Pasola Festival in West Sumba, East Nusa Tenggara

Pasola Festival in West Sumba, East Nusa Tenggara, – Pasola Festival is an annual festival of the people of West Sumba, East Nusa Tenggara. People marks the growing season with Pasola Festival.

Pasola comes from the word “sola” or “hola”. This means a kind of wooden javelin for throw. Participants pasola ride horse while throwing javelin to the opposing group.

Having got ‘pa’ become (pa-sola, pa-hola), means to be a game. So pasola or pahola means game of agility throwing wooden javelin over the horseback that is being raced hard between two opposite groups.

Pasola Festival is part of a series of traditional ceremonies Sumbanese people who follow the Marapu religion.

Festival Pasola in West Sumba
Festival Pasola in West Sumba. (Foto:

The local authorities require blunt spearheads. But still pasola festival including dangerous rituals, not infrequently there are participants who are injured. Even died.

Pasola Festival usually exist in three districts in West Sumba: Wanokaka, Lamboya, and Gaura. Generally Pasola festival in Lamboya held in February. While at the Wanakoka and Gaura pasola festivals every March.
Pasola Festival in West Sumba
Pasola, cultural icon and tourist attraction in West Sumba. (Foto:

There are two traditions or rituals that complement the pasola. That is the tradition of Bale nyale ritual and Pajura ritual.

In the morning before pasola, the community held Bau nyale ritual. This is a tradition of catching marine worms. People in West Sumba believe that nyale worm is the incarnation of a Princess Mandalika.

While in the middle of the night held Pajura ritual. This is a boxing fighter match. Boxers are young children using boxing gloves made of reeds.

Pasola has become a cultural icon and tourist attraction of Sumba Island. So you have to watch it.

Come to West Sumba, watch Pasola and other cultural traditions. And enjoy the beautiful nature of Sumba.

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