Manado Travel Guide

Manado is the capital of North Sulawesi and boasts a number of fascinating attractions. It is scenically situated and surrounded by volcanoes, volcanic lakes and a pristine coastline.

Activities abound in Manado, with scuba diving and rock climbing being two of the more popular options. For those who want to delve into life under the sea, Bunaken Island (which is found just off the coast of Manado) boasts beautiful and unspoiled dive sites.

If, however, you want to keep your feet on dry land, the nearby volcanoes known as Mount Lokon and Mount Mahawu have a number of different climbing opportunities. They also boast beautiful crater lakes and a range of footpaths.

Manado not only boasts outdoor pursuits, it is also the cultural center for the Minahasa people. There are many museums and centers offering information on their local traditions and heritage. With regards to historical sights, unfortunately bombing raids in WWII flattened much of Manado and therefore eliminated much of the ancient culture.

The tourist infrastructure in the city is very good with bars and restaurants (local and international) making up the nightlife choices and museums, landmarks, caf├ęs, temples and mosques making up daytime options. You will never be stuck for somewhere to stay - whatever your budget, and with a number of tour companies operating in the city, you will have plenty of opportunity to explore the surrounding area.

Getting There & Away

Manado has its own international airport, which has daily flights to and from Malaysia (4 hours), Singapore (3 hours, 30 minutes) and the Philippines (1 hour, 30 minutes). Once at the airport, there are taxis and buses to take visitors into the city center. It is also possible to take boat to Manado from other islands in Indonesia.

Things to Do

Manado Attractions

Tangkoko National Park

Home to a wide selection of indigenous plants and wildlife including tarsiers and macaques, the park is an enormous expanse of land and a must-see for all nature lovers.

Bunaken Island

Located just off the coast of manado, this stunning island is home to pristine beaches, dense forests and an abundance of dive sites.

Ban Hin Kiong

A 19th century buddhist temple.

Bukit Kasih (Love Hill)

This stunning hill boasts scenic footpaths and panoramic views across the city once at the top.

Side trips from Manado


A small town which is surrounded by three active volcanoes

mount lokon, mount mahawu and mount masarang. it is just 25 minutes away from manado and an excellent place to stay for anyone looking for peace and quiet as well as cooler temperatures.


Manado Beach Festival

Is held every july and is a celebration of the founding of the city. it is one of the most popular events in indonesia and takes place over a week. locals and tourists of all ages come together for fun, music and laughter as well as the chance to feast on local cuisine. traditional dancing, music, art and textiles are showcased every day, with festivities lasting well into the night for the entire week.