Come stay in our community and immerse yourself in the Timorese culture in Baguia, East Timor


East Timor

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    within 5 days

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    Super Host

 Min stay requested: at least a week

  • Description


    My name is Eneida. I’m a Brazilian traveler and during my trip in Timor-Lest I went to Baguia for visiting the Mountain Matebian [a historical place during the resistance period against Indonesia occupation], and luckily I ended up at Mana Leo’s house. After a few minutes chatting I was invited to stay longer, for a week, and meet the students to play and encourage them to practice Portuguese. After that, I was sure that I wanted to stay a bit longer, so I went to travel around the country, extended my Visa and came back for two weeks more, and then, three weeks more. Yes, there is something about Timor-Leste that makes you not want to leave.
    So I introduced the concept of Workaway to Mana Leo, as she frequently hosts people who come to help the community. She’s an admirable strong woman, who gives her best to develop her community and country. She’s the one who’s going to manage this page from now on. =]
    Baguia is an administrative post of Baucau District. The local agriculture produces beans, pineapples and peanuts to sell to other places in Timor-Leste as in Laga, Baucau and Dili and other types of fruits and vegetables are sold on the local market.
    It’s also known for the famous Mountain, MATEBIAN, the second highest peak in the country which was a key place during the resistance against the Indonesian occupation. As it’s a mountain area there are many other mountains around, not as famous as Matebian, but still breathtaking, as WAIBORO-GUA, MAUQUEHI, RUFAGUIA, ADAITI, MAURATE-ISI, HAECONI, BICALARI, RA’A-GUA, LARIGUA, AFALARI, WAIBORO.
    It’s an active community which works hard on its own initiatives, supported by local friends and international relationship with friends in Australia, to develop its economy and giving the residents better education and life conditions. Some the activities in progress now a day are:
    • Building or rehabilitation of schools and toilets;
    • Building water plumbing into the community;
    • Making drinking water (through filtration) available for schools and communities;
    • Community agroforestry and horticulture projects;
    • Computer classes;
    • English classes;
    • Restoration of a historic building to offer accommodation for visitors and tourists;
    • Organizing trekking for visitors and tourists.

    Help is needed for all these activities.

    If you want to help while learning about the local culture and having an unforgettable experience, you are welcome to come! =]

  • Types of help and learning opportunities

    Types of help and learning opportunities

    DIY and building projects
    General Maintenance
    Farmstay help
    Help with Eco Projects
    Charity Work
    Language practice
    Art Projects
    Help with Computers/ Internet

  • UN sustainablity goals this host is trying to achieve

    UN sustainablity goals this host is trying to achieve

    UN goals
    No poverty
    Zero hunger
    Good health and well-being
    Quality education
    Gender equality
    Clean water and sanitation
    Affordable and clean energy
    Decent work and economic growth
    Industries, innovation and infrastructure
    Reduce inequality
    Sustainable cities and communities
    Responsible consumption and production
    Climate action
    Life below water
    Life on land
    Peace, justice and strong institutions
    Partnerships for the goals
  • Cultural exchange and learning opportunities

    Cultural exchange and learning opportunities

    Timor-Leste is a new country writing its own history since the independence in 2002.
    Volunteers will have the opportunity to hear about all the historic facts from those who experienced that, can take the chance to visit the mountains were the population resisted the Indonesian occupation during 5 years, experience the cultural customs and beliefs which are marked by the Animism and Catholicism, and experience the hospitability of the amazing Timorese people.

  • Projects involving children

    Projects involving children

    This project could involve children. For more information see our guidelines and tips here.

  • Help


    *️️️️️️ Sharing knowledge and implement concepts of permaculture, hydroponic plants and agriculture;
    *️️️️️️ Sharing knowledge and implement concepts of care for the environment;
    *️️️️️️ Helping to rebuild/renovate dilapidated classroom, libraries, bathrooms and other scholar facilities, solar lights and gutter installation.
    *️️️️️️ Cultural exchange;
    *️️️️️️ Language Practice (Portuguese/English);
    *️️️️️️ Helping with computers/computer classes/internet;
    *️️️️️️ Art, music and sport classes
    *️️️️️️ Helping to rebuild/renovate dilapidated classroom, libraries, bathrooms and other scholar facilities, solar lights and gutter installation.

  • Languages spoken

    English: Fluent
    Indonesian: Fluent
    Portuguese: Fluent

  • Accommodation


    Shared room and main meals are provided by a host family.
    Be aware that people here have a humble life, so expect bucket shower and simple meals with rice, vegetables and leaves.

  • What else ...

    What else ...

    *️️️️️️*️️️️️️*️️️️️️Minimum time expected for a volunteering work is 1 WEEK.*️️️️️️*️️️️️️*️️️️️️


    Infrastructure is one of the major issues in the country. Coming to Baguia requires a great deal of patience and will.
    There is no accurate schedule for public transportation and it only leaves the terminal after being filled of people or goods. Smoking on public transportation is not allowed, but it frequently happens. Loud music is often played during the trip, as well.

    To get to Baguia, first you need to take a bus from Dili [Terminal Becora] to Baucau [which takes around 4:30h and costs USD4], and then another bus to Baguia [which takes around 5:30h and costs USD3].

    Public transportation from Baucau to Baguia leaves from 7:30AM to 10:00AM. So, we suggest the volunteers to take the chance to visit Baucau and stay overnight there. To make Dili – Baguia in the same day the volunteers should leave Dili around 3AM.

    A bus from Baguia to Baucau leaves daily from 00:00AM to 02:00AM.


    Baguia is generally warm, but it can get colder at night or up to the mountain.

    It’s generally safe to visit any province in Timor-Leste. However, we advise the volunteers not to walk around by night time due to lack of street lighting and also being mindful of their belongings, especially when using public transportation.


    Timorese culture is rich of customs, tradition and beliefs. We kindly ask you to be respectful towards people and land [the mountains are considered sacred places], always asking if you can do something or going somewhere by yourself.

    People in Baguia are generally very simple, humble and hospitable. They can be quite timid and reserved. They offer coffee or tea to the visitors as a symbol of welcoming to their homes and community. It’s a gesture of goodwill, so we encourage the volunteers to always accept it.

    Taking photographs and videos of the community and activities is allowed, but the volunteers should ask permission and use discernment when photographing certain scenes.


    Baguia is quite remote and rural. The culture is conservative and very simple. Smoking and drinking are not encouraged during the volunteering period, as you are going to deal with students and young people and it’s not the kind of example that should be given to them.

    An exception is when locals invite you to smoke or drink as form of welcome or especial occasion.


    Generally, Timorese people are conservative, especially in the country side, so it’s important to be dressed appropriately during the volunteering period.


    It’s a safety area, but with lack of street lighting, so we encourage the volunteers to be inside the host’s house at 7:00PM. In case it’s needed to buy some suppliers, find a signal or be outside at night, please let the host know, so they can get a companion.

    It’s a rural and agricultural area, most people are farmers, and they have the routine of sleeping early and waking up early as well, so it’s recommended to the volunteers to be quiet from 9:00PM onwards.

    Frequently there is power cut for few hours.


    There is no wifi signal, so if you need to be connected, we encourage you to get a local SIM card and internet data, which could be daily, weekly or monthly.

  • A little more information

    A little more information

    • Internet access

    • Limited internet access

      Limited internet access

    • We have pets

    • We are smokers

    • Can host families

  • How many Workawayers can stay?

    How many Workawayers can stay?

    More than two

  • ...

    Hours expected

    Maximum 4-5 hours a day, 5 days a week

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Host ref number: 272649564828