Toraja

The rugged highlands of Sulawesi are home to the Toraja people, an indigenous population whose name derives from a derogatory Bugis word that means "bumpkin"! While the Toraja today are mostly Christian, they have held on to some of their customs and beliefs, particularly their elaborate funerary rites. In addition, the surrounding landscape is an excellent destination for outdoor sports and activities, among them watersports and trekking.

Experiences

A handpicked selection of experiences endorsed by our experts. If you can’t see what you’re looking for, let us know, as our extensive network of local contacts can open many doors.

Ancient Religious Rites

While many Torajans are now Christian, converted by missionaries under the Dutch colonial administration, many still practice the rites of their religion, Aluk Todolo, an amalgam of animism and ancestor worship. Learn about the intricate funerary rites of the Torajans, particularly the use of multiple burials, cave chambers, and wooden likenesses called tau-tau.

Buffalo Sacrifice

Attend a buffalo sacrifice at a funeral rite. Enjoy a meal with the local natives as you learn about their norms, mores and culture. Such feasts can last for days, if not weeks.

Coffee Plantation

Visit a Torajaland coffee plantation, where you can learn about the local means of production and cultivation. Take a sip of a special blend and if you wish, purchase coffee to bring back home with you.

Rantepao

Rantepao is the largest town in Tana Toraja, and is home to a fascinating market. Upwards of 600 buffalo, an animal integral to the Toraja way of life (and death) are on sale at any given time at Rantepao, with some fetching such astronomical prices as 22,000 USD. You will also see hundreds of pigs and many other animals for sale here, including roosters who are assessed for their prowess in cockfighting.

Tongkonan House

Visit the village of Palawa, which offers an excellent example of tongkonan, traditional Toraja homes. These unique edifices are perched on columns with vast roofs that curve upwards in imitation of the sweep of a buffalo’s horns. A family’s wealth may be measured in columns of buffalo horns displayed outside the home. Meet local villagers and, through your guide and interpreter, chat with them about their lives.

Indonesia Regions

Explore in-depth information, experiences and highlights by navigating to specific regions using the links below.

Multi-Country Specialists

Indonesia Goes Well With

Why Remote Lands?

Exclusively Asia

With Remote Lands you'll travel with people who have made Asia the solitary focus of their own lifelong adventure. As our guest, you'll discover Asia on a journey that is completely, authentically your own, adapted from our own remarkable experiences and adventures over the years.

Travelogues

An Asia-focused magazine brought to you by Remote Lands - a platform for adventure, luxury, and authenticity from experts and explorers around the continent.

What Others Say

Here is a small selection of the kind words our clients have said about us recently.