Bukittinggi is the cultural center of the Minangkabau people, the only ethnic group in Indonesia with matriarchal-like features. Land and home ownership is always bestowed on the women. Here you can see the unique culture and exceptional architecture of the Minangkabau, which is represented by the Rumah Gadang, the traditional houses with roofs designed as bull horns. Bukittinggi is located in the Bukit Barisan Mountains with a beautiful landscape and quite cool temperature throughout the year.
As a tourist center, Bukittinggi has a multitude of craft and souvenir shops as well as those for jewelry and antiques. For some of the better stuff and to be where a lot of it is made then it is advised you travel further out of town where many of the craft villages are. But it is also possible to visit ... yes, the equator. Near Bukittinggi a monument that is built over the road marks the equator. Travelers can stand in both hemispheres at the same time.
Sights to see in Bukittinggi
Maybe the best example for the traditional Minangkabau architecture in Sumatra is the museum of Bukittinggi. The traditional house hosts cultural and historical items of the Minangkabau people.
Just on the southern outskirts of Bukkitinngi the Panorama Park is located. Here you will get great views of the deep Sianok Canyon. There is also a delightful walk into the canyon and along the river, which takes about 4 hours. On the river bank all kinds of plants such as Rafflesia and medicine plants can be found. And if you are lucky, wild monkeys can be seen.
A must do in Bukittinggi is to step up Jam Gadang, a clock tower build in 1926. The clock was a gift from the queen of Holland, the former colonial power in Indonesia, but meanwhile the tower has become a typical Minangkabau roof with the symbol of the buffalo horns. Those who take the effort will enjoy great views from here right into the highlands.
Travel to Bukittinggi
From Jakarta International Airport to Minangkabau International Airport near Padang it will take about 2 hours, after you arrive you can take a taxi or bus to Bukittinggi. The taxi price from the airport to Bukittinggi is fixed at Rp. 185.000.