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Karot can be accessed from Labuan Bajo by public transport via Nggorang within 4 hours. Transport from Labuan Bajo to Nggorang ranges from 10000 and 15000 IDR and takes approximately 30 min. From Nggorang, public transport (Autokol) departs from the police station.
Nggorang – Karot (around 4 hours): departure on Mondays, Tuesdays, Wednesdays, Fridays and Saturdays between 11am and 1pm
Karot – Labuan Bajo (around 4 hours): departure on Mondays, Tuesdays, Wednesdays, Fridays and Saturdays between 5am and 6am
- Price: IDR 40.000 per person
Please be aware that public transportation often runs late and that these prices may increase in the future due to the rising costs of petrol on the island of Flores.
Karot is a small agricultural village located in the mountainous region of West Manggerai, located along the Trans-Flores route, between Labuan Bajo and Ruteng. The majority of Karot’s villagers practice Catholicism and speak Bahasa Manggerari, as well as the administrative language, Bahasa Indonesia. The village is comprised of modern brick-built houses, as well as many traditional gedek (woven bamboo) houses. Most of the houses contain their own gardens and larger, more forested plots of land are set aside to grow coconut, palm, hazelnut, and clove trees. This village offers a quiet location for visitors and the opportunity to participate in a wide variety of local craft activities.
Nine families have recently joined the homestay network program. These houses provide comfortable private bedrooms which include a mattress, mosquito net, lockable doors and other facilities, depending on the homestay. The bathroom facilities, located exteriorly to the houses, feature a traditional squatter toilet and bucket shower. Electricity is provided to the village throughout the day. This is a recent improvement, as the village originally received only four hours of electricity per day. Cellphone in the village is poor and intermittent.
Breakfast is included in the price of your stay. Additional meals can be purchased for 25.000 IDR per meal. You may also help in preparing your meal with your host! If you have any food preferences (e.g. vegetarian) or allergies please let us know upon booking.
LOCAL TOURIST ATTRACTIONS
- Info on its way!
- Traditional hand-woven Conke sarongs and scarves
- Knives and machetes
- More to come!
- Info on its way!
Machetes (parang) and knives (pisau) are essential tools in any agricultural village, for cutting through dense forests and harvesting agricultural products. The blacksmith of Karot produces these tools for the village using traditional methods and is providing visitors with a unique opportunity to watch and even participate in their making. In this two hour lesson, you will learn about and join in the process of shaping, flattening and straightening of metal blades and watch as the blacksmith carves the wooden handle and sheath. If you are interested in taking home a souvenir of your experience, you may help to make your own small knife. Since the entire process of knife making can take up to eight hours, you will join the blacksmith for two hours, after which he can work at a faster pace and finish the knife by the end of the day. It is recommended that you begin this activity in the morning and notify the blacksmith a day in advanced. This is a highly specialized skill and if you are happy with your experience, tips are always welcome.
Lesson Price: 50,000 IDR per person for a two hour lesson or 90,000 IDR per person for a two hour lesson and knife to take home.
Arak, also known as sopi, is a traditional Indonesian alcohol made from the palm wine (moke putih) drained from the branches of the Enau tree. Currently, there are two producers of Arak who will show you the process with the help of a local guide. During this tour you will learn about the tradition of arak and will be able to see the production process from start to finish. The tour begins with a short hike through the local plantations to the Enau tree where you will watch as the moke putih is collected from high up in the enau tree. Here you may have a tasting of the collected palm wine that will be later processed into the final product. If you wish to taste this, make sure that you do not eat any pineapple or watermelon. Among the locals, this combination it is widely known to cause illness or even death. Following this, you will return to the home of the Arak producer and will be able to participate in the making of this traditional alcohol, while the local guide describes the distilling process completed using a simple device made of a metal pot and locally grown bamboo. The guide will also explain the differences between the two main classes of arak, while you have a tasting of the two. At the end of the tour, you will have the opportunity to buy the finished product. One liter of first class arak sells for 30,000 IDR and the second class for 15000 IDR.
Price: 50,000 IDR per person
Ikat weaving is a tradition inseparable from local Flores culture. The weaving of wrap kain (saraong) is the central feature of traditional Flores dress and a symbol of cultural identity, with each region producing its own motifs. Many women of Flores continue to hand weave their own kain for their families and communities. The women of Karot offer the opportunity to learn more about the tradition of Ikat weaving and its process through a two hour interactive lesson. The lesson will take you to the house of one of the many Ikat weavers in the village. With the help of a local guide you will be given an explanation of the history of Ikat weaving and the tools and process, while you sit and watch as your hostess begins weaving. Following this, you will be able to try your hand at weaving with the help of the professional weaver. If you are interested in taking home a souvenir of your experience, you may help to make your own woven belt. Additionally, sarongs made by the women of Karot may be purchased.
Like many villages throughout Flores, the economy of Karot is largely focused on agriculture, providing the area with a wide array of fruits and vegetables. With this lesson you will not only learn to cook a delicious Indonesian meal with local products, but also be able to explore the traditional Indonesian kitchen and learn a bit of Indonesian while you’re at it. If you schedule your cooking lesson on a Thursday, you will have the added opportunity of visiting the weekly local market to purchase the ingredients for your meal. During your cooking lesson, you will learn to make kuay (Indonesian cake), lombok (chili sauce), yellow rice, and a main dish that is dependent on ingredient availability. After finishing, you will sit down and enjoy your meal with the family of the house. If you are vegetarian or have any food allergies please make this clear upon booking so that the house may properly prepare for your lesson. It is also recommended that you make the reservation for your cooking lesson a day in advanced.
This Code of Conduct was established together with the homestay families and members of the community. All visitors to the homestays should follow these rules. Thank you for your understanding!
Visitors must register in the village guest book upon arrival.
Visitors should not use water excessively, due to the scarcity of water in the village, and are asked to shower only once a day.
Being intimate/ showing affection (e.g. kissing) should be avoided in public areas and in the homestay.
When travelling as a couple, visitors should state that they are already engaged (bertunangan) to avoid being placed in separate rooms or being turned away.
Visitors should cover up appropriately during their stay in Karot (please see the section below on suggested clothing).
Visitors should not give children money. If tourists wish to give food to children they must ask an adult for permission.
Visitors should always be friendly and open towards the locals and respect the local traditions.
Visitors are not allowed to enter the community house (rumah adat) unless the traditional chief (Tua Tembong) is present. When in the rumah adat, the visitor must always sit on the floor with legs crossed and greet others by shaking with the right hand. If wearing a sarong, women must sit with their legs bent to the side.
Visitors may enter the local church and take photos as long as mass is not being held. During Sunday mass, only Christian visitors are allowed to enter the church. Visitors must wear appropriate clothing (please see the section below on suggested clothing).
When walking through a group it is polite to bow while walking with your right hand held downwards in front of you.
Always give, pass and accept objects with the right hand.
Visitors should take off their shoes before entering a house, unless otherwise indicated.
- Shoulders and stomachs must be covered, as well as the chest until the collar bone and the legs until the knees.
- When visiting the local church, all visitors must cover their shoulders and stomachs and wear trousers/sarongs reaching below the knees.