Lake Tolire

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A brilliantly blue volcanic lake, Tolire Lake is set in a crater at the foot of Mount Gamalama, on the island of Ternate, North Maluku Province. The Lake is comprised of two lakes, roughly 200 meters apart: TolireLamo, The Greater Tolire Lake, and TolireIci, the Small Tolire. The Great Lake is almost perfectly round, somewhat resembling a giant pan.Its mystical waters change colors with the seasons, from a bright blue during the summer, to a dark green or brown throughout the rainy season. 50 meters below the lip of the crater where in it lies, Tolire Lake spans about 5 hectares, yet its depth remains unknown. Some believe that it leads directly to the Ternate Sea.

 Lake Tolire - Indonesia Travel

As with many a volcanic lake, Tolire is surrounded by many legends. One such legend tells of a man who impregnated his own daughter. In their fury for such a deed, the gods cursed them, transforming the father into the Great Tolire Lake, and his daughter into the lesser one.


Local folklore tells that the bottom of the lake is covered in treasure belonging to the bygone Ternate Kingdom, which was thrown into this lake to prevent it from falling into the hands of the then invading Portuguese.


Others believe that the lake is inhabited and guarded by invisible crocodiles, measuring a dozen meters in length, as well as an even larger, white crocodile, which only occasionally makes an appearance. According to local belief, you can try to throw a stone into the lake, but no matter how hard your try: it will never touch the surface of the water.


To Eat, To Stay, To Do

Amara Bela International Hotel is situated on a hill overlooking Ternate City and Harbor, and is the only starred hotel on the island. Facilities include a swimming pool, fitness center, restaurants, ballroom and wedding chapel.

Address: Jl. Jati Raya No. 500, Ternate, Indonesia



Bukit Pelangi Hotel has rooms in both an older building and newer building on one property. In the newer building you'll find fresh tiles, wooden furnishings, TVs and new air-con units. Those facing the seaside open onto a common terrace with gorgeous harbor and Tidore views. Facilities include air-conditioning and WiFi service.

Address: Jl Jati Slt 338, Bastiong, Ternate Selatan

Phone: +62 921 312 2180


Wisma Mega Ternate offers creamy-coloured, air-con rooms with good beds and satellite TV in a sub-urban house with a lovely view.

Address: Jl Raya Bastiong Dusun Bastiong Kota Ternate

Phone: +62 921 327989

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Getting There and Around

Get There

The Babullah Airport on Ternate has available flights from Jakarta, Manado and Makassar. From Ternate, simply rent a car or motorcycle, or venture out with public transport, as Tolire Lake is just 10 km from the city.