Wae Rebo hamlet is now popular as one of destinations in Flores Island. The hamlet is very unique for its housing, isolated location and its indigenous culture is well- maintained. Administratively Wae Rebo is located in Satar Lenda Village, Satarmese district, of West Manggarai.
The closest village to Wae Rebo is Denge. Yet I think the best option to stay before hiking to Wae Rebo is Wae Rebo Ecolodge located in Dintor. As the location of Wae Rebo is far from schools, Wae Rebo villagers have second home located in Kombo Village, that is where children stay during weekdays for school and return to Wae Rebo on weekend.
Currently road from Denge to Wae Lomba is being constructed, that maybe next year 2016, no need to trek from Denge to Wae Lomba anymore and only from Wae Lomba to Wae Rebo, (about 04 KM). The route is forest, some steep, some are not and normally can be reached by 3-4 hours trek. If you do not bring enough water, you can take water in Wae Lomba, there is a very clear and clean water running there. The long and tough track is paid well when reaching Wae Rebo Hamlet, seven houses of cone shape called as Niang. The village is located in the middle of a bowl surrounded by mountains.
Upon arrival visitors will be accepted by locals, which cock should be given to locals by guests. This ceremony has existed since hundreds years ago. After the ritual, visitors can precede their activities in Wae Rebo, as they are already accepted officially and protected by the locals.
Visitors can sleep in Niang prepared special for visitors, where mat, pillow and blanket are provided. Do not worry, Niang is equipped with shared bathroom as well. All meals are served in Niang on pandanus mat with local produced food.
Menus served are local product, such as vegetable and chicken. And you can have local coffee here. Interestingly, there are 3 species of coffee in Wae Rebo: Robusta, Arabica and Kolumbia. You can also buy Luwak Coffee. Coffee is already packaged as part of community based tourism.
In Niang also prepared local products such as weaving, local honey (Madu Ruang), Mat, other weaving products and coffee.
Visitors can see the activities of local accompanied by local guide, such as: Village tour to see weaving, coffee tour, and Mbata Performance.
Coffee tour will take visitors to the coffee plantation, to know more about how local pick coffee, process coffee, coffee season. The guide will show the difference between Robusta, Kolombia and Arabica Coffee. How those coffee should be treated differently to get good coffee. Local people put coffee beans they harvest in a roto, pandan weaving bag. The coffee beans then dried. Afterwards then roasted on an earthen wares until it dries perfectly and tastes good. Women of Wae Rebo pound the beans using wooden mortar and pestle.
Local honey called Madu Ruang is collected from forest. Best harvest time is in rainy season, it is found under the ground. Visitors can buy Madu Ruang in Niang.
Mbata is a special performance by men with drum instruments consists about 6 persons. The lyrics in Mbata performance contains local wisdom and advice handed down from parents to young generation. It says that father plays Mbata usually to calm crying children.