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Jakarta Post

‘Phinisi’ boats Bugis-Makassar masterpieces

  • Andi Hajramurni

    The Jakarta Post

Makassar   /   Wed, December 14 2011   /  09:13 am

Stunning: Phinisi ships stand on the sand, under construction in Bira in Bulukumba, South Sulawesi.Phinisi boats – a masterpiece of traditional Bugis-Makassar design – are exceptionally strong, and are famous for their ability to break through high waves and sail vast distances.

The wooden boats have sailed the Pacific to Japan and Vancouver as well as the Indian Ocean to Madagascar and to Australia.

 For Bugis-Makassar people, phinisi boats have served as a means of transportation for generations. The boats are used not only to connect islands and countries but also for trading purposes.

The typical features of phinisi ships, with two masts and seven sails of different sizes in orderly arrangement, distinguish them from other traditional wooden boats in the country.

With their unique shape and strength, phinisi vessels are almost entirely built tra...