Thursday, 12 December 2019 | 12:58 WIB

Makassar, the Second Largest City Outside of Java Island

The city of Makassar (makassarkota)

MAKASSAR, NNC - Makassar, which was officially known as Ujung Pandang from 1971 to 1999, is the capital of South Sulawesi province. Makassar is the largest metropolitan city in eastern Indonesia and has in the past been the capital of East Indonesia and the province of Sulawesi.

Makassar is located on the southwest coast of Sulawesi Island and borders Makassar Strait in the west, Pangkajene Islands Regency in the north, Maros regency in the east and Gowa regency in the south.

From the aspect of development and infrastructure, the city of Makassar is one of the metropolitan cities in Indonesia, the largest city outside the island of Java after the city of Medan.

With an area of 199.26 km² and a population of more than 1.6 million people, the city is ranked fifth largest city in Indonesia after Jakarta, Surabaya, Bandung, and Medan.

Demographically, the city belongs to a multi ethnic or multi-cultural type with various ethnic groups residing in it, among which significant numbers are Bugis, Toraja, Mandar, Buton, Java, and Tionghoa. Makassar typical food that is commonly found in remote corners of the city is Coto Makassar, Roti Maros, Jalangkote, Bassang, Cake Tori, Palubutung, Banana Ijo, Sop Saudara and Konro Sop.

The name Makassar has been mentioned in pupuh 14/3 Nagarakretagama works by Mpu Prapanca in the 14th century, as one of the conquered areas of Majapahit.

Nevertheless, the 9th King of Gowa Tumaparisi Kallonna (1510-1546) is thought to be the first person who actually developed the city of Makassar. He moved the royal center from the hinterland to the coast, built a fortress at the mouth of the Jeneberang River, and appointed a shahbandar to regulate trade.

In the 16th century, Makassar became the dominant trade center in Eastern Indonesia, as well as being one of the largest cities in Southeast Asia.

The kings of Makassar applied a strict free trade policy, in which all visitors to Makassar were entitled to trade there and reject the VOC (Dutch East Indies) effort to obtain monopoly rights in the city.