Travel

Serene Sunset and Floating Houses at Tempe Lake

Some of us would agree that although they’ve traveled far and visited many countries, they feel most comfortable in their home country. So do I. I love staying in Malaysia, but my love for Indonesia never change.

Actually, I’ve been to more European countries than destinations in Indonesia. Up until now, I’ve only been to Bandung, Jogja, Solo, Bali, Raja Ampat and Makassar. The reason is very cliche. As a native, I think I can visit other parts of Indonesia anytime.

On my way to the floating houses!
Not sure if you can find a boatman, my tour guide made the reservation
The sticks are to hold the nets to catch the shrimps

Strangely, the day that I fall in love again with my home country isn’t when I was at the top of Wayag Island, Raja Ampat but when I was floating at Tempe Lake.

Tempe Lake is located in South Sulawesi, Indonesia. It’s very near to Sengkang and a beautiful beach, Tanjung Bira. Honestly, I’ve seen more beautiful lakes overseas. However, as the boat went further, I was surrounded by serenity…

Tea Time at the Floating House

The main attraction of Tempe Lake is the floating houses. They’re not beautiful houseboats like the ones in India or Copenhagen, nor built with solid bricks like the ones in Venice.

The floating houses are built with woods and other humble materials – which make them unique in the eyes of travelers.


The best time to go there is before sunset so you can enjoy the view while sitting on the floating house. Be punctual with the time, as you need to rent a boat and the boatman will refuse to send you there if the sky has turned dark.

There aren’t many floating houses in Lake Tempe, I think less than 10. The boatman will drop you off on one of the floating houses. Take your time and worry not, the boatman won’t leave you behind, hehe!

The houses may be made from humble materials, but remember to take off your shoes as soon as you arrive. There are only 2 rooms: a kitchen and a big space for the bedroom cum living room.

The hosts will serve you pisang goreng (fried bananas) and sweet, hot tea to accompany you while watching the sunset.

Pisang goreng and a cup of sweet, hot tea for tea time
Fyi, the host uses clean, boiled water from the city to make your tea 🙂

As a polite gesture to the hosts, visitors are expected to pay a small amount of money (around RM10-12/USD3). Some travelers even take the extra mile, staying overnight to experience sleeping on a floating house.

Met a tour guide from Papua. He’s taking a traveler for 30 days trip to explore Indonesia!

What I enjoy the most from this visit is the return journey. Since it was a solo trip, there’re only me, the tour guide and the boatman on the boat. The sun was almost completely gone, the wind caressed my face… All I heard was the soft sound of the boat moving.

The serene sunset at Tempe Lake

I stretched my hands and closed my eyes… It’s so serene. For the first time, this Capricorn lady could think about nothing when doing nothing.

I love Indonesia!

P.S.: Read about my trip in Raja Ampat to experience a digital detox trip

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