Bajawa, the capital of the Ngada district, is a small charming town located in the middle of the Florinese highlands.
As the regional center of the Ngada people – who still keep their long-standing culture firmly anchored in communities – Bajawa is a perfect starting point to explore the past and present Ngada way of life.
As Bajawa is the highest (around 1500m above sea level) and coolest town in Flores, this area is ideal for hiking and trekking adventures in comfortably refreshing surroundings of utter natural beauty. If you are in good shape, you can choose to climb one of the nearby volcanoes or simply take a relaxing hike to the natural hot springs.
Plenty of local cultural events take place in Bajawa and its surroundings. The most popular ones are ‘reba’ and ‘sagi’. Reba is held in Bajawa, Bena, Mangulewa, Wogo, and many other surrounding villages. It is the traditional new year celebration and one of the most important thanksgiving festivals, accompanied by extensive ceremonial and ritual activities. From May until July, traditional boxing, calledsagi, determines the Ngada (and also Nagekeo) ceremonial life. These, and other ceremonies and local events, are usually scheduled and take place at a fixed date. Being part of such events will definitely be an unforgettable highlight of your Flores journey.
You find a good choice of basic to mid-range hotels as well as many warung and restaurants (some of them also serve European-style food). As the Bajawa nights can be pretty chilly, be sure to bring enough warm clothes with you.
How to get there
Bajawa can be found easily as it is located right on the Transflores ‘highway’.