Oebelo & Oesao
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Oebelo, a small salt-mining town 22km from Kupang on the Soe road, is notable for a terrific Rotenese musical-instrument workshop, Sasandu, run by Pak Pah and his family. Traditional 20-stringed harps, aka sasando (featured on the 5000Rp note), are made and played in all sizes. Pak may treat you to a haunting instrumental number, or a perversion of Yellow Submarine.
Oesao is another 6km down the road and has a war memorial dedicated to the 2/40th Australian Infantry Battalion. It also happens to have one marvellous sweets shop. Cucur Sitepu Oesao, located just east of the main market serves a variety of traditional Timorese cakes. Our favorites were the pancakes stuffed with cream and the sublime flying saucer–shaped discs of fried dough stuffed with candied rice. Your driver will know the place. Stock up for the road.