Tuesday, 18 October 2011

Last day in Banjarmasin

8th October 2011

Diamond Mine

First thing in the morning we went to a diamond mine between Banjarmasin and Martapura at Cempaka village. The people that work there all live in the small village right beside the mine. There were lots of hawkers there trying to sell diamond encrusted jewellery to the visitors, probably all fake though methinks.




Many people are panning for diamonds, gold and other precious stones. It looks like really hard work, especially in the heat of the sun, reaching around 35 degrees and very humid.

PhotobucketThey are all working so hard to find something big, but seldom do and I think they are still very poor. One guy found a small diamond just as we were leaving and he rushed over to show us, he wanted 300,000 rupiah for it (about 21 pounds) I cant imagine how small it would have been after a cut and polish.

PhotobucketMeek Farm

After the diamond mine we went to Meek Farm, which has a durian plantation and lots of other fruit, such as Jack fruit, papaya and mango. We were walking through the trees to find some ripe durian, its not hard once you pick up the smell!


PhotobucketWe stopped for food at a restaurant right by the river and I had chicken satay, nom nom nom - obviously very popular, judging by the amount of satay they were cooking! There was a small band playing traditional Indonesian music in the middle of the restaurant which was pretty cool. And the view across the river was nice.


Later in the evening we caught a flight back to Balikpapan - it took about 30 mins, as opposed to 15 hours by bus.

I really enjoyed the time in Banjarmasin. Indah and Iwan made me feel right at home, they showed me some amazing places and we had a lot of fun especially with my Indonesian language mistakes! So MAKASIH!!

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