Written by Olo Nadeak
With edits by Flores Plus editor
A must-see attraction in Manggarai, West Flores, East Nusa Tenggara (NTT), is the Caci Dance. This war dance is very interesting, because it has a noble meaning for the indigenous people of Manggarai. The Caci Dance is no regular dance – it is a form of an ancient warrior whip fight accompanied by loud drums and gongs as two warriors from neighbouring villages come together in a duel.
If you want to witness a Caci Dance in action, head to Melo Village in Liang Ndara where you can enjoy a one-hour war dance performed by village youths, led by elders and accompanied by music on instruments played by the women of the village. Performed usually to express gratitude to God for good health and good harvest, the full name of the Caci Dance is Caci Randang Uma, meaning ‘thanksgiving for the harvest’.
There are three types of Caci Dance, namely Randang Uma for gratitude for good harvest, Caci Lontong Golo for gratitude for good health, and Caci Randang Weri Leka for the inauguration of the village. Nowadays, the Caci is performed also at parties, events and to welcome tourists.