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Selayar or Saleyer (Indonesian: Kabupaten Selayar, Dutch: Saleijer), is an archipelago of South Sulawesi province, Indonesia. It lies in the Flores Sea, between Sulawesi and Flores, around 150km southeast of the major city of Makassar.[1] Kabupaten Selayar is the Regency, covering 903.35 km² with a population of about 120,000 (2012). There are 73 islands, the main one being Selayar Island. To the east lies Pulau (Island) Kalaotoa and Pulau Karompa Lompo (in Sulawesi Tenggara province), and to the west lies Kepulauan Sabalana (the Sabalana Islands). It is a biodiverse diving site.[2]


Map showing the location of the islands

The Selayar Strait (Selat Selayar) is more than 100 fathoms deep and, with a strong current, is dangerous for native ships to navigate. The strata of Selayar Island are all sedimentary rocks: coraline limestone, occasionally sandstone; everywhere, except in the north and north-west, covered by a fertile soil. The watershed is a chain running throughout the island from N. to S., reaching in Bontona Haru 5840 ft.,\ and sloping steeply to the east coast.


The population, mainly a mixture of Makasars, Bugis and the natives of Luvu and Buton, is estimated at 57,000 on the main island and 24,000 on the nearby islands. They speak the Makassar language and are for the most part nominally Muslims (though many non-Muslim customs survive) and support themselves by agriculture, fishing, seafaring, trade, the preparation of salt (on the south coast) and weaving. Raw and prepared cotton, tobacco, trepang, tortoise-shell, coconuts and coconut oil, and salt are exported. There is frequent movement between the area and other parts of Sulawesi as well as to other parts Indonesia. For that reason, and also because of its excellent horses and numerous water buffaloes, the Saleyar Islands are often compared with Madura, being of the same importance to Celebes as is Madura to Java.


  1. ^ Andi Hajramurni, 'Discovering enchanting Selayar, South Sulawesi', The Jakarta Post, 3 January 2012.
  2. ^ Agung Parameswara, 'Nature, culture & history', The Jakarta Post, 1 December 2012.
  3. ^ Andi Hajramurni, 'Taka Bonerate offering an undersea paradise' Archived 2013-04-18 at, The Jakarta Post Travel, 3 January 2012.

  This article incorporates text from a publication now in the public domainChisholm, Hugh, ed. (1911). "Saleyer". Encyclopædia Britannica. 24 (11th ed.). Cambridge University Press. p. 67.Coordinates: 6°0′S 120°30′E / 6.000°S 120.500°E / -6.000; 120.500