Bena Village was really great. I liked it so much I spent hours there. But it’s not the only traditional Ngada village near Bajawa.
Luba village is practically right next door to Bena, but for some reason fewer people visit. It’s dramatically located on the slopes of the volcanic Mt. Inerie.
There weren’t as many locals around, and all the kids were at the school next door, but it was certainly worth a wander.
All of these villages are easily accessible by motorbike from Bajawa. I’m a big advocate of independent travel, so I advise just going on your own. They aren’t difficult to find, and there are always people around to ask directions. Just say “di mana Luba?” and they will point you in the right direction.
I saw some folks with a guide, and he talked talked talked. The tourists listened intently, and only talked to him. By being there alone, I was forced to actually interact with the locals. I see this as a good thing!
Sure, the guide provided insight, but so does Google!