15 Jun '14, 11am

Indonesia's spice of life - Straits Times

Indonesia's spice of life - Straits Times

The rich smell of cloves was unmistakeable as we drove through the villages on Ternate, one of two Spice Islands in eastern Indonesia that were the main source of this much- valued aromatic spice for centuries. Clove trees dot the foothills of Mount Gamalama which towers above the island and whose volcanic soil nourishes the clove, nutmeg, cinnamon and other spices that made this one of the wealthiest and most important trading cities in South-east Asia. A string of 500-year-old forts scattered along the island's coastline and on its next-door neighbour, Tidore, bears witness to this storied past of how explorers were drawn to the region. Today, there are no five-star beach resorts but the two islands promise majestic views of nature and secluded beaches, surrounded by crystal clear waters. In some parts, you can snorkel and dive right off the shore to see an array of cora...

Full article: http://www.straitstimes.com/lifestyle/travel/story/indone...

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