HomeBlogs Waruga Sawangan Waruga are stone sarcophagi used by the Minahasa tribes to place their
dead in a squatting position. The Waruga park is located in the village
of Sawangan, and at the Airmadidi sub-district, some 40 kilometers from
Based on local belief, these graves are made of carved
stone that are shaped like a house, a tradition kept since 1600AD. The
graves vary, depending on the profession or social status of the
There are 144 “dotu” or clans gathered together
at the waruga park in Sawangan, whose original locations were
previously spread out throughout several villages in the Minahasa
district, but these have now been gathered in the waruga compound at
Sawangan and nearby Airmadidi.
Since this heritage which
originates from the megalitic era is notable, several heads of state
have come to view them , among others Queen Jualiana and Prince
Bernard, as well as Queen Beatrix of the Netherlands and many more.
To Do At
the entrance to the Park you can see reliefs at the right and left
walls. These reliefs show the process of how in ancient times the Waruga
was made. At the Waruga Museum located right beside the entrance to
the site you will find artifacts found in the graves. The Museum has
shelves displaying gold, silver and copper bracelets, necklaces, ear
rings plates and pots. These ancient artifacts are unique for their
form and carvings in stone. The Waruga sarcophagi are not dug into the
ground but stand above ground at one meter wide and one to two meters
tall. These sarcophagi contain bodies in a squatting position and are
covered by stone roofs that resemble house roofs.
Getting Around Since
the park is in fact a cemetery, you can walk around to explore every
corner of this tourist site. A cemetery for the local community is
situated near the main entrance. The gate is always locked by the Waruga
guard who lives near the location. It is best to visit this site
between 08.00 am to 06.00 pm.
Getting There This
Waruga site is located some 40 kilometers from Manado, capital city of
the province of North Sulawesi. To reach this location, you can take a
private car or taxi from Manado, which will take less than one hour.