graves

Londa

Londa

March 11, 2013 / by / 0 Comment

Londa is a grave site located 5 km south of Rantepao, on the road to Makale. Three methods of burial are customary at Londa. Here, the coffins of ordinary people are placed in caves and crevices at the foot of the hill. Bring a powerful torch or hire an oil lamp for 25,000 rp. The remains of persons of higher rank rest in burial chambers carved from the wall of the limestone cliff. The latter are accompanied by tau tau, realistic looking wooden ancestor statues, placed close to the chamber. The higher the status of the deceased, the higher the chamber, which can be situated as far as 50 meters from the ground. There are also some newer graves which Torajans refer to as banua tai ma’rambu (the house without smoke). Entry fee: 20,000 rp per person. How to get there? Jump on a Rantepao-Makale bemo and ask the driver to drop you off at the turn-off to the burial site (ask “kiri decat di jalan Londa”). From there on it’s a 20 minute walk. View Larger Map

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Kambira

Kambira

March 10, 2013 / by / 0 Comment

On the road from Sangalla’ to Suaya you will find Kambira. Surrounded by a bamboo forest you will find a large tree containing several baby graves. Some of them are more than 100 years old. When a baby that does not have any teeth yet dies in Tana Toraja, it is brought within the hour to the baby tree of the village, where a the a small ceremony is held (no buffalos are sacrificed). Torajans believe that by doing it that way, the spirit of the baby will grow up together with the tree to reach the sky, where it can go to the afterlife. Entry fee: 20,000 rp. How to get there? Jump on a Makale bound Kijang. Just before Makale, the driver will ask you to leave the vehicle. At that place you are able to take on a pete-pete to Sangalla’. From there on, travel by ojek to Kambira.

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Buntu Pune'

Buntu Pune’

March 07, 2013 / by / 1 Comment

Formerly, the sites of Buntu Pune’ and Rante Karassik belonged to one integrated settlement. Buntu Pune’ was the dwelling compound and Rante Karassik was the ceremonial ground. Although these sites are now separated due to recent development, the sites still function as they did in the past. You will find 7 granaries and 2 big traditional tongkonan built around 1880. All are owned by the family of Pong Maramba, an important coffee farmer in Tana Toraja. On a hill behind the granaries you can see the the grave of Pong Maramba. It is said this was the first building in Tana Toraja made of concrete. Entry fee: free! How to get there? The easiest way is to jump on an ojek or sitor in town. It’s located just outside of town.

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Bori' Parinding

Bori’ Parinding

March 06, 2013 / by / 1 Comment

On the road from Rantepao to Batutumonga, in the middle of stunning rice paddies, you will find the site of Bori’ Parinding. It is a combination of ceremonial grounds and burials. The ceremonial ground is an open space used for traditional ceremonies, including rituals for the dead and thanksgiving. More than a hundred megaliths stand on the ceremonial ground, each representing a feast of merit performed in the past by a person of high status. Human remains are placed in stone chambers carved out of huge stone boulders, which lies scattered around the ceremonial ground. There are five tongkonan compound spread around the area. Bamboo is now planted in some places around the ceremonial ground to replace the extinct bamboo forest of the traditional settlement. In the middle of the bamboo trees there’s some baby graves cut out of a tree. Entry fee: 20,000 rp. How to get there? Jump on a Bori’ bound pete-pete and ask the driver to drop you off at the burial site (ask “kiri decat di Bori’ Parinding”). It is located next to the main road.

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Lo'ko' Mata

Lo’ko’ Mata

March 05, 2013 / by / 0 Comment

In the mountains of Batutumonga you will find the burial site of Lo’ko’ Mata.  You’ll find 20-30 burial chambers cut out of one giant rock. Although it’s not really common at Lo’ko’ Mata, you will see a couple of Tau Tau, realistic looking wooden ancestor statues, lined up on a small balcony and a nice big buffalo head cut out of the rock. Walk around the big rock. On the left side you will find an open grave. The door to the grave is only 80x80cm but the actual grave inside measures 2m x 2m x 1m and is big enough for several coffins. At Lo’ko’ Mata you will also find a couple of smaller megaliths. Entry fee: free! How to get there? Jump on a Bolu-Batutumonga pete-pete and ask the driver to drop you off at the burial site (ask “kiri decat di Lo’ko’ Mata”). It is located next to the main road.

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Lemo

Lemo

February 15, 2013 / by / 0 Comment

Lemo is probably the best known and most visited burial site in Tana Toraja. It is located 10 km south of Rantepao, on the road to Makale. The sheer rock face has a whole series of galleries with Tau Tau, realistic looking wooden ancestor statues, representing the dead persons inside the graves. Walk around the side of the cliff to find more rock graves and hanging and falling coffins. Close to the rock you will find little huts where men are carving (and selling) tau tau and of course numerous souvenir stalls selling everything from wood carvings to keychains and t-shirts. The whole burial site itself is surrounded by beautiful rice paddies. The best time to visit Lemo is early in the morning, when the sunlight is coming from the right direction to make beautiful photos. Entry fee: 20,000 rp per person. How to get there? Jump on a Rantepao-Makale bemo and ask the driver to drop you off at the turn-off to the burial site (ask “kiri decat di jalan Lemo”). From there on it’s a 20 minute walk. View Larger Map

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