Around the world there are some traditional houses and accommodations that the locals have been living in for centuries. Let’s take a look at 5 of the very best.
5. Mbaru Niang
These ‘drum houses’ are traditionally called mbaru niang. The indigenous people of Flores have been using them in their villages, in particular the townships of Wae Rebo and Manggarai, for many centuries. The houses are made from wood and bamboo and are almost always conical in shape.
Traditional houses in Korea are known as a hanok. While these hanok houses are becoming more and more rare in cities these days, many of the hanok villages, such as at Bukchon and Namsangol in Seoul, are preserved and have become tourist attractions in their own right. They are built of stone and do not have an upstairs, whereas the floor of the hanok is also heated to prepare the residents for the long, cold Korean winters. Read more about experience at Bukchon Hanok Village.
The Mongolian Ger is a circular shaped tent that insulates heat within and can be found all over Mongolia, from propping up beside stone houses in the city to laying alone in the vast expanse of the Gobi Desert.
In the central parts of the Indonesian island of Sulawesi, you will find Tongkonan houses, which have been the traditional design of abode for the reclusive Toraja people for many centuries. These houses are distinguished by their oversized roofs, which are often built in the shape of a boat. The Toraja People like to decorate their Tongkonan with elaborate artefacts, including skulls and skins of local animals such as buffalo. Read more about my experiences in the Tongkonan houses.
1. Fujian Tulou
The alien-like Fujian Tulou dwellings in rural and mountainous areas of southern China were built as early as the 12th century. They are usually circular in shape (although some are rectangular) and are up to 5 stories high. Inside the Tulou can be up to 80 families, and their wealth and status determine the level at which they reside (the aristocrats of the community live on the top floor, whereas the peasants live at the bottom, likely with the rats).