SOUTH KALIMANTAN (KALIMANTAN SELATAN)
South Kalimantan is one of the 4 provinces in Kalimantan (formerly called Borneo).
It is often called the Province of a Thousand Rivers. One is Barito River, the largest and the longest river in South Kalimantan, and one of the longest in Indonesia at more than 600 km in length. One of its tributary rivers is the Martapura River, which in turn has two tributary rivers of its own, the Riam Kanan and Riam Kiwa Rivers. Barito connects with the Negara River which branches out into lesser rivers.
The high rainfall and adequate sunshine have made South Kalimantan fertile. Extensive forests with a large variety of trees make South Kalimantan one among the largest timber producers in Indonesia. The region is well-known for its iron-wood, meranti, pinus and rubber.
South Kalimantan is connected with cities all over Indonesia through Syamsuddin Noor airport which is 25 km from Banjarmasin. This airport serves 737s, DC-9s and smaller aircraft. Airlines serving Banjarmasin are Garuda, Merpati Nusantara, Bouraq, Sempati and Dirgantara Air Service (DAS). The main runway was to be lengthened to 2400 metres to allow larger wide bodies aircraft to land. The work should have been completed in 2006.(we are not certain if the work is complete at this stage – if anyone has further information, please let us know)
South Kalimantan can also be reached through the seaport of Trisakti and Banjarmasin harbour. Plenty of good roads access towns in Kalimantan.
If waterways are preferable, go by boat along large rivers which head in almost every direction.
PLACES OF INTEREST
Banjarmasin and its surroundings
THE BARITO RIVER IN BANJARMASIN
MONKEYS AT THE CHINESE TEMPLE ON KEMBANG ISLAND
In 1985 a large raw diamond of 116.7 carats was found in a 15 metre deep mine shaft.
Martapura is a finishing centre for diamonds and precious stones, and is also the centre of diamond marketing. The town is 40 km from Banjarmasin. The polishing work uses traditional as well as modern equipment.
DIAMOND MINING IN CEMPAKA
Takisung Beach lies about 10 km West of Pleihari. Folk entertainment is available, and there is a hotel and a play area for children.
Hulu Sungai Tourist Resort
Hulu Sungai is a vast region in the northern part of the province. Most areas here are swamps, but the eastern part is mountainous.
Loksado is at the South Hulu Sungai district whose capital is Kandangan, and lies about 3 hours by car from Banjarmasin. The road is good, however, from Kandangan to Loksado, the road goes as far as Halunuk, a small village. Then the trip continues by motor cycle which takes a single passenger over a narrow foot-path.
The natural surroundings of the hilly region provide attractive sights for those who enjoy hiking and mountaineering. On the way, meet the local people with their original ways and cross the river on a suspension bridge.
Visitors usually use the river to get back after visiting Loksado. Those who enjoy rafting may venture the trip through numerous rocky rapids by traditional rafts made of bamboo or by rubber rafts. The river trip starts at Loksado, 45 kilometres from Kandangan. If a motorcycle ride is preferred, it takes about 4 hours. Those who enjoy trekking through the forests of the hill, the trip takes 8-10 hours.
If you want to take a river trip, start from Loksado to Batu Laki which is 56 km away. The trip can be made in two stretches. The first is from Loksado to Muara Hatip. The second is from Muara Hatip to Batu Laki.
The first stretch is not very challenging because the rapids are not very strong and ranks as grade 1 to 2 1/2. On the second one, the level of difficulty increases, while the rapids are higher and stronger at grade 3, such as Hawangan and Kandihin at the mouth of the river Muara Haring. The panorama along the river is fascinating.
BAMBOO RAFTING ON THE AMANDIT RIVER
Photographs copyright to “Lovelos” (Sweden – www.pbase.com/lovelos/kalimantan) and Liono Setiowijoso, and Ken Ratihn (bamboo rafting)
Much of the Information on this page has been derived from various Indonesian Embassy links and Indonesia-Tourism.com (the Indonesian Tourism organisation),