By the end of the seventeenth century the Dutch had made a treaty with the chief of Minahasa, also known as Manado. In time the people of Manado became culturally and politically close to the Dutch. By the early nineteenth century the Dutch had introduced Christianity to the Minahasa and established missionary schools there more than 40 years earlier than they had in other regions of the archipelago. Because the people of Manado had learned the Dutch language before those in other islands, they had advantage in the competition for government jobs when the Dutch civil service was installed throughout the Dutch East Indies n the late 1800’s. The Manado people were in some ways different from other groups in the archilepago, not eager to let themselves be dominated by the central Jakarta government after independence. The public figure of the Menadonese Christian Sam Ratulangi as first republican Governor of Eastern Indonesia, won the Manado people to the cause of the young Republic of Indonesia. There were some strong independence movements in Manado, lasting even into the 1950’s. Their rebellion against the Soekarno administration was finally put down in the early sixities.
Mountains in the sea
Sulawesi is famous for its overwhelming natural beauty. The impressive Sulawesi ecology is home to rare species of animals which only exists in Sulawesi, for example the dwarf buffalo or Anoa and the pigdeer or Babirusa.
Off the coast of Manado lie many islands with fascinating coral reefs. Bunaken island is well-known as a dive site, with its thrilling Liang beach coral reef. Around 100 metres offshore the seabottom becomes sharp edged in, and gives divers and snorkelers the sensation of floating above a mountain top.