will close on Feb 27th.

Please save any personal content and exchange contact info with other members you?d like to stay in touch with. Thank you for your contributions to the VirtualTourist community.

"The Venice of Borneo" Indonesia Things to Do Tip by global_explorer

Indonesia Things to Do: 469 reviews and 867 photos

Banjarmasin is called The Venice of Borneo, the name refer to the part lying close to the river. Here it is several channels, and mutch of the life takes place on the riverbanks and on the water itself. The channels are lined with grey and poor wooden buildings on stilts, it is scrubby, yet scenic in a way. On the channels it is heavy boattraffic, some are taxiboats packed with people, other carry cargo. Between the boats, young boys have a good time swimming, this thinned out sewagewater is their only playground. The banks are occupied by busy people, here they wash themselves, their utensils and the laundry. There is little in the way of privacy. The rule appears to be”see in another direction”. Visitors get an overwhelming reception. Everyone cheers, and want to have their picture taken. After a while one get a little exhausted. Early in the morning there is a floating market where the two rivers Barito and Kuin meets. This marked, Pasar Kuin, dates back four hundred years. Lack of space on land is the reason for its existence today. Here you will find a floating island of salesboats selling mainly fruit, vegetables, fish and meat. There is also some grocery stores there. Around is a swarm of buyers boats, some big, some are only small canoes risking their lives to get hold of their shoppinglist. If you can’t reach a particular boat, shout and establish contact that way. Then the goods go from hand to hand in one direction, the money in the other. Thievery is not a problem. Around this busy anthill there is several warungboats, cafe’s, circling around in safe distance. In a sideriver i visited the floating village consisting of livinghhouses some shops buildt on bamboorafts in the river. This is a little community of its own, life goes on here just the same way as in the settlements along the riverbanks. Nothing is different from land, despite everything is different. Here we ate breakfast from a little warungboat serving tea and a wide variety of kueh, pastries. Delicious and cheap.

Was this review helpful?

  • Written May 27, 2004
  • Send to a Friend
  • Add to your Trip Planner
  • Report Abuse



“the world is my playground”

Online Now


Top 5,000 Travel Writer
Member Rank:
0 3 6 6 1

Have you been to Indonesia?

  Share Your Travels