Rote or Roti, is an island and regency which part of East Nusa Tenggara Province. Rote is located in the southernmost region of Indonesia. The island is famous for its distinctiveness palm cultivation, coastal tourism, Sasando music, and custom hats of Ti’i Langga. Rote island had its statues to be a regency as Rote Ndao through Act No. 9 of 2002.
The island is situated to the southwest of the larger island of Timor. To the north is the Savu Sea, and to the south is the Timor Sea. To the west is Savu and Sumba. Rote Islands consists of 96 islands, 6 of them are inhabited. The main town is called Baa,it is located in the north of the island. It has a good surf area in the south around the village of Nembralla. There is a daily ferry to the island from Kupang, the provincial capital on West Timor, which brings tourists to the venue.
Rote has many historical relics including fine antique Chinese porcelain, as well as ancient arts and traditions. Many prominent Indonesia nationalist leaders were born here. Moreover, there is popular music instrument Sasando, which is made of palm leaves, is particularly made at this island. Rote Islands are peace and tranquilly personified where the people are still predominantly influenced by their past beliefs and traditions. Even today, following the ancient tradition, the Kingdom of Rote is divided into two groups of clans named “Sunrise” and “Sunset”. Each clan performs it’s own rituals during the yearly “Hus” festival.
Rote is consists of rolling hills, terraced plantations, and acacia palm, savanna and some forests. The Rotinese people are depend on its Savunese and lontar palm for living, as well as fishing and jewelry making. Agriculture is the main form of employment, while fishing is also important, especially in the eastern village of Papela, which has led to disputes with Australia over the water between them.
The magnificent nature in Rote is not only from the culture, but also coming from the islands and the beach. There are some destination that worth to be visited like Nembrala beach, Ndana island, Do’o island, Termanu rock and many more.
Rote is particularly well know for its surfing, each year surfers flock to Namberala to ride the near perfect tubes formed by the shallow reefs and off-shore winds. Accommodation in Namberala includes a traditional beach front bungalow resort and several home stays. The beach itself is one of the best examples of a palm fringed pure white sandy beach to be found anywhere. Diving in the area is also exceptional due to the large numbers of Manta and Dugong seen there. A boat trip to nearby Dana or Ndao Islands is also recommended.