Arriving to Togian Islands

We spent all night on the ferry last night. As I’ve stated before, we stayed in middle class. We had a very long bench looking thing where we had mattresses all over. Everybody had a number and a mattress (if they bought one) and we slept next to each other like herrings. I had Harry on one side a total stranger, a German guy on the other side. I thought it will be worse. Everybody said before that there will be people smoking and eating so it won’t be as a good experience,yet my only problem was the heat. It was very hot so I woke up a few times but compare to what people said, I could sleep at least 4-5 hours. We left at about 7.30pm from Gorontalo and arrived about 6.30am to Waikai. We had to sort of check ourselves into the island in a little office as we got out from the ferry. It’s a white building left side of the port. We had to show our passport and fill out a form: where we come from, where we stay, for how long,etc. I also had to pay IDR150,000 for a tourist entrance to the ‘national park’. That’s a very new thing, probably about 2 months old. Togian islands were never a national park but apparently now it is and every tourist have to pay. It is only valid for 5 days. And then you have to pay again…according to them. In reality since they don’t put the date on it, you stay as long as…. We arrived to Kadidiri Lastari by little boat. This is where we are staying for 2 days. As soon as we arrived, we got some brekkie and wooden house number 5. It doesn’t have the bathroom inside but who needs it inside. It has bed and a small table and it’s also cheaper, IDR 175,000/person to compare the IDR 200,000 for the one with bathroom. Our house is literally in front of the water and the view is amazing. There is a huge rock by the beach which makes it even better looking. After a well deserved sea water shower we had a little chill (I could sunbath a bit) and then we went off to see Togian’s famous jellyfish lake. Yes, there is a lake in Togian which is full of with jellyfish (3 different type) and none of them are poisonous. You can touch them and nothing will happen. So we arrived and call me a wussy but when I jumped in, it took me like 5 mins to get out. Ok,maybe it was 10-15 mins I stayed for but I was constantly looking if anything is around me. Funny enough, I’m actually amazed when I see a jellyfish but swimming with them and feel their jelly body….that’s a different story. I took some photos and made a video and I was out. But it was good fun. The lake followed by the Karina beach which is a beautiful white sandy beach with a coral reef we could spend time at snorkelling. It took about 1 hour or so to get back. The boat trip was IDR 75,000/person.
As soon as we arrived I jumped into the hammock and I didn’t get out for quite a while. We had a chat with Harry and I found out he likes Spanish music just like me and he also told me a story about how police ‘sweeps’ hotels to find out if any couple is there without marriage papers. Basically they pick a hotel, they get in and they knock on every door. If they find out there is a couple, they take them into 2 separate rooms and they question them about the other. First question: are you two married?When they say yes, they ask, when did they get married, how was the wedding, where was it held,etc. If the answers are different, it’s obvious they aren’t married. They can actually get punished by a day in prison or paying money. They also call the man’s wife to let her know about the situation.
If a man isn’t married but sleeps with someone who he isn’t married to, he gets 1 strike. After the 3. strike he gets a day in jail. That’s how serious they are about marriage and breaking it.
Before dinner we sat around the fire the owner’s son made. Harry’s brother was playing on guitar and singing while we talked about gym and if the earth is flat or not (of course not) and all sorts. Dinner was rice and fish, same as lunch but different type. I am not the only westerner here, we have 4 German, 1 Austrian and 2 Dutch guests plus a bunch of locals. Most of them are leaving tomorrow.
Tomorrow’s plan is mystery but it’s either visiting a village somewhere not too far or kayaking and definitely some sunbathing and snorkelling.
It’s a beautiful and peaceful place here where the water is crystal clear and you can see billions of stars as there is no light pollution. Just you, the sea and the stars.

photos will come as soon as I have better internet connection. In the meantime,I could put some on Facebook.

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