SENIORS, HERE’S SUMBA, INDONESIA



 Seniors Lost in a Different World

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Senior travelers, are you ready for an adventure? I’ve found a good one for you in a recent travel article. The lost-world island of Sumba, said to be a dynamic mystery, is an hour’s flight from Bali. Chris Burch, the US billionaire investor, has fallen in love with a remote atoll in the Indonesian archipelago.

When Burch visited two years ago, the place tugged at his heartstrings, and today, around US$30 million later, Burch is realizing his dream of turning Nihiwatu on Sumba into the world’s most exclusive sustainable luxury resort and multi-million dollar foundation.

The island is home to the last-remaining Animist tribes, an ancient indigenous people who believe in the spirits of animals and plants. Sumba is at once one of the culturally richest and financially poorest islands in the Indonesian archipelago.

Seniors Drawn To A No Longer Ignored Island

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Islands like Bali and have gotten the majority of tourist attention over the years, but today it’s Sumba. Sumba  has remained largely uninfluenced by the outside world.  Discovered in the 16th century by Portuguese explorers, Sumba was incorporated into the Dutch East Indies in 1866.

However, the island had very little contact with the outside world and remained, throughout history, largely “ignored” due to its lack of natural resources and its fierce warriors, the famous headhunters.

The island is also known for its small and versatile horses. I wrote a blog recently on a nearby island called Lombok.  I wonder who counted all of Indonesia’s 18,307 islands.

Seniors Meet Kind, Sweet People

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Sumba, an island in eastern Indonesia, with a population of 660,000, is of volcanic origin, and predominantly mountainous, with lovely beaches. The people of Sumba have a rich social culture. They are kind and sweet, with strong traditions of music, dance, literature, crafts and religion.

Historically, this island exported sandalwood and was known as Sandalwood Island. The largest town on the island is the main port of Waingapu, with a population of about 53,000. The landscape is low, limestone hills, rather than the steep volcanoes of many Indonesian islands.

beautiful_children_landscape For you birders, the island is particularly rich in birdlife with nearly 200 species. Facing the wide Indian Ocean, the island of Sumba in the province of East Nusatenggara is a surfer’s paradise. Although as yet little known on the tourist map, surprisingly the island of Sumba has a number of luxurious, well frequented resorts.

The women of Sumba produce some exemplary hand woven cloth with motifs of stylized horses, animals and people, in dark blue, red and black, white and yellow natural dyes.

So make plans for a super adventure today. Set your sights on Sumba.  jeb

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