and his family, is really a friendly people. They always smile to you, and the waitress who serves your meals also smile to you – and to foreigners always act very shy (like how typical most Indonesians behavior because they worry the foreigners will speak to them in English – this fact not applicable to Indonesians who able to speak English fluently).
Salassa Guest House has a very good chef – which is also pak Erik’s wife, ibu Santi. I can honestly admit, the cuisine are freaking good! Now, when I’m writing this article, I can smell the food again and taste the tomato salad in my mouth.. Yumm! The price also affordable. You can see the price list of the food from the picture below. Don’t be surprise if the restaurant full with foreigners. Mostly they will stop here for lunch or dinner, even they stay in another guesthouse/hotel.
Talk about the guesthouse, Salassa Guest House has a humble place with simple facility – it’s really basic for backpackers. But the price is so cheap, Rp. 100.000,- for 1 person, and Rp. 120.000,- for 2 person, including breakfast – such a good deal, isn’t it?! It’s with Fan, outside bathroom, and I like it here cause I can wash bunch of my dirty clothes hehee, even they also do the laundry – but I forget to ask how much for the price.
Do you want to stay in Salassa Guest House? Here’s the number of pak Erik : +628124265672.
Actually, there are many places surrounding as well. Such as Sunny Guesthouse, which also recommend by some travellers, Mangga Lodge Bungalow, Bira Dive Resort and Bara Beach Bungalow. Also on our way walk from Bira to Bara beach, you can see many guest house everywhere. We were passing Bira Dive Resort in our way to Bara beach, and we have a look how it’s inside. The place quiet cool, but when we were there, there’s no one stay there cause it’s still low season.
Bara Beach Bungalow also our favorite place to spend time looking at the beautiful ocean while enjoying our lunch. Bara Beach Bungalow also serve lunch and dinner for public guest. Their crew are so friendly and recognize us easily when we came again for the second time. A warm place always make the guest feel welcome, isn’t it? 🙂
Tanjung Bira is a small village in the southest of South Sulawesi with a beautiful white sandy beach. The beach will be very crowded in the weekend. Local people will gather to hang out in the beach, there also some water sport such as banana boat and snorkeling by renting a boat, Rp. 300.000,- able for 10 person inside of the boat, so you can share the cost to cut the budget. Snorkeling destination is in Liukang Island or Kambing Island. We snorkeled in Liukang Island for 3 hours and eat our delicious fresh fish in Liukang Island. The underwater life is so amazing. So many variety of fishes and coral under the sea. Best weather to visit Tanjung Bira is end of March – September every year. When we were there beginning of March, the storm still hit so rough in the evening, and the wave quiet strong.
Best time to visit Bira beach is in the weekdays, while not so many people and you can enjoy the whole beach peacefully. The locals sometimes clean and take out the rubbish from tourist to keep the beach clean, so please don’t litter wherever you are! Then if you want to go to , you can walk for 2 km, either along the beach or walk from the solid road. Walk through the beach only possible when the tide is low, usually in the morning, afternoon above, the tide will high and everything cover with the water.
Then you will find this…
Tanjung Bira may not like Bali, which already so sophisticated, but because of it, the place is really recommended for you who want to find something different, more quiet, laid back place and dwelling with real local people, cause in surrounding area you can see the life of locals with their house on stilts.