Inland market town, and a good base to visit the surrounding attractions
One of the few inland towns, Ruteng is the market centre for the surrounding villages. There is little to do for the tourist, but it is a convenient overnight stop allowing you to spend time in the traditional Todo village, as well as the nearby Gampong Ruteng another traditional village just outside town hosting a few restored Rumah Adats. I found the people here are actually more interesting, and photogenic, than the houses.
Ruteng itself is nicest in the morning, when, from a little hill called Golo Curu one has a spectacular view over the padis surrounding town, and the towering volcano. The dead are offered the same view: the hill is also home to the town’s cemetery.
Near Ruteng is also the finding place of the Flores Hobbit, more correctly called the Homo Floresiensis, discovered in 2003 in the Liang Bua limestone caves. I didn’t go there myself, because reportedly, there is not much to see in the caves.