Lighthouses of Indonesia: Western Sulawesi (Celebes)

Indonesia has been independent since 1945, after having been the Dutch East Indies for more than 350 years. It is a huge country, stretching along both sides of the Equator for more than 46 degrees of longitude (roughly 5100 km or 3200 miles). Comprised of some 17,000 islands (more than 6000 inhabited islands), it has hundreds of major aids to navigation. This is one of three pages for lighthouses of Sulawesi (Celebes), a major island in the northern part of the country.

Shaped like an artistically drawn letter K, Sulawesi consists mostly of four narrow peninsulas. The Makassar Strait separates Sulawesi from Kalimantan (Borneo) to the west. The Celebes Sea is north of the island, the Banda Sea is to the east and southeast, and the Flores Sea is on the south. Makassar, also called Ujung Pandang, is the major port. This page covers the west side of the island, including the province of West Sulawesi and the west coast of Central Sulawesi Province.

The Indonesian word for a lighthouse is mercusuar. The phrase menara suar, which includes the Arabic word menara, is sometimes used instead. Pulau is an island and karang is a reef.

Aids to navigation in Indonesia are operated and maintained by the Directorate General of Sea Navigation.

ARLHS numbers are from the ARLHS World List of Lights. Admiralty numbers are from volumes F and Q of the Admiralty List of Lights & Fog Signals. U.S. NGA List numbers are from Publication 112.

General Sources
Online List of Lights - Indonesia - Vol. F and Vol. Q
Coming soon: photos by various photographers posted by Alexander Trabas.
Indonesian Lighthouses
Historic postcard views from the collection of Michel Forand.
World of Lighthouses - Indonesia
Photos by various photographers available from Lightphotos.net.

Teluk Palu Light, Donggala, January 2017
Radar Sulteng Online photo by Muhammed

Sulawesi Barat (West Sulawesi) Province Lighthouses

Majene Regency Lighthouses
Tanjung Rangasa
Date unknown. Active; focal plane 105 m (344 ft); white flash every 5 s. 21 m (69 ft) white iron skeletal tower. No photo available, but a Bing satellite view probably shows the station. Located on a prominent cape in Banggae, a town about 5 km (3 mi) southwest of Majene (Madjene). Site status unknown. ARLHS IDO-325; Admiralty Q1496; NGA 25492.
Tanjung Binanga
Date unknown. Active; focal plane 24 m (79 ft); white flash every 6 s. Approx. 20 m (66 ft) square pyramidal skeletal tower, painted white. No photo available, but Google has a satellite view. Located on a promontory at Palangpalang, about 40 km (25 mi) north of Majene (Madjene). Site probably open, tower closed. Admiralty Q1494; NGA 25494.
Tanjung Ongkone
Date unknown. Active; focal plane 14 m (46 ft); white flash every 4 s. 14 m (46 ft) square white skeletal tower. No photo available, but Bing has an indistinct satellite view. Located on a remote point of land about 40 km (25 mi) south of Mamuju. Site status unknown. Admiralty Q1493; NGA 25496.

Mamuju Regency: Mainland Lighthouses
Tanjung Kai
Date unknown. Active; focal plane 16 m (52 ft); white flash every 5 s. 10 m (33 ft) round barbell-shaped white fiberglass tower. No photo available, but Bing has a distant satellite view. Located on a sharp cape about 20 km (13 mi) southwest of Mamuju. Site status unknown. Admiralty Q1491; NGA 25502.
Tanjung Rangas
Date unknown. Active; focal plane 99 m (325 ft); white flash every 6 s. 21 m (69 ft) white iron skeletal tower. No photo available, but Bing has a satellite view. Located on a prominent cape about 10 km (6 mi) northwest of Mamuju. Site status unknown. ARLHS IDO-324; Admiralty Q1490; NGA 25500.
Simboro Mamuju North
Date unknown. Active; focal plane 13 m (43 ft); green flash every 5 s. 13 m (43 ft) square skeletal tower painted green and mounted on a square platform supported by piles. Google has a street view and an indistinct satellite view. Note: NGA has reversed the Admiralty numbers of the two Mumuju lights. Located close offshore north of the Mumuju ferry harbor. Accessible only by boat. Site open, tower closed. Admiralty Q1490.15; NGA 25503.
Simboro Mamuju (South)
Date unknown. Active; focal plane 15 m (49 ft); white flash every 3 s. 13 m (43 ft) square skeletal tower painted white. Google has a street view (also seen at right), but the tower is inconspicuous in Google's satellite view. Located on the quay of the Mumuju ferry harbor. Site open, tower closed. Admiralty Q1490.1; NGA 25503.5.
Tanjung Lalereh
Date unknown. Active; focal plane 42 m (138 ft); white flash every 5 s. Approx. 38 m (125 ft) tapered square skeletal tower with lantern and gallery, painted white. No photo available, but Bing has a satellite view. Located on a cape about 80 km (50 mi) north of Mamuju. Site status unknown. Admiralty Q1485; NGA 25503.8.

