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SULAWESI - Bada Valley | The morning after | Megaliths | The Long Walk | Food Poisoning
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Bada Valley

By the afternoon, my girl friend, L. and I had arrived in Tentena, a small village in Central Sulawesi that took a bus journey from hell to reach, not just because of the normal problems of awful music and cramped seats, but also because the roads in Sulawesi are shocking. We settled in for a relaxing evening in a good but pricey losmen, and made our plans for tomorrow: the mission, to discover the megaliths of the Bada Valley.

The Bada Valley follows the Lariang River along the southern border of the forested Lore Lindu National Park, and is becoming world famous for its ancient and mysterious statues, or megaliths: megaliths are large stone carvings along the lines of those on Easter Island. Our options were many, but we decided we'd go alone and try to find the megaliths ourselves: guides from Tentena came in at 50,000 rupiah per day per person, which sounded like a right royal waste of money, so we bought a seat on a jeep heading east into the valley the next day, and tried to glean as much information as we could from local tour guides and other travelers. It wasn't the most successful fact finding mission: all we got was a photocopy of a dodgy-looking map and some vague walking times, but at least it confirmed that we were in the right area. And besides, a walk with a proper map just wouldn't be right in Indonesia, would it?