Medan, Part 6 – Tomb of King Sidabutar

By jo.yean - August 17, 2013

Tomok, where the the Tomb of King Sidabutar is located a short walk away from the lake, at a little uphill from the main road passing through a small alley with souvenir stalls. Before entering the grave, one is required to put on the Ulos of the Batak to show respect, this is available at the gate.


Tomok is a traditional village with beautiful houses and ancient tombs, a gateway to Samosir and one of the main landing-points on the island. Rows of stalls sell an array of handicraft, traditional ulos cloth and Batak musical instruments. According to this site, King Sidabutar was the first man ever set foot on Samosir Island. He and his descendants reside in an area which is now known as the small town of Tomok. Before the arrival of Christianity to the island, they practice an indigenous belief called Parmalim which is another form of animism. In the 19th Century, European missionaries successfully converted this society into Christianity, which occurred during the reign of the third king of Sidabutar family. The 200-year-old stone sarcophagus of King Sidabutar at tomok built in the shape of a ship is its most famous sight and is the evident to this.

The first and the second King sarcophagus. The first King with his masculine features are sculpted on the sarcophagus.


The second King with a lady behind is said to be the beloved of the king. The beauty of the village and the love of his life. However, on the wedding day; his beloved decline to be his wife. The King with his magic powers made her a crazy woman and ran off into the woods. According to the guide, she had not been found till now.


The pillars and roof of the Batak village are ornamented with lizards and breast. The lizard carving represents the high adaptability toward life of the Batak, the ability to live everywhere in any conditions. The breast represents the high nobility of women. The high respect they have of women, the more child bearing women earns a higher respect.

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