Jl. Sapurata, Tambolaka

Sumba Barat Daya, NTT 87254

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Pasola Festival is an important annual event in Sumba Island Indonesia. Pasola comes from the word "sola" or "hola", which means a type of wooden javelin that is used to throw each other while riding a horse. Horseman are grouped into 2 teams, based on their traditional clan. So, Pasola means the game of throwing wooden javelins from the back of a horse that runs fast between two opposing groups.


Pasola's goal is to throw a dull wooden javelin into an opposition rider while trying to avoid their counterattack. Javelin is made of blunt-tipped wood and approximately 1.5 cm in diameter. Even though it has a blunt tip, this javelin will hurt when it hits the opponent.


Pasola is the part of a series of traditional ceremonies held by Sumba people who still adhere to the original religion called Marapu. Pasola festival is not only a religious tradition, but it also represents a unique social opportunity for the families to gather together. Hundreds of members of the families of the villagers flock into the village the night before the beginning of the Pasola.


Pasola begins with the implementation of the Nyale Ritual. Nyale (in local language) is a type of sea worm that is abundant on the beach at the full moon. The Rato (tribal leaders) will predict when nyale will come out. Nyale will be catched by Rato and the his community. Without getting nyale, Pasola cannot be held.

Pasola is not just a form of festival, but is a form of obedience to the ancestors. Pasola is the glue of brotherhood between two groups which are involved and the local people. Pasola described the gratitude and joyful expression, because of the abundant harvest.

Pasola was carried out in a wide field, whatced by all the family of the two competing groups, public, foreign and local tourists. Pasola can be used as a milestone in Sumba tourism, because this cultural attraction has been known to many tourists. This can be seen in every Pasola event, there are always many foreign and domestic tourists coming.

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Pasola Festival

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+62 81 392 655 696