Simboro Mamuju Light, Mamuju, January 2016
Google Maps street view

Mamuju Regency: Balabalagan Islands Lighthouses
Pulau Ambungi
Date unknown. Active; focal plane 33 m (108 ft); quick-flashing white light. 30 m (98 ft) skeletal tower, painted white. No photo available, and the island is only a blur in Google's satellite view. The Balabalagan Islands are reefs and islets in Makassar Strait emerging from a dangerous reef extending southeastward from Borneo. Located on an island at the northwestern end of the Balabalagan group about 130 km (80 mi) southeast of Balikpapan. Accessible only by boat. Site status unknown. ARLHS IDO-190; Admiralty Q1486.4; NGA 24946.
Kepulauan Balabalagan (Balabalagan Islands)
Date unknown. Active; focal plane 40 m (131 ft); three white flashes every 20 s. 40 m (131 ft) skeletal tower, painted white. No photo available, and the island is only a blur in Google's satellite view. Located on the southeasternmost of the islands in the middle of the Makassar Strait about 175 km (110 mi) southeast of Balikpapan. Accessible only by boat. Site status unknown. ARLHS IDO-177; Admiralty Q1488.5; NGA 24944.

Mamuju Utara (North Mumuju) Regency Lighthouse
Tanjung Pasangkayu (Pasaugkajoe)
Date unknown. Active; focal plane 56 m (184 ft); three white flashes every 24 s. 37 m (131 ft) skeletal tower with lantern and gallery, painted white. No photo available, but Bing has a satellite view. Located on a promontory about 2.5 km (1.5 mi) west of Pasangkayu. Site status unknown. ARLHS IDO-044; Admiralty Q1484; NGA 25504.

Sulawesi Tengah (Central Sulawesi) Province West Coast Lighthouses

Note: Despite its name Central Sulawesi Province is in the northern part of the island; it includes the southern half of the long northern peninsula. Its west coast faces the Strait of Makassar and, to the north, the Celebes Sea. Lighthouses of the province's east coast are described on the Northeastern Sulawesi page.
Southern Donggala Regency (Palu Gulf) Lighthouses
* Teluk Palu (Tanjung Karang, Palu Gulf)
1907. Active; focal plane 82 m (269 ft); four long (2 s) white flashes every 25 s. 21 m (69 ft) hexagonal white iron skeletal tower with lantern and gallery. A photo is at the top of this page, and Google has a good satellite view of the station. One of Indonesia's not-so-well-known Dutch lighthouses. Located on a prominent cape on the west side of the entrance to the narrow Palu Gulf, about 25 km (15 mi) northwest of Palu, the capital of Central Sulawesi. Site status unknown, but it should be possible to drive to this station from Palu. ARLHS IDO-339; Admiralty Q1476; NGA 25508.
Donggala
Date unknown. Active; focal plane 13 m (43 ft); white flash every 3 s. 11 m (36 ft) square white skeletal tower. Google has a distant street view and an indistinct satellite view. Located at the north end of the quay at Donggala, on the northwest coast of the Palu Gulf. Site status unknown. Admiralty Q1478; NGA 25510.
Pantai Taipa (Taipa Beach)
Date unknown. Active; focal plane about 15 m (49 ft); light characteristic unknown. Approx. 15 m (49 ft) square skeletal tower mounted on a square platform supported by piles. Miloslav Petrtyl has a photo, Anastasiya Ivanova has a second photo, and Bing's indistinct satellite view shows the platform. Located just offshore on the southeast coast of the Palu Gulf. Easily seen from shore. Site open, tower closed. Admiralty Q1481.2.
Taipa Jetty
Date unknown. Active; focal plane about 15 m (49 ft); light characteristic unknown. Approx. 13 m (43 ft) round barbell-shaped white fiberglass tower. A small photo is available, and Bing has a satellite view. Located just north of the ferry pier at Taipa. Site open, tower closed. Admiralty Q1481.
* Pantoloan
Date unknown. Active; focal plane 18 m (59 ft); white flash every 5 s. 15 m (49 ft) square white skeletal tower mounted on a square white equipment shelter. The tower is the far right in a photo of the port by Bagus Roby, and Bing has a distant satellite view. NGA spells the name as Panteluan. Located at the south end of the quay at Pantoloan, a port on the east side of the Palu Gulf. Site open, tower closed. Admiralty Q1480; NGA 25512.

Northern Donggala Regency Lighthouses
Manimbaya
Date unknown. Active; focal plane 50 m (164 ft); two white flashes every 20 s. 40 m (131 ft) square skeletal tower with lantern and gallery; tower painted white, lantern red. A closeup photo is available, and Google has a satellite view of the station. This lighthouse is built almost precisely on the Equator. Located at the tip of a long promontory extending into the Strait of Makassar about 30 km (19 mi) northwest of Mapaga. Site status unknown. Admiralty F2040; NGA 25114.
Pulau Tuguan (Pulau Tugguan, Noordwachter)
1902. Active; focal plane 92 m (302 ft); white flash every 5 s. 20 m (66 ft) white iron skeletal tower. The modern description is consistent with the Dutch original. No photo available, and a cloud hides the station in Google's satellite view of the island. Not to be confused with another, better known Noordwachter in the Java Sea. Located on an island in the strait about 25 m (15 mi) northwest of Munte in northwestern Sulawesi. Accessible only by boat. Site status unknown. ARLHS IDO-031; Admiralty F2044; NGA 25120.
Ogoamas
Date unknown. Active; focal plane about 18 m (59 ft); light characteristic unknown. Approx. 15 m (49 ft) square white skeletal tower. The top of the lighthouse is at the right in a photo of the port by Ar Rahman Ar Rahim, and Google has a fuzzy satellite view. Located on the waterfront at Ogoamas. Site status unknown. Admiralty F2044.8.

Tolitoli Regency Lighthouses
Pulau Simatang (Sematan)
Date unknown. Active; focal plane 31 m (102 ft); two white flashes every 8 s. NGA has no description of this light, but a tall tower would be needed here. No photo available, and the tower is not conspicuous in Google's satellite view. Located at the northern tip of Pulau Simatang. Accessible only by boat. Site status unknown, but probably open. Admiralty F2046; NGA 25118.
Pulau Kabetan (Pulau Kapetan, Tanjung Paligisan)
Date unknown. Active; focal plane 31 m (102 ft); white flash every 10 s. Approx. 28 m (92 ft) skeletal tower with gallery. Lighthouse painted white. A photo is at right, and Google has a satellite view. Located on the southeastern tip of Pulau Kabetan, an island on the approach to Botakna Bunga. Accessible only by boat. Site status unknown. Admiralty F2047; NGA 25121.

Pulau Kabetan Light, Tolitoli
unattributed photo from identitastolitoli.com
Pulau Lutungan
Date unknown. Active; focal plane 45 m (148 ft); two white flashes every 8 s. Approx. 25 m (82 ft) skeletal tower with gallery. Lighthouse painted white. No photo available, but Google has a satellite view. NGA spells the name Latungan. Located at the northern tip of Pulau Lutungan, an island in the entrance to the harbor of Tolitoli. Accessible only by boat. Site status unknown. Admiralty F2047.5; NGA 25122.
* Tolitoli (Tanjung Labuan Dedeh)
Date unknown. Active; focal plane 16 m (52 ft); white flash every 3 s. 15 m (49 ft) skeletal tower, painted white. Novander Ulag has a photo, Fauziah Muslimah has a view from the sea, and Google has a fuzzy satellite view. Located at the ferry terminal in Tolitoli. Site open, tower closed. Admiralty F2048; NGA 25116.
Pulau Salando (Tanjung Malagka, Pulau Silando Timur, Stroomenkaap) (2)
Date unknown (station established 1913). Active; focal plane 57 m (187 ft); white flash every 5 s. 25 m (82 ft) white iron skeletal tower. A photo is at right, and Google has a satellite view. This lighthouse marks the northeastern entrance to the Strait of Makassar. The original lighthouse had a focal plane height of 46 m (151 ft). Located on an island just off Tanjung (cape) Malagka, the northwestern corner of Sulawesi. Accessible only by boat. Site status unknown. ARLHS IDO-312; Admiralty F2050; NGA 25112.
Pulau Dolongan
Date unknown. Active; focal plane 23 m (75 ft); white flash every 6 s. 15 m (49 ft) "white beacon." No photo available, but Google's fuzzy satellite view shows a square white skeletal tower mounted on a platform. This light faces the Celebes Sea, marking the extreme northwest corner of Sulawesi. Located off the northern tip of an island about 10 km (6 mi) northeast of Tanjung Malagka. Site status unknown. Admiralty F2051; NGA 25111.7.
Pulau Malagka Light
Pulau Salando Light, August 2013
Panoramio photo copyright Roly R; used by permission

Buol Regency North Coast Lighthouses
Tanjung Kandi
Date unknown. Active; focal plane 120 m (394 ft); three white flashes every 20 s. Approx. 65 m (213 ft) square skeletal tower with lantern and gallery. Lighthouse painted white, lantern red. Three 1-story station buildings. No photo available, but Google has a good satellite view. Located on a very prominent cape about 65 km (40 mi) east of Pulau Dolongan. Site status unknown. Admiralty F2052; NGA 25113.
* Leok
Date unknown. Active; focal plane 18 m (59 ft); white flash every 4 s. 15 m (49 ft) square white skeletal tower. Yonnas Grey has a view from the sea, and Google has a satellite view. Located at the ferry terminal in Leok, a fishing port about 15 km (9 mi) south of Tanjung Kandi. Site open, tower closed. Admiralty F2054; NGA 25124.

Information available on lost lighthouses:

Notable faux lighthouses:

Adjoining pages: North: Northern Sulawesi | East: Northeastern Sulawesi | South: South Sulawesi | West: Eastern Kalimantan

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Posted December 18, 2008. Checked and revised February 25, 2018. Lighthouses: 28. Site copyright 2018 Russ Rowlett and the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.