Formerly called Ujung Pandang, the city of Makassar is the largest city in east Indonesia. Capital of South Sulawesi, Makassar enjoys a central location in the Indonesian archipelago and today Makassar is Indonesia’s busy air hub, connecting Sumatra, Java, Bali and Kalimantan in the west with Sulawesi, the Moluccas and Papua in the east.
Makassar, once called Ujung Pandang, has now reverted to its original and more familiar name it carried through the ages. Bustling Makassar is the most important city in South Sulawesi, the sea trade and airline hub to Indonesia’s eastern islands. Makassar itself is famed for its bright handwoven silk sarongs, silver and gold handicrafts, as well as its succulent, grilled seafood taken fresh from the sea. Makassar is also the entry point to an adventurous journey to Tana Toraja in its northern highlands.
In the heydays of the kingdom of Goa between the 16th and century and during the Spice Trade, Makassar flourished as the entrepot for pepper, nutmegs and gold, when merchant ships from India, China, Java and distant Arabia and later from Portugal, Britain, Spain and Holland called on this port. Many stayed to setttle here. During the colonial period, the Dutch turned Makassar into a fortified trading post, making it into one of the most mportant cities of the colonial government.
Given its long history as a busy trading port, Makassar is well-versed in the art of welcoming visitors with warm hospitality. Today, the city enjoys rapid development in terms of infrastructure and facilities. The brand new Hasanuddin International Airport can now accommodate wide-bodied jet aircrafts, while access to the city center has also been made easier and hotels and commercial establishments continue to grow rapidly.
Decorated with the splendor of stunning beaches, beautiful countryside and amazing cultures, and moreover, supported by many conventions and exhibitions facilities, Makassar today is more than ready to take on the role of a MICE destination.
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