Rituals and Heritage of Mount Bromo

Rituals and Heritage of Mount Bromo

“I am Tenggerese, and our people are descendants of the 13th-century  Majapahit Kingdom”, the flower seller said as he adjusted his bouquets. “Please leave these flowers on the crater rim and offer a prayer. This offering will make the gods of the mountain very...
The Dark Night – Bali

The Dark Night – Bali

Life in Bali revolves around ceremonies, and one of the major highlights in the Balinese Calendar is Nyepi, the Day of Silence. The three to five day period leading up to Nyepi Day is one of the most exciting, colourful and festive times on the island. However, from...
Sebangau – The Archipelago Journal

Sebangau – The Archipelago Journal

In less than two hours, you can fly from the bustle of Jakarta to the fringe of Sebangau National Park in Kalimantan Indonesia Borneo, world-famous for its orangutans. Stephanie Brookes takes an exotic river journey. I start my trek into Sebangau National Park at...
A Stone Chair Village, Lake Toba, Sumatra

A Stone Chair Village, Lake Toba, Sumatra

On Samosir Island, Lake Toba lies the little village of Ambarita. Tales abound there of rough justice, and possibly even cannibalism. While these are from long ago, more benign old ways live on, for example in the village’s traditional architecture, and an ancient...
Setulang – Deep in the forest, North Kalimantan

Setulang – Deep in the forest, North Kalimantan

When I arrived at Setulang Village, I noticed there were no supermarkets to be seen anywhere. The village is located in North Kalimantan, miles from any major town. It is nestled along the edge of a forest which dates back 130 million years. I was greeted by my lovely...
The Magic Eels Of Ambon

The Magic Eels Of Ambon

On a sailing voyage through the Maluku Islands, I found myself in Ambon. The Portuguese sailed into these waters in the 16th century with their tall ships, on a quest to conquer the islands. They built forts and attempted to monopolise the spice trade, which was...
REFLECTIONS 2018

REFLECTIONS 2018

Each month, NOW! Jakarta brings you tales of hidden heritage from our intrepid traveling duo Stephanie Brookes, writer, and David Metcalf, photographer. During 2018 they have brought stories back from Lombok, Sumba, Lembata, Belitung, Sulawesi, Kalimantan and Bali....
EAT PRAY LOVE – Falling in Love with Bali

EAT PRAY LOVE – Falling in Love with Bali

—There’s more to Bali than beach clubs and Bintang. Stephanie Brookes gets an intimate glimpse into the elaborate preparations for Galungan, a festival that reminds you of the spiritual charms of the island— Galungan is a wonderful time for the Balinese, Ibu Wayan, an...
Celebrating Indigenous Dance and Rituals at Gawai Festival

Celebrating Indigenous Dance and Rituals at Gawai Festival

The crocodile appeared on the stage in the form of a human. The dancer writhed and slithered, accompanied by the deep tones of the didgeridoo. This opening dance at the 2018 Gawai Festival was received with loud cheers from the crowd.The Gawai festival committee had...