Manupeu Tanah Daru National Park covers some of the last remaining lowland monsoon forest in Sumba. Most of the forest areas of this Park are on steep slopes which rise from sea level up to a height of 600 metres.
This Park has a high species diversity, with some 118 species of plant including suren (Toona sureni), taduk (Sterculia foetida), kesambi (Schleichera oleosa), pulai (Alstonia scholaris), tamarind (Tamarindus indica), kemiri (Aleurites moluccana), jambu hutan (Syzygium sp.), cemara gunung (Casuarina sp.), and lantana (Lantana camara).
There are 87 species of bird, including seven endemic species like the yellow-crested cockatoo (Cacatua sulphurea citrinocristata), Sumba hornbill (Rhyticeros everetti), Sumba green pigeon (Treron teysmannii), Sumba flycatcher (Ficedula harterti), Sumba cicada bird (Coracina dohertyi), and apricot-breasted sunbird (Nectarinia buettikoferi). The Sumba hornbill and the yellow-crested cockatoo are the rarest and are threatened almost to the point of extinction.
In addition, there are about 57 species of butterfly, including seven endemic species like Papilio neumoegenii, Ideopsis oberthurii, Delias fasciata, Junonia adulatrix, Athyma karita, Sumalia chilo, and Elimnias amoena.
Manupeu-Tanah Daru has only recently been declared as a National Park, and as such has limited facilities for visitors. The only available facility is still in the form of a homestay which is managed by the local community. Most visitors to the Park come for recreation after touring the cultural attractions on the island of Sumba.
Interesting locations and attractions:
Matayangu waterfall: 40 metres high, this waterfall is located in Waimanu Village and attracts a lot for visitors.
Cultural attractions in Sumba include the following:
Waikabubak: located close to the Park, this area has many ancient carved graves. The graves are a symbol of the social status and health of the local community (Kadung Tana, Watu Karagata, and Bulu Peka Mila).
Lemboya, Kodi-Gaura and Wanukaka: the religious attraction of Pasola is both fascinating and nail-biting to watch: several people riding colourfully decorated horses, trying to unseat each other at high speed. The attraction is held in Lamboya and Kodi in February, and in March in Gaura and Wanukaka.
Location : West Sumba Regency, and East Sumba Regency (In East Nusa Tenggara Province)
From Kupang to Waingapu, about one hour by plane, and then Waingapu-Lewa-Waikabubak by car, about two hours; then proceed to the Park (Langgaliru, Katiku Loku and Watumbelar Villages)
Best time of year to visit: March to June, and October to December
Temperature: 25° – 32°C
Rainfall: 2,000 mm/year (on average)
Altitude: 0 – 600 m asl.
Geographical location: 119°29′ – 119°53′ E; 9°35′ – 9°53′ S
Source: The Ministry of Forestry Republic Indonesia