Lake Toba

Referred to as the centrepiece of North Sumatra Lake Toba offers beautiful scenery and a pleasant climate. Lake Toba is the largest lake in South East Asia measuring 100km in length; it is also one of the deepest and highest lakes in the world. The lake was formed after a prehistoric volcanic explosion; today the surrounding landscape is steep and fertile. Lake Toba has the island of Samosir situated in the centre of the lake and a regular ferry is available from the mainland to Samosir. Samosir is home to the hospitable tribe, Toba Batak and is well worth a visit, just to capture the traditions and culture of the tribe.

High quality hotels can be found on the mainland at Prapat, many of which have restaurants serving European food. Leo's jazz blues restaurant & cafe (near Elsine GH & Hora's Homestay) offers video, pizzas & happy hour. Reggae bar (near Samosir & Anju cottages) boast a pool table. Tuk-Tuk and Samosir are littered with small cafes to larger more upscale restaurants. Explore, and you will not be dissapointed!

Two star hotels and comfortable home stays can be found on the Island of Samosir.


Lake Toba is approximately 3 hours by road from Medan there is a frequent bus service that runs from Medan to Lake Toba and hired taxis available. If you are in Samosir and wish to go to Lake Toba there is a regular ferry service that will carry passengers and motorcycles. If you so desire there are private speedboats for charter.

Lake Toba is a spectacular experience, it is a walker's paradise. There are a variety of tours available encompassing Samosir and the surrounding area. The ferry from the mainland to Samosir is a pleasant experience and a trip to Samosir provides an insight into the local Batak culture that resides on the island. If you're into photography Lake Toba is a good place to go and take some magnificent pictures.


Lively and exciting dance and music performances are held here every Saturday night for a modest entrance fee; alternatively Prapat hotel has a similar cultural exhibition on their premises for tour groups. The week-long Lake Toba Festival is held annually in June, where alongside the song and dance, is the fascinating canoe race held by competing villages.

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Information provided by Department of Tourism. Government of Indonesia.


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