Ternate is the capital city of northern Maluku and a volcanic island. Don’t imagine pristine white sandy beaches will meet you as the island is volcanic and the sand is black at its best.
Ternate does however have many things to offer the traveller so don’t be deterred, as the rich culture and heritage of the island will certainly captivate your mind and have you dreaming of bygone days.
Ternate definitely has its place in the history books of the Spice Islands. It is here, where the Sultanate has survived and is proudly, a massive part of this culture-rich island.
As Ternate is served by quite a few major airlines in Indonesia, you will probably find yourself transiting here for a day or so before heading to nearby Halmahera. If that is the case you should consider a trip to the Sultan’s Palace, which is probably the most prominent site in the whole of Ternate. The Palace is still used as a residence for the Sultan and his family, however you can still visit certain parts and see numerous interesting objects such as ancient weaponry, clothing and flags to mention just a few. Unfortunately, the most prized object – the Sultan’s crown is not on display yet remains safely tucked away inside the Palace.
Ternate is also the place you need to head to if you are interested in climbing the active volcano of Gamalama. It is actually this volcano that has risen out of the sea to create this lush tropical island. As Gamalama is still active to this day you must always enquire about recent activity before trying to ascend. As with most treks in the Moluccas, it is highly recommended you hire a guide. Make sure you agree a fee before you commence. If you do manage to climb the volcano, you will be met by stupendous views of the whole of Ternate, however please be aware that most days, the volcano is shrouded in cloud and mist.
Getting to Ternate is relatively easy, with flights arriving from the capital Jakarta, Makassar in Sulawesi and of course Ambon. A more reputable airline to check would be Lion Air and its sister carrier Wings Air.
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