Lake Toba is one of the most interesting and spectacular places on Sumatra. The volcanic lake in the north of the island of Sumatra is 27 kilometres long and 87 kilometres wide. It is the largest crater lake on earth, surrounded by several inactive volcanoes. It is an ideal destination because of its beautiful landscape and the picturesque peninsula of Samosir. Worth seeing are the villages and towns on the shore, but also the bay of Porsea and the river Asahan, which drains Lake Toba. Check out our top 10 things to do at Lake Toba below.
Swim in the lake
Swimming in Lake Toba is possible at several well-developed and well-maintained beaches. The wind-protected bays with gently sloping access to the water are particularly idyllic.
Take a walk around Tuk Tuk
The town of Tuk Tuk is definitely worth a visit. Discover the traditional architecture and craftsmanship of Sumatra. Tuk Tuk has an abundance of inexpensive accommodation and first-class restaurants. The local markets and souvenir shops are especially recommended.
Eat fish in Jenny’s restaurant
Jenny’s is one of the most famous seafood restaurants on Lake Toba. Discover the traditional cuisine of Sumatra with an abundance of first-class dishes. Check on Google Maps
Do a boat tour
You can explore Lake Toba on a boat tour from many different landing stages. With the boats you can get from A to B quickly and cheaply. Tours around the Samosir peninsula are particularly recommended. The peninsula, which is 20 kilometres wide and 40 kilometres long, is characterised by a rich variety of flora and fauna. It can also be reached from the mainland via a narrow headland.
Visit the Batak Museum
The Batak are a tribe that settled around Lake Toba and attracted attention as warlike bounty hunters and cannibals. The Batak Museum also informs you about the tribe’s building and handicraft skills. Discover ornate carvings and traditional house constructions with pointed roofs that are typical of Sumatra. Dance performances are also held regularly at the Batak Museum.
Stroll around Tomok
Tomok is the most important place on the Samosir peninsula. Tomok can be reached by car ferry from Parapat or by scooter if you are already on Samosir island. The harbour of the village and the centre with many interesting markets, buildings and shops are worth seeing. The beaches of Tomok are ideal for relaxing, swimming, sunbathing and water sports. Two small lakes on Samosir can be reached from Tomok, where there are ample opportunities for fishing and nature observation.
Admire the Batak architectur
The Batak tribe has developed its own architectural style, which is widespread around Lake Toba and throughout northern Sumatra. Characteristic features are a special wooden construction method and the pointed roofs of the buildings. Also interesting are the pile dwellings, which also make it possible to settle on the shore or in the swamp area.
The most beautiful viewpoint on Lake Toba is Parhallow Viewpoint. It is located on the east coast of the Samosir Peninsula. From there you have a wonderful view over Lake Toba and the entire surrounding area.
Get a scooter and cruise around the island
A practical and widespread means of transport at Lake Toba is the scooter. Rent a scooter at reasonable rates and explore the lakeshore and the entire Samosir Peninsula.
Taste the local coffee at Tabo Cottages
At the end of our Top 10 things to do at Lake Toba, it gets culinary again. Sumatra is one of the largest coffee-growing regions. On the shores of Lake Toba there are the so-called Tabo Cottages. There you can taste the different regional coffees.
Tipp: 4 days at Lake Toba