Ruteng is a Hinterland east of the port area of Labuhan Bajo and close to the other ports of West Manggarai regency and it really another 'passing through' area in Flores's western area. whether you area heading to Komodo and the eastern islands of extensive protected wildlife and or towards the east in search of incredible peaks and mountains it is likely that you will find Ruteng a convenient stopping point. Ruteng is a beautiful place to explore when passing trough or residing in any of the coastal area in the west, southwest and northwest of the Flores Island.
Ruteng is a town that deals will the export of the tropical fruits and vegetables from which the farmers of its surrounding areas produce as the largest industry and traditional of the area. Beautiful traditional villages surround the large town, these villages extend high into the mountains offering cooler and more humid mountain fresh climates with amazing sunrise views and the ability to grow and sustain a larger selection of crops. crops here include Pineapple, cinnamon, cloves, sweet potato and many other spices and fruits.
Points and areas of interest that Ruteng has to offer include Golo Curu, the 'welcome mountain' this beautiful view point can be reached by heading out from Ruteng towards Reo but going straight after the bridge when instead of following the main road round to left. from here you area lead to an unpathed road that is only a 20 minute to the top. As with most of the Mountains in the Flores area, Golo Curu is subject to clouds manifesting around its peak during the day but is almost always clear in the morning, if you make it for first light you will witness an incredible sunrise over the city of Ruteng and its surrounding mountains and hills. upon the mountain of Golo Curu the very top is obstructed by vegetation but a little further down there are some excellent panoramic viewpoints. there is also an alter to the virgin Mary after a reported sighting and message that one should be built, the church agreed to build it but so far this is where the story ends.
Another worthwhile experience is to visit and witness a local marriage, marriages are an interesting and pleasant event and usually feature one of the most potent elements of Flores' culture, the whip fighting. Whip fighting is a social display that is more of a dance then a fight but does feature a competitive edge. The whole ceremony is a good experience and if you are appropriately dressed and know how to behave according to the customs then you will be warmly welcome even as a stranger. The best way to look for this if you are interested is to ask in Indonesian at the market or employ the help of someone who speaks English to help you and advise you on how to behave and what to wear.