5 Things to Do at Lake Toba
- Eat Batak meals
How better to understand a culture than through their food? Since the Batak people normally have a unique culture from the rest of Indonesia, it is shown from the food as well. Among the famed and popular dishes is the Batak Grilled Pork. Given the Bataks are largely Christians, they don’t have dietary constraints as with the majority Muslim population of Indonesia. Nevertheless, it was mentioned by my guide it was getting harder for the regional Bataks to get non-Halal meat and as such, their dietary patterns have been changing.
2. Have coffee on a pond
Many locals run small eateries in the edge of the seas in which the views are absolutely stunning. Offering local snacks like Goreng Pisang (fried bananas) and java, these are great locations to take a pitstop and relish the view of the Lake.
3. Have a lakeside meal
There are so many eateries surrounding the lake that offer a wide range of cuisines from Batak to Sundanese food. Try some Ikan Bakar (Chargrilled Fish) freshly caught from the lake with rice along with other dishes!
4. Climb GunungSibayak
As with the rest of Indonesia, Sumatra has numerous active and dormant volcanoes (nicely Things to Do at Lake Toba is a huge one itself). Perhaps you want to challenge yourself by taking a hike to the summit of one of the dormant volcanoes. Popular with locals and foreigners alike, Mt. Sibayak is located close to the town of Berastagi, only two hours north west of Lake Toba. Make an overnight trekking and camping out excursion together with scores of other hikers to see the sunrise. You’ll not regret the attempt to arrive there! There are locally run hot springs in the area if you want to take a dip.
5. Visit the tallest waterfall in Indonesia
On the northern tip of Lake Toba lies Sipiso-piso waterfall, the maximum plunge waterfall in Indonesia in 120m. The waterfall was formed when the land closer to the crater lake collapsed, exposing a underground river on the side of the cliff. Trek down to the bottom of the waterfall and allow the river rain down on you. Talk about a refreshing experience!
The beauty of Lake Toba is completely understated. With a lot of sights to see, it might be hard to remember all them without taking a few pictures to remind yourself of the memories. Remember to bring a camera along and click away in this region of glorious natural wonder!