First stop was a small city named Palopo. There was a KFC in the city for our lunch. Being in Sorowako for few months, KFC was really a luxurious treat! Later on we bought back to Sorowako a bucket full of fried chickens on the way home :p.
The road to Rantepao (the touristic city in Tana Toraja) from Palopo is SCARY. It was all winding road for two hours drive. The road was not wide, and I believed that I always gasped everytime there were cars coming from other direction. I didn't dare to look out of the window too. Jurang!!. Hiro stopped the car at one point for taking a break. Duh bener-bener deg deg-an waktu ngambil foto ini. Bayangkan kalo salah langkah terus aku jatuh dibawah sana!! hiiiiiiiii
winding road view on the way to Rantepao
We stayed at Heritage hotel, mentioned as the best hotel in Rantepao. It was quite beautiful though it looked old and unfortunately not well maintained too. Our friends from Sorowako even didn't get hot water in their rooms! The staffs were friendly, the food was really good eventhough it took FOREVER to get served. After more than an hour waiting for our food I was really pissed off and yelled to the waiters :p.
Toraja Heritage Hotel
We didn't hire any driver or guide there. My lovely husband said that he would love to take the challenge to explore Toraja by himself, only using a (not so clear) map we got from the internet. He even didn't want to stop to ask for direction. We literally got lost for many times (@_@).
Our first plan was visiting Kete Kesu, a famous traditional village burial site closest to our hotel. Well, we couldn't find it :p, and visited Pala' Tokke which has hanging graves instead. We almost got lost again, Hiro and Ikemura (his friend coming with us) already climbed a rocky hill to find the hanging graves haha! We almost gave up and Hiro drove back a bit, but then I insisted to open my window ask a pedestrian. Which was a good decision!!
It was not that easy to reach Pala' tokke. The road was not good, thanks God we are using 4WD company's car :p. Still then we had to walk and climb a rocky mountain for about 15 minutes.
rice paddy at Pala' Tokke
climbing a rocky mountain
I was the first one who arrived there, shocked, and screamed. Skulls! I saw skulls!!!
I couldn't sleep on our first night there. Everytime I closed my eyes, those skulls from Pala's Tokke haunted me...... :(