Medan was one the site of a battlefield between the Aceh people and the neighbouring Deli Kingdom. Medan is the capital of North Sumatra Province, a trading center and important harbour.
Once Medan was part of the Deli Sultanate. What is historically most interesting is the Mesjid Besar (Grand Mosque) and the Palace of the Sultan of Deli which has been restored to rivive its past grandeur.
Medan’s harbour town is called Belawan, which is the sea link to Penang Malaysia. Medan, Indonesia’s western international gateway maintains regular flight to Singapore, Kuala Lumpur, Penang, Amsterdam and Vienna. Additionally, there are several air connections between Medan and Jakarta, and other destinations in Sumatra.
Lake Toba – Parapat
The town of Parapat is the main tourist resort and lies oil the very shore of famous Lake Toba. This lake is about 50 miles long and 16 miles across, with a depth about 1.400 feet.
In Parapat live Batak Toba and Batak Simalungun tribes, and are happy and easy going people. They are known for their lively and sentimental love songs. Recreational sports in Parapat are among other swimming water skiing, motor boating, canoeing, fishing, and golf at Sally golf course (19 holes) about 5 km from Parapat.
Parapat is 176 from Medan and can be reached in 4 hours by bus. The climate in Parapat is cool, and dry, making Parapat an ideal place to relax. Many hotels, bungalows, villas, resthouses welcome visitors. Small shops selling souvenirs such as “Ulos” (local woven cloths) and specific fruits locally grown.
The island of Samosir is right in the middle of Lake Toba, covering area of 329 square miles. This island is the original home of the fiercest hut kind hearted Toba Bataks. It can be reached in half an hour by boat from Parapat. Visiting, the village of Tomok, Tuk‑tuk, Siallagan, Ambarita are recommended for traditional Batak Toba houses, and local dances. This island has many hotels, bungalows, and rest houses.
Great Bukit Barisan
Located at Tongkoh village, in the district of the Karo highlands, approximatelly 59 km from Medan. Formerly Tahura Bukit Barisan since 1916, known for its location called “Arboretum Tongkoh-Berastagi”, however since 1989 renovated and renamed Great Bukit Barisan Forest Park. Found there is the zoological museum and a gazebo with Karo ornaments designed on the top of the roof, painted with various writings of typical welcome greetings in Tapanuli, which is “Horas”.
Medan has the largest crocodile farm in Indonesia. Here one can see how the crocodile eggs are hatched, and then reared somewhere else. This farm is located at Asam Kumbang, 5 km from the heart of the city, and has nearly 2000 crocodiles of different kinds.
See also Bali, the famoust place in Indonesia