Saturday, August 20, 2011

Another West Sumatra road trip

People kept talking about all the lakes in West Sumatra and I knew Solok was supposed to be a decent sized town. So I took off last weekend without much of a plan and figured I would go exploring.

I drove through Solok and quickly decided it didn’t really deserve any time and headed to lake Singkarat. I checked into a hotel and headed out to find Balimbing village. This is a village where they have preserved their old traditional Minangkabau houses. It took a few wrong turns and ignoring the assurances of Indonesians who believe the answer is always keep going, but I found the village. It really was fascinating. The roof style has been replicated throughout the province, but I fell in love with the beautiful weaved wooden walls which must have gone out of style a few hundred years ago. ;)

Lake Singkarat wasn’t that exciting so I decided to go find these other lakes that I had heard about. The maps I had with me didn’t refer to any “twin lakes,” but they did have danau diatas and danau dibahwa which when I thought about it, referred to a higher and lower lake and they did look approximately similar so I took off in that direction hoping I had figured it out.

The twin lakes are gorgeous. They are set high up in the hills amongst tea plantations and vegetable farms. I happily spent some time just sitting in the panorama admiring the lakes and eating fresh locally grown passionfruit.

In the morning I enjoyed a beautiful walk through the vegetable gardens along the side of lake diatas.