Bena, Ngada Traditional Village

Bena is the name of a traditional village in Ngada Regency, Flores, East Nusa Tenggara, Indonesia.

By Universitas Budi Luhur

Prudensius Maring

Bena Traditional Village has a megalithic village pattern that is cared for and inhabited by 9 indigenous Ngada tribes, on Flores Island.  Bena Traditional Village is located in Tiworiwu Village, Jerebu'u District, Ngada Regency.

BENA, NGADA TRADITIONAL VILLAGE (2023-06-13/2023-06-13) by Ahmad PramegiaUniversitas Budi Luhur

Traditional Village

Bena Traditional Village has 45 traditional houses with unique architecture and shows authenticity. The tribes living in Bena Traditional Village still maintain their customs. It is estimated that Bena Village is about 1,200 years old.

BENA, NGADA TRADITIONAL VILLAGE (2023-06-13/2023-06-13) by Ahmad PramegiaUniversitas Budi Luhur

The entrance is only from the north while the south bank side is a steep cliff. The architecture of Bena's houses and village layout is not only for residential purposes, but it has a deep function and meaning about local cultures and wisdom.

BENA, NGADA TRADITIONAL VILLAGE (2023-06-13/2023-06-13) by Ahmad PramegiaUniversitas Budi Luhur

Bena Traditional Village is inhabited by 9 tribes, namely Bena, Khopa, Ago, Ngada, Deru Solamae, Deru Lalulewa, Wahto, Dizi and Dizi Azi (Tandafatu, 2015). The houses were established on land with original contours so as to form tiers. Each tribe occupies one level. 

The houses are neatly arranged around the outer side of the land to form a formation that separates the space in the middle of the village. The formation of houses and village planning in addition to meeting the needs of housing in harmony with nature, also fulfill the needs.

The position in the middle of the village is the place for traditional ceremonies.  In the middle of the village there are buildings called Nga'dhu and Bhaga. Nga'dhu contains symbols and meanings related to ancestors or male ancestors.

The Nga'dhu pole is made of a special and hard type of wood because it also functions as a sacrificial animal gallows during traditional parties. Bhaga contains symbols and meanings related to ancestors or female ancestors whose  shape resembles a miniature house

Cultural Symbols

Bena Traditional Village is located on the bottom of Mount Inerie. The location of Bena village on the bottom of the mountain is characteristic of the  Ngada people who believed that the Gods live on the mountain.

BENA, NGADA TRADITIONAL VILLAGE (2023-06-13/2023-06-13) by Ahmad PramegiaUniversitas Budi Luhur

People believes that the existence of Lord Zeta on Mount Inerie protects the Bena Traditional Village. That belief is still firmly held by the local community until now.

BENA, NGADA TRADITIONAL VILLAGE (2023-06-13/2023-06-13) by Ahmad PramegiaUniversitas Budi Luhur

The villagers of Bena village is part of the villagers of Tiworiwu Village which currently numbers around 778 people. The villagers of Bena village, both men and women, mostly work as farmers. Women used to weave in their spare time.

BENA, NGADA TRADITIONAL VILLAGE (2023-06-13/2023-06-13) by Ahmad PramegiaUniversitas Budi Luhur

Nowadays, Bena Traditional Village is becoming a cultural symbol of the Ngada’s people. Bena is a world-class cultural tourism destination visited by domestic and foreign tourists. Bena Village has been touched by technological advance.

BENA, NGADA TRADITIONAL VILLAGE (2023-06-13/2023-06-13) by Ahmad PramegiaUniversitas Budi Luhur

Access data and payment transactions for tourism purposes already began to use internet services. People use electrical energy for lighting. The well-maintained paved road infrastructure facilitates visitors' access to Bena Traditional Village.

Credits: Story

Article : Prudensius Maring
Photo : Ahmad Pramegia

Credits: All media
The story featured may in some cases have been created by an independent third party and may not always represent the views of the institutions, listed below, who have supplied the content.
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