In 2012 Wae Rebo Village received an Award of Excellence from UNESCO in the culture and tourism category at UNESCO Asia Pacific Award for Cultural Heritage Conservation. It is the highest award for cultural heritage conservation, putting it on the list as one of the must-visit places on Flores island
Lots of natural beauties can be found in Wae Rebo Village, attracting people all over the world to its charm. Nestles in the highland of Manggarai district, Wae Rebo Village is known as a village above the cloud. Isolated at an altitude of 1,100 meters above sea level and surrounded by panoramic mountains.
How to Reach Wae Rebo
Firstly, you need to take a flight to Labuan Bajo. Afterward, continue with a car ride from Labuan Bajo for 3-4 hours to Denge. Start trekking from Denge (500m over sea level), then walk uphill to Wae Rebo (1200m over sea level). Through the dense rainforest, a 2-3 hour trekking is needed to reach this traditional village. There is varied terrain ranging from rocky roads to crossing rivers with bamboo bridges. On the way to the village, you will meet villagers carrying heavy loads of food supplies. There is no market available in the village, the villagers need to walk for miles to buy food supplies. Along the way, you may hear a population of singing birds, pass coffee and chocolate plantations, and see many Flores biodiversity.
Once you’ve arrived in Wae Rebo village, warmly welcomed by their traditional welcome ceremony at the main house called Mbaru Gendang. The traditional welcome ceremony called Waelu is performed by the Chief tribe. praying for goodness and safety. The difficult access may require an overnight stay in the local house. Spending a night with the villagers is a good opportunity to have a local experience and to learn more about the culture and tradition. Due to the location of the village, no mobile signal and the electricity is available only from 6 to 10 pm.
Heaven for Coffee Lovers
Wae Rebo village was known as heaven for coffee lovers. There, you can encounter lots of coffee plantations. No wonder their livelihood is coffee. As a result, it is used to support all the residents’ needs. Starting from buying rice and other necessities in the market to sending their children to higher education. Long before tourism, coffee had become their life support. Surely visitors are able to observe how the making of coffee is in traditional ways. From harvesting to grinding the beans.
House of Wae Rebo
The houses in Wae Rebo are unique. The Mbaru Niang house is 7 cone-shaped traditional houses. Sitting semicircle around Compang, or the sacred altar, that is used for traditional ceremonies. The main house, Mbaru Gendang is where the welcome ceremony is usually held. It is the biggest and the tallest house in the village. The other six houses are called Niang Gena. 5 Niang Genas are used by the families and one traditional house for visitors.
You can combine your tour visiting the Komodo National Park with this majestic Wae Rebo Village.