Aceh Special Region Local Customs
'Black Jack Kopi', Banda Aceh
'Black Jack Kopi', Banda Aceh
Sweet treats at a coffee shop, Banda...
A small warung selling local coffee,...
'Dakota Kopi', one of the many coffee...
A porter at...
Reviews from VirtualTourist Members
Smiling face and PA KHABA
As entering Sultan Iskandar Muda Airport, some porters greeting us with their smiling faces, they ask a Question if there are any luggage to claim, I just reply him with aceh lingo 'PA KHABA' means how are you and said that I have no luggagge at all. Acehness are very kind people, even they are a porter, just give them your smiling face and if you don't need them just tell them -no thank you- and said that we do a claim baggagge with ourself, it was satisfy them and they'll go leave us with their smiling face
After a while working in Aceh, I found out that the Acehnese has a great sense of culture. They love dance, poets and other cultural performance. One of my favorites is Acehnese dance performance. If you are interested to see Acehnese dance performance, you can check “Taman Budaya” and “Turkish Community Centre”. The dance also performed in ceremonial events.
Drink Coffee at "Kedai"
Most of Acehnese like to "hang out" in a "Kedai", some kinda coffee shop where they drink coffee and talk for hours. The strange thing is that they seems like spending more times in Kedai instead of at their working places.
One of local customs in Indonesia is the people like to gather for any kind of purposes. Meeting, discussion, rest, etc. If Java has the community center name “Bale” and in Bali, people use to call it as “Bale Banjar”, in Aceh the community center known as “Meunasah”. Meunasah is multi-purposes for Acehnese, and it’s a center for community, especially those who live in rural area, to hold gathering, discussion, prayer, etc.
Without a presence of Starbuck, soon I look for the place to satisfy my coffee addiction. And I found one!! Ulee Kareeng is a place where people usually go for coffee in Banda Aceh. The coffee is delicious. “Warkop” stands for Warung Kopi is a literally translate for coffee shop. The traditional coffee shop is unfortunately male domination. You will be disappointed if you imagine cozy corner where you can contemplate or reading a book. Coffee shop in Aceh is more like “gathering place” where people discuss about anything, from daily life to political matter. Better go with male companion if you wish to sip a coffee here.One of my favorite coffee is "sanger". It's basically a coffee with layer of milk at the bottom of the glass. It's a Caffee Lattee of Aceh version I guess :) But the taste is nice!!
Ramadhan, a holy month for Moslem, is an important month for Acehnese. Moslem is fasting from dusk to down, and in Aceh, there are rarely restaurant open during the daytime. And during night time, people activity are mostly revolve around Mosque and other religious activities. The nice thing about Ramadhan is there will be a lot of home made food seller for “break the fasting”, along the main road of Banda Aceh city. Other nice thing is Invitation for break the fast together.
Strong Islamic Culture
Aceh is famous known as “Macca Verandah”. History shows a strong influence of Islamic principal which a part of Acehnese culture. Be respectful and never hesitate to ask question if you are not clear about something. Although it seems reserved and very conservative, many Acehnese I met are really open minded. And generally Acehnese people are friendly, although sometimes Acehnese has a little bit “rough” in their attitude, but it’s not what they really are. They are very friendly.
Cover Up Girls!!
Well, it’s not really matter for non-Acehnese or especially Westerner. But it’s better to be prepared. Woman traveler better to bring scarf and avoid to wear revealing clothes. Tshirt short sleeves or long sleeves are enough. And long trouser is a wise choice when you move around.
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Reviews and photos of Aceh Special Region local customs posted by real travelers and locals. The best tips for Aceh Special Region sightseeing.