Lake Toba Tourism Guide
What to do:
-Attending Toba Lake Festival
This festival is usually held annually in August-September. During the festival, you could watch a diversed cultural performances from North Sumatra province including the famous Tor-Tor Dance. The festivities also include a competition to decorate and race the traditional dragon boats. And if you happen to be a shopping enthusiast, this festival would be a great opportunity to hunt for Batak traditional cloth ulos in all of its variants. Last but not least, you could also satisfy your taste buds with the varieties of local culinaries from both North Sumatra and other parts of Indonesia.
-Sailing around Lake Toba
Another popular activity available at Lake Toba is to sail around it with the unique two-story decked passenger boats. While enjoying the ride, you would witness the majestic view of Samosir Island and the mountain surrounding the lake. The trip would generally take you to see the famous Batu Gantung (a hanging stone from a cliff) as well.
-Visiting Jangga Traditional Village
This village is located in the beautiful valley of Simanuk-Manuk Mountain, Lumban Julu, Toba Samosir Regency. It is ± 24 km from Lake Toba. In the village, you would encounter the traditional lifesytle of the Batak people that is far away from modernity. There you could see the traditional Batak house as well as the ulos weaving process by the villagers. In fact, if you would like to observe the Batak culture even more, you could even arrange to stay in one of the locals’ traditional houses. One important thing to bear in mind is to always show respect while you are in the village. One way to do this is by asking permission to the villagers before taking pictures.
For you who seek for a more adventurous activity at Lake Toba, you could try out some of the water sports that are available at most of the hotels there. Some of them include water skiing, riding jet ski and banana boats as well as canoing.
-Shopping for souvenirs
At the traditional market located in the heart of Parapat, you would find a range of shops offering a variety of souvenirs both modern and traditional. Some of the popular ones would be ulos and several carvings with Batak traditional writings.
Best time to visit: Best to avoid rainy season (September – January) as it could be foggy.