Sisingamangaraja Palace is a preserved former residence of Batak kings in the Lumban Raja village, Baktiraja District, Humbahas. It is in Bakkara Valley, about 6 hours from Medan or 1 hour from the nearest airport. To see it on the map, click here.
1. The palace. The palace is the symbol of the modern Batak Kingdom that lasted for 400 years (~1500 to 1907). It features four traditional Bolon houses, each carved in detail and decorated with beautiful ornaments, in the area of about 1 hectare (2.5 acres). The buildings are not the real ones but have been rebuilt to resemble the original structures.
2. The graves of 11 kings. Its yard has the graves of 11 kings (instead of 12), as their final successor King Sisingamangaraja XII has been named a national hero and his grave moved from here to Balige (see Tomb of King Sisingamangaraja.) Interestingly, according to the residents, the tomb of King Sisingamangaraja X only has his head since the rest of his body was left at the place where he lost the war to King Rao. There are some versions of the story about King Rao. According to one of them, he was the king’s nephew who revenged because Sisingamangaraja dispelled Rao’s parent for same-clan marriage. This type of marriage has been a taboo among Batak until today.
3. The seer stone. Outside the compound, there is a stone 80 centimeters (3 ft) in diameter fenced with iron. Its name is Batu Siungkap-ungkapon. The ancestors used the rock as the site to predict important matters, especially in agriculture. According to the legend, they would perform the ritual for seven days and seven nights before carrying out farming activities.
What to Enjoy
Tour the complex to see details of the palace buildings. Note each extraordinary work of art on the houses. Also, learn history of the kingdom from your travel guide. Those kings are the heroic figures among local people.
What to Expect
Entrance is free, but you are kindly to tip the guards.
What Visitors Say
“This is an amazing place for International tourism, you can reach this place for about 45-60 minutes from Silangit Airport. Not only the castle, you can enjoy Toba Lake view and swim as far as you can, hehehe, or if you have jet-sky, that will be awesome, an then enjoy traditional house of Batak Tribe and try some culinary. Horas!!” Ronald Sianipar (Source)
“Great place to check traditional Bataknese house at the palace if the late King Sisingamangaraja. This place is recently upgrade but there is gap in the information for visitors.” Heru Prama Yuda (Source)
“Many good spots for takes pictures.” Riel Niro (Source)
“The facilities at Sisingamangaraja Palace are also quite complete. Visitors will have no trouble to find toilets or trash cans. Meanwhile, to maintain the authenticity and cleanliness of historical buildings, visitors are asks to remove their footwear when enter the Sisingamangaraja Palace.” Valent Huba (Source)
“October 2018 I came to this palace to see directly the palace of His Majesty King Sisingamangaraja XII…come a long journey from Bengkulu to Humbahas Regency..i miss it and someday I will come back again..” Balai Bahasa (Source)
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