Ambon is the capital of the Moluccas otherwise famously known as the Spice Islands. It was here that the Portuguese first discovered the very lucrative nutmeg and clove that was very much sought after in 15th century Europe.
Ambon experienced clashes in the early nineties amongst the Christians and Muslims; however, rest assured that today, it is a peaceful place and very much worthy of a trip to these beautiful islands.
Most visitors wanting to travel around the Spice Islands will surely arrive by plane into Ambon. It is from here where you can venture onto your next leg of a Spice Island Hop. There are numerous attractions in and around Ambon and if you find yourself in transit, waiting for a ferry or connecting flight, don’t despair as you can visit many a historical place here.
Probably, the most prominent site to visit would be Nieuw Victoria Fort. The Portuguese built this fort in 1575 to protect from the Dutch, who were also in search of nutmeg and clove. The Portuguese eventually lost control and the Dutch took over in 1602.
Siwalima Museum is the place to head to if you want to see an extensive collection from the Maluku’s heritage. The museum houses a huge collection of maritime exhibits as well as an impressive skeleton of a whale. The Museum is only 3 km out of town, however please be aware that the museum is closed on Mondays, Thursdays and Fridays.
If your body is crying out for some therapeutic waters, head to the hot springs, which are located just outside the port of Tulehu. The springs are in the foothills of Ambon’s highest mountain – Salahutu. There is also a very beautiful waterfall about an hours walk from the springs called the Waai waterfall.
There is a beach in Ambon, however it may not be the beach you will have dreamed the Spice Islands is reknowned for. That being said, it is still a nice break from the city and you will probably make new found friends with the locals who bathe there. The beach is called Natsepa Beach and is located some 14 kilometers outside of town. The waters here are very shallow and allow for a refreshing dip.
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