Thetraveljunkie.org – Banjarmasin is the capital city of South Kalimantan. Unique architectural heritage, natural splendour and colourful floating markets have made Banjarmasin a charming riverfront getaway. Officially established in 1526 as Banjarmasin, the city had actually been settled centuries earlier with a legendary history spanning the ancient South Kalimantan Kingdoms of Nan Srunai, Negara Dipa and Negara Daha. Its key location near the junction of the Martapura and Barito rivers made Banjarmasin a strategic trading port throughout the colonial era and earned the city its nickname of ‘The River City’. And here are eight things to do in Banjarmasin:
01). Pasar Terapung Lok Baintan, visit the famous Pasar Terapung, a traditional floating market. The market springs to life at around 5.30am and only opens for about three to four hours, so we have to get there before everyone arrives. We navigate along the Martapura River, passing by many Rumah Lanting – the traditional, local flood-proof houses built on stilts that hover above the riverbank. The boat slows to a stop in front of the Lok Baintan jetty. We’re early. But soon enough sellers arrive from the surrounding villages using their small colourful wooden boats loaded to the brim with equally colourful farm-fresh produce. Boats slowly approach from all directions; it is quite a sight to see so many vessels creating a harmonious slow dance. This floating market has been here for generations. In fact, some of the sellers still use the old-school barter system: no money required. It really is a one-stop-river-shop.
02). Soto Banjar Bang Amat, famous among locals for its soto Banjar, a lovely coconut milk-based broth dish with hearty rice cakes, shredded chicken, carrot, duck egg and vermicelli. The broth is thin, yet has a rich curry-like flavour to it. Eat like a local and order a portion of chicken satay to go with soto. The restaurant perched on the Martapura riverbank and the panoramic river views are a great accompaniment to flavourful Banjar dishes.
03). Lontong Orari, an authentic Banjarese food. If you’re hungry for traditional eats, Banjarmasin never disappoints. They may not look like the prettiest plates, but give them a taste before you make up your mind – they have a lovely sweet and spicy flavour combo.
04). Bekantan Statue, One of the main elements of the park is the famous landmark Bekantan Statue, which depicts an icon of Kalimantan, the proboscis monkey.
05). Waja Sampai Kaputing Museum (Museum Wasaka), The museum is located on the banks of Martapura River, adjoining the bridge 17 Mei (Banua Anyar Bridge) that large, long and sturdy. Wasaka Museum in the house of Banjar Bubungan Tinggi then converted from a residential into a museum. This is done as one of the traditional buildings conservation efforts. There are also historical relics such as old-fashioned typewriter, camera, mirror, spear, sword, guns, mortars, and four chairs that supposedly was once used as a fighter of South Kalimantan deliberation. While the walls that surround the seats contain of pictures the first governor until now. Do not miss an ancient bicycle that said during the colonial era used to mail the letters to hide sheets in the bike that is not known by the colonial Dutch.
06). Masjid Sultan Suriansyah, the oldest mosque in South Kalimantan. It was built over 300 years ago when Sultan Suriansyah ruled the area. He was also the first Banjarese King converted to Islam from the previously Hindu kingdoms. The mosque is located at the palace complex (Kampung Kraton) in the village of Northern Kuin. It has a unique architectural design with a layered roof showing the pre-Islamic Banjarese design called Bubungan Tinggi.
07). Kampung Sasirangan. In this Village, we can find the manufacturers process of making batik Sasirangan. Now, we can get many products not only cloth, but also Sasirangan provides with variable products like, dress, wallets, shoes, sandals and bags. Sasirangan is traditional cloth that originally come from South Borneo and Kampung Sasirangan which located near Waterfront , Sub-district Kampung Melayu, opposite of Siring Martapura park.
08). POP! Hotel Banjarmasin, brings the new concept of POP! Hotels to Borneo with its 24-hours cafe + convenience store concept, PITSTOP, serving hot food, snacks and hot beverages. A walking distance away from Banjarmasin’s city center. It is 4 km from Menara Pandang Banjarmasin, Duta Mall Banjarmasin and Jahri Saleh zoo; and 12 km from Wasaka Museum and the floating market.
Happy Sustainable Travels